Jaiku and Dodgeball are "shut down"

Josh Chandler · January 17, 2009 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/656

Google “didn’t care about Dodgeball” and "Jaiku.com was shut down"

If a journalist could have written a more clearer article title then Rafe Needleman of CNET.com, then they would have only echoed the sentiment that “Jaiku is Closing Down!”,  however what Techcrunch.com and CNET.com failed to do was address the key difference between axed and simply carrying on without Google’s support.

Jaiku.com and Dodgeball.com both purchased and owned by Google have endured some varied success. Jaiku itself has been in invite only beta since it’s purchase in October 2007 and has failed to capture the mass audience of microblogging with it’s competitor Twitter.com stealing the majority of the limelight, however what appeared at the beginning of the week to be the demise of Jaiku was soon denounced by Jyri Engeström, co-Founder of Jaiku.com who wrote a blog post explaining the real meaning of the original blog post,Engeström said in his post:

The jaiku.com domain and the Jaiku user accounts (and their friend graph and their messages) continue to live on just as they have today.  The biggest difference is that behind the scenes Jaiku is moving away from its original proprietary hosting model and on to App Engine.

It certainly appears that Engestrom again remains positive about the change citing that:

All of the code used to power Jaiku on App Engine is going to be released under the Apache license.  Combine these two changes — Jaiku on App Engine, and open source Jaiku — and you can start see the opportunity that emerges here.

Whilst Jaiku.com looked to a more positive future without Google, Dodgeball.com the other casualty of this axing process appeared deflated and despondent in a recent post on Flickr.com, however as the post progressed it was clear they were going to pick themselves up and just go and create a new “Dodgeball.com”, now I don’t want to appear to be to cynical on the matter but if Google decides that Dodgeball doesn’t quite work and columinsts such as  Allen Stern of Centernetworks.com mention that Brightkite.com has caught on as a more popular solution for location-based meeting service, then maybe it is time to move on.

And a company should figure that if a popular site such as Valleywag.com mentions that the service is “overhyped and underused” you know you have outstayed your welcome in the web world, there was little to no empathy from Owen Thomas of Valleywag who said:

Google may never have wanted Dodgeball in the first place. Large companies buy smaller ones all the time for a host of reasons: to hire talent, to block rivals from purchasing a company, or even to strangle a threat in the crib.

Slightly harsh, but ultimately true. The thing that gets me is just how blase Google can be with it’s purchasing power, exerting money not to harness and improve developer power within it’s own company but to waste money on purchasing companies who have worked hard to produce a great product and community and then adding  little to no value in a product with the “support”, a particular example of this is Feedburner.com,  many articles have been written lately discussing how Feedburner.com can help replace the gap in many services such as Google Reader, helping in the enterprise side of Google Reader news delivery, on the other hand I discussed in a recent blog post how I believe enterprise RSS readers would be using social media moreso then RSS in the future.

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