Amazon’s Purchase of Shelfari, a Possible Front in the Battle with Borders

In Amazon’s Purchase of Shelfari, a Possible Front in the Battle with Borders—and a Triumph for Social Book Sites

Last week, we reported that Amazon is acquiring Seattle-based Shelfari, a literary social networking site. We also noted that Cambridge, MA-based LibraryThing (which Amazon also owns 40 percent of) had some harsh words for its West Coast rival. John Cook of the Seattle P-I provided some useful insights and comments here (e.g., the deal is less than $10M, not a home run). But the acquisition left me wondering about more than just the future of these two startups, and whether it was a good exit for Shelfari. It made me think about Amazon’s strategy, and how the deal fits into the larger context of social sites built around books and other consumer goods.

Full blog entry here.

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