Imgur has been bought by the owner of Kik, Genius, and WorldStarHipHop

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Nov 10, 2017
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Popular image-sharing site Imgur has been acquired by MediaLab, a Santa Monica-based firm that describes itself as a “holding company of consumer internet brands.” The company owns a number of B-list tech and internet services, including messaging apps Kik and Whisper, lyrics annotator Genius, and viral video aggregator WorldStarHipHop.

Imgur, which currently claims some 300 million users, says the move will help the company “keep the main Imgur team focused on what we do best: creating the best place for community-powered entertainment online.” In a blog post, the company said “Imgur’s journey is far from over” and that MediaLab is committing to “investing more resources in engineering and community.”

What exactly the acquisition means for the future of Imgur is unclear, but it’s hard to read this as positive news for the site. MediaLab isn’t explicit about its business model (you won’t find much information on their website), but it seems to be mainly focused on acquiring ailing brands with sizable, but stagnant, communities. Presumably, the goal is to bundle together traffic from these properties to sell ads or data, while cutting costs by sharing the work of keeping the sites running.

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