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Google to close Lively next month  (View post)

Andy Baio [PersonRank 2]

Thursday, November 20, 2008
10 years ago5,311 views

I never understood this product. It never seemed to fit Google's worldview, and even the standalone domain and branding were weird. I wonder what the story behind it was.

googleblog.blogspot.com/2008/1 ...

Avrohom Eliezer Friedman (AEF) [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Livley will now officially be renamed to Deadly.

(Sounded much different then I thought it would.)

Luka [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

What will Google do with lively.com ? Lively name is very close to Windows Live name.

Remember that Google also own hello.com, which is very sexy too :)

DPic [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Hahahahahahahahahahaha. Biggest Google fail ever.

Jérôme Flipo [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

[Moved from "Lively: The End." ~ hebbet]
googleblog.blogspot.com/2008/1 ...

<<In July we launched Lively in Google Labs because we wanted users to be able to interact with their friends and express themselves online in new ways. Google has always been supportive of this kind of experimentation because we believe it's the best way to create groundbreaking products that make a difference to people's lives. But we've also always accepted that when you take these kinds of risks not every bet is going to pay off.

That's why, despite all the virtual high fives and creative rooms everyone has enjoyed in the last four and a half months, we've decided to shut Lively down at the end of the year. It has been a tough decision, but we want to ensure that we prioritize our resources and focus more on our core search, ads and apps business. Lively.com will be discontinued at the end of December, and everyone who has worked on the project will then move on to other teams.

We'd encourage all Lively users to capture your hard work by taking videos and screenshots of your rooms. >>

Via Friendfeed (via Steve Rubel)

Juha-Matti Laurio [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Covered at
news.cnet.com/8301-13772_3-101 ...

PierreS [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

The best project in Google
The best compagny in the world
Thus the best project in the world.

Will they at least opensource it in someway ?

Reto Meier [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

I'd love to see an interview with the team to find out what their 'vision' was, and how far / close they believe the project got to that goal.

Would also be intriguing to know what they thought were the main reasons for the project's ultimate failure.

Mrrix32 [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

[Moved from "Lively Closing" – Tony]

googleblog.blogspot.com/2008/1 ...

Wasn't around for long was it? To be honest after seeing what it was like I never used it again.

Colin Colehour [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

I never did get to play with that site cause it was Windows Only. Oh Well....

Above 10 comments were made in the forum before this was blogged,

Roger Browne [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

I hope they keep Knol going for more than 4 months. At least we own our Knol content and could host it elsewhere if Knol closed.

Reto Meier [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

[put at-character here]Roger: The overhead to keeping Knol running is pretty negligable compared to 3D world environments. Plus Knol has monetization built in so I don't see them killing it in the same way.

Lively must have eaten a lot of CPU cycles without generating any revenue OR buzz. I can see why they killed it.

David Mulder [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

A pity they wont opensource... but even though I still had my hopes up for lively I wasn't really expecting something form it.

Shiakara [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

I am an active Lively user and like so many am saddened that Google has decided to shoot it it at the starting gate. It has been a life-enriching experience getting to know people from dozens of countries, sharing stories about life on this planet and seeing the amazing things they created with the Lively product.

KosmiKGuru [PersonRank 1]

10 years ago #

Thanks for blogging about the efforts of Livelyzens Phillip. We need bloggers to help us voice our appeal to Google. Lively is truly a unique 3D platform that has great potential and we want to do everything we can to save it. Please do tag/request fellow bloggers to also blog about our efforts. Thank you very much.

Heebie [PersonRank 1]

10 years ago #

31st December? Are you sure?

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Heebie, at least that's what Google seems to say?
"Since Lively will no longer be available after December 31st"
groups.google.com/group/lively ...

FC [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

we lively users are trying our best to petition for the site to stay longer and show that we truly care about it and why it should remain. stay tuned to livelyzens.com to keep up to date with our movement. there will be some interesting announcements soon ;)

staying alive, staying alive, ah ah ah

Belavar Planiie [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

Lively has not been given a real chance.
   It has enriched my life in these few months far and away beyond my expectations.
   I have found wonderful caring friends in many time zones and experienced more fun, adventure, laughter, love and learning than in any 12 months of "real life"!
   And...I found myself with tears in my eyes today meeting with my friends...it felt like a whole shipload of most beloved companions was hopelessly doomed to sink....like the last night on the Titanic.
   I don't care who knows it, I am not ashamed to cry on my keyboard!...and I'm not the only one!!

drtimofey [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

I agree with Reto Meier. I really think that it's because of the CPU issue that Google is shutting down lively. Weren't they had issues with that lately?

Marcin Sochacki (Wanted) [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Check out this comment on Slashdot from someone named Wee, apparently a Googler:

tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl? ...

"""
Lively was (is?) headed up by Niniane Wang, one of google's hotter engineering types. She used to work at microsoft games, and so was really pushing for a 3-D experience type thing. I personally never saw the point. But Niniane is something of a diva at google, and so she can basically do whatever she wants. Anyone cute, female and employed pre-IPO can pretty much do whatever they want no matter how pointless, come to think of it.

I tried Lively when it was an internal alpha, and just didn't understand the utility of it. I wasn't sure how they were going to monetize it, either. Or what it had to do with anything, really.

I did enjoy going to meetings Niniane held. Her being hot and all.

-B
"""

As a former employee myself, I tend to agree. Niniane was working on something along the lines of 3D web for a long time. Being a great engineer she had a lot of freedom to play with it, especially having participated in successful products such as Google Desktop Search.

Personally I didn't see the point in releasing it as a Google product, as it was difficult to merge with company's mission (organize the world information). Perhaps Google could instead spawn a separate company for less fitting products and have the team market Lively as something independent.

OTOH, maybe I am so skeptic because it's Windows-only, so I couldn't see it live in action.

drtimofey [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

[put at-character here]Marcin Sochacki (Wanted)
That's a great article. The whole picture is starting to make form.

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Marcin, "she gets all she wants in the company because she's hot" does sound a bit like a misogynist stereotype though. Looking at other comments by that person on Slashdot one wonders if the person's jumping to conclusions based on their own past problems with a Google manager.

PierreS [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Sent a mail to Niniane to ask whether they were considering making it opensource.

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Sent Google the following question: Had you considered open-sourcing Lively, or selling it, instead of just ending it?

Their answer:
<<To your question about alternatives for the Lively technology, the Lively team invested lots of time and energy into building this product. As we mentioned in our blog post, their talents and lessons learned will certainly apply to other products, and we're also currently looking for ways to incorporate some components from Lively elsewhere. We don't have any specifics to share right now.>>

PierreS [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

You see the influentblogger(TM)'s powers.
I didn't receive any response on my side.

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

PierreS, did you sent it to press[put at-character here]google.com?

PierreS [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Nope, directly to Niniane, which may be an explanation.

drtimofey [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

PierreS – too funny!

PierreS [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

I didn't imply anything by saying this. Employees in a company do not make statements. That's all.

drtimofey [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

You reminded me of how simple we all are.

KosmiKGuru [PersonRank 1]

10 years ago #

Phillipp – just realized I had posted one of your rooms "Museum of Modern Stuff" as one of the weekly top 3 on LHP (Lively Hot Picks)!!

Well, its on display now at "LHP:Best of 2008" – #8 incase you are interested in checking it out.
url: lively.com/dr?rid=983957584344 ...

...its a small world!

~KosmiKGuru

Tomi Häsä [PersonRank 5]

10 years ago #

Unfortunately Lively was too slow to use with both of my laptops, so I wont miss it.

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