Mary Hodder has the scoop, which if true is huge news in the Web 2.0 world. Also quite eerie given what I wrote yesterday! Here’s what Mary blogged:

Ask Jeeves Buys Bloglines

(Updated 12:30pm. This was apparently going to be announced Tuesday, not Monday.)

That’s the scoop. Ask Jeeves is integrating Bloglines into their search system (it’s not yet live on their main site, til Monday as reported).

Noted however that on Ask Jeeves new blog (it’s a baby, three days old!) at the top, blog search, and the sidebar, Top Blogs and Most Popular Links go straight to Bloglines.

So Mark Fletcher will be their newest employee starting Monday. Congratulations, Mark and Bloglines! Oh, and welcome to the blogosphere, Jeeves!”

RM says: so (if this gets confirmed) once again Mark Fletcher’s strategy was to get bought out by a bigger company. He’s getting rather good at that 😉 Obviously I will write more about this news, once more details get released.

Update 1: has some excellent early analysis. e.g.

“Selling is a great way to get around the problem of a viable business model. Mark Fletcher was on the verge of phasing in a version of adwords, which may turn out to be a good way to make money from Bloglines … but selling should have a much faster return.”

And Rafat speculates that the acquisition cycle may not yet be complete: “…it certainly makes AskJeeves [a] more palatable acquisition target”.

richard macmanus