Google aquires JotSpot, JotSpot Server product dropped

31 October, 2006

Google has acquired JotSpot (coverage also on the Google Blog)

I’ve been evaluating wikis for rollout at work for a good while now, and the overwhelming impression I came away with was one of disappointment. Almost all of the hosted wikis are very poor indeed. You see the editing on Wikipedia? That’s almost as good as it gets. JotSpot essentially provided hosted wikis with wikipedia-like features (i.e. not many) but with added enterprisey bolt-ons like MS Word import, project management, bug tracking, spreadsheets and so on. This is where the value in Jot lies, not in the actual wiki software, which is distinctly average.

Jot had just put out a beta version of JotSpot Server – a VMWare-based system you could download and use to run your own hosted JotSpot install. We tried it out as part of our evaluation of many the different wiki tools. Other than being very hard to set up and actually get going, it really did provide companies with a way to get JotSpot inside their firewall. No more. From an email today:

At this time, we are no longer planning to offer JotSpot Wiki Server. You can continue to use the beta version for the 90-day Term you agreed to in the click-through JotSpot Wiki Server Beta Agreement but we are no longer providing support for the product. (The Term may be different for those of you who signed a paper version of the beta agreement.) Once your Term has expired, per the agreement, we ask you to destroy all copies of the software you have installed.

So now, if you want something inside your firewall, it’s pretty much Confluence or nothing (we chose Confluence anyway btw – it’s amazing and far, far ahead of everything else).

According to a JotSpot employee:

I work for JotSpot and just wanted to make a quick clarification that the JotBox product line has not been cancelled. All new business has been suspended for now as we join Google including sales of our JotBox hardware appliances. That being said, we currently have a number of customers actively using JotBoxes which we will continue to upgrade, support, and maintain.

Well, that doesn’t quite match up with the email I received from the Sales team as I quoted above: we are no longer planning to offer JotSpot Wiki Server. I can understand some confusion, given what’s going on, but this is kind of important to both Google and Jot’s customers, surely?

See other posts tagged with general and all posts made in October 2006.


03 November, 2006 at 03:27

You could have, and still can, choose Socialtext for behind the firewall. Open Source equivalent that is free. Or an Appliance that is actually serviced. Good luck.

04 November, 2006 at 15:29

Thanks for that Ross. We did look at Socialtext and I’ve been following what you’re doing since you first started.

The bit that put us off was:

“Enterprise is built for user groups from 500 to 50,000+. Contact Socialtext Sales for pricing information.”

Do I want to talk to a salesman? No I don’t. I want to get an up front evaluation of the possible candidates, and that includes price. If you can’t provide that, then we’re not going to bother with you, sorry. We’ve previously dismissed candidates for other pieces of software for not being up front about their pricing, too, so we’re not just picking on you.

When we started evaluating, Socialtext 2.0 hadn’t been released, and so the open source version of it wasn’t available. We’ve had an (admittedly brief) look since, and although I think it’s a big step in the right direction, I think that Confluence is still better.