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Yahoo! wants to buy Facebook - WSJ

This social networking disease is catching

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Yahoo! is in talks to buy Facebook, the social networking site for college- and schoolkids, the WSJ reports today.

Facebook is looking for up to a billion dollars, the paper says. Earlier suitors include Microsoft and Viacom. The popular website has already rejected a $750m offer, Business Week wrote in March. At the time, the company was said to be holding out for a $2bn offer.

Facebook is supposedly America's second most popular social networking site, behind MySpace. Launched in 2004, it claims 9.5 million members. The company landed itself in hot water a couple of weeks ago, when it sprang a 'creepy' news feed on the home pages of users. This updated members about the recent Facebook activities of their friends. Some 500,000 users - signed a petition protesting the upgrade, prompting Facebook to backpedal furiously with a new redesign.

In response to the petition, founder Mark Zuckerberg wrote: "We really messed this one up. When we launched News Feed and Mini-Feed we were trying to provide you with a stream of information about your social world. Instead, we did a bad job of explaining what the new features were and an even worse job of giving you control of them." ®

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