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Facebook buys NextStop, will shut it down

The travel recommendation service will disappear as of September 1, and its creators plan to release its database under a Creative Commons license.

Facebook has acquired a travel recommendation start-up called NextStop--but as has been the pattern with the massive social network's history of small purchases, it will be shutting the NextStop product down. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"We'll be joining Facebook and...Facebook has bought most of our assets," a message on NextStop's home page read, adding that NextStop will be shutting down on September 1 and that current members are being offered a number of tools for exporting their travel guides. "In the next few weeks we will be releasing the NextStop database of places and recommendations under a Creative Commons license in a format suitable for easy importing. Our aim is make it possible for other products--whether they already exist or are yet to be created--to harness the collective knowledge of the NextStop community, which includes information on nearly 100,000 recommendations for places around the world."

In an FAQ, NextStop called shutting down the site "a difficult decision."

"We can confirm that we recently completed a small talent acquisition for Nextstop and acquired most of the company's assets," a statement from Facebook read. "We've admired the engineering team's efforts for some time now and we're excited to have them join Facebook."

When Facebook buys companies, for the most part, it's for the engineering talent: the company seems to prefer building products in-house or letting third parties contribute to the Facebook experience by accessing its application programming interface. Most recently, Facebook acquired a photo-sharing service called Divvyshot in April and shut it down six weeks later; a 2007 acquisition, Parakey, brought the former creators of the Firefox browser to Facebook's employee ranks.

The acquisition of FriendFeed from last summer was a significantly bigger one, and the FriendFeed product remains intact. Its former CEO, Bret Taylor, is now Facebook's chief technology officer.

This post was updated at 12:12 p.m. PT with comment from Facebook.