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Pownce to shut down after Six Apart sale

Once considered a Twitter rival, the start-up co-founded by Digg's Kevin Rose will be closing down in two weeks.

Another one bites the dust? Pownce, a would-be Twitter rival that was heavily hyped due to the involvement of Digg co-founder Kevin Rose, is closing its doors in two weeks.

It's not quite going away, according to a post from Pownce founder Leah Culver on the start-up's official blog. The technology has been sold to blog platform Six Apart, which runs TypePad and Movable Type. And its two full-time employees, Culver and Mike Malone, will be joining Six Apart's team.

"We'll be closing down the main Pownce Web site two weeks from today, December 15," Culver wrote. "Since we'd like for you to have access to all your Pownce messages, we've added an export function...(you can) import your posts to other blogging services such as Vox, TypePad, or WordPress."

Pownce, which is like Twitter with additional features like file-sharing, was so buzzworthy at its debut that people were auctioning alpha test invites off on eBay. It also had a business model, with paid accounts available for sale. But the Pownce hype died off, and Twitter gained more and more market share.

Additionally, we heard that the self-funded Pownce was trying to secure a round of venture capital. It looks like that didn't work out. This is, after all, not a great time to be raising money.

Six Apart is encouraging Pownce members to join its blog platform Vox. "We hope the Pownce and Vox communities can come together, just as the teams have, towards a better future," Six Apart's Chris Alden wrote on the company blog.

Pownce's two other co-founders, Rose and Daniel Burka, will become Six Apart "advisers."