Type of site
Web search engine
Owner Disney Interactive
(The Walt Disney Company)
Launched January 10, 1994; 23 years ago (1994-01-10)
Current status Closed

Infoseek was a popular search engine founded in 1994 by Steve Kirsch.

Infoseek was originally operated by the Infoseek Corporation, headquartered in Sunnyvale, California.[1] Infoseek was bought by The Walt Disney Company in 1998, and the technology was merged with that of the Disney-acquired Starwave to form the network. Since then it has been replaced with Yahoo! search and is no longer in use.


By September 1997, Infoseek had 7.3 million visitors per month.[2] It bought out the WebChat Broadcasting System in April 1998. Infoseek was bought by The Walt Disney Company in 1998, and the technology was merged with that of the Disney-acquired Starwave to form the network.

Infoseek was the first search engine to sell advertising on a CPM, Cost Per Thousand Impressions, basis. In 1997 the first Cost Per Click programs, as well as the precursor to pop-ups called daughter windows, was sold by east coast sales executive Robert Formentin to Grey Advertising for a Procter & Gamble Pampers campaign.

In 1998, Infoseek was the first internet company to develop and launch behavioral targeting via its UltraMatch targeting algorithms. In 1999, Infoseek engineer Li Yanhong moved to Beijing, China and co-founded the search engine Baidu. In February 2001, Disney decided to cancel the service and lay off all staff. Eventually,[when?] the hosting service was shut down. Also in 2001, Bernt Wahl, Andy Bensky and 15 software engineers, all Infoseek employees, led a management buyout attempt from Disney but were ultimately rebuffed.

Infoseek's Ultraseek Server software technology, an enterprise search engine product, was sold in 2000 to Inktomi. Under Inktomi, Ultraseek Server was renamed "Inktomi Enterprise Search". In December 2002 (prior to the Yahoo! acquisition of Inktomi), the Ultraseek product suite was sold to a competitor Verity Inc, who re-established the Ultraseek brand name and continued development of the product.

In December 2005, Verity was acquired by Autonomy PLC. Under Autonomy, Ultraseek ceased to be a stand-alone product and became a modular component under the IDOL platform. It continued to be developed and marketed as Autonomy's entry-level keyword-based site search offering until after Autonomy was acquired by Hewlett-Packard (HP) in October 2011.

Domain name

Today, the "" domain name forwards to the "" website. The brand name of Infoseek is now unused except in Australia,[3]Japan[4] and Poland.[5]


External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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