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Friends Reunited finally admits defeat to Facebook

Launched in 2000, the service is finally closing its doors.

In the immediate years following the turn of the millennium, Friends Reunited was the premier social network in the UK. Before Myspace, Bebo or, most importantly, Facebook had gripped the nation, it was considered the top website to post your details and rekindle some old friendships. Of course, much has changed since the early noughties and now everything is dominated by Mark Zuckerberg's service, Twitter and the like. It was inevitable then that the site would close its digital doors, which co-founder Steve Pankhurst has now confirmed will happen next month.

In an email to users, Pankhurst explains that he's been out of the picture since the site was sold to British TV broadcaster ITV in 2005. He was then approached "not long ago" to take back control and "try some new projects." It quickly became apparent, however, that the site couldn't be revitalised. "It has become clear that the site is no longer really used for the purpose it was built for," Pankhurst admits. "For the site to continue it needs a complete rewrite and this is just not viable."

An exact date for the closure hasn't been given, but the co-founder says users will receive an email with further details and information about downloading their photos. Going forward, Pankhurst will be focused on a new service called Liife, which is still in development and seems to be centered around sharing photo sets with small groups. If you're old enough to have fond memories of Friends Reunited, now is the time to boot up your profile and admire those embarrassing snaps one last time.

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