One thing is for sure: I won't by buying it.
IGN has certainly been one of the larger and more well known hubs for goings-on regarding gaming on the Internet. People have long argued over whether or not this has been a good thing. There have been the usual accusations of advertisement oversaturation, blatant biases, articles that have nothing to do with gaming, and much more. All of that may change soon though, for better or worse, because it seems that the once mighty entertainment site is going to be hitting the auction block sooner rather than later.
What's particularly telling to me is that the article mentions that back in 2005 IGN was bought for $650 million dollars but more recently failed to sell at a $100 million dollar price point. I know that there have been seven years in the interim but that seems to be quite an extreme difference in price.
There are a number of likely factors to blame for the decline of IGN. As I mentioned above accusations of being in the pockets of the people producing games has not been kind to the site in terms of satisfying people's concerns regarding journalistic integrity. Certainly not helping matters has been what many have viewed as a homogenisation of the site from a more gaming centric one to just general entertainment including movies, tv and the like. While movies like this have been fine for other sites the fact that IGN doesn't seem to deliver the most hard hitting content to begin with probably meant that spreading itself even thinner was a poor choice.
The question now is whether anyone is interested in attaining the media based site, and if they are what they'll ultimately do with it. IGN hasn't been the greatest gaming site out there, but there's nothing saying that a proper retooling and refocusing of efforts couldn't turn it into a rival for that title. One thing I really do hope that they keep is the April fools tradition. Those videos have been solid, if nothing else.
In the larger picture this is another one of those things that makes me realize that the industry, even the tertiary aspects of it, aren't immune to the ebb and flow of things. Just as with Nintendo Power going under (although not to the same extent) this seems to be a sign of change, whether people want it or not.
I could be blowing things out of proportion I'll admit. I'm not really going to be waxing nostalgic over IGN even if it undergoes radical changes or just plain disappears altogether, but I don't really doubt that there are people that feel the same way about it as I do about Nintendo Power. I can't fault those people for feeling that way.