Following Google's purchase of DoubleClick, there's been a lot of talk about further deals in the internet advertising space. So far, Yahoo has made a purchase, while Microsoft is said to be interested, but has yet to bite. While all of the speculation has driven up shares of online advertising firms, it's also been good for investment banks, which love to see this kind of activity, whether it's in their clients' best interest or not. So now analysts are coming out with all kinds of recommendations, as banks look to keep the internet M&A momentum alive. Although it has nothing to do with online advertising, an analyst at Banc of America is tossing out the idea that CNET could be the next to be acquired at a healthy premium, if one were to use the same valuation metrics as the DoubleClick deal. Of course, the line that CNET is about to be acquired is one of the longest-running rumors there is, despite the fact that no company has publicly shown any interest in buying it. Also, to make a comparison between it and DoubleClick on a valuation basis is simply sloppy, relativistic reasoning. Along with yesterday's (nonsensical) rumor that Google could be a Dow Jones suitor, it's become acceptable to throw out out any combination of companies (particularly if one is Google or Yahoo) and argue for a tie-up, even if it doesn't make much sense.
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