A couple of months ago the future of social bookmarking pioneer Delicious (or Del.icio.us for you purist) looked bleak.

Today, the service was sold to YouTube founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen for an undisclosed sum. The pair will fold it into their new company, AVOS.

News of Delicious’ shut down broke famously on the Internet last December when an internal Yahoo presentation slide was leaked on Twitter suggesting the services days were numbered.

Delicious owner, Yahoo, tried to clarify the slide and said they were looking to sell the social media tool off.

In it’s wake, a firestorm of activity online looked for ways to preserve years of organized information and various do it yourself options popped up. Competitors like Google and PinBoard stepped in to vie for attention, but a large contingent has remained loyal and taken a wait and see attitude.

The AVOS overhaul, set to re-launch by July, promises to “add new features and grow the service overall,” but keep much of it the same functionality, according to an FAQ on the Delicious blog.

Yahoo bought Delicious in 2005 for an undisclosed sum.

In 2005, Delicious wrote on their blog: “We’re excited to be working with the Yahoo! Search team – they definitely get social systems and their potential to change the web.”

However critics have noted Yahoo’s downsizing of the group and seeming refusal to invest or expand the service.

Perhaps to avoid the same stigma, the AVOS deal specifically mentions developing a much requested Firefox 4 plug-in as one of its first priorities.
What remains to be seen is what else Hurley and Chen have in mind. Delicious is the only product under the AVOS umbrella and the company is hiring according to their website.

Under the deal, Yahoo will run Delicious until July, at which point AVOS will assume control and all hosting duties.

If you’re a Delicious user, be sure to check out the FAQ and instruction on how to opt-in and transfer all your user data and bookmarks to AVOS before the July deadline.

Users who fail to transfer in time will no longer be able to log in or access their bookmarks after the deadline, according to a press release.

*This article was originally written for The Houston Press.