CNet shares were up 7% Friday based on the rumors. Last month, a group of investors began gathering shares of CNet and desired to exert influence on the makeup of the board of directors.
Google investing in CNet in exchange for control over some or all of the advertising inventory isn’t a ridiculous proposition. Microsoft recently invested in Facebook in connection with an advertising deal. And in 2005, Google took a 5% stake in AOL for $1 billion.