is “exploring opportunities to merge with or be acquired by another media company” after losing around $15 million in the last five years, according to the Wall Street Journal. I’m not much of a tycoon — winning a few rounds of Mall Madness is the extent of my interest in such matters — but that sounds bad. But losing an Internet stalwart like Salon sounds pretty awful, too. Salon was one of my first Internet loves, a site I started checking religiously when I was still using AOL CDs and dial-up. I feel like I grew up reading Salon.

I know, I know: times change, tastes change, is this the little girl I carried, etc etc. But what about Ask the Pilot? I love Ask the Pilot! I still hate-read Cary Tennis sometimes (because life is too long, apparently), and the recently published Hack 30 list was both hilarious and terrifying. The Internet would be a sadder, poorer place without Salon — though even the cockeyed optimist in me knows that isn’t enough to sustain a business.

What about you, PopWatchers? What were the first websites you started following back in the early days of ye olde intarnets? Wouldn’t you be sad to see them go? Or am I just hanging on to the shadowy vestiges of what was instead of embracing the bright and new of what is?