Warner Bros TV Group & AOL join hands for Socialthing

MUMBAI: AOL and Warner Bros. Television Group (WBTVG) will launch Socialthing, a new online platform for socializing websites across WBTVG’s digital destination businesses, such as CWTV.com, TheWB.com, KidsWB.com, DCHeroZone.com, Essence.com and Momlogic.com.

Socialthing leverages the power of AIM’s social graph coupled with advanced community tools to enable social networking publishers to attract new users and keep them engaged on their site.

AOL People Networks president Joanna Shields said, “AOL is enabling leading media brands such as Warner Bros. Television Group to tap into the power of the social graph by combining the strength and global reach of our messaging networks with our powerful social networking tools. With Socialthing, fans can converse and connect around hit TV shows such as ‘Gossip Girl’ and broadcast their passion and opinions to anyone across the Internet.”

Warner Bros. Television Group executive vice president, business management Craig Hunegs added, “Warner Bros. is excited to be working with Joanna and her team. Socialthing, combined with the stories and programs on our sites, will create a powerful and engaging combination of content, community and conversation for our users.”

The Socialthing pact will offer WBTVG and its digital entertainment destinations immediate access to AOL’s global messaging network of monthly AIM and ICQ users. WBTVG will embed the Socialthing platform – free to users and requiring no installation or download – on its family of sites, creating a social experience that makes it easy for users to share content, connect with one another, and explore common passions in a number of ways.

Socialthing will make it easy to sign-on, allowing users to login to sites using their AOL or AIM credentials, without having to create a new account. In the future, users will also be able to log into Socialthing using their Facebook, Gmail, Yahoo! or OpenID credentials.

Users can publish their online activities in a real-time feed that is distributed to their friends for the immediate sharing of experiences. WBTVG will use this feed to create online identities for characters from its popular TV shows, such as Serena van der Woodsen or Blair Waldorf from Gossip Girl, enabling fans to follow not only their friends’ lives, but also their favorite characters’ lives online.

WBTVG will also post breaking news into the feed, delivering the latest information instantly to fans and spurring further discussion.

Socialthing users can meet up with fans in chatrooms using the embedded AIM chat client, or speak directly to buddies via the built-in Instant Messenger. Users can connect and converse with all of their friends and other fans, and broadcast these activities to anyone on the web, if they choose, via the real-time feed.

Socialthing also makes it easy for users to share video, photos, articles and comments with their friend networks, starting with the AIM network and in the future adding other top networks including Facebook, Twitter and MySpace.

AOL and WBTVG will support the Socialthing launch with cross-promotion and anticipate launching the application on CWTV.com, on WBTVG’s digital entertainment destinations, and on AOL properties. The campaign will raise consumer visibility for the application and drive fans to the destinations for exclusive opportunities.

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