AOL Adds Video Clips to Media Search
America Online is feeding its Singingfish audio and video (AV) search engine with content from leading media companies on the Web. Over ten content providers will begin providing AOL with high quality video feeds, pitting the company against recently launched video search engines from rivals Google and Yahoo.
Singingfish is a horizontal search engine specializing in returning results only related to media. This is a niche technology: Traditional search engines are not well equipped to search for streaming media.
For instance, the inquiry "how to bait a fish hook" will return a video relevant to baiting a fish hook on Singingfish, whereas a general purpose search engine would aggregate Web pages associated with fishing.
To find what its users are looking for, the Singingfish engine cross references metadata encoded in streams with its own rules and annotates from third party databases. To improve accuracy, metadata is always superseded by trusted data sources.
Some of these trusted data sources include the partners announced today: AtomFilms, Big-Boys.com, CBSNews.com, Healthology, Inc., Hollywood.com, Like Television, ManiaTV.com, MarketWatch from Dow Jones & Company, The One Network, and ROO Media.
Other high profile partners are MSNBC, NPR, and Reuters.
"With the growing amount of video content available freely on the Web, consumers rely daily on our leading Singingfish search platform to discover new and interesting content," said Karen Howe, Vice President and General Manager of Singingfish. "The different video genres that these partners represent – from entertainment, news and sports to education, films and animation – add even greater depth and variety to our ever-increasing index, helping us to deliver more meaningful and relevant search results."
AOL took Singingfish off the ice in November 2004, refreshing its front page with a new look and more powerful search tools. Prior to that, the Singingfish Web search was a merely a demonstration for licensees including Microsoft, RealNetworks and InfoSpace.
Singingfish also powers AV searches within the AOL client software.
Although AOL did not actively promote the site, word of mouth marketing helped grow an audience on the Web and Singingfish began receiving approximately 700,000 queries per day on its Web front-end with 7 million on the back-end. Howe told BetaNews, through an AOL spokesperson, that search page traffic has remained steady that since November but back-end traffic has increased to over 8 million queries per day.
This bump in queries is attributed to Lycos, Dogpile and Excite licensing the service.