AIM Users Join the Blogosphere

Continuing its strategy of targeting the open Web, America Online has launched a new service to attract the blogging masses. Users of AOL's instant messaging client have been given access to the company's personalized AOL Journals feature, which up until now was limited to AOL subscribers.

The AIM Blogs service acts much like a Web log, or blog, allowing users to post their thoughts and pictures and control who can view the contents of their site.

"The blogging phenomenon grows stronger each day and has especially taken hold among our community of members," said Bill Schreiner, Vice President of Community for AOL. "AOL Journals is one of our most popular community-building tools and has created an active forum where users can share their thoughts and opinions and participate in online discourse."

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Features of the service include the ability to send entries to their journals via AOL Instant Messenger, meaning a user could post anywhere with AIM access or through an AIM-capable wireless device. Also included in AIM Blogs is RSS support and anti-spam measures to prevent comment spam.

Blogging has taken off in the past year, prompting many of the major players to enter the "blogosphere" with services of their own. MSN introduced Spaces last year, which quickly grew to nearly 7 million members. Yahoo has planned a service, called 360, which should be publicly available in the coming months.

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