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LiveJournal Shines Spotlight On User Content

LJ Media launch aims to promote selected LiveJournal communities with a mix of technical and marketing support.

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LiveJournal, one of the more-established community-based social networks, on Wednesday debuted its latest initiative to elevate its most active and dynamic communities.

The San Francisco-based company launched an effort dubbed LJ Media, a social publishing group created to transform select LiveJournal communities into media sites, which the company hopes will boost its reams of user-generated content.

The move means that certain LiveJournal communities are offered design support, along with marketing help through exposure on the home page, advertising, social media, and promotions. LJ Media communities can also elect to participate in an affiliate revenue program.

LiveJournal general manager Anjelika Petrochenko said selected LiveJournal sites can expect a variety of technical support. "First, we help the sites to redesign and to look more professional," Petrochenko said. "We offer several widgets and tools to the [site] maintainers that we tested successfully with [the site Oh No They Didn't], which was our inspiration. Those are featured-post widgets, top commenters, and there are a couple monitoring tools that we offer."

"Mainly, [we offer] all of our experience, expertise, and power to promote stuff on the home page," Petrochenko said. "Technically, they are still LiveJournal communities with their moderators, with their audiences, with their passions. We're not actually trying to change them, it's more like embrace and promote."

The aforementioned celebrity gossip hub Oh No They Didn't (ONTD) is one of the selected LJ Media sites. Other selected communities include: Anything Diz (Disney celebrity gossip), ONTD Political, Arama They Didn't (Japanese pop culture), Craftgrrl (crafting and DIY), and ONTD Games (video games). Additional communities in the LJ Media pipeline focus on popular themes such as LGBT, food, cats, and fashion. LiveJournal expects 40 to 50 LJ Media sites by the end of 2012.

ONTD is the most popular community on LiveJournal with more than 3 million monthly visitors and, as Petrochenko said, it's the model on which LJ Media was created. LiveJournal is home to 35 million accounts worldwide.

In 2010, community owner Brenden Delzer joined LiveJournal, and he is now editor in chief of ONTD. "LJ Media provides the necessary tools and support for ONTD to reach a greater audience than ever before," Delzer said in a statement. "The success of ONTD has paved the way for additional communities to join LJ Media, and encouraged other owners to help transform their communities into media sites."

Petrachenko will likely discuss the LiveJournal news on Thursday at the Social Media Week conference in San Francisco, when she joins a panel discussion called "Finding Your Niche: Social Networks Using Focused Content to Drive Interaction."

The Enterprise Connect conference program covers the full range of platforms, services, and applications that comprise modern communications and collaboration systems. It happens March 26-29 in Orlando, Fla. Find out more.

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