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Firefox's 'The Coop' Tests Social Browsing

The plug-in from Mozilla Labs allows the browser to become a content sharing tool and compete directly with sites like MySpace.

Firefox is getting a social life. Mozilla Labs, Mozilla's research group, today detailed "The Coop," an experimental set of content sharing tools for Web browsers.

"We want to create a fun and easy way to share links with your friends, and to browse the set of links that friends have shared with you," a Mozilla Labs blog post explains. "We also want to make it easy to 'subscribe' to a friend in order to make it easy to keep track of the pictures, movies, blog posts and status information that they might be posting on a variety of services."

Web browsing, in other words, is trespassing on MySpace.

The Mozilla Labs Wiki elaborates: "Perhaps the most common social interaction on the Web today is sending someone a link. It's done over IM, e-mail, Web logs, RSS feeds from aggregator sites, bookmark sharing sites like del.icio.us, social networking sites like Facebook or MySpace, and even over the phone. The desire is the same: 'Hey, friend, go check out this neat thing and then let's talk about it!' The goal of The Coop is to ease this interaction, and merge it with similar tools provided by a large number of popular Web services."

Mozilla Labs isn't the first to do this. Flock has been updating its Flock social Web browser for more than a year. The current beta version is 0.7.12 for Linux, Mac, and Windows.

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