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Microsoft promotes user-generated content with Popfly

User-generated content (the YouTube phenomenon) has sent the entire internet industry scrambling for a piece of its ad-revenue potential. Now, any bozo with a video camera can produce his/her own masterpiece and find an audience of millions (just like Hollywood bozos do).

What if, however, your creativity runs to internet gadgets, mashups, and web pages? Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) doesn’t believe your lack of html expertise should freeze you out of the market.

Following the lead of Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO), Microsoft has launched a new tool, Popfly Creator, to take the coding work out of creating user-built web content. It has also launched a community, Popfly Space, to host the creations.

With Popfly Creator, you’ll be able to piece together feeds to create your own custom web pages, or mash them up to create something new and wonderful (or dreadful). For example, suppose your life dream is to create a real-time display correlating the temperature in Mumbai, the S&P 500 average, and the color of the shirt you have on, in a 3-D graph? Popfly could make that dream come true, for better or worse.

Microsoft is not, as usual, first with concept. Yahoo launched Yahoo Pipes last year. Google has allowed mashups utilizing Google Earth and Google Maps.

MSFT is currently spooning out user privileges, perhaps hoping to clone the video site Joost‘s success in cultivated allure through the illusion of scarcity.

The new program is built using Microsoft’s new Silverlight platform, but the average user won’t need to know that. Microsoft is betting that, if they allow the world to unleash its creativity, some great content is bound to result — the million monkeys approach. Then, by hosting such content on Popfly Space, the company will gain the eyeballs they need to grow their advertising revenue.

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May 26, 2007 - Posted by | youtube clone

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