MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--You can't have the Web without content. The companies presenting at this morning's content group at Under the Radar here are trying to scrape together things for people to look at and enjoy--from stand-up comedy to a search engine that tells you how to beat the Serpentshrine Cavern raid in World of Warcraft.
Comedy.com better be funny. Luckily its CEO and founder Dean Valentine is. Valentine's a longtime content creator, and just happens to be the same guy who helped create the mid-'90s TV dud Homeboys in Outer Space, so go figure. The site launched in February, and it aggregates comedy content from all over the Web, including clips on YouTube, Metacafe, and others. Everything is picked out by human editors. Like Collegehumor and Break.com, the site also has its own series of original videos with reoccurring characters and hosts.
In addition to short comedy clips, the site hosts stand-up comedy routines and lets comedians create their own branded pages. It also hosts a database of 30,000 jokes.
Curse.com is an unfortunately named but useful series of portals for MMORPG gamers. It pulls in game statistics from a variety of platforms, and also grabs video game-related videos from hosting sites. Users can pick which game they're playing and they'll get a customized version of the site, complete with tips, related news, and blog stories, and downloads. CEO Hubert Thiebolt also demoed the service's search tool WOWDB, which lets you search through Wiki FAQs for the popular World of Warcraft series.
Next month Curse.com is releasing a premium subscription service for $4 a month that gives players access to special premium content on its site and partnered pages. Thiebolt is banking on MMO users already being comfortable with using services that incur a monthly charge.
MyHollywood is an upcoming "casual game in a virtual world that's married to virtual reality," says creator Joey Carson. The site is aimed at women who enjoy celebrity gossip sites and is actually tied to real-world news. Users get scored on quizzes and gameplay in a 3D virtual world. That information is then tied in with their online persona.
The site is heavily widgetized, with bits and pieces you can stick on existing social networks like MySpace and Facebook to show off your MyHollywood.com character. There's also a premium service with specialty goods people can buy with real-world fashion to adorn their virtual self. I will definitely blog about this later, if only to see how much celebrity knowledge I've unintentionally absorbed.
The site hasn't launched yet, but we got a small peek at its ties to existing celebrity gossip sites that get reposted as feeds.
PluggedIn.com launched in mid-April (see past coverage) is built around HD and broadcast-quality content. The site's claim to fame is pulling in content that's been linked up to artists and actors, so you can have entire pages of good clips and full-length videos for concerts or TV shows. The service also has a drag-and-drop playlist creator that gives people permalinked URLs that can be shared with friends or posted to an artist page.
Stay tuned for more UTR coverage throughout the day. Coming up are demos from game makers and video exploration services like Ffwd, which I'll be writing up soon.