Twitter co-founder becomes AOL 'strategic adviser'

Among the ongoing changes at AOL, the company announces today that it's brought on Biz Stone, who serve as an adviser on "social impact and cause-based initiatives."

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CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
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Twitter co-founder Biz Stone is now a special adviser to AOL.
Twitter co-founder Biz Stone is now a special adviser to AOL. Twitter

Twitter co-founder Biz Stone has been tapped by AOL as a "strategic adviser," the company announced today.

Stone's official title is "strategic adviser for social impact." In that role, he will be helping AOL "develop a platform to facilitate people doing service in their communities [and] rally other companies to invest in and deploy best corporate practices." He will also be developing a video series discussing philanthropic and corporate-responsibility efforts on the part of companies and executives.

"My goal in partnering with AOL and The Huffington Post Media Group is ambitious but vitally important," Stone said in a statement. "Together we will rally companies to think about new ways of doing business, share best practices, and strive for positive impact at all levels--from global to local."

Stone's addition to the AOL team is part of a wider strategy on the company's part to start "giving back," it said today. The newly formed Huffington Post Media Group and AOL launched a "30-Day Service Challenge" to try and get employees to work in their communities. Even Huffington Post founder Arianna Huffington and AOL CEO Tim Armstrong are getting in on the effort by teaching a class to schoolchildren at the Urban Academy of Arts and Letters in Brooklyn.

AOL announced its $315 million acquisition of the Huffington Post last month. The deal closed last week.

Since then, major changes have been going on at the company. Last week, it laid off approximately 200 people in the U.S.. The majority of those employees worked in its editorial operation. Another 700 people were laid off from its operation in India.

In their place, a slew of journalists have joined AOL today. Many of the additions have come from traditional media outlets, including The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and other prominent publications. In addition, Howard Fineman, the former senior political editor at The Huffington Post, has been named the Huffington Post Media Group's editorial director.

But that's not all. AOL also announced today that it will be rolling out its "first round of integrated user features." AOL.com will now boast a "Most Popular Articles" widget featuring the top stories from Huffington Post and AOL sites. The Huffington Post will also feature the widget, as well as hyper-local content from AOL's Patch service.