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GetGlue strikes book publisher deals

The "check-in" start-up launched a partnership with four major publishing companies--an industry that has been diving into social media later than other niches of media.

There's a new partnership for GetGlue, a start-up that lets users "check in" to the movies or TV shows they're watching, music they're listening to, and books they're reading. The company announced Tuesday that it's partnered with four major book publishing houses to launch "stickers," the equivalent of Foursquare's achievement badges, for the season's biggest-ticket fiction and nonfiction books as well as bestselling authors like Tom Clancy and Paulo Coehlo.

On board are Hachette Book Group, Simon and Schuster, Random House, and Penguin. The largest publishing house that isn't participating, GetGlue Vice President of Business Development Fraser Kelton told CNET, is the News Corp.-owned HarperCollins.

The "stickers" can be earned by "checking in" to participating publishers' books on GetGlue, which says it had 600,000 users as of August and about 8 million check-ins that month.

The whole announcement is somewhat of a notable one. The book publishing world has been less enthusiastic than its film and TV brethren about launching social-media partnerships, with much of the high-profile campaigns and deals so far limited to teen fiction series. (Not that those aren't absent here. The "Twilight" sensation has its own GetGlue "stickers.") By encouraging more Web chatter around books, GetGlue is starting to push into a territory currently dominated by book-specific start-ups like Goodreads and LibraryThing.

Disclosure: One of GetGlue's partners in the announcement is publishing house Simon and Schuster, which is owned by CBS Corp., publisher of CNET.