SOURCE: Wetpaint

November 07, 2007 09:16 ET

Wetpaint Adds Web 2.0 Message Boards to Industry-Leading Wiki Platform

#1 Consumer Wiki Service Reshapes Discussion Forum Paradigm to Make Reading, Discovering, and Participating in Collaborative Online Conversations Easier Than Ever Before

SEATTLE, WA--(Marketwire - November 7, 2007) - Wetpaint (www.wetpaint.com), the leading consumer wiki powering online community, today announced the availability of fully integrated Web 2.0 discussion forums for its rapidly growing community of nearly 600,000 wiki websites. Integration of discussion forums into the Wetpaint Wiki platform addresses key shortfalls of traditional message boards -- buried information, inefficient organization, and repetitive questions.

"Forum technology has been in desperate need of an upgrade since the paradigm was established 20 years ago. We've been successful at transforming the wiki application into a flexible, easy, and powerful communication tool for everyday web consumers, and now we're doing the same for message boards," said Ben Elowitz, CEO of Wetpaint. "By seamlessly integrating discussion forums into the Wetpaint Wiki platform, we hope to provide consumers with the ultimate environment to collaborate online."

While traditional forums generate billions of monthly pageviews, the technology and interface powering them have remained largely unchanged. As a result, it has been difficult for the communities they serve to extract any long-term value from the evolving conversation. Now that forums have been upgraded and innovatively incorporated into the Wetpaint Wiki platform, it is not only easier to carry on and follow a conversation, but to also convert the resulting information into content pages of enduring value and relevance for current and future participants.

With this latest release, Wetpaint delivers three distinct benefits that address problems inherent with traditional forums:

--  With Wetpaint, the best information rises to the top: Within a
    Wetpaint Wiki, any threaded discussion can be converted into a fully
    editable wiki page, allowing the community to transform relevant
    conversations into content pages that can then be further improved upon
    through continued editing and collaboration.
    
--  New discussion forums allow consumers to spend less time scrolling,
    browsing, and organizing:  With Wetpaint, threaded discussions can easily
    be expanded inline to view posts -- without waiting for the browser to
    refresh.  Tags allow users to associate threads with keywords, making
    topics easy to find and track, and eliminating the need to be a forum
    expert in organization and cross-posting. Thread tags also enable users to
    conveniently discover related pages and discussions containing additional
    information.
    
--  Wetpaint Wiki forum integration helps new users add value sooner: With
    older forums, the only way for new users to get involved was to dive in and
    start asking questions.  There was no easy way to orient themselves within
    the community.  Since Wetpaint combines wikis and forums into the same
    cohesive site experience, new users can engage in several different ways
    before they venture into the conversation.  Parallel activities like
    reading content, making edits to pages, and creating a profile both help
    orient new users and introduce them to existing wiki members.  When they do
    eventually jump into the conversation, they're much better prepared to move
    the conversation forward rather than resurface the same old issues.
    
To try the new discussion forum functionality, visit Wetpaint.com, where you can start your own free public or private Wetpaint Wiki or join any of the featured wiki sites to see a newly integrated discussion forum in action.


About Wetpaint

Wetpaint is changing the way people share and collaborate about passions and interests online through its consumer-friendly wiki platform. For the first time, anyone who knows how to use Microsoft Word can use Wetpaint to click and type online. Wetpaint has powered close to 600,000 user-created community sites since launching in June 2006. The Seattle startup has also caught the attention of prominent consumer brands such as CBS, Dell, the Discovery Channel, HP, HTC, and T-Mobile. These companies have partnered with Wetpaint to create community wikis for their most active and knowledgeable users. Wetpaint is backed by Accel Partners, Trinity Ventures, and Frazier Technology Ventures. For more information, visit www.wetpaint.com.

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