Pageflakes is moving beyond the personal portal page. promoting branded media Pagecasts (personalized pages created with Flakes, or widgets) from USA Today, Rolling Stone, CNN, Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive, Entertainment Tonight, The Insider, Slate, AOL, Die Welt, Bild and others as part of its new 'Blizzard' release. Pageflakes already has more than 120,000 sharable and customizable Pagecasts and 240,000 Flakes.
Pageflakes CEO Dan Cohen said that Pagecasts offer media partners a new way to extend their brands. “By embracing the Pageflakes platform, our partners are now offering Pagecasts in which anyone on the web can combine their favorite print and broadcast content with new forms of media such as user-generated content and social networking. The result is unique, compelling, and above all, lots of fun.”
For Pageflakes, Netvibes and other personalized portals, adding social networking features (create profiles, find people with similar interests, mashup content) is the way to create communities and extend the time spent on the services, which could eventually end up competing or partnering with Facebook, MySpace and other social networks.
The Blizzard release brings one-click personalization; personalized themes; making Pagecasts part of your own pages; galleries of Pagecasts and Flakes; public profiles and finding people with similar interests.
The Pageflakes site has been down this morning while the Blizzard is being deployed.
Update 11:39 PST: Still waiting...
Update 12:00 PM PST: Live