AOL buys social identity site about.me

Posted by Kate Taylor

AOL has bought brand-new personal profile aggregator about.me, which lets users create a single personal profile page holding all their online identities including Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook, email and personal blogs.

As well as tying together an individual’s social profiles, about.me provides analytics allowing users to track how many people viewed their profile pages and which social networks they went on to view from there.

The company describes this as "providing users with deeper insight into how best to build and market their online 'selves'" - indicating that businesses and marketers may find it more useful than consumers.

"We founded about.me so that any of us could quickly build a personal and dynamic splash page that points visitors to your content around the web (Facebook, LinkedIn, Flickr and Twitter) - be it for personal use, or to create a professional on-line profile," says cofounder Tony Conrad. "About.me is one of those 'duh, why hasn’t someone done that?' type of ideas."

Conrad and his team will join AOL's Consumer Applications Group and will be based in AOL’s Palo Alto offices.

"About.me is more than just the aggregation of social profiles: it allows people to easily express themselves in an increasingly noisy environment full of disparate social experiences," said Brad Garlinghouse, president of consumer applications for AOL.

"Creating smart online identities for consumers can have an incredibly positive impact on AOL’s content and advertising strategy as it gives us the ability to provide relevant and meaningful content to consumers. The team at about.me has built an incredibly compelling product and we look forward to having them join the team."

About.me is just the latest of a series of AOL acquisitions: over the last year it's also bought StudioNow, 5min Media, TechCrunch, Thing Labs and most recently, Pictela.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.