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AOL plans a big expansion of its blog offerings.
The beleaguered Internet business launched
, 75 blogs covering college, professional and fantasy football. Plans are in the works to add other sports including basketball, baseball, hockey, auto racing and golf.
AOL is also increasing the number of stocks covered by its BloggingStocks
, which started in April.
"There is a ton of noise in the blogging space today,'' says Jason Calacanis, who sold his Weblogs blog network to Time Warner last year, in an email. "It is much different than when we started two or three years ago. Two or three years ago, you got traffic just because you were a blog -- for showing up -- now you have to earn it.''
BloggingStocks, which currently covers eight companies, will add
and the satellite-radio services in the fall, says Marty Moe, vice president and general manager for AOL Money & Finance. There will be 20 stock blogs running by next year and more may be added later, he says.
AOL's blog expansion comes as advertisers are becoming increasingly interested in reaching people who read and write the online journals because it lets them target their messages to audiences which are passionately interested in particular subjects. The blog audience of about 32 million remains a fairly small percentage of the overall Web users, which means that advertisers tend to buy ads on blog networks like AOL's so they can reach the most people.