AOL has announced a strategic content and advertising partnership with CitySearch an IAC owned company. The agreement enables AOL CityGuide, AOL Local Search and MapQuest to leverage CitySearch's local content and in return CitySearch gains access to AOL's distribution. CitySearch CEO, Jay Herratti had this to say:
"This partnership is a classic ‘win-win’ for both companies; Citysearch’s content is great for AOL’s audience, AOL’s reach is great for Citysearch’s advertisers who will gain access to qualified local customers and the ability to deliver a consistent message across the web, and both companies will benefit from incremental revenue."
Sounds like a simple enough deal to me. AOL will help get more ad units in front of Citysearch users and CitySearch will provide its local city reviews and information to AOL - makes sense.
Ask.com rolled out Ask 3D search in June 2006 and I was pleased by its simple, beautiful design which enables users to select from a couple of skins or backgrounds for the search experience. Ask has just enhanced the feature to offer users the ability to create their own skins for the Ask 3D experience. Users can now simply add there own skins to customize the Ask search background to any photo that they like. It takes about a minute or less to do and is actually quite fun.