Tribune Inks Interactive Technology, Classifieds Deals

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Tribune Interactive, the online arm of 160 year-old newspaper publisher Tribune Company, has enlisted startup VMIX, barely over one year old, to provide technology to manage user-generated media.

Tribune Interactive manages more than 50 websites for Tribune Company papers including the Chicago Tribune and Newsday. VMIX’s technology will help manage the assimilation of user-created videos and photos, in addition to community-powered content like blogs and rating systems.

“Engaging and informing community discussion is a core part of both our heritage and future strategy,” said Tribune Interactive president Tim Landon in a statement. “VMIX technology will help us empower consumers to contribute to and participate in the content that affects them.”

With other user-generated content sharing websites like YouTube scooping up consumer-level users, VMIX has turned to white label partnerships, according to CNET columnist Greg Sandoval.

The Tribune Company has been moving more of its efforts to the web. Last week, Tribune’s LA Times announced that it would be reorganizing its newsroom to focus on delivering faster breaking news and multimedia to the LA Times website.

The financial details of the VMIX deal have not been disclosed. VMIX will handle all hosting, queuing, distribution and management of user-generated content, while the Tribune audience can gain access to content from the VMIX community as well as current VMIX partners like Fox and Warner Bros.

Also yesterday, Tribune announced its partnership with news aggregator Topix.net to provide online classified services for the Baltimore Sun next month and for 12 other papers by the end of May.

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