Google Acquires Fflick, Plans to Add a Social Discovery Component to YouTube

YouTube is confirming on their blog that Google has acquired the Fflick social movie service. The $10 million purchase, according to TechCrunch, will eventually give YouTube a new social discovery component to the service which will crawl popular social networks to glean popular videos shared amongst friends and the web in general. Previously, Fflick crawled Twitter’s public timeline to provide users 140 character reviews and commentary tweeted by their friends on the movies they were interested in seeing (or have seen). Fflick also created a sentiment algorithm which rated a movies likability by the text of all its related tweets. No word yet when the new YouTube component will go live, but the Fflick Team has already shut their site down to the public to focus on YouTube. Fingers crossed that we’ll all get better video recommendations from the union. My guess is we’ll see YouTube tie-in our social graphs into the service so it can provide us with relevant videos we may not have discovered through the service alone. Remember, a good chunk of the people you’re “friends” with on sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. aren’t part of your YouTube friends network.

This Week in Startups #69

UPDATE: I was curious to see how many members Fflick accumulated in its short lifetime and posted the following tweet (1/27/11):

Hmmm. @fflick launched 177 days ago, has 24,094 members (100% auto added when clicking sign in w/ Twitter). A success? Good buy for @google?

What’s your take? A person in the Social TV space, who I’ll leave nameless, wasn’t very impressed with the site. He liked all the bells and whistles, but couldn’t see what the hook was to bring users back after the novelty wore off. I get his point — being that I only checked back less than a handful of times. I think Google was interested in the team who created it and the sentiment algorithm that was designed in-house.

Last blog post by Fflick before the YouTube announcement — 12/30/2010:

Five Months, Statistics, and Happy New Year!

Hard to believe, but just about five months ago we launched fflick and what a ride it has been thus far. Over the past few months we’ve released a website all about movies and analyzed how the world talks to each other on Twitter. We’ve been listening to what you love about the site and also what you want to see next and we’ve been hard at work making it a reality. With all the excitement, you can imagine why this is only our third blog post, but 2011 is sure to bring some exciting changes to fflick, so stay tuned!

Some fun statistics from 2010:

* We’ve processed and stored twenty million movie related Tweets for over ten million users since we launched.
Inception was the most tweeted about movie with over 2.3M tweets, followed closely by Toy Story 3 with over 1.5M tweets.
Toy Story 3Despicable Me, and How to Train Your Dragon were the most loved movies on Twitter
How Do You KnowSkylineThe Last AirbenderChain Letter, and Legionwere the most hated movies on Twitter
* The most anticipated movies of 2011 (thus far) are Scream 4The Green Hornet, and Sucker Punch
* Some of the most active users on fflick are CinemaReelmoviepromos, andNewMovies2u

Have a very happy New Year and thanks for supporting us.


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