As amazing as this last year has been for the AOL Huffington Post Media Group, we have even bigger plans moving ahead: more sections, more international editions, more original reporting, more ways of making the site -- and the stories we cover -- social.
We've decided to kick off the first official week of the new Huffington Post Media Group at AOL with a "30-Day Service Challenge" to all AOL/HuffPost employees worldwide, encouraging them to find ways to give back to their local communities.
Greg Shove of Halogen casts the deal between AOL and The Huffington Post in proper light when he says, "AOL has just placed a big bet on the authentic web at scale," making an interesting use of two important terms.
As a fairly regular blogger on HuffPost, I can expertly say three things. I make no money from blogging, and I don't resent it; I don't intend to stop, and I don't agree with critics who challenge the current model.
AOL is an online pioneer that engenders great trust among its 250 million global users. HuffPost is on the cutting edge of creating news that is social and brings with it a distinctive voice and a highly engaged audience. In this case, 1 + 1 = 11.
If the 21st century is about "self-determination" -- and I think it is -- then we all need to be actively informed and engaged. Journalism has become an interactive, communal exercise in self-education.