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"AOL gets it! Steve Case gets it!" beamed Dave Winer today, after brokering a deal that sees two hundred of the most popular weblogs become part of the AOL-Time Warner publishing empire.

The media giant has acquired rights to many of the most popular blogs including Instapundit, USS Clueless, and many hitherto unheard-of sites including Hello! Katty, ScratchMyselfRedAndYellow.org, Xanax Nation, and the Scottish blood transfusion service's samizdat news blog, Roamin' In The Haemoglobin.

"The wind of the savannah pushes the pollen to the top of the mountain", said pioneer blogger Doc Searls, in a characteristically organic metaphor. "A mountain is bigger than a grain of pollen, but many grains together can create a stronger, more resilient outcrop, and they grow faster" he said.

AOL-TW executives seemed pleased with the company's acquisition spree.

"You can't really put figures on this," one executive told The Register, "but we think we have 78 per cent of the libertarian news blogs, 91 per cent of the ClueTrain Manifesto fan sites, and 59 per cent of all blogging female arts graduates, many of whom are Virgos," he said.

"And the possibilities for vertical integration are endless," he enthused. "No cat will ever go ill again in America again in obscurity."

Giving The Register his characteristic two thumbs-up gesture from his Burlingame hot tub, surrounded by two young female advisors sporting "I GET IT!" T-shirts, Dave Winer rejected accusations that he had sold out.

"When I said Big Media was stupid, and that blogs would make them redundant," he told us, "I was simply inviting Big Media to pay me lots of money to tell them that they're stupid."

"Er, the girls? AOL sent them along," he explained. "They're experts on the SOAP protocol. Ha ha."

In related news, MetaFilter was said to be signing a merger agreement with Kuro5hin to pool content between the two sites. We'll bring you more news as soon as we hear it.

Ralph Rumney is dead.®

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