Users watch and chat at Lycos Cinema

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Lycos Inc. has rolled out Lycos Cinema, a Web-based watch and chat video experience that lets users talk at the movies.

This launch changes the way people consume and socialize around high-quality video content online, the company said.

Lycos' watch and chat technology is a patent-pending video platform that allows users to view and chat simultaneously and in real-time.

Digital rights owners, artists and content managers can release content to an audience with direct interaction, providing screening and sampling opportunities, marketing and promotion and innovative opportunities for new revenue streams. The software is designed to protect the artist's rights.

Users can now host their own screening rooms and invite others to watch high-quality video content, while the host of the room controls the video experience.

Screening room hosts can pause, rewind and fast-forward video streams, and most importantly, chat with other screening room viewers.

Users can view profiles of other guests in the screening room audience and build buddy lists for future watch and chat sessions.

Also, users may congregate in virtual lobbies within the Lycos Cinema environment, browsing lists of available screenings and conversing with other users. For additional privacy, screening room hosts can password-protect screenings, making watch and chat sessions available by invitation only.

Future product enhancements will allow users to rate, review, post questions and recommend content. Additional features will enable independent film producers and high-quality content providers to upload videos while moderated chat capabilities make director, actor or subject expert chats available.

In the coming weeks, Lycos will roll out additional platforms completing its suite of video offerings, including the new Lycos TV with streaming channels of pre-programmed broadcast quality content and Lycos Video on Demand for users to rent or purchase everything from Hollywood hits to hard-to-find niche films.

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