October 31, 2006

With election season in full swing, MSNBC.com and MSNBC TV have partnered with HOTSOUP.com®, an issues-based online community where members discuss and debate the topics that are relevant to their lives and critical to the future of the country. Extending well beyond the mid-term elections, the partnership with HOTSOUP.com gives MSNBC.com users a platform and a community through which they can sound off on the issues that impact the nation. HOTSOUP on MSNBC.com can be found at www.politics.msnbc.com.

Every day, MSNBC.com will post the HOTSOUP.com "Hot Loop," provided by Ron Fournier, editor-in-chief of HOTSOUP.com and former chief political writer for the Associated Press. Loops are the discussion boards embedded throughout HOTSOUP that allow members to go deeper into the dialogue, engage with like-minded individuals and debate those who disagree. Fournier will also write a weekly analysis piece for MSNBC.com.

Since going live on October 19, HOTSOUP has already attracted thousands of members who want to add their opinions to the mix alongside contributors such as Bill and Hillary Clinton, Mitt Romney, Barack Obama, John McCain, Jon Bon Jovi, Karen Hughes, and Lance Armstrong.

On MSNBC TV, HOTSOUP.com co-founders such as Matthew Dowd, chief strategist for the Bush-Cheney campaign in 2004, and Joe Lockhart, Bill Clinton's former press secretary will make weekly appearances on "Hardball" in addition to other appearances on MSNBC programs.

"Those who visit MSNBC.com's political coverage featuring HOTSOUP will get a powerful combination of smart, coherent conversation and up-to-date news and information," said Russ Shaw, MSNBC.com deputy news editor.

"HOTSOUP.com is a community for the millions of Americans who want a voice in the public square – a place where they can connect with one another, exchange views and work together on the issues that their leaders too often ignore," said Ron Fournier, editor-in-chief of HOTSOUP.com "Now the HOTSOUP.com community can have an even stronger voice, as its sentiments will reach the millions of people who turn to MSNBC.com as a source for news and commentary."

"We're excited to be able to tap into the HOTSOUP community," said Tammy Haddad, Vice President, Washington, for MSNBC TV and executive producer of "Hardball." "HOTSOUP will allow MSNBC to bring the voice of the voter into our political coverage."


MSNBC.com, celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, is the exclusive online channel for the NBC Universal News family, which includes the Today show, NBC Nightly News, Dateline NBC, Meet the Press and MSNBC TV. MSNBC.com's driving force is to provide the optimal consumer experience, presenting a diverse range of original content and the best from partners in a rich multi-media environment that includes interactive features and free streaming video, allowing users to access the news and information they want, when they want it, 24 hours a day. In September, 2006, MSNBC.com relaunched its political coverage section at politics.msnbc.com, powered by NBC News and National Journal. Based in Redmond, WA, MSNBC.com is a joint venture of Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) and NBC Universal, a division of General Electric (NYSE:GE).


Built on the worldwide resources of NBC, MSNBC defines news for the next generation with world class reporting and a full schedule of live news coverage, political analysis and award-winning documentary programming -- 24 hours a day, seven days a week. MSNBC's highly acclaimed political program "Hardball with Chris Matthews" brings viewers a nightly hour of in-depth political analysis and fiery debate. Veteran newscaster and journalist Keith Olbermann delivers a unique and compelling hour of news every night that is designed for the modern news viewer on "Countdown with Keith Olbermann." Former Congressman Joe Scarborough brings his Capitol Hill expertise to "Scarborough Country," and in a lively review of the day's headlines, journalist and author Tucker Carlson holds newsmakers accountable for what they do and fail to do every day on "Tucker."


HOTSOUP.com is the premier online community for the millions of influencers who want a say in how to improve America. Harnessing the power of social networking technology, HOTSOUP community members discuss and debate the topics that are relevant to their lives and critical to our country's organized institutions – from politics and business, to religion and the media. A community comprised of involved, passionate, and concerned individuals, HOTSOUP will turn the pathways of influence in this nation upside down as community members help rewrite the national agenda and leaders engage with their constituencies in new ways.


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