While rumors surfaced in 2007 about a public launch beyond AOL’s official network (which would open up Blogsmith to the masses), nothing much has emerged regarding Blogsmith which thus far remains a “gated community.”
However with AOL facing financial woes (as they struggle to regain their former glory), we may see AOL re-enter the blogosphere again later on this year by opening up Blogsmith to the masses (at least for a price).
Unlike AOL Journals which the company previously shut down, Blogsmith could actually become a hit with users (especially technology and celebrity fans), challenging Typepad, Squarespace and (to a lesser extent) WordPress for the hearts and minds of users everywhere.
If AOL decided to unleash Blogsmith to the masses, they would probably have to adjust their commenting style layout (which truth be told is rather basic when compared to other blog platforms) as well as provide some decent blog templates (as people will desire something fancier than the basic “block” layout).
While it is doubtful that AOL would allow users to install Blogsmith upon their own servers, AOL could offer Blogsmith as a freemium or premium service (similar to how WordPress, Ning and Movable Type are set up).
Whether or not AOL decides to launch Blogsmith to the masses has yet to be seen, although if the former internet giant decided to invade the blogosphere with their own platform, we could see AOL regain some of its former glory (not to mention some much needed cash as well).