ShareThis Launches Stream: See Top Shared Online Content and Relevant Conversation

If you spend time reading websites and blogs online, take note of ShareThis’ new Stream service, which aggregates not only what content friends are sharing on hundreds of thousands of sites, but also any conversations about the content.

You might already be familiar with ShareThis’ discreet little green button on multiple sites, which upon clicking displays a list of social sharing (bookmarking, voting, etc.) sites where you can post a link to the page you’re browsing. ShareThis claims over 400 million users across 130,000 websites using this social sharing wdiget. Now, they’re leveraging this base to show the top shared content plus “social comments from friends on Facebook, Twitter and other social services.”

The ShareThis Stream service, now in beta, is available for publishers to integrate on their sites through either a customizable widget or an API. Readers can see top shares at Stream, or check what their friends are sharing by logging in using Twitter, Google, Yahoo or Facebook Connect.

Now given that they are in Beta, there may be some quirks. (I found a Facebook request for “Special Permissions” displayed twice, asking me to allow posting to my wall. Usually once it’s dismissed, it goes away.) Upon first glance, there appears to be the potential for a goldmine of social sharing data, especially for social scientists who want to study trends and see what topics are really hot, as far as sharing goes. Stream also offers publishers the potential to display targeted advertising based on the topics of top shared content — a service that ShareThis will launch in the future.

A snap of the ShareThis Stream main page is below:

ShareThis Stream: top shared online content and conversations

ShareThis, based in Mountain View, California, is privately held and funded by a number of firms including Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Blue Chip Venture Company.