Last week the LA Times and Mixx announced an alliance of sorts (Venture Beat), that while not necessarily revolutionary, adds interesting insight into the direction both old and new guard media are headed.  

As a recap for those not aware of Mixx, they are basically a Digg copy cat - a social media site where you vote for news items, articles, etc.     While Digg is the first and most dominant player in the category, they've been under a lot of fire as of late for allowing people to 'game' the system, and for various accusations of censorship.  This has opened the door for Mixx, a Virginia based company, that launched a private beta in September with 1.5M in first round funding.

The LA Times announcement is interesting for one thing because its another indication of major media realizing that their traditional model of delivery needs adjustment.  The LA Times has already been relatively progressive, especially compared to smaller outlets that sit on their thumbs preaching the old ways while their sales dwindle.  While the deal doesn't seem to add up to much more than a little Mixx icon at the bottom of LA Times articles, whats more telling is that the LA Times has chosen to invest in Mixx (the amount was not disclosed).  When one of the largest newspapers in the world chooses to invest in an online social media site, you know the weather is changing.    

For Mixx the announcement is an indication of how they plan to gain ground on Digg.  Mixx technologically speaking isn't really much different from Digg, so my initial impression with them when they launched a couple months ago, was that they didn't have anything largely noteworthy to convince people that they were better.  The LA Times deal, seems to point to a strategy of leaving the Digg model largely the same, but differentiate with better content.  This proves interesting, because while Digg is highly popular, it still largely just caters to the "tech" demographic.  Mixx, may break out the gates, by become the best social voting aggregator for actual news.  If that's true, this type of announcement is probably the first in a larger scale plan to integrate old guard news into Mixx and vice versa.