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Obituaries Site Respectance Launches With Undisclosed First Round Funding

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Solid Ventures, a Dutch VC firm whose portfolio includes internet TV operations, has contributed an undisclosed amount as sole investor in a first round for obituaries site Developed by LeftBrain BV, which includes Kazaa co-founder Richard Derks, Respectance aims to lift the humble obit from its usual domain – the local newspaper – and into multimedia social networking territory. Friends, family and colleagues can gather at celebration profile pages to pay tribute and share their memories using photos, videos and text – after all, the reasoning goes, with local paper readership falling and with modern relationships mediated over long distances by the web, people still need a way to find out you’ve snuffed it. Respectance launched Friday at the Next Web conference in Amsterdam. It lets users aggregate each of their obituary contributions and charges $1 per video download. (Via Alarm:Clock), an obits site used by some 400 newspaper affiliates and funded by Tribune Co., among others, has been active in the U.S. since 1998. It claims more than seven million monthly users.