Tout (company)

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Type of businessPrivate
Type of site
Social network service, microblogging
Available inMultilingual
Area servedWorldwide
Founder(s)Michael Downing
IndustryInternet industry
RegistrationRequired (to post, follow or be followed)
LaunchedApril 2010 (2010-04)[1]
Current statusInactive

Tout was an online social networking service and microblogging service that enabled its users to send and view 15-second videos, known as "touts." The service's core technology was created at SRI International by Michael Downing based on two patents owned by that company.[1][2]

In April 2010, Tout spun off as its own company with SRI taking an equity stake.[2] Tout gained popularity in June 2011 when basketball player Shaquille O'Neal used the service to announce his retirement. By early 2012, Tout had received over 12 million visitors and 75 million Touts had been shared by users of the service.[3]


On July 11, 2012, WWE invested $5,000,000 in Tout Industries, Inc.'s ("Tout") Series B Preferred Stock and in July 2012, WWE entered into a two-year strategic partnership in Tout. WWE will be eligible to receive up 11,250 shares of Tout common stock per quarter for the life of the two-year agreement that is if certain performance metrics are met during the two years of the agreement.[4][5]

During WWE CEO Vince McMahon's quarterly conference call with investors held on the morning of August 2, WWE CFO George Barrios disclosed the amount of that investment to have been $5 million but would not disclose what percentage of the company that sum represents.[6][7][8][9] Stephanie McMahon, CBO of WWE, would appear on the Board of Directors for Tout.[10] Starting on the July 13th, 2012 edition of one of WWE’s weekly shows, SmackDown, WWE began airing Touts of both fans and wrestlers at certain points during episodes of the show.[5] Brock Lesnar used the service to announce his kayfabe retirement in August 2012.[11] The WWE's partnership with the company expired in 2014 and they stopped using it afterwards.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Malone, Michael (2011-12-05). "News Chiefs 'Tout' Benefits of Social Video". Broadcasting & Cable.
  2. ^ a b Lawler, Ryan (2011-03-23). "Bye-Bye 15 Minutes of Fame: Tout Gives You 11 Seconds". Gigaom. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  3. ^ Ha, Anthony (2012-03-14). "Tout's Plans For Turning Video Status Updates Into A Business". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  4. ^ "WWE Quarterly Report 8/2/2013". WWE / U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Retrieved 5 August 2013.
  5. ^ a b "Tout tag teams with WWE". WWE Corporate. 2012-07-11. Archived from the original on 2014-03-13. Retrieved 2012-08-02.
  6. ^ "WWE financials announced, what was up and down plus a guidance of an increase in the next five month". 2012-08-02. Retrieved 2012-08-02.
  7. ^ Caldwell, James (2012-08-02). "WWE News: Additional news from McMahon conference - Tout investment, PG-TV, Superstars & NXT, Smackdown dragging down attendance, big Social Media push, WWE Studios, more". Retrieved 2012-08-02.
  8. ^ Johnson, Mike (2012-08-02). "'We Do More Than Disney' - Vince McMahon Says the Company Went Too Far Into the "G" Realm, is Trying to be More 'Sophisticated' With its Product and More:WWE Conference Call Coverage". Retrieved 2012-08-02.
  9. ^ "WWE News: 8/2 Vince McMahon conference call - WWE Network, WWE TV deal with Ion, Raw expansion to three hours". 2012-08-02. Retrieved 2012-08-02.
  10. ^ "WWE Corporate - Executive Team Bios - Stephanie McMahon". WWE. Archived from the original ([dead link]) on August 9, 2013. Retrieved 2 October 2021. Stephanie is a member of the Board of Directors for both the USO Metropolitan Washington and the social media company, Tout, Inc.
  11. ^ "WWE Says Brock Lesnar Is Leaving For Good, Tout Video From Lesnar". Wrestling Inc. 2012-08-20. Retrieved 2020-04-10.
  12. ^ "WWE Partnership With Social Media Site Finished?". Wrestling Inc. 2014-09-03. Retrieved 2020-04-10.

External links[edit]