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Gaia Online users get to proxy-vote at the Comic-Con masquerade live via webcast on 9 October. Cool notion.

Please stand well clear of the press-release until it comes to a complete stop SAN JOSE, Calif. – October 5, 2010 – Gaia Interactive, owner of Gaia Online, the world’s most active social gaming community with more than eight million young adult members, today announced that the Gaia Online community has been tapped, en masse, to be a guest judge at the Minori Chihara Concert and Masquerade at the 2010 New York Comic Con. For the first time, Gaians around the world will actively participate in choosing the best cosplayer at one of the biggest events of its kind in the U.S.

Members can login to Gaia Online on Saturday, October 9 to join the live web cast of the Masquerade from the New York Comic Con and New York Anime Festival. A live online poll during the show will determine the Gaia community’s favorite, which will help decide the final winners. Non-members are invited to participate by joining the Gaia community at gaiaonline.com.

New York Comic Con is the East Coast’s biggest and most exciting popular culture convention and is expected to attract over 75,000 attendees. The Masquerade will feature hundreds of anime and comic book fans donning costumes in an awards show-style cosplay contest. While most events are judged by a handful of industry insiders, with a few awards sometimes reserved for fan favorites, Gaia Online’s participation breaks this mold by opening a seat on the main judging panel to a community voice. The best costumes will compete for the top honor, the Yume Cosplay Prize – a trip to a global cosplay destination to be announced at the event.

“Cosplay is a unique part of fandom and an integral part of the Gaia culture,” said Derek Liu, co-founder, Gaia Interactive. “The passion and interest that Gaians have for anime, manga and cosplay culture is unparalleled. As a community centered around self expression and dress up, Gaia is well suited to take on the role of picking the best cosplayers at this year’s Comic Con Masquerade.”

Contest winners will be announced at the Minori Chihara Concert and Masquerade at New York Comic Con on Saturday, October 9, from 7:30 – 9:45pm at the IGN Theater. To participate in this year’s festivities online, join Gaia today.

About Gaia Interactive

Founded in 2003, Gaia Interactive runs Gaia Online, the leading online hangout for teens and young adults. More than eight million visitors come to Gaia Online every month to make friends, play games, and participate in the world’s most active online community. Gaia Online provides a fun, social environment that inspires individuality and creativity. With everything from art contests to discussion forums on poetry, politics, celebrities and more, to fully customizable profiles, digital characters and cars, Gaia Online is a place where teens can create their own space and express their individual style. For more information, visit www.gaiaonline.com.

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