Judging by trademark applications and domain name registrations, it appears that AOL is preparing to announce a social networking site called NVIBE. AOL registered NVIBE.com on September 9, and they applied on the same day for five trademarks that describe interest- and location-based social networking services.

AOL acquired Bebo, another social networking site, for $850 million in 2008 but sold it for around $10 million two years later. Ouch. AOL has not announced any news related to NVIBE, nor has the domain been linked to the trademark applications in any way other than the date of origin, but these trademarks clearly describe the features of a full-fledged social network.

Fusible was first to report these trademark applications by AOL Inc.:

Serial Number: 85419192
Online social networking services; online local and community social networking services

Serial Number: 85419185
Providing a website that enables users to connect with people in a particular neighborhood or city; Providing user-defined content and content of others selected and customized based on the known or estimated geographical location of users

Serial Number: 85419176
Providing neighborhood and community information in the fields of education, entertainment, local events and activities, current events, shopping, arts, culture, and sports; Providing information about community and neighborhood livability

Serial Number: 85419162
Providing geographic information, destination information, interactive maps, and driving directions via computer and communications networks; Providing information, news, and commentary in the field of travel via computer and communications networks

Serial Number: 85419151
Providing information and news in the field of local business

When more information about NVIBE comes to light, we'll be sure to report it.

Update 9/15 8:00 a.m.: Fusible has also discovered that AOL registered five similar trademarks for "Neighborhood Vibe" in August 2011; serial numbers 85391630, 85391628, 85391626, 85391625, 85391623. They also registered neighborhoodvibe.com on January 11 of this year.

(hat tip: Fusible)