A relatively minor development at Time Warner (NYSE:TWX) is receiving more than minor play in the media.

On the one hand, Reuters' Kenneth Li's article about the media giant's launch of its new AOL Food service is an illustration of just how closely the company is watched and analyzed. On the other hand, it's news.

Sure, I'm partial to the Food Network website run by E.W. Scripps (NYSE:SSP), but Time Warner's new online area will combine content and recipes from a number of its magazines -- Real Simple, Cooking Light, and Southern Living, among them -- as well as its Oxmoor House cookbook. More from Food & Wine, In Style, Parenting and Essence is scheduled to appear soon.

The launch of a cooking website isn't exactly earth shattering, but this one is notable in that it implies cooperation between the new- and old-school operations at Time Warner. (More, and similar, ventures are reportedly on the way.) Perhaps that's why the company felt it worth including a quote from Ted Leonsis in its press release:

The cultural, organizational and power wars that have characterized efforts to "bridge the gap" thus far have been widely and gleefully chronicled, and today's news may provide some cause for optimism.

Indeed, the content for AOL Food comes from Time Warner's magazines. Moreover, Time Warner will market the new service, as well as the basic AOL services, in its magazines. Exclusive online content, meanwhile, will be available to magazine subscribers.

In short, the online and offline businesses are finally showing that they're capable of the cooperation that was to justify the massive deal back in 2000. Skeptics will hem and haw, but today's news at least suggests that the company is getting serious about taking its next evolutionary step.

Could this really be the start of something new for Time Warner or is it just another bout of wishful thinking. Talk it over on our Time Warner discussion board.

Dave Marino-Nachison can be reached at dmarnach@fool.com.