Planely, the social network that wants to make flying more social by letting you find out who else is on the same flight as you, has rolled out a new feature called ‘Online Communities’ that aims to make it easier for you to find likeminded individuals.

On your profile you can now choose from a number of different communities to be a part of – these include tech blog readerships (you can mark yourself as a The Next Web reader, for example) and frequent flyer schemes. “Our hypothesis being that people in the same community as each other by definition have some something strong in common and therefore sharing time together will likely be fruitful,” says Planely founder Nick Martin.

The idea is that a simple tick of a box to show you’re a member of a particular online group helps others know a lot more about you. “Take The Next Web as an example,” Martin explains. “I need to know very little more about somebody to decide whether spending 2 hours from Copenhagen to London would be a good use of my time than if I know they too read TNW. They like technology? Tick. They like the internet? Tick. They like to consume as-current-as-it-gets blog content in preference to celeb-phone-hacked-detritus? Tick. Let’s do it then! I’ll learn the rest about you on the plane.”

While there are currently only a few communities listed, Planely allows users to suggest other communities they’d like added. Planely still requires a little forward planning on behalf of users if you actually want to sit next to any matches it finds for you, but the Denmark-based startup hopes to work with airlines in the future to make this easier.

So, if you’re a Planely user and a The Next Web reader, mark yourself as such on your profile and who knows, next time you fly you could be chatting about the latest technology with a likeminded person rather than someone who wishes you’d just put that laptop or iPad away.

Screen Shot 2011 07 22 at 10.23.09 520x166 With Planely, you can now find other The Next Web readers on the same flight as you