Yahoo Names Next Chief Product Officer

Well, that didn’t take long.  Less than two weeks after Yahoo announced that chief technology officer and chief product officer Ari Balogh would be leaving the company, a semi-replacement’s been named: Blake Irving, a former Microsoft exec.

Are You Wrong About What it Takes to Get Conversions?
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SeeWhy has released an eBook with an interesting premise for online retailers. It looks at how the top 10 converting e-commerce sites drive their website conversions. The main takeaway, a representative for SeeWhy tells WebProNews is that "the top 10 converting e-commerce sites, on average, convert roughly 10 times as many visitors into customers as the typical site — 23 percent vs. 2-3 percent."

How Absorbed by Facebook is the Web Going to Get?
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Facebook’s developer conference F8 doesn’t begin until Wednesday, but there is already plenty of news about the company’s plans coming out, and those plans reportedly involve Facebook consuming even more of your web experience.

Are you comfortable with Facebook dominating more of your online experience? Tell us what you think.


Seagate Adds Netflix And YouTube Access

Storage solutions firm Seagate said today that it will allow users of its FreeAgent Theater+ HD media player to access content from Netflix, YouTube, vTuner and Mediafly.

The new content offerings are available to existing FreeAgent Theater+ HD media player owners through a free, firmware update that can be downloaded from Seagate, and will be included in all future product shipments.

Microsoft’s Ad/Publisher Group To Get New Head

In less than one month, a change in leadership will occur within Microsoft’s Advertiser and Publisher Solutions group.  Scott Howe, the corporate vice president currently in charge of it, is set to leave on May 14th, with Rik van der Kooi replacing him.

Facebook And YouTube Get The Most Business Internet Traffic
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More business Internet traffic goes to Facebook than to any other website, according to a new report by managed security firm Network Box.

Network Box looked at 13 billion URLs used by businesses in the first quarter of 2010 and found that 6.8 percent of all business Internet traffic goes to Facebook, a one percent increase over the last quarter of 2009.

ChaCha Takes On Steve Jobs Mobile Search Comments
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Apple CEO has made comments recently implying that people aren’t searching much with their phones. When Jobs announced iAds, Apple’s new mobile advertising platform, for example, he said something along the lines of "people aren’t searching on their phones." WebProNews received an email on behalf of ChaCha who apparently doesn’t take too kindly to Jobs’ implications (the title of the email was "500 million issues with Steve Jobs").

Google Loses Chinese Exec To Baidu

It’s almost a waste of space to state that Google is a good employer; the fact is widely known, and people all over the world apply there on a regular basis.  However, in a move that may speak to how the search giant is faring in China, an important research executive has gone to work for Baidu after quitting Google within the past couple weeks.

Google Sides With Yahoo In Email Privacy Dispute
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Quite often, a Yahoo loss works out to be a Google win, and it would come as no surprise to see the second company make the first fight its own legal battles.  But Google – along with several other organizations – is attempting to help Yahoo, now, as the Department of Justice is pressing for access to certain Yahoo Mail messages.

Mobile Ad Report Shows Big Gains for Android, RIM, PSP
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Mobile advertising firm Millennial Media has put out a report mobile devices and their impact on advertising. "For the past year Millennial Media has released a monthly SMART report (Scorecard for Mobile Advertising Reach and Targeting), which discusses trends in the mobile ad space. Beginning this month, they’ve decided to release an additional device-focused report, the Media Mobile Mix," a representative for the firm tells WebProNews.

U.K. Leads Europe In Mobile Mapping Usage

The use of mobile mapping and direction services in Europe in the past year has jumped 68 percent, according to a new analysis from comScore.

In February, more than 21 million mobile users in the EU5 countries (U.K., France, Germany, Spain and Italy) used their mobile handsets for navigation.

Google, Yahoo Countersue Xerox Over Patent Claims
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Two months ago, Xerox sued Google and Yahoo for patent infringement, and the two defendants haven’t responded by pulling out their checkbooks.  They’ve instead taken the interesting (though not unexpected) step of making counterclaims.

Brokerages Support Google In Wake Of Financial Report

Although shareholders didn’t respond too well to Google’s first quarter earnings report – Google’s stock dipped afterward, and is now down 5.80 percent – analysts generally liked what they saw.  A roundup determined that four brokerages raised their price targets, while just two cut them.

Startups Shouldn’t Necessarily Count on the Twitter Strategy
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Early in the week, Twitter revealed its new "Promoted Tweets" feature, or ad platform (though the company doesn’t like calling it this), and essentially its long awaited business model. The jury is still out on how successful a business model this will be, but it’s already created a huge amount of buzz, and Twitter has grown enormously up until this point without a business model.

Walmart And ASPCA Launch Facebook Campaign For Animals

Walmart has teamed up with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) for a Facebook campaign aimed at saving and improving the lives of animals.

Google Introduces iPad Targeting
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AdWords users who feel an urge to target iPad owners can now do so without reaching out to people carrying Android devices and iPhones, as well.  Google’s added an option to its "networks and devices" screen that’ll allow advertisers to adopt a narrow focus.

Google Cloud Print in the Works for Printing from Chrome OS
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If computing is going to the cloud, does that include printing? It does in Google’s plan. The company has introduced preliminary designs for a project called Google Cloud Print, a service that would allow any desktop, web, or mobile app on any device to print to any printer that the user sets up.

Solid Earnings Report Fails To Save Google’s Stock
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Google’s announced its financial results for the first quarter of 2010, and as usual, the search giant hit most of the targets analysts had established for it.  Investors have not taken the news well, however, sending Google’s stock down 4.51 so far percent in after-hours trading.

E-Reader Owners Avid Fans Of Magazines
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Owners of e-readers are avid fans of magazines when compared to U.S. adults who do not own such devices, according to a new report from Mediamark Research & Intelligence (MRI).

The majority (91%) of e-reader owners read magazines, while 84 percent of total U.S. adults are magazine readers. In addition, e-reader owners read an average of 13 magazine issues a month, compared to 11 issues for average adults.

Viacom Cheers Release Of More YouTube Documents
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Today, another nine exhibits from the Viacom-YouTube were released, and while Google will no doubt get around to spinning the documents its own way, Viacom has already had a go.  The entertainment company highlighted four rather incriminating quotes this afternoon.

Google Introduces Driving Directions In 111 Countries
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People who are planning trips abroad may be able to move "I’m lost" a few places down the list of foreign phrases they’ll want to learn.  Google’s taken a major step towards making that scenario less likely by introducing driving directions in 111 new countries.

The list of countries is, as you might expect, rather long:

NASA Invites Twitter Users To Next Shuttle Launch

During the next space shuttle mission, NASA will host two Tweetups to give people an up close look at the space program.

For the second time, NASA Twitter followers are invited to a view a shuttle launch in person at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. NASA is hosting the Tweetup May 13-14. Shuttle Atlantis is scheduled to launch at 2:19 p.m. EDT, May 14 on its mission to the International Space Station.

Women Becoming More Engaged With Social Media
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Nearly three-quarters (73%) of online women are now active social media users, engaging weekly or more often with popular social media platforms, according to a new study from BlogHer and iVillage.

Google Services for Websites Goes to Plesk Panel
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Google has announced that it’s expanded its Services for Websites program in which hosting companies integrate Google services into their platforms, to include Parallels, a provider of control panel software for hosting companies. Parallels will integrate Google Services for Websites into the new version of its Plesk Panel, a platform Google says millions of site-owners use to manage their sites.