MySpace, MSN Now Said To Be In Talks

Yesterday, the surprising news that Facebook and MySpace are negotiating a content-sharing partnership broke, yet that’s not all the latter social network has on its plate.  A fresh report indicates MySpace is also in talks with MSN over some sort of music deal.

Apple Unveils New “Get a Mac” Ad
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Apple has released a new commercial in their "I’m a PC" and "I’m a Mac" successful advertising campaign. The new ad is aimed directly at Windows 7, which was just released yesterday.

Which has the better OS: Apple or PC - Tell us what you think.

Google Connects Friends on WordPress Blogs
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Google has developed a plug-in for WordPress that adds the social features of Google Friend Connect to WordPress blogs. The plug-in allows visitors to these blogs to authenticate using any OpenID account, including Google, Yahoo, or AIM and then comment on posts without having to register. When a visitor authenticates, it creates a WordPress account.

Facebook Redesign Emerges
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Update 2: Facebook announced today that the changes are rolling out. With the new design, you can view stories by News feed (what Facebook deems the most interesting stories in your feed) or Live feed (everything in real-time).

Why they did it:

Google Offers Free AdWords Shortcuts Stickers
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Running an advertising campaign is complicated enough without having to mentally assign new meanings to most of the buttons on your keyboard.  Google’s giving advertisers a hand, then, by offering them AdWords shortcuts stickers.

The stickers (see a mockup below) are meant to be applied to your keyboard.  Assuming your fingers don’t block your field of view, they should subsequently make it easier to figure out what key combos will let you go to the Ads group tab, for example, or select multiple rows within a table.

Only In Japan: Burger King Offers A Windows 7 Whopper
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UPDATE: A video has surface on Youtube of someone attempting to eat the Windows 7 Whopper… watch at your own risk.

Amazon Rolls Out Kindle For PC
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Amazon.com has introduced "Kindle for PC," a free software application that allows PC users to access Kindle content on their computers.

Users will be able to buy e-books from Amazon without having to own its Kindle e-reader. Previously users had to buy a Kindle or an iPhone or iPod touch to buy e-books from its Kindle store.

The new Kindle for PC download will be available from Amazon next month. Amazon introduced its Kindle for PC software at Windows 7 launch event today in New York City.

Facebook, MySpace May Share Content
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Never mind swine flu – it may in fact be time to start watching out for flying oinkers.  Social networking archrivals Facebook and MySpace are discussing the idea of sharing content, according to people at the highest levels of both organizations.

Lawmakers Benefit From Online Town Hall Meetings

Online town hall meetings with a member of congress has significant and positive impact on a voter’s view of a lawmaker and increases the likelihood that they will become more politically engaged, according to research form the Congressional Management Foundation.

Google Launches Social Search Experiment
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The experimental feature that Marissa Mayer announced last week is becoming available today for everyone to try.  Google Social Search promises to help users "find more relevant public content from your broader social circle."

The premise is simple: people value their acquaintances’ content more than that of random strangers.  So Google Social Search brings content from your social circle to the forefront, perhaps showing a friend’s or coworker’s take on a restaurant rather than (or in addition to) whatever the local newspaper reviewer had to say.

Census Bureau Launches New Website For 2010

The U.S. Census Bureau has launched a new website as part of its effort to communicate with Americans about the 2010 census.

The website called 2010CENSUS.GOV features an animated marquee that allows users to click on images representative of the population and view video clips aimed at easing fears about the census and encourage participation.

"2010CENSUS.GOV puts the census in the hands of the public," said U.S. Census Bureau Director Robert M. Groves.

The Rising Problems of Facebook Reconnect

With Halloween looming in the very near future one wonders if the ‘reconnect’ feature’s algorithm doesn’t have a little bit of ‘All Hallow’s Eve’ mischief in it or is programmed for the macabre. Either way it is managing to upset more than a few Facebook users with suggestions that border on the, well, bizarre.

The Final Farewell of Facebook Beacon

As announced last month, Facebook is finally ending its unpopular advertising program, Beacon, through a court settlement. The class action lawsuit settlement only needed judicial approval to make it final. And last week we they got that preliminary approval.

The SEO’s Toolkit Part Two of Three: Tools
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Welcome to part two of this three part series on SEO tools and resources. In the last article we discussed the variety of Firefox extensions used for SEO. In this article we’ll discuss some of the free and affordable tools you can use to better your organic optimization efforts. To make sure that when I say affordable I mean for virtually everyone I’m going to set the bar at $100/yr or ownership. Admittedly, we use tools that cost more than this but many of those tools will be out of some people’s price range.


The SEO’s Toolkit Part One of Three: Firefox
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Every SEO uses different tools and resources. Some tools are paid, some are free and some are internally developed tools that we use for ourselves and our clients – but we all use them. Very often I get asked what tools people should use if they’re looking to optimize their own sites and what resources they should use to keep up with the latest going’s on. While telling people how to optimize their own sites and what the tools we use isn’t generally the best of business practices – I just can’t help myself.

Facebook Reminds Users How to Handle Death
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If you’ve had a friend or loved-one die during the Facebook age, you may or may not have known that Facebook will memorialize their profile if you let them know about it. Facebook’s Max Kelly reminded us of the fact in a post on the company’s blog today.

YouTube Faces Formal Complaints In Germany

In about two weeks’ time, the two-year anniversary of YouTube Germany’s launch will roll around.  The site’s set to receive more legal documents than birthday presents, however, as it’s facing some formal complaints.

The distribution of copyrighted material is at issue, of course, and so is the (lack of) distribution of royalties.  What sets this situation a little bit apart from other ones is that a number of individuals -rather than just a money-grubbing organization or two – are involved. 

U.K. Social Networking Sites Account For 25% Of Display Ads
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Social networking sites in the U.K. accounted for 13.8 billion display ad impressions in August 2009, representing more than 25 percent of all display ads viewed online, according to a new study by comScore.

Telecommunications companies were the heaviest social networking site advertisers, serving more than 949 million display ad impressions on social networks in August, or about 7 percent of all display ads delivered in the site category.

Social Networks Blamed For $2.25B In Lost Productivity
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Short stretches can really accumulate.  Did you know, for instance, that if someone comes back from lunch nine or ten minutes late every day, he (or she) will take the equivalent of free week of paid vacation per year?  And similarly, one IT services and technology company believes social networking is costing UK businesses $2.25 billion each year.

Facebook Makes Share Buttons More Useful
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Facebook launched a new version of its Share button today. This includes a live counter and analytics. When you use the new share button on your content, you can measure engagement and view the number of shares, likes, comments made, and clicks back to your site.

Twitter Picks Up Former Facebook Platform Manager

The personnel push-and-pull between tech companies is always interesting to watch; who goes where can be a sign of how insiders are placing their bets.  And more than bragging rights appear to be at stake as Josh Elman, who used to work for Facebook, has joined Twitter.

AOL Names Post-Time Warner Board of Directors

AOL has named eight members to serve on its Board of Directors, once the company’s separation from Time Warner is Complete. The members have experience in Internet media, entertainment, marketing, and finance.

1. Former Amazon Senior Vice President and CIO Richard Dalzell holds a B.S. in engineering from the U.S. Military Academy, West Point. He has also worked as Vice President of the Information Systems Division at Wal-Mart.

Newspaper Websites Attract 74 Million Visitors In Q3

An average of 74 million people visited newspaper websites in the third quarter of 2009, representing 38 percent of all Internet users, according to a custom analysis by Nielsen for the Newspaper Association of America (NAA).

Newspaper website visitors generated more than 3.5 billion page views during the quarter, spending 2.7 billion minutes browsing the sites over more than 596 million sessions.

Carl Icahn Quits Yahoo’s Board Of Directors

Another noteworthy event in the long, strange tale of the Microsoft-Yahoo deal has occurred: about 15 months after securing his seat on Yahoo’s board of directors, Carl Icahn has resigned the position.

It’s important to note that the move isn’t supposed to be interpreted as the first step in starting another fight.  Or even as a sign of disapproval.  In fact, in a letter announcing his resignation, Icahn made it sound more like a case of "mission accomplished" and "time to move on."