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SEMPO Wants You to Get Involved

SEMPO, the Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization, wants people involved with SEM to take its 4th annual State of the Market survey.

Yahoo Talks New Panama Features
TheYahoo! Panama team has been working on new methods through which advertisers can fine-tune their ad campaigns. The details of these enhancements to their service are available at the YSM blog.

Report: Live Spaces Has Most Downtime

Pingdom tracked 12 top social networking sites from October 19 to November 19, and found that Microsoft’s Live Spaces had the most downtime, with the site failing to respond for a total of three hours over the course of the month.

By contrast, that’s more than Facebook (10 minutes), MySpace (10), Bebo (30), LiveJournal (40) and Orkut (85) combined, and worst on the list.

Photo Site Looks to Bloggers for Profits

Reuters details a new program from Corbis giving bloggers access to some of its photos.

Changing Search Results with Google Experimental

Some users are reportedly seeing a new experiment in Google Experimental: the ability to re-order and even hide specific items in web search results.

Google Expands Contests to Pre-College Kids

Building on the success of the Summer of Code Contests, Google has expanded the contests to now include the pre-College community.

The contest is open to students age 13 and older who have not yet begun university studies, and contestants will be able to claim tasks until 12:00 a.m. Pacific Time on January 22, 2008.

We hope that students who participate will be long-term contributors to these and other open source projects in the future, and we look forward to announcing the grand-prize winners on February 11.

Hotmail Founder Seeking Lawsuit from Microsoft?

Sabeer Bhatia, co-founder of Hotmail (which he sold to Microsoft) is now trying to take on Microsoft Office and Google Docs, launching an online office suite.

While that in and of itself is a perfectly fine (albeit difficult) project, Sabeer’s methods are surprisingly self-destructive. His Live Documents site (a name that makes you think of Microsoft’s Office Live) uses Office 2007’s “Ribbon” interface, designed in Flex, to power document editing, spreadsheets and presentations.

Structured Search Coming Soon from Yahoo?

Barry Schwartz reports that Yahoo plans to roll out a "structured search" functionality in the near future.

KML/KMZ Collaboration Added to Google Maps
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Google added two new features to Google Maps: collaborative editing and importing of KML/ KMZ files.

MySpace Working on News Feed Feature

MySpace is working on a News Feed feature of its own, reminiscent of Facebook’s own feature, Reuters reports.

YouTube Account Shut Down Over Police Brutality

Reuters writes:

The video-sharing Web site YouTube has suspended the account of a prominent Egyptian anti-torture activist who posted videos of what he said was brutal behaviour by some Egyptian policemen, the activist said.

Wael Abbas said close to 100 images (sic) he had sent to YouTube were no longer accessible, including clips depicting purported police brutality, voting irregularities and anti-government demonstrations.

Gmail Goes Out of Bounds

I really like Google’s Gmail program. It’s truly my favorite email service. They also do a great job scanning through my emails for relevant keywords and phrases that they match with their advertisers.

Google’s Energy Initiative

Google issued a press release stating they want to create a research & development group with the goal of creating “electricity from renewable energy sources that will be cheaper than electricity produced from coal.”

The initiative is called “RE<C” and is supposed to be receiving “tens of millions” from Google in 2008. From the release:

Great Idea for an Event Organizer

What a great idea for an event organizer… I’ve often wondered why event planners don’t come out with "official" tags for people to tag entries on blogs, photos on flickr, videos on youtube etc… (many people, including yours truly post photos and create our own tags) but here’s a cool idea that I never thought of.. what about networking groups on LinkedIn, facebook and others?

That’s exactly what Nokia is doing for their Nokia World event… attendees can coonect by being accepted into these special groups… nice idea!

Google Maps Replaces Hybrid Button with Terrain

Google Maps replaced the button Hybrid with a button reading Terrain (Hybrid used to show a mix between satellite imagery and maps data, such as streets or borders).

Thanksgiving Huge for Wal-Mart

U.S. traffic on Thanksgiving Day in 2007 increased 20 percent compared to Thanksgiving 2006, Hitwise reported today. 

Google Israel Compelled to Expose Blogger

Slav Ben Ari sends in this news bit from his blog – I cannot read Hebrew and can’t confirm this info:

MSFT Math Add-in Released For Word 2007

Microsoft has released a new Microsoft Math add-in for microsoft Office Word 2007. It adds enhanced computational and graphing capabilities to Word, letting you do this:

Dark Spot for BrightSpot

BrightSpot.TV, a site covered here before, has shut down. I wrote back in August, "…You’d think the one thing we need a break from is advertising. Yet sheep that we are, we can’t get enough of it." I guess we can get enough of it after all.

TheStreet.com Surges

Here’s something we haven’t seen since the last bubble: TheStreet.com with a stock price over $12. A sign of steady growth and progress, rising subscription and ad revenues, and a dogged desire to mine one’s Hedgehog Concept?

Google Opening Day Care Center

The Palo Alto review board has approved Google’s plans to create a child care center next to the Baylands Nature Preserve, an 18,500-square-foot kid’s complex.

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