Xanga blogger detained for threats against the US President

A Freeport, Pennsylvania Area High School student has been arrested following threats he made on against US President George W. Bush, other government officials and classmates on a Xanga Blog.

16-year-old Jeff Neely, a 10th-grader, has been detained in the Butler County Juvenile Center on charges of making terrorist threats.

The Valley News Dispatch reports
that the US Secret Service initiated the criminal investigation when it came across a message Neely posted on a blog at Xanga.com. The paper reports that it was unable to dtermine what had exactly been written.

CNN highlights UK blog network

UK Blog network Shiny Media has received some great publicity with one of their blogs being featured on CNN.

CNN’€™s Global Office highlighted Shiny Media’s TechDigest.tv in a feature on advertising on blogs yesterday. TechDigest was recently chosen by UK White goods group Dyson to run a series of advertisements for the company’€™s latest ball vacuum cleaner.

The Blog Herald turns 2

Duncan Riley> I promised myself I’d never indulge in any self indulgent blego activities, but a quiet news day allows me to reminisce with the Blog Herald turning 2 this week with the first news story going on site on 20 April 03, and the official launch a week later.

A lot has changed and a lot has stayed the same. Through four versions, numerous changes in post format, colourful comments and the occasional flame war I’m happy to say that with your help The Blog Herald is going stronger than ever.

From 1,502 posts and 1,725 comments, what follows are a few of my favourite moments

May 03: Star Wars Kid Blog Charity: Help, Publicity Stunt or Fraud? was the first big traffic story on the site and the Waxy.org groupies have never forgiven me since.
Aug 03: Flash Bloggers: new trend or nuisance? highlighted what turned out to be one of the shortest fads in history, and strangely this post was also only the 3rd blog to be “flash blogged” and one of the last as well.
Sep 03: Technorati cracks the 1 million, how far we’ve come….
Towards a Weblogging Empire, the first mention of Webloginc’s Jason Calacanis, my profound comment at the time: “An interesting concept in the future development of blogging”
Oct 03: Microsoft fires worker over blog, the days before Scoble were very different indeed
Apr 04: Defining the A-List at BloggerCon according to Halley Suitt: ‘€œelitist bad-ass-A-list-bloggers exclusive event’€? revealed is still one of my funniest scoops. Halley tried denying it all until Dave Winer confirmed it was all true.
CIA set to raid BloggerCon: Osama Bin Winer suspect demonstrated I had too much time on my hands playing with Photoshop.
May 04: Steve Rubel to become Blog guinea pig, Steve Rubel launches what turns out to be a masterful PR stunt which bought him to the attention of many in the blogosphere.
Aug 04: Google Adsense expands to include previously excluded bloggers, The day where blog advertising and riches became available to the little person
Oct 04: Secret Service visits blogger, if somebody was going to get a visit from the men in black over a blog comment, it would have to be a LiveJournal user
Nov 04: The politics of blogrolls, it wasn’t the most commented on post, but it got a lot of links and people talking. It also highlighted to me that many bloggers out there appreciate a bit of advice ad guidance..

There were many more highlights, and even the occasional lowlight over the last two years. My many thanks to the contributors and tipsters that have helped me along the way, and to the many readers who have stuck around and enjoyed the ride.

Blogging and where to start

Duncan Riley> I did an interesting email interview the other day with a leading Australian newspaper on the subject of blogging tools which, like any good interview, really got me thinking in regards to where is the best place to start blogging. Now I know not everyone will agree with the answers I gave, and as always I welcome your comments and feedback, but this is what I gave them.

Q – For those who are not ready to D-I-Y, which system is the easiest? Is it still Blogger?
I’d still recommend Blogger as the best starting point, it’s very easy to use, even for somebody who has no experience in blogging, yet its also flexible and provides the ability to expand and customise a blog as a new blogger develops their knowledge.
[Read more…]

Business Blogging makes the cover of Business Week

Well regarded US Business Magazine BusinessWeek has business blogs as their cover story.

Blogs Will Change Your Business” provides the interesting advice: “Your customers and rivals are figuring blogs out. Our advice: Catch up…or catch you later”

Business Week has also launched a new blog: blogspotting which is promising to provide coverage of business and media blogging. The blog is powered by SixApart’s MovableType.

(via Steve Rubel)

Calacanis, Denton blogger payments exposed

The payments made to bloggers from leading weblog networks Weblogsinc and Gawker Media have been exposed in a new article from OJR.

Nick Denton’s Gawker Media runs on a “Complex system of compensation based on traffic, with a bonus is “banked” on good months and can’t be taken out in one month…leaving it to drop as the traffic drops in future months. traffic bonuses are weighted according to a multiplier depending on the subject matter of the blog.”

Jason Calacanis of Weblogsinc is reported to have dropped the 50/50 model and has instead adopted a flat fee structure for bloggers ranging from $100 to $3,000 per month, and is now signing multiple bloggers per blog to accomodate part time workers.

Feedster and AdBrite Partner in blog ads deal

RSS search engine Feedster and advertising service AdBrite today announced that they are partnering to offer blog publishers a complete suite of tools for buying and selling ads.

“AdBrite makes it easy for bloggers to earn money by connecting them directly with interested advertisers. Using AdBrite, the only thing bloggers need to do is write their blog, approve ads, and cash checks,” said Philip Kaplan, CEO of AdBrite. “We are pleased to offer the Feedster community the opportunity to join the more than 4,000 sites already taking advantage of AdBrite’s ever-growing Internet ad marketplace.”

“We’ve partnered with AdBrite because we have similar objectives in our approach to advertising. This program enables both high volume blogs and smaller, highly targeted properties to generate revenue,” said Chris Redlitz, VP, Feedster. “Smaller sites also profit from Feedster’s direct sales efforts to high profile advertisers. Publishers in our Network will gain access to advertisers they couldn’€™t sell to on an individual basis.”

The partnership with AdBrite is the first opportunity for publishers who sign up for the Feedster Media Network to monetize their traffic. Publishers can soon earn revenue from ads in RSS feeds and Podcasts. Prominent blogs such as Buzzhit, Metroblogs, Lockergnome, Bittsplitter, Muniwireless, and SkypeJournal are charter publishers in the network.

Microsoft poised to take blogosphere lead: 7 million blogs, 100000 new blogs being created per day

Microsoft is poised to become the blogospheres leading provider of blogs according to figures reported today in the Wall Street Journal.

Microsoft is quoted as saying there are now over 7 million blogs on MSN Spaces and that the service is currently growing at the extraordinary rate of 100,000 blogs per day, at which rate the service would pass Google’s Blogger and SixApart LiveJournal to become the largest blogging service on the planet at some stage during the next fortnight.

The service was launched in beta form in December and claimed 1 million members at the beginning of January. The service came out of beta in early April, when the number of users was said to be 4.5 million. The full launch also included the ability of MSN Messenger users to post directly to the service, credited by many as the driving force behind the recent growth.

Yahoo 360 team launches blog

The Yahoo! 360 team have joined the blogosphere and lauched their own blog that plans to keep users up to date with the latest, exciting happenings from the world of Yahoo! 360 blogging, with “no marketing speak or soap box stuff”.

The blog is naturally being hosted on the 360 service itself, and perfectly demonstrates to potential users the copious amounts of customisation and colour available on the service.

Rojo Networks Releases Public Beta

Rojo Networks, Inc., has publicly released its RSS feed reader. The free, web-based service is being promoted as the only feed reader with social networking capabilities and tagging.

“Millions of people, from bloggers in pajamas to professional journalists and news outlets, are dynamically creating a flow of information that is unprecedented in the history of publishing,” said CEO of Rojo Networks Chris Alden. “We created Rojo to solve the ‘information overload’ problem that so many news and information consumers suffer from today…Our goal with Rojo’s community features, tags, search, link analysis, and wizard is to make the brave new world of blogs and RSS feeds accessible and appealing to technophiles and new consumers alike”.