June 18, 2010

Twitter Execution Announcement. Taking Micro-Blogging Too Far?

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Twitter Execution Message - Utah

Attorney General Mark Shurtleff announced the go ahead to kill Ronnie Lee Gardner today.

Lee, who was on death row, was killed by firing squad and while it’s standard practice to announce the death approval of a death row inmate, the way Shurtleff handed it isn’t…he tweeted the announcement.

Shurtleff’s sent two tweets which read:

“I just gave the go ahead to Corrections Director to proceed with Gardner’s execution. May God grant him the mercy he denied his victims.” While earlier in the day he tweeted: “A solemn day. Barring a stay by Sup Ct, & with my final nod, Utah will use most extreme power & execute a killer. Mourn his victims. Justice.” read more

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June 17, 2010

Amazon Files “Social Networking” Patent

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PlanetAll Social Networking Site - Owned By AmazonThe United States Patent and Trademark Office has agreed to give Amazon a patent for a “new” social networking system. I put “new” in quotes because the Patent doesn’t appear to allude to anything that isn’t already being done by the likes of Facebook, Myspace and various other social networking websites.

According to the Patent filing:

“A networked computer system provides various services for assisting users in locating, and establishing contact relationships with, other users. For example, in one embodiment, users can identify other users based on their affiliations with particular schools or other organizations. The system also provides a mechanism for a user to selectively establish contact relationships or connections with other users, and to grant permissions for such other users to view personal information of the user. The system may also include features for enabling users to identify contacts of their respective contacts. In addition, the system may automatically notify users of personal information updates made by their respective contacts.”

TechFlash says the patent was created by Brian Robertson and Warren Adams, the two men who sold PlanetAll to Amazon in 1998, a social networking platform which was later ditched by Amazon in 2000. Amazon sent the patent to the U.S. Patent office in May 2008. read more

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June 16, 2010

LiveJournal Joins WordPress, Copies Tumblr

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It looks like “Tumblr envy” is spreading throughout the blogosphere as LiveJournal has joined WordPress (not to mention Typepad as well) in copying a feature that has set apart Tumblr from the rest of its rivals.

You can add a repost button that allows other users to share all or part of your entries on LiveJournal. Please note that you must disable auto-formatting to insert a repost button. This button is only intended for public entries (i.e., if your entry is marked friends-only and you add the repost button, the entry can be reposted publicly by others, although the original post will remain friends-only).  (Official LiveJournal Blog) read more

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AOL Sells Social Network Bebo

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Aol LogoAOL has finally found a buyer to offload Bebo, the social network site they purchased in 2008 for $850 million. The network since that time has been a monumental flop for the company.

AOL has been searching for a Bebo buyer for quite some time now, announcing in April that they would shut down the site if a suitable buyer could not be discovered.

At this time the buyer has not been revealed, what we do know is that the move matches AOL’s recent sell off of poorly performing and poorly managed programs including their ICQ program which was picked up by DST. Unlike Bebo ICQ is at least still popular in certain countries. read more

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June 15, 2010

Will Twitter’s Downtime Hurt It’s Premium Business Accounts?

With fail whales becoming a frequent greeting, the boys and girls at Twitter have decided to inform the twitterverse as to why their social world keeps crashing around them (especially during the World Cup).

Record traffic and unprecedented spikes in activity are never simple to manage. However, we were well aware of the likely impact of the World Cup. What we didn’t anticipate was some of the complexities that have been inherent in fixing and optimizing our systems before and during the event. […]

Over the next two weeks, we may perform relatively short planned maintenance on the site. During this time, the service will likely be taken down. We will not perform this work during World Cup games, and we will provide advance notification. (Official Twitter Blog)

Twitter is recommending users follow @Support to receive the latest updates regarding the downtime, although they also point users to their status blog which is (wisely) hosted upon Tumblr (note: are they secretly telling us something?). read more

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Twitter Announces “Places” Feature, Adds FourSquare And Gowalla Integration

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Twitter Places - Screenshot 2Twitter has been promising a geo-location based option for months and today they announced Twitter Places, a simple to use and useful geo-tagging feature.

The new “features” function highlights Tweets that have occurred around a specific location. Twitter.com and mobile users can tag their existing tweets (existing Twitter Places) and add new Twitter Places.

The application lets users search recent public Tweets from their current location and view nearby points of interest information such as restaurants or clubs in the area. Not sure if you want to go see that DJ at the hottest nightspot in town? Just check to see if any users are Tweeting about it, now you have immediate reviews and other information for locations found directly in your area.

read more

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June 14, 2010

Movabletype Offering An iPad For Themes?

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In order to help increase the availability of high quality themes, it looks like the boys and girls at Six Apart are launching a contest for template designers, with the lucky 2nd place winner receiving a 32 GB iPad (Wifi of course).

Guess what the winner receives?

We are welcome [sic] that you to join and win Movable Type Theme Contest 2010. Movable Type 5 allows you to create and share your innovative web design by a single theme file. There are thousands of beautiful websites build upon Movable Type 5 already, and now it’s time to spread and share your achievements ! […]

The winners of the contest will be determined by the contest judges. Each winner will receive:

  • 1st place : Adobe Creative Suite 5 Web Premium
  • 2nd place : iPad Wi-Fi (16GB)

(Movabletype Community Blog) read more

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Splashpress Media Acquires ‘The Freelance Writing Jobs Network’

In five years only Deborah Ng has grown The Freelance Writing Jobs Network from scratch to one of the most important and powerful communities for freelance online authors. Deborah, @Debng, announced today that Splashpress Media, owner of this publication as well, has acquired The Freelance Writing Jobs Network.

As Splashpress Media CEO I feel honoured that we will be able to follow in Deb’s footsteps and nobody else than Susan Gunelius will lead FWJ as Managing Editor. Splashpress Media is happy to have been chosen from the pool of bidders and will continue the site in the same spirit and with the same values Deb has built the site on:

Why Splashpress Media?
When I decided to sell FWJ I received a half dozen offers and the one from Splashpress Media wasn’t the highest. However, in selling I had three concerns and Splashpress was the only potential buyer who addressed these three concerns and promised FWJ wouldn’t languish or lose the message and image we worked so hard to maintain throughout the past five years.
My three concerns: read more

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Twitter Meets Marriage With A Tweetup Reception

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Sara and Paul - Twitter Wedding CoupleSome Twitter followers share their entire lives online, you don’t even have to meet them in person and there’s a good chance you’ll know more about them then friends who don’t use Twitter. Now Paul and Sara, a couple from Mobile, Alabama will tie the knot using the services capabilities.

According to ReadWriteWeb the wedding will take place with:

“A purple dress. A kilt. A best man who is *all* woman. Live-streaming and live-tweeting. A Twitter-themed-pot-luck-pool-party-reception. Rock Band. A pinata. A sex toy toss in place of the bouquet.”

Sure Twitter has been used in the past at weddings, in fact one groom famously stopped after the “I do’s” to Tweet the good news right from the alter, but Paul and Sara are a bit more involved. The couple met while arguing over a blog post and Paul proposed at a Tweetup, they also run a website together the Daily Shite.

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June 11, 2010

Coming Soon To The Twitterverse: Pay Per Trends

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Not content to insert tweet ads into the search streams and timelines of users, Twitter is now pondering on allowing companies to place ads upon Twitter trends, a feature that may thrill and upset corporations and tweetaholics respectively.

But the basic gist seems to be this: Advertisers will be able to insert their own terms into the list of trends Twitter displays on users’ homepages (see image below; click to enlarge) and on its login page. Clicking on a term would call up a Twitter search results page, which would feature the associated advertiser’s “promoted tweet” at the top of the results. (MediaMemo) read more

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