Six Apart receives $12 mln in funding

Six Apart, providers of the TypePad, Live Journal and MT blogging platforms has received around $12 million in a third round of funding for use in new products, international expansion and network growth.

Accroding to Reuters, Barak Berkowitz, chief executive of SixApart said this brings the funding Six Apart has raised to roughly $23 million since being founded four years ago by Ben and Mena Trott.

Six Apart plans to use the financing in part to help launch a new service, code-named Comet.

Bloggers Unite to Promote Online Freedom of Speech Act

Bloggers from both sides of politics have joined forces to push the Online Freedom of Speech Act (H.R. 1606) through the US Congress.

According to Human Events Online, a bipartisan letter urging members of Congress to vote in favor of passing the bill was sent off this morning. The letter was authored by Michael Krempasky of RedState.com and Markos Moulitsas Zúniga of DailyKos.com.

Part of the letter includes:

H.R. 1606 would preserve the status quo which governed the 2004 election cycle and beyond, one in which a vibrant blogosphere empowered millions of citizens to influence national politics, leveling the effect of wealth on the electoral process, and without any of the corruption which its opponents now fear. Its passage would send a strong message to the Federal Election Commission to tread lightly when it comes to the Internet, telling it that Congress does not wish to stifle online citizen participation in the political process.

Published reports indicate that, as of February 2006, there are over 14 million weblogs, with approximately 75,000 new blogs are created every day, about one every second. The blogosphere is over 60 times bigger than it was only 3 years ago. With the blogosphere continuing to double in size about every five-and-a-half months, it is simply not possible for any person or entity, no matter how wealthy they may be or how much money they can spend, to dominate or corrupt online political discourse.

Mind you, they cant count. 14 million blogs? Even Technorati managed to track 27 odd million.

Nokia releases updated version of Lifeblog

Nokia has announced the availability of the latest version of their Lifeblog software.

The new version allows mobile bloggers to automatically attach location, time, and relevant calendar information to photos, videos, and audio clips.

(via TechWackNews)

Feedster Expands into Japan

Feedster has announced that it is expanding into Japan by partnering with Mitsui & Co., Ltd., a diversified and comprehensive trading companies and a Feedster investor.

As part of the Mitsui partnership, Feedster’s syndicated content service will provide Japanese web publishers with web-based tool to help editors tailor aggregated feeds to generate new content and new ad inventory.

‘€œBlogging and feed creation continue to experience explosive growth around the world. In the US alone, our index has exceeded 25 million sources,’€? says Chris Redlitz, president of Feedster. ‘€œBy using Mitsui’s evolving media group, Feedster is entering a very hot market at just the right time with a product mix and a partner that will accelerate our growth in Japan.’€?

‘€œThrough strong relationships with major US partners like Feedster, Mitsui will establish its market leadership in Japan for a variety of e-marketing services that satisfy e-commerce client needs,’€? says Andrew VanEtten, senior director of Mitsui & Co., (U.S.A.), Inc. Consumer Service Business Dept. ‘€œWe are confident that Feedster and Mitsui will enjoy rapid and great success in Japan.’€?

Blogging Minister Worries Whitehall

UK Cabinet Minister David Miliband, tipped as a future Labour leader, is to become the first member of the British cabinet to set up a blog in which he will publish views that go beyond his ministerial brief.

The Times reports
that the launch of the blog, disclosed in a leaked letter, is likely to cause concern among colleagues of the communities minister, who fear that he may encroach on their departmental territory.

5 nabbed in blog threat case

Five teenage girls were arrested this week for allegedly using a blog to threaten a fellow High School student they believed was going to testify against their friend in a marijuana possession arrest.

According to
Greenwich Time, Greenwich High School Headmaster Al Capasso said, “These girls were extremely unhappy and posted (messages) talking about extremely derogatory and obscene language and threats,” Capasso said.

Greenwich Schools Superintendent Larry Leverett said the four Greenwich High School girls arrested were given multi-day suspensions.

“There was an exchange of threats precipitated by a disciplinary incident at the high school, and they were of a sufficient nature to raise our concern,” Leverett said.

Three of the girls, two from Greenwich and one from Stamford, all 17 years old, were arrested on warrants Monday and charged with tampering with a witness — a felony — in addition to single counts of threatening, and second-degree harassment, according to police.

On Tuesday, two more Greenwich girls, both 16, were charged with single counts of threatening, and second-degree harassment, according to police.

SEO offers $10,000 to bloggers to subvert the A-List

SEO John Scott, widely known more recently as the man behind the v7ndotcom elursrebmem SEO contest at v7n, has thrown down the gauntlet to bloggers to subvert the A-List.

Loren Baker writes at Search Engine Journal that Scott feels that the blogosphere is being controlled by a clique of A-list bloggers “who are sitting on top of their blogostools, and adding to their perceived level of divinity by playing link grabass with each other” and thinks that bloggers don’€™t link enough.

From Scott’€™s Internet-Marketing-Blog :

I challenge every blogger to post links to new blogs, unknown blogs and blogs not in the Technorati’€™s Top 100. And I’€™ll pay out a total of $10,000 to those who participate.

All I ask is that you announce on your own blog your intentions to blog about newer, less known blogs, and post your blog URL here in the comments. ( A link would be appreciated but is not required.)

In six months time, I will make a list of all the blogs participating – the ones who have followed through and blogged about unknown blogs – and I’€™ll let the readers here vote and choose a winner.

Grand prize is $3,000. The top 70 runners-up will receive $100 worth of schwag or cash or gift certificates

New Feedburner stats to combat spam blogs

Feedburner are set to roll out a new stats package that they claim will help combat spam blogs.

The new features will help bloggers track those people who are republishing RSS feeds automatically, including both those who might be doing it legitimately with your permission – but also those who are not and who are writing spam blogs and infringing copyright.

Darren at Problogger puts it this way:
“This is a killer app as far as I’€™m concerned and if it works will remove my main barrier to publishing full feeds on my blog.”

Now if only their feeds would actually work more often I might be tempted to switch as well.

Google Testing Video Advertising on Blogs

Adjab reports that Google may be testing video advertising as part of it’s Adsense contextual advertising program. One such ad was spotted at the gossip blog The Superficial, it did not auto-play but required the viewer to select start to view it.