Very interesting debate. Both sides make very strong arguments. Maybe this is the kind of thing best left to each nation to decide, but does that really work in this day and age? Would Google be held responsible for sites that scrape content and repurpose it? I wonder how on earth they’d go about implementing this effectively.
Two security researchers have discovered that iPhones and 3G-equipped iPads regularly record and store location information to a hidden file that is backed up to iTunes and even transferred to new devices. While the information isn’t necessarily accessible to remote hackers, the researchers noted that it does raise some important concerns about privacy.
Researchers Alasdair Allan and Pete Warden announced this morning that they are presenting their findings at the Where 2.0 conference on Wednesday. “Ever since iOS 4 arrived, your device has been storing a long list of locations and time stamps,” the pair noted in a post to O’Reilly Radar. “We’re not sure why Apple is gathering this data, but it’s clearly intentional, as the database is being restored across backups, and even device migrations.”
Immersive Labs introduced its smart billboard technology at TechStars‘ Demo Day in New York on Thursday. The software combines video analytics with environmental factors and Twitter and Foursquare information to decide what the best ad to display at that moment is.
If a young man is looking at an ad, for instance, the billboard will know to show an aftershave ad instead of a tampon ad. If the room is loud, it might not show an ad that has an audio component. If Twitter or Foursquare data indicate that there’s a sports game going on in the area, it might show a Nike ad instead of a FedEx ad.
Are HuffPo bloggers being exploited?: Arianna Huffington spent last week axing many of AOL’s paid writers, and this week she heard from a few of the unpaid ones in the form of a class-action lawsuit filed by Huffington Post bloggers, led by longtime HuffPo blogger Jonathan Tasini. The Washington Post explained Tasini’s claims that HuffPo had breached its contract with bloggers by failing to come through the “implied promise” of compensation, and that it was “unjustly enriched” by the unpaid bloggers’ contributions. PaidContent, meanwhile, said this suit isn’t much like Tasini’s earlier suit against The New York Times.
The story should be that we’re smart enough to ensure that identity verification isn’t done by a single company. I avoided Google ID’s, and then the Facebook connect, for a long time out of fears of being tracked, but privacy concerns eventually gave way to ease of use, and now I love the convenience. Will you be signing up?
It was now interested in a question of particular concern to social-media experts and marketers: Is it possible not only to infiltrate social networks, but also to influence them on a large scale?
The group invited three teams to program “social bots”—fake identities—that could mimic human conversation on Twitter, and then picked 500 real users on the social network, the core of whom shared a fondness for cats. The Kiwis armed JamesMTitus with a database of generic responses (“Oh, that’s very interesting, tell me more about that”) and designed it to systematically test parts of the network for what tweets generated the most responses, and then to talk to the most responsive people.
In a letter sent to the big labels, Amazon says it has been selling more MP3s since it launched the service. In other words: Stop whining about licensing deals and start thanking us for making you more money.
Arianna Huffington is like a “slave owner on a plantation of bloggers,” according to the lead plaintiff in a class action lawsuit that seeks more than $100 million in damages on behalf of 9,000 unpaid bloggers who, he argues, should be paid for helping build the Huffington Post into the valuable media property AOL bought for $315 million.
We’re still in the early days of the New York Times paywall, but traffic-measurement firm Hitwise already has some numbers on how the subscription plan has affected the newspaper’s readership. The bottom line? The Times has seen a drop of between 5 and 15 percent in daily readers. That may not seem like much — especially compared with the falloff at some other papers that have implemented more restrictive paywalls — but 15 percent is still a fairly significant decline. And there are signs in the Hitwise data that the NYT may not have fine-tuned its wall as well as it might have hoped, which could have an impact on the long-term health of the subscription strategy.
Arianna Huffington, is plunging into a campaign to rescue AOL Inc.. As the new editor in chief of AOL’s 56 content sites, a job she began after AOL’s $315 million acquisition of the Huffington Post closed last month, Ms. Huffington is installing her employees, pushing coverage of her pet topics and gutting aspects of AOL’s existing system to do so.