Lots of Myspace stuff being talked about…
States Fault MySpace on Predator Issues Attorney generals from eight different states have sent a letter to Myspace saying they had not done enough to block sexual predators from the site and had failed to cooperate with authorities.
A Casualty Of War: MySpace The Defense Department officially started blocking Myspace yesterday, cutting off one of the favorite ways for soldiers to stay in touch with their friends and family.
Things Sure Are Quiet At MySpace News Michael Arrington notes how quiet it is in Myspace News, and how they still are not linking to it from anywhere. How do they hope to get anything going without driving some traffic there? Surely they don’t think people like us are going to show up to vote for stories just to help them out? The top story, as of this writing has 2 votes. Here is a link just to help them out, Myspace News.
Branded Video Channels Coming to MySpace Duncan Riley of Techcrunch says that Myspace is building some branded channels in their video section, it will contain content from National Geographic, The New York Times, Reuters, The Daily Reel, Expert Village, Flow, IGN Entertainment, Octane TV, Kush TV, Ripe TV, VBS TV, and Young Hollywood. Here is the press release, MySpace Video to Launch Branded Channels. ?The upcoming branded channel launch continues the growing momentum of MySpace Video,? said Jeff Berman, General Manager of Video and SVP of Public Affairs for MySpace. ?We?re empowering our partners to customize their own video channels and use them as hubs to create a niche experience for users. Today?s announcement is a sign of things to come for MySpace Video.? Hopefully, they will do more with it than they have the news section.
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After the little spat they had last month, MySpace began blocking videos embedded on MySpace pages that originate from Photobucket, it looks like they have more than made up. Myspace is planning on buying Photobucket for $250 million, with the possibility of another $50 million on an earn out. Looks like Myspace will have no problem with their videos from now on.
Apparently an overzealous Photobucket employee is the source of this rumor, but we?ve confirmed it with more senior people: MySpace is acquiring Photobucket for $250 million in cash. We?re hearing that there is also an earn-out for up to an additional $50 million.
Photobucket has been looking for a buyer since March, when they hired Lehman Brothers to help sell the company. They were looking for $300 million or more, but may have had few bidders other than MySpace. Source: Confirmed: MySpace To Acquire Photobucket For $250 Million
Marshall Kirkpatrick says they are shooting themselves in the foot by closing their system off to outsiders, which is what they are doing still, they just bought a company to make it easier on themselves I am sure. This could be a new strategy for starting an online business…
The primary takeaway is that the recent peace found between MySpace and Photobucket was obviously not a sign that MySpace is any more open than before to third party services thriving in their ecosystem. They just bought the biggest one, bringing it in house. You have to wonder whether Photobucket’s valuation was hosed minus MySpace anyway, I suppose. They were presumably bought for both their huge user base and their innovative technology (see this TC story, for example.)
If MySpace allowed other companies to monetize their monstrous traffic, perhaps just taking a cut, then the whole market would see far more innovation than it does today or is likely to given the people and adspace hording by MySpace. Source: Thoughts on MySpace Acquisition of Photobucket
Never dull in Internet land.
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Google has purchased some video conferencing software, no, not just copies of the software, the software from a company called Marratech. I foresee free video conferencing from http://gmeeting.google.com with lots of Google video ads and adwords ads to increase the bottom line a little. Add it to some software you already have, and herd users there.
As a company, we thrive on casual interactions and spontaneous collaboration. So we’re excited about acquiring Marratech’s video conferencing software, which will enable from-the-desktop participation for Googlers in videoconference meetings wherever there’s an Internet connection. Source: Collaborating with Marratech
Interesting. Om Malik suggests it could be added to Google Talk and that video conferencing is starting to take off as manufacturers add cameras to laptops.
If they are making a deal to buy the software for internal use only, then you need to wonder why this company, and why acquire a piece of software? It doesn?t exactly seem to be a good way of spending their cash. I think they might have bigger ambitions though, as it also tries to capture the small-and-medium enterprises with its office-suite. Perhaps some of the Marratech functionality ends up in the Google Talk client.
Conferencing – video, voice and white board – is now part of work life, whether you are a small company, a web worker or a large corporation. Source: Video reasons for Google-Marratech deal
Mashable says MySpace News sucks. I had trouble finding it as it wanted me to login, I don’t have a MySpace account, so I guess I will never see it, so it sounds like I am not missing anything. I guess lots of users are in the same boat, as they say it’s impossible to find on the MySpace site.
MySpace News has the advantage over Digg because of its huge audience, but they?ll need to do some substantial tweaking if they want to make this work. I feel the same way about MySpace Video: if they could make that service 80% as good as YouTube, it would win. So far, MySpace has failed to push that huge audience to its own services (think: MySpace IM, MySpace Video, fact that photo hosting is mainly done by Photobucket etc). Source: MySpace News?Kinda Sucks
Business 2.0 Beta agrees and says no wonder MySpace users are still using Youtube and Photobucket, and are not using MySpace IM, they can’t find the MySpace versions of either.
What is it about the Web that made Rupert Murdoch lose his taste for synergy? Offline, his News Corp. (NWS) empire is as self-promoting as always. But MySpace, Murdoch’s Internet jewel, can’t even seem to promote its own services. Source: Rupert, the Cowardly Internet Lion
The Google Earth ban in the Sudan is not because of the Sudan, it is because of US export restrictions which say,
SELLING TO SUDAN – Except for information or informational materials and donated articles intended to relieve human suffering, such as food, clothing and medicine, and the licensed export of agricultural commodities, medicine and medical devices, no goods, technology, or services may be exported from the United States to Sudan, either directly or through third countries, without a license. Source: Oh the irony: Google Earth ban in Sudan is due to US export restrictions
This in effect helps the current regime, and makes it hard for its citizens and aid workers to find information about what is going on in the country.
That term has been said many, many times, spammer Scott Richter, say it with me, spammer Scott Richter, of Optinrealbig.com, I’m sure many of you have received mail from these guys, whether they identified themselves as optinrealbig or not, that would be the question. Here is one of many threads at Abestweb where they denied any wrong doing, like in this statement:
We take all abuse very seriously and act probably faster then most networks on abuse when there is any problem reported to us. I would like is any of you could email me your emails that you have gotten that you claim are spam so that we can respond to them as well as show Optin info to you.
I think this is a fair request to make as its easy to scream and say what you like but its fair to let us proof your statements are not true.
I do not see how it benefits any one if we do not all work together as a group.
Please email and ones to look up to firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you and I look forwarding to replying with the information and will hope you then will post that we did not spam you. Source: Abestweb
I think we all probably chuckled when reading it, the thing I have learned from liars over the years is, not matter what, never admit to anything, so, they always deny, deny, deny, once you admit it, you can never take it back. So it is good to see them getting some of their just rewards.
MySpace also seeks a permanent injunction to bar Scott Richter, who has fought with Microsoft and the state of New York over spam, and his affiliates from using the popular social networking site. Richter runs Optinrealbig.com, an e-mail marketing company based in Westminster, Colorado.
MySpace, which is owned by News Corp., also accused Richter of running afoul of the federal CAN-SPAM act and California’s antispam law. The suit was filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. Source: Yahoo
They are accused of sending millions of bulletins, a few lines of text you can send to multiple users on MySpace, to MySpace users from July to December of last year. Of course this is not the first time they have been accused of anything, nor has it been the first time they have had settlements against them, they settled with Microsoft in August of 2005 for 7 million and in 2004 with they state of NY for a measly $50,000, probably less than a days take back then. It’s good to see spammers like Optinrealbig.com and Scott Richter getting what they deserve. You go MySpace.
In an article from Techweb on Yahoo.com titled MySpace Beefs Up Security; More To Come, CSO Says, it talks about how they are using technology Sentinel Tech Holding to build a database and search technology to allow employees to monitor and remove profiles of registered sex offenders. They will use name, age, height, and eye color weed them out and cut them from the pack. Does anyone else think, what registered sex offender is going to use their real description, age, etc, on their Myspace account, won’t they be trying to trick young people into thinking they are talking to another young person?
Chief security officer Hemanshu Nigam, who joined MySpace last spring from Microsoft, hopes the database can be used by the rest of the social networking industry. “We saw this really gaping hole here,” Nigam said last week in an interview.
The concept, however, is unproven. It’s not clear how well technology for matching physical characteristics of sex offenders with photos works. And the database won’t include unlisted child predators. “Most of the people who are molesting children online are not registered sex offenders,” says online child safety advocate Parry Aftab of WiredSafety.org.
Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal applauds the effort but says any safety program without some form of age verification for new members would be ineffective. MySpace uses algorithms to analyze profiles and determine if members are lying about their age, and it deletes 30,000 underage profiles a week. The company continues to assess other age verification technologies, Nigam said. Source: Yahoo
This reminds of the Attorney General from Virginia who is pushing for creation of an email and instant messenger name database of registered sex offenders. Umm, does anyone who works with these guys ever tell them how this stuff works? Sure, they will submit their email addresses and user name, but do you think they will actually be using them when they are targeting kids? No, hello, is anyone out there in federal government thinking about anything? Ridiculous, if the government really wants to make a difference in the lives of children, then they need to create education programs to teach them what to look for, and programs to teach parents how to monitor and make sure their kids don’t get taken advantage of or worse.
This is another one of those feel good programs where they can point and say hey we are doing something, even though it may not be very good at what it is supposed to be doing. If anyone from the government wants some real ideas on protecting children online, feel free to leave me a voice mail at 304-521-2582.
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I just found the coolest thing yet for your Myspace account, now you can Add voicemail to your MySpace page, and it’s free! You get your own phone number for your voicemail, so you can give the number out on forms you have to fill out, or surveys, etc, so telemarketers will end up calling your free voicemail and they won’t be bothering you on your home or cell phone.
This free voicemail can be used to setup an outgoing message that invites users to leave a voicemail for them, and you can add it to your Myspace or Friendster page. Here, test it out by calling 304-521-2582 and leave me a message. I will post the funniest ones, so leave your name or website address if you want credit for it. Then try it for free, what have you got to lose?
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Universal Music Group has filed a lawsuit against MySpace.com for allowing rampant unauthorized copying, as opposed to just unauthorized copying, and distribution of the songs and video of their artists. They are seeking damages of $150,000 per violation and MySpace must not allow any more copying or distribution of its copyrighted material. $150,000 per violation sounds pretty high, I mean, you can buy the songs on iTunes for 99 cents each and movies starting at $9.99, and so I wonder how they came up with $150,000?
Popular social-networking Web site MySpace was slapped with its first copyright-infringement lawsuit yesterday, by Universal Music Group, alleging that the site enables “rampant” unauthorized copying and distribution of its artists’ songs and videos.
The lawsuit, filed yesterday in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, said “[n]o intellectual property is safe in the MySpace world of infringement — not plaintiffs’ videos, not plaintiffs’ songs, not even songs from the unreleased album ‘Kingdom Come’ by superstar artist Jay-Z,” scheduled to go on sale next week.
MySpace denied wrongdoing and said it would fight the lawsuit. Source: Washington Post
Universal and MySpace already have some content-sharing deals in place, but Universal says that MySpace does not take the material down fast enough, while MySpace says they are in compliance with the law.
“We have been keeping [Universal] closely apprised of our industry-leading efforts to protect creators’ rights, and it’s unfortunate they decided to file this unnecessary and merit less litigation,” a spokeswoman for MySpace said in an e-mailed statement. “We provide users with tools to share their own work — we do not induce, encourage, or condone copyright violation in any way.”
On the 17th of November, MySpace announced that they are releasing a new tool that will allow content providers like Universal to mark any video or music they allege is theirs, and MySpace will remove it, promptly, they say.
MySpace.com, the world?s leading lifestyle portal, announced today plans to launch a new tool for copyright holders that makes it even easier and faster to remove content they allege is unauthorized. The tool is being tested with FOX and MLB Advanced Media and will be expanded to include other verified copyright holders.
The new tool will allow copyright holders to digitally flag any user-posted video containing content that they own and allege is unauthorized. MySpace will promptly remove all videos flagged by a copyright holder. In addition, MySpace has implemented a proprietary system to block videos that are removed at the request of a copyright owner from being re-uploaded to the site by other users. Source: Business Wire
And as Scott Karp of Publishing 2.0 noted, most user generated content is really user-appropriated content, like TV shows, movies, etc. There are some good things users are actually creating, and then there are some things they are creating that really suck, all kinds of tech content being created, how to’s, tips, instructions, if you can talk about it and show someone on your monitor how to do it, it’s being created. Many, many Second Life videos being created, check out Second Life Videos for some great examples. I’m working on creating a windows tech support video site, www.Threll.com and have been trying to gather up funny clips and videos here at www.phunymovies.com, check em out and post your favorites or even your own.
So, where are we headed? I have no idea, but I would say they can’t hold sites like MySpace entirely responsible, if you compare it to web hosting and how they can’t really be held responsible for what their users do, as long as they take it down when notified, which MySpace, Youtube and Google have been doing already.
In the article posted by the BBC, Universal claims that MySpace encourages the posting of the content, the owners of MySpace have benefited greatly from it and they would like what is due to them and their artists.
In a statement it added: “Our music and videos play a key role in building the communities that have created hundreds of millions of dollars of value for the owners of MySpace.
“Our goal is not to inhibit the creation of these communities, but to ensure that our rights and those of our artists are recognised.” Source: BBC
Saw this note on Netcrafts site that MySpace was compromised by phishers who have presented a spoofed form on MySpace, this modified login form is designed to submit the victim’s username and password to a remote server hosted in France.
Netcraft has notified MySpace of the issue, although it currently remains live. Because the fraudulent login page is hosted on MySpace’s own servers and does not exhibit any signs of external content, such as cross-site scripting (XSS) or open redirects, it is convincing and even security-conscious users are at risk of becoming victims. The attack is launched from a profile page, where the username is login_home_index_html, and uses specially-crafted HTML in order to hide the genuine MySpace content from the page and instead display its own login form. Source: Netcraft
No notice on the MySpace site, that I can tell.
Added: Just saw a post on InfoWorld about the Netcraft post, and I went out again to check and see if it is still up, but it looks like they have finally taken it down. The page was a user with this name http://myspace.com/login_home_index_html, if you click on it now, it says Invalid Friend ID.
Woah, wait a minute, one time the page is up, the new it is not. Either they are working on it or that page is being slammed.