[Weekly Wrapup] Wanna buy MySpace?; Tweets Hit Techmeme
MySpace Is For Sale
Big news: MySpace still exists. No, I’m not kidding. And they’re for sale.
Parent company News Corp. has admitted that they are considering selling MySpace, just a day after announcing massive layoffs affecting nearly 50% of their staff. “News Corp. is assessing a number of possibilities including a sale, a merger and a spinout,” spokesperson Rosabel Tao told Bloomberg. News Corp. bought MySpace in 2005 for $580 million, but the site has been declining dramatically and it has proven unsustainable. It was one of the first large social networking sites, but it was quickly overtaken by Facebook. MySpace recently tried to make a comeback by redesigning the site and calling themselves “the leading social entertainment destination powered by the passion of fans.” MySpace was originally cool because it gave musicians a place to hang out virtually and share music. The redesign is probably an attempt to recapture that initial appeal. But their 65 million users simply fail to compare to Facebook’s 600 million users. If News Corp. wants to sell, they need to sell now.
Tweets Hit Techmeme, Blogging Officially Dies
Tech news aggregator Techmeme has announced that tweets can now become headlines or discussion posts on the site. This is yet another indicator that Twitter is becoming a mainstream source of news and information, which is a big step forward for Twitter as a company. But could it also be an indicator that blogging is dead?
I sure hope not. But a blog aggregator full of arbitrary tweets sounds like a recipe for disaster in the blogging community.
Techmeme says tweets are not taking over the site; they are going to be tactfully blended with the other types of headlines:
Since 2007 I’ve been asked about 200 times about whether we would introduce a “Techmeme for tweets,” i.e. a Techmeme made up of just tweets. My answer for this has always remained “no”. Any news site aiming for a certain level of comprehensiveness can’t limit itself in such an arbitrary way. Most of the time, the best headline for a story, and the best link for a story is, well, a story, not 140 characters. But omitting tweets from Techmeme wasn’t the best approach either. We believe a mix of blog posts, articles, and a smattering of tweets (plus other new forms of content), is the best way to distill what’s happening right now in technology. We hope you’ll agree, enjoying Techmeme all the more, and will maybe even contribute something to Techmeme now that it requires only 140 characters.
Internet – How it affects us.
In the past 20 years, the internet has changed the common man’s life in more ways than previously imagined. Earlier restricted only for communications between Military Agencies and Research Organisations, today we see avid internet-users of all age-groups throughout the world. This exponential growth is in itself a testament to the success and popularity of the internet.
Recent years have seen a huge jump in terms of the amount of services accessible on the internet. We are also seeing a majority of companies reaching out to their customers through the internet. The internet has helped us achieve feats in many sectors which were earlier thought to be impossible. Who would have thought that you could talk to a friend sitting in another country at the touch of a button? Or packaging companies could deliver international parcels within the accuracy of the hour? Or socialize with our friends even without leaving the house? The list is endless. The internet is a tool for development – both personal and industrial.
The internet’s impact on a person’s life is not superficial. It affects the lifestyle and behavior of individuals to their very core. This can have both – a positive as well as negative impact on the users of the internet. I have tried my best to explain these impacts under the following points:
- Kids and Teenagers
- Internet access in every household has led to a surge in the number of kids and teenagers who use the internet. No longer do kids need their grandma to help them learn the alphabet or the numbers – they can do it on their own, at the touch of a button – not only do they see the alphabet, but pre-recorded voice even pronounces it for them. No longer do children need books with sketches on them – the internet is filled with interactive websites which respond to each touch of the user. I think that soon the internet would be a more popular way of teaching kids as it preserves the spirit of the book and combines it with interactivity of the web – animations, videos, links, etc.
- Internet is now an in-separable part of many teenager’s lives. Not only does it eliminate the need of encyclopedias or dictionaries, it enhances the education experience. Since we are looking at the impact of internet as a whole, it would be foolish not to talk about non-educational experiences. The internet acts as a socializing hub – sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Google Buzz, GMail, Hotmail are the new rage among teens. Emails have obliterated the letters. Waiting for a friend’s reply for a week is only heard in bedtime stories of our parents. Virtual “Walls” have replaced verbal communication. Instead of sitting with friends and marveling at old photographs, we now upload it on “FaceBook” and wait for the critics to comment on it, wait for the number of “likes” to increase. Not that this a bad thing – infact, throughout history many people have either opposed development or favored it. I fall in the latter category. But in trying to keep up with all the status updates, notifications, comments, tweets, emails and what-not, most children are wasting their constructive time on not-so-important-in-the-long-run activities.
What do you think? How has the internet affected you? Has it changed you in some way or the other? Tell me about it. Comment 🙂
PS. I’ll be adding more categories in different posts about how I think the internet has affected other sections of the population. This post marks my comeback to the Underground. *The Original iPhone Exploiter – Soon coming up with OS 4.0 unlock jailbreak for 2G (old/new), 3G, 3GS and iPhone 4*
False Twitter Invitations Leading to Spyware?
I’m sure some of the people who read this post follow “Welcome to the Underground” Blog and maybe other blogs by Twitter. However, did you know that some hackers send false Twitter invitations to lure people into installing spyware or downloading viruses?
Ever since Twitter became the major channel for information spread by Iran presidential election protestors, its popularity has rocketed upwards. Even the news of the Phoenix discovering ice on Mars was first announced on Twitter. However, all good things have a bad side. Cyber criminals are now sending false Twitter invitations to prompt installation of Trojans and virus worms!
From the format and content, the false invitations looks like that it’s a real one sent by the Twitter official site. However, if you look at it closely, you’ll find that the false invitation does not have the “inviting” link in contrary to the real invitations. In its place is a link that downloads a file called “invitation.zip” in the background that you cannot control, and lures the people who are considering joining Twitter into downloading the virus contained in the “invitation.zip”.
The virus in that zip file has been identified as a worm” W32.Ackantta.B@mm” by ESET nod32 antivirus (it’s definitelyNOT an email address!). This worm earlier appeared in February’s invitation card attack, which collects email addresses from the infected computers, and copies itself to those multiple addresses (this is how it’s supposed to work, but it’s usually blocked 90% by stronger av programs such as ESET or AVG).
I remind readers to upgrade their antivirus and communication software to prevent getting infected.
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Twitterbar – Great Firefox Extension for Twitters!
So here at the blog, Voltaire and I became twitter users, more as a response to our third suspension from WordPress. In efforts to keep the community abreast of our activities, we have implemented two Twitter widgets. One widget is for the overall blog, and then the other widget is for myself as I continue to work on special projects.
Rather than login to Twitter.com all the time to post a tweet, I now use a nifty firefox extension called twitterbar. How it works is you type a message into the address bar, and then to post you type –post.
Example: Hello world! –post
When you type the “–post”, it will automatically post your tweet to your account and then the rest of the world can see what you just said. The twitterbar initially asks for your login information, and then afterwards it just remembers. It is very useful when I am browing some site, I can just tweet from the address bar than distrupt my workflow to visit twitter.com.
Want to give it a whirl? Here is the link.
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