Founded by Mary Lou Song and Alex Kazim, erstwhile eBay employees, Tokoni has financial backing from eBay. The press release announcing the official launch seems to suggest that sharing stories through Tokoni would be far easier for the mainstream users compared to other platforms on the social web.
Online auction/shopping websites have been around for a long time. However, the proverbially long reach of the law hasn’t been observed when it comes to online stores for all these years. The absence of stern laws has fostered an illegitimate industry that has proved to be very profitable for thieves and charlatans galore, besides being less perilous then drug trade and other illegal businesses.
But online sellers dealing in stolen goods might soon be stymied by three new legislations, the E-fencing Enforcement Act, Organized Retail Crime Act of 2008 and Combating Organized Retail Crime Act of 2008. These bills are intended to combat Organized Retail Crime (ORC). There are numerous online sellers that are comfortably selling huge volumes of stolen goods – stolen directly from retailers – through popular websites like eBay.
If these bills get a nod from lawmakers, online stores and resellers will be required to disclose the contact information of any seller with annual earnings in excess of $12K to any competent party (retailer) that makes a request for such info. This will allow retailers to catch unscrupulous sellers red-handed. The proposed legislations will also put the onus of scrutinizing sellers on online stores. The National Retail Federation has placed its support behind the bills. What about you? Share your thoughts.
Amazon has armed its subsidiary Internet Movie Database (IMDB) with 6,000 full-length movies and TV episodes. Users can watch the video content without spending even a single penny. Video on IMDB had been long overdue and its absence was perplexing.
Sadly enough, though, only a glimpse of the video feature is enough to tell you that it will take quite a long time for video to be the site’s USP. The list of featured videos is too short to be any good.
Infantile search engine Cuil came out a cropper during its launch when it crumbled under the weight of its lofty promises – blame it on the copywriter’s strong imagination. But any startup needs some time, sans any distraction, before it can stake a claim for a place in the big league.
However, Cuil’s management will find it difficult to stay focused on its development roadmap for the time being. The startup has lost the services of its VP Product, Louis Monier, who has quit. Monier was an employee worth his weight in gold for Cuil due to his vast experience in the field of online search. It has been confirmed that there were “philosophical differences” between Monier and the Cuil bosses. A huge blow for Cuil as retaining top talent is one of the biggest challenges for any startup.
Google is currently pursuing an aggressive strategy of continuous, unabated expansion. Most people depend heavily on Google search for their online research, but Google is not resting on its laurels. After adding tools like Google Scholar and Google Book Search, the company is all set to make another welcome addition to the list of its research tools. The company plans to digitize newspaper archives.
It has enlisted the help of newspaper publishers for the digital newspaper archives. “Not only will you be able to search these newspapers, you'll also be able to browse through them exactly as they were printed—photographs, headlines, articles, advertisements and all,” Google’s product manager Punit Soni claimed in a blog entry. Google will initially concern itself with only U.S and Canadian newspapers.
According to speculation, the ban came after a popular pro-Tibetan album, Songs for Peace, went on sale on iTunes on August 8. On Friday, Apple acknowledged the sudden unavailability of iTunes in China and said that it was investigating the matter. However, it is not known whether or not access to iTunes has been resumed there.
There was always a disconcerting political undertone to the Beijing Olympic Games besides a few controversies in the middle. Nevertheless, it was a great show with some scintillating performances by some of the world’s best sportspersons. I choose to be apolitical but you are free to voice your unbridled opinions in the comments section.
Yahoo’s search ads deal with Google might have come as a shock to most but it elicited a different emotion among legislators, that of suspicion. Yahoo has made its 50 page agreement with Google public amid all the talk of it being anti-competitive. It filed the document with the Securities and Exchange Commission as a supplement along with its quarterly report card. But certain parts of the agreement are not available to the public and have been made available to SEC separately.
The prospects of an antitrust lawsuit still loom over the search ads deal, which capped Yahoo’s brazen defiance towards Microsoft. However, don’t mistakenly assume that the SEC is probing the matter. The probe into the legality of the agreement is being carried by U.S. Department of Justice and various states.
Mozilla has issued an open invitation to all people with a vibrant imagination, regardless of their calling, to posit ideas that could determine the future of Firefox and the web. It is especially interested in bringing aboard designers that haven’t worked on open source projects hitherto. Mozilla Labs’ website is asking for people to turn in their ideas that can be “a sentence, paragraph, or even bullet-points kick-start the process.” If Mozilla sights real potential in the idea it will turn them into reality. The website also flaunts a number of exciting browser concept videos. If you have any fascinating ideas, feel free to deposit them in the comments section.
A surge in the volume of stolen data has caused the price of hacked bank and credit card details to fall sharply, Reuters reports. According to researchers for Finjan, a Web security firm, account details with PIN codes that once sold for $100 or more might now only bring in $10 to $20. Taking its place are new types of stolen data, such as patient healthcare information that can be used to commit insurance fraud or to acquire prescription medication to sell on the black market. Other data commanding a high price now includes business information, company personnel files, and intercepted commercial emails.
Click the jump to see what new types of data are commanding a bigger premium, an why your banking institution might not always have your back.
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, and don't mess with her computer either. A recent survey by the Swedish computer magazine PC för Alla (that's PC for Everyone in English) suggests that it's women, not men, who are more prone to being frustrated when surfing the web. Some of the more interesting survey results:
Frustrated by slow load times for web pages Men: 56 Women: 66%
Frustrated if their broadband connection doesn't reach the promised speed Men: 48% Women: 56%
Frustrated by (interacting with) computer support Men: 38% Women: 42%
Looking at the above numbers, does this suggest women are impatient, always want more than what they're getting, and have trouble communicating? Only if you fancy sleeping on the couch!