• LivingSocial To Cut Staff

    Throwing more cold water on what was once a white-hot daily deal space, LivingSocial is reportedly ready to cut about 10% of its workforce, or as many 400 jobs.

    “For the 5-year-old social commerce company, the long-rumored layoffs reflect a struggle to stabilize itself financially after a frenzied headcount expansion in 2011,” the Washington Business Journal reports.

    “The layoff shouldn’t come as much of a surprise following Amazon’s third-quarter earnings report, which blamed its $169 million loss on its stake in LivingSocial,” writes Mashable. “Amazon invested $175 million in the daily deal site two years ago.”

    “The daily ...

  • Will Yahoo, Facebook Consider A Search Alliance?

    Are Yahoo and Facebook in talks about forming a search alliance, or building a search engine together?

    Yes, reports The Sunday Telegraph, citing sources. “Marissa Mayer, chief executive of Yahoo, has held discussions with Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, about how the two companies can work more closely together."

    Not true (!), reports Kara Swisher in AllThingsD, citing her own scoffing sources. “Yahoo is not anywhere near ending its search partnership with Microsoft,” she writes. “It would be nearly impossible for Yahoo to extricate itself from the long-term contract easily.”

    Not sure which report to believe,

  • Papa John's Sued For Aggressive Digital Marketing

    Putting aggressive digital marketing tactics on trial, Papa John's is facing a $250 million class-action lawsuit for spraying customers with illegal text messages.

    “The plaintiffs allege that Papa John's franchises sent customers a total of 500,000 unwanted messages in early 2010,” reports CNNMoney.com. “The pizza franchises sent the text blasts through a mass text messaging service called OnTime4U, which is also a defendant in the case.”

    “Some customers were getting as many as 17 messages a day, and they were even coming when they were asleep,” writes The Inquirer. “Let's face it, no one wants to buy 17 ...

  • Sinofsky Out At Microsoft

    Windows chief Steven Sinofsky -- who some assumed would one day replace Steve Ballmer as head of Microsoft -- is out. “Two weeks after Apple's stunning management shakeup, Microsoft has announced a shocker of its own,” writes CNNMoney.com.

    “His departure was a mutual decision,” reports The New York Times’ Bits blog, citing sources. Yet, “the departure raises questions about how Microsoft … will prepare itself for a new generation of leadership.”

    “Critically, Sinofsky was not ousted because of any issues with the launch of Windows 8 or the Surface,” The Verge reports, citing its own sources.

  • Priceline.com To Buy Kayak

    Realigning the online travel business, Priceline.com on Thursday agreed to buy rival Kayak for $1.8 billion in cash and stock. “A bomb just dropped in the online travel world,” Rafat Ali writes in Skift. Likewise, Forbes calls the move a “major shake-up” for the industry.

    If and when the deal closes, “Priceline will gain a great online and mobile team to build its portfolio and will put muscle behind the Kayak brand,” Ali adds.

    “The acquisition … could provide a new source of revenue for the company,” The New York Times’ DealBook blog writes.

    “Kayak adds a ...

  • Instagram Ready For Web

    To date, Instagram has attracted over 100 million users with its wholly-mobile platform. Now, the Facebook-owned photo-sharing app is ready for the Web.

    "We're launching Web profiles to give you a simple way to share your photos with more people and to make it easier to discover new users on the Web," Instagram said in a Monday blog post.

    Some Web watchers say the move is a no-brainer.

    “It strikes me that a quick, dynamic overview of your life in pictures is maybe even more compelling than the overall Facebook Timeline because it’s so simple,” MG Siegler blogged.

  • Facebook Works On Classified System

    With Craigslist in its crosshairs, Facebook is reportedly working on a classifieds service, which utilizes users’ personal networks.

    “The new tool, which is tentatively called Marketplace … would allow users to create short advertisements that appear in their friends’ news feeds notifying them of everything from apartment rentals to furniture sales to job boards,” The Daily reports, citing sources.

    On the news, Forbes asks: “Why Did This Take Facebook So Long?” Indeed, “if you’ve already got 1 billion users, all of whom are already telling people their location, then wouldn’t running classified ads strike you as an obvious ...