• Report: AutoTrader Jacks Kelley Blue Book
    AutoTrader.com has agreed to buy rival auto info resource Kelley Blue Book, The Wall Street Journal is reporting. "In some ways [the deal] will streamline the research that goes on before many prospective buyers walk into the showroom," The Journal suggests. "However, people shopping for cars, used ones in particular, will have fewer sources of pricing data to compare." Meanwhile, "For the companies, the deal looks like a good fit because people generally go to Kelley for pricing information while researching a possible purchase, and to AutoTrader when they are ready to buy," according to The Journal. ...
  • PayPal Unveils Micropayments Product
    Micropayments, and their potential impact on the digital landscape, have been bandied about for years. Hoping to finally realize some of that potential, PayPal on Tuesday debuted a micropayments product, which it describes as an "in-context, frictionless payment solution that lets consumers pay for digital goods and content in as little as two clicks, without ever having to leave a publisher's game, news, music, video or media site." According to TechCrunch, "Pricing is set at 5 percent plus 5 cents for purchases under $12." Meanwhile, as TechCrunch insists, "This product is huge for the payments industry because it can ...
  • Report: Zynga Out-Values Electronic Arts
    Guess it's no longer 'in the game,' but on the Web. Showing the dramatic rise of socially spread, online gaming, Zynga Game Network's estimated worth has surpassed Electronic Arts's stock-market value, reports Bloomberg/Businessweek. As the news source explains, the shift is "a sign of the ascendance of social-networking entertainment at the expense of traditional video games." Zynga is now valued at $5.51 billion, according to SharesPost Inc., an exchange for shares of privately held companies. Electronic Arts, the second-largest game publisher by sales, is worth $5.16 billion on the Nasdaq Stock Market. Less than four years old, ...
  • Travel Sites/Microsoft Challenge Google/ITA Deal
    Top online travel companies are forming a coalition to block Google's proposed $700 million purchase of flight data provider ITA Software. The reason, as The Wall Street Journal explains, is that "The deal would give [Google] too much sway over the travel sector." Dubbed FairSearch.org, the group -- including Expedia, Kayak.com, Sabre Holdings and Farelogix -- is seeking to persuade the Justice Department to block Google's latest deal. The companies are simultaneously launching a lobbying campaign on Capitol Hill, "making the case to members of Congress that the deal would allow Google to dominate the online air-travel market by ...
  • Condé Hands Style.com To Fairchild
    Condé Nast on Monday said its popular Style.com property was now part of Fairchild Fashion Group, effective immediately. Fairchild chief executive Gina Sanders tells Woman's Wear Daily (part of Fairchild itself) that she proposed the repositioning of Style.com away from Condé Nast Digital a few months ago, "and that there was a real 'a-ha moment' among company executives when it was first discussed." According to Sanders: "It started as an idea and I built out a business plan and discussed it with [Condé Nast ceo] Chuck Townsend and it seemed like a great opportunity ... It simply ...
  • Ozzie To Microsoft: Look Beyond The PC
    If Microsoft wants to stick around for much longer, it had better start preparing for a "post-PC" world. That's according Ray Ozzie, the software giant's soon-to-be-ex chief software architect. Regarding Microsoft's unnamed competition, Ozzie writes in a memo: "Their execution has surpassed our own in mobile experiences, in the seamless fusion of hardware & software & services, and in social networking & myriad new forms of internet-centric social interaction." Microsoft, therefore, needs to prepare for a "post-PC world," dominated by "cloud-based continuous services that connect us all and do our bidding, and ... appliance-like connected devices enabling ...
  • Facebook Investor Mail.ru Files IPO
    As many expected, Russian Internet company Mail.ru Group has filed an for an initial public offering in London, Bloomberg reports. Who cares? Well, for one, it's seeking as much as $876 million, and it presently holds strategic investments in some top U.S. Web companies, including Facebook, Zynga and Groupon. Formerly named Digital Sky Technologies, Mail.ru includes the Russian email and gaming website Mail.ru, the ICQ instant-messaging system it acquired from AOL, social networking site Odnoklassniki.ru, and stakes in Russian networking site VKontakte.ru and payment-terminal system Qiwi. Now, the company plans to sell 3 million new shares while ...
  • Report: Digg Publisher Jumps Ship
    Digg publisher and Chief Revenue Officer Chas Edwards is heading for the exit, reports BoomTown, citing sources. His next stop? Pixazza, a photo tagging site for advertising, according to BoomTown. Edwards joined the social news site in May of last year from ad network Federated Media. Though "amicable," BoomTown says the departure is further evidence that Digg is "undergoing some turmoil." Digg recently appointed Matt Williams as its new CEO. "He quickly apologized for the bungled relaunch of the news aggregator and has promised to fix its problems," notes BoomTown. Still, some analysts insist that the five-year-old ...
  • For Google, Is There Such Thing As Too Creepy?
    Digital Daily is working on an authoritative compendium of "Unsettling Quotations From Powerful CEOs." No, it actually just compiled some really "creepy" statements from Google CEO Eric Schmidt regarding privacy and Google's grander ambitions. Said Schmidt in one instance: "If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place." Regarding Google, Schmidt asserted: "We know where you are. We know where you've been. We can more or less know what you're thinking about." Meanwhile, what Google is really up to, said Schmidt, is "building an augmented ...
  • Taking the 'Rap' For Facebook's Privacy Woes
    Forget Facebook's disregard for privacy -- at least for now. The Wall Street Journal, which has run several stories questioning the social net's privacy policies -- has moved on to online tracking company RapLeaf. And it's not the only one. Why the focus on RapLeaf rather than countless other tracking services? Because, along with tracking consumers' voter-registration records, shopping histories, social-networking activities and real estate records, among other information, RapLeaf records their full names and email addresses. "Most trackers either can't or won't keep the ultimate piece of personal information--your name," reports ...
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