Posts Tagged ‘Wall Street Journal’

Syria Shuts Down the Internet As Revolt Gains Steam

Published by pratyushkp on June 4th, 2011 - in Social, Technology

Image via Wikipedia

Internet traffic has come to a halt in Syria after the government blocked Internet services in an attempt to quell a growing revolt in the Middle Eastern nation.

“Starting at 3:35 UTC today, approximately two thirds of all Syrian networks became unreachable from the global Internet,” Internet intelligence firm Renesys reported on its blog today.

“Over the course of roughly half an hour, the routes to 40 of 59 networks were withdrawn from the global routing table.”

Most mobile phone and Internet networks are affected by the blackout. According to The Wall Street Journal, government-run websites such as the Oil Ministry’s website are still operational.

Syria has been banning social media services in the last few months, but this is the full time there has been a widespread Internet outage.

The move comes as protests have intensified in the troubled nation. 34 people were killed Friday after security forces opened fire. The uprising, which began in late January, has been focused on ousting Bashar Al-Assad from his role as President of Syria. Al-Assad ascended to the presidency in 2000 after his father’s 29-year rule.

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak shut down Internet services during the Egyptian revolution so protesters couldn’t easily organize. It didn’t quell the revolt though, and on February 11, Mubarak resigned.


  • Syria Shuts Down the Internet As Revolt Gains Steam (
  • Syria condemned after more killings (
  • 34 shot dead in Hama as protests sweep Syria (
  • Syria’s Internet Blockage Brings Risk of Backfire – Wall Street Journal (
  • Syria Has Cut off Internet Access (
  • Syria Drops Off the Internet As Turmoil Spikes (
  • VIDEO: Can Syria’s Assad cling to power? (
  • Factbox: Protests in Middle East and North Africa – Reuters (
  • Syria’s Embattled Dissidents Grapple with Government Hackers, Wiretappers and Imposters (Time) (
  • Syrians Protest Alone as West, Military Leave Assad Free Hand (

Google’s Drug Problem: Ads Continued in Spite of Warnings

Published by pratyushkp on May 21st, 2011 - in Social, Technology

Image via CrunchBase

Google may have continued to serve ads for illegal drug companies even after being warned by several groups that the ads and the online pharmacies they promoted violated the law.

If the company did knowingly allow illegally operating companies to use its advertising platform, it could have to pay the Department of Justice up to $500 million, one of the largest sums ever paid to the government in a corporate dispute.

In the DOJ’s investigation, officials are trying to determine whether Google worked with advertisers who were promoting illegal activities, such as selling controlled pharmaceuticals to U.S. citizens from pharmacies operating in Canada and other countries.

Now, according to evidence that has been reviewed by the Wall Street Journal, “state regulators and industry watchdogs” may have repeatedly alerted Google to the illegal activity. These warnings had been coming to Google since at least 2003 and intensified in 2008, when ads from illegal online pharmacies appeared in Google ads even after the company started using a third-party verification system.

Just a few months ago, Google announced it was suing online pharmacy advertisers for breaking the search engine’s terms of service and violating U.S. federal laws by using the Google ad network to sell prescription medication without a prescription. However, given the timing, this announcement may have simply been a face-saving reaction to DOJ probes.

We’ll continue to follow this case. Do you think Google was innocent in these matters, the victim of illegal advertisers who were intent on gaming the system? Or could the web giant have been complicit, collecting fees and turning a blind eye to its advertisers’ activities?

Source :-

  • Google’s Drug Problem: Ads Continued in Spite of Warnings [REPORT] (
  • Google’s Drug Problem: Ads Continued in Spite of Warnings [REPORT] (
  • Google was ‘warned repeatedly’ about rogue drug ads (
  • Report: Google warned repeatedly about online drug ads (
  • Google praised by White House, investigated by DOJ (
  • Google praised by White House, investigated by DOJ (
  • Is Google profiting from illegal ads? (
  • REPORT: Google Was Warned About Illegal Drug Ads In 2003 (
  • Google ‘close to $500m settlement’ over illegal drug ads (
  • Google’s $500M DOJ fine all about illegal online drug ads (

Lady Gaga & Zynga Found GagaVille

Published by pratyushkp on May 11th, 2011 - in Social, Technology
Image representing Zynga as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

Two social media heavyweights — Lady Gaga and Zynga — will partner for GagaVille, an offshoot of FarmVille.

GagaVille, a uniquely designed neighboring farm to FarmVille, that sports unicorns and crystals, according to Zynga, launches May 17. GagaVille visitors will get a first listen to unreleased songs from Gaga’s album Born This Way, available May 23. The full album also comes bundled as a free download when you buy a $25 Zynga game card at Best Buy.

The deal also includes a “Words With Gaga” contest in Zynga’s mobile Words With Friends game. Playing the designated Gaga word of the day — which will be announced on Gaga’s Facebook Page each day — will give players the chance to win concert tickets and a signed copy of Born This Way. Zynga is also giving players limited edition Lady Gaga virtual items on RewardVille that can be used across Zynga games.

Such a deal had been predicted after Gaga and Zynga collaborated on an earthquake relief effort for Japan in March. Last month, The Wall Street Journal reported that Zynga and Gaga were in discussions about a tie-in effort.

Source :-

  • Lady Gaga & Zynga Found GagaVille (
  • Zynga Bringing Lady Gaga To ‘FarmVille’ with ‘GagaVille’ (
  • Lady Gaga Joins Forces With Zynga (
  • Cityville,Farmville,Lady Gaga, Gagaville,Coming to Zynga (
  • Cityville Lady Gaga, Gagaville, Coming to Zynga (
  • Zynga, Lady Gaga, bring GagaVille to FarmVille: Clash of the ‘Villes (
  • Zynga, Lady Gaga Launch Massive Cross-Promotion That Spans FarmVille, Words With Friends (
  • Zynga teams up with Lady Gaga through GagaVille (
  • Welcome To GagaVille! (
  • Lady Gaga Teaming up with Farmville for Born This Way | News (
Tags: Born This Way, , , , , Music download, ,

Google to Revamp YouTube with Original Content Google to Revamp YouTube with Original Content

Published by pratyushkp on April 15th, 2011 - in Social, Technology
Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

Pumps in $100 million for 20 channels hosting original content

The king of streaming video, YouTube, has made a success story out of hosting user generated content; stealing eyeballs off television networks, thanks to a user base that’s warmed up to the freedom of content that comes directly from the source and without the meddling of any TV network or production houses. According to a Wall Street Journal report, Google wants to bite into the broadcast TV model by hosting around 20 channels showcasing several hours of professionally produced original programming per week. YouTube got a cool $100 million from Google to implement the original programming.

The streaming website will be competing with traditional TV networks with its own model of original content, which is a daunting proposition considering the quality of professionally produced network content. The question is – will the average user, who fires up YouTube expecting memetic videos uploaded by random users, want to see YouTube’s version of network programming?

Source -:

  • YouTube to get more TV-like with channels and $100M worth of original content (
  • YouTube Drops $100 Million to Add Original Content (
  • YouTube Is Sending Copyright Offenders Back to School [VIDEO] (
  • Copyright Outlaws Will Now Get Schooled By YouTube’s Animated Squirrel (
  • Google investing $100 million into original YouTube content (
  • YouTube Ready to Spend $100 Million on Original Content (
  • The LeBrons Becomes A Regular YouTube Series (
  • YouTube scheme to back UK digital talent (
  • “YouTube wants to start professional, original content channels” and related posts (
  • YouTube Users Not Thrilled With New Copyright School (
  • Google creating YouTube ‘channels’, spending $100 million on original content? (
  • YouTube planning premium channels with original programming (
Tags: , , Streaming media, , Television network, , ,

Twitter Debunks Google-Facebook Takeover Rumours

Published by pratyushkp on February 20th, 2011 - in Social, Technology

CEO Dick Costolo questions if Google can afford Twitter; hints towards a new revenue generation model

After a Wall Street Journal report claimed low level talks between Facebook and Google executives about acquisition of Twitter, the Internet saw a great hue and cry about another big corporation assimilating a smaller one. However, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo has debunked the rumours. Speaking at the ongoing Mobile World Congress (MWC), he denounced the rumours by stating, “People write that stuff all the time. I don’t know where these things come from, it’s just a rumour.” Costolo punctuated the statement by asking if Google could afford a $10 billion acquisition. Ouch.

Addressing the media at the MWC in Barcelona, Costolo spoke about Twitter s revenue model, claiming that Twitter was making money through the existing means of promoted tweets, accounts and trends. He also mentioned that Twitter will launch a new method of monetising the microblogging website this year; although, no details were provided about the new revenue generation scheme. He dismissed the persistent queries about Twitter s monetisation by stating, “Every time I have an interview I am asked when we’re going to make money. The short answer is we’re already making money.”

  • Twitter chief: Google offer is “rumour” (
  • Mobile Fair-Twitter dismisses reports of Google interest (
  • Twitter denies $10bn takeover talks with Google and Facebook (
  • Twitter dismisses reports of Google interest (
  • MWC: Twitter boss admits platform must become simpler (
  • Dick Costolo: There will be no Twitter-branded mobile phone (
  • Twitter CEO Dismisses Google $10 Billion Takeover as ‘Rumor’ (
  • Twitter dismisses reports of Google interest (
  • Twitter chief dismisses talk of $10bn offer from Google as ‘rumour’ (
  • Twitter CEO: Why There Won’t Be a “Twitter Phone” (
Tags: Barcelona, , , , Mobile World Congress, , ,
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