Archive for September 8, 2006

Six Apart Buys Rojo; Tech Froth; Apple iPhone

September 8, 2006 1 comment

op Stories for the Week of September 4 – September 8

 Word of the week: frothy. The tech industry is spewing companies and Web doohickeys and blog amalgamizers and Internet contraptions like video social-networking wiki cooking sites says Kevin Maney. Translation: It’s out of control. The inventor of the Web, Tim Berners-Lee tried putting some brakes on the hype, calling Web 2.0 “a piece of jargon, nobody even knows what it means.” Blogger reaction was not what you’d call subdued: Web 2.0 launched a lengthy defense of Web 2.0’s architectures of participation. Um right. Dead 2.0 agreed with Berners-Lee that hype has outstripped 2.0 technology, while Scobleizer says of course it’s a bubble-a froth bubble-and here’s how to step outside it.

 Back inside the reality distortion field, Apple announced an event September 12 to showcase what’s rumored to be the iTunes Movie Store, (via CrunchGear) although Cult of Mac said don’t count on it; the timing’s all wrong and where are the invitations, anyway? Oh, here they are-it’s real, alright. But blogs that there’s no demand for full-length video downloads anyway. Gizmodo thinks a long-awaited iPhone intro will happen soon, to the point where brokers are recommending an AAPL “buy” before the phone’s release.

 Facebook launched its redesign but it’s visibly tracking users’ movements-and telling their friends what some of them are, reports Mashable! Plenty of users are creeped out. Meanwhile, SiliconBeat blogged that YouTube is now on Facebook’s turf with YouTube Colleges, while ProHipHop is upbeat about MySpace selling indie music through Snocap’s back end. This is no iTunes competitor since the songs are unrestricted MP3s, writes Go Big Blog Network, but NetFamily News says it’s yet more bad news for Tower Records.

 And Rojo (that’s this service, folks) was bought by Six Apart this week blogs TechCrunch and calls it one of his favorite web sites (thanks, Mike!). There are getting to be fewer and fewer feed readers say GigaOm (note on that link: Rojo is not being rolled into Vox) as feed reading becomes a feature on other sites. Instead Six Apart will continue to focus on its core business while and its newsreader will be spun off with the goal of selling a majority interest (see for more). We’re going to see lots of these kind of deals blogs Mark Evans as Web 2.0 start-ups scramble into the arms of well-financed Web 2.0 players.

In other major media news, the Audit Bureau of Circulation will start combining print and online audience numbers to determine readership, blogs BuzzMachine, but the model’s flawed since it only takes a one-day snapshot and doesn’t count people who read both the online and paper versions of a publication. It may not matter, writes Don Dodge, since newspapers and magazines are dying off anyway.

 In entertainment news, Rosie O’Donnell is about to join Barbara Walters on The View, but not before blogging her complaints bout the show’s promotion. Walters asked her to stop, according to Micro Persuasion, but that’s not the week’s only rocky beginning. Katie Couric finally tried her hand at journalism, with mixed results, writes Gothamist: decent Afghanistan coverage but a bit Entertainment Tonight with the Suri Cruise “coverage.” Of course Suri is beautiful, writes Blogging Baby, but that’s what you get from a super-secret Annie Liebovitz photo shoot. Suri aside, TV Squad liked the Free Speech segment where well-known personalities like Bill Clinton, Rush Limbaugh and Bill Maher will get to say what’s on their minds, and recommended that Katie sign off by saying “I’m Katie Couric, and I like asparagus.” The show generated big ratings for Katie and CBS, giving the network its highest ratings in that time slot since 1998.

Finally and sadly, bloggers mourned the death of TV’s Crocodile Hunter and famed conservationist Steve Irwin after he was stabbed through the heart by a stingray in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. Crikey! The whole thing was caught on film but the tape will likely be destroyed writes Gothamist. Animal Planet plans an all-day tribute September 10, and Irwin’s father will take over his son’s conservation work reports Blogcritics. A video tribute to Irwin is here.

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