Friday, June 5th, 2020

While Google launched their new Offers service last week – a coupon product similar to Groupon, the company that turned down a $6 billion offer – Groupon reached out and hired Margo Georgiadis, the VP of Global Sales Operations at Google, as their new COO. Groupon reported Georgiadis “drove sales operations across regions and channels and the global technology teams that commercialize Google’s products such as AdWords, AdSense and display among advertisers and publishers. She also led the local and commerce businesses, working to extend services like Checkout, Google Places and product search. Georgiadis previously served as EVP of Card…

Wael Ghonim, the Google Middle East employee who was detained during the revolt in Egypt announced he will be taking a long-term leave of absence from the company to start a non-governmental organization in Egypt, Wired reported. Ghonim became a rallying point during the protests in Tahir Square after he was detained, and his subsequent release foreshadowed the stepping down of the despotic Egyptian ruler Hosni Mubarak….

I received an email this morning from the Google Video team explaining how to transfer my videos from their hosting to YouTube and that the closing of this product on April 29 will not be happening. The email was a followup to a previous one detailing how to download the videos to my computer. Apparently a large number of users had asked Google for a quick way to transfer them to YouTube. “Google Video users can rest assured that they won’t be losing any of their content and we are eliminating the April 29 deadline. We will be working to…

Walmart have announced the purchase of Kosmix, “a social media filter aggregating information by topic from Web sites, Twitter messages and other sources in real time – a potentially important new way to give shoppers information, and get it from them,” the New York Times reported. Kosmix, a start up based in Mountain View, California, was founded in 2005 by Venky Harinarayan and Anand Rajaraman whose work in the ecommerce space is well known. They sold a previous company to Amazon in 1998 and helped develop Mechanical Turks for Amazon….

The debate about the legitimacy of news bloggers has been settled. ProPublica, a web-based independent investigative news organization, has received the Pulitzer Prize for its reporting on Wall Street leading to the financial crisis. The judges praised the way journalists Jesse Eisinger and Jake Bernstein used online tools “to help explain the complex subject to lay readers,” the UK Guardian reported. ProPublica shared a Pulitzer last year but the story had appeared in the New York Times Magazine….

The Federal Trade Commission announced a major crackdown against a number of sites using the appearance of a news site to promote acacia berry weight loss products. “The FTC seeks to permanently stop this misleading practice and has asked courts to freeze the operations’ assets pending trial,” the FTC website stated. Ten websites “that are meant to appear as if they belong to legitimate news-gathering organizations, but in reality the sites are simply advertisements aimed at deceptively enticing consumers to buy the featured acai berry weight-loss products from other merchants” were being sued by the FTC….

If you are an online poker player using PokerStars.com, you would have found the site had been seized Friday and a Department of Justice notice was there in place of your normal access page. While online gambling has been illegal in the United States for five years under the UIGEA (Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act) that prohibited online gambling sites to operate in the United States and financial institutions from transferring money to or from any online gambling operation, there has been a push to legalize it recently. Full Tilt Poker and Absolute Poker were also seized on what bloggers…

Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr (D-Il.) told Congress Friday iPads were to blame for thousands of US job losses because of its ability to stop book and newspaper printing. Speaking in Congress, Jackson – son of Rev. Jackson – said Steve Jobs was doing okay but what about all the people in industries tied to paper. Sure technology has changed the use of various items and created job losses, but Jackson did not take in to account the numerous jobs it generates. iPads may be manufactured in China but the technology is American. Jackson is unaware that the majority of companies…

Last week Google started rolling out their new email suggestion feature – put in one recipient and they will make suggestions of others that you may want to include in the email being sent. While handy, this service shows that Google is collecting information from the emails – to make the suggestions they have to keep track of who you email….

Google announced it is dropping the Tags feature for its Places product – a feature they were selling to small businesses to promote their location and products or services through Google Maps. The unfortunate thing is the disconnect did not show any Google team unity and has left people wondering what to do. If you have been using this beta test product you may have received an email (hopefully they did that – I do not use so did not get one) about the service being discontinued. If you had been thinking about using it you are too late. The…