China has muffled dissidents and thinned out its notorious traffic for the Beijing Olympics, but its brazen peddlers of counterfeit goods are proving tougher to bring to heel.
Despite a half-hearted crackdown meant to curb embarrassing copyright theft during the Games, sellers of China's vast array of counterfeit goods say they are ringing up bumper sales to bargain-hunting Olympic visitors.
Some spruikers are even brashly wearing counterfeit versions of the blue and white Olympic volunteer shirts now-ubiquitous in the city.
"Business is good. We've got a lot of new customers now due to the Olympics," said a young woman who gave only her surname, Wu, selling pirated Dolce & Gabbana, Polo, and other clothing at Beijing's Silk Street market.
Merchants at that and other fake-goods emporia had reported a crackdown in recent months as Beijing moved to sweep the city's less-savoury elements such as prostitution under the rug during the Games.
But despite finding a slightly less varied selection, several shoppers said it looked like business as usual. [by Dan Martin - Yahoo News]
Apple may have a hard time shutting down the new maverick Mac-clonemaker Psystar, say legal experts.
Psystar, a Miami-based IT services company, started advertising the $400 OpenComputer this week. It's a generic PC that comes with Leopard, Apple's latest operating system, pre-installed.
And while Psystar may be violating Apple's end user license agreement, or EULA, by doing this, legally there's not much Apple can do about it, says Raj Abhyanker, a patent lawyer who used to write patents for Apple.
"Basically, when people go to a store or download software, they have a license with Apple to use this patented software on their computer. But breach of contract is one of the weakest forms of legal disputes," Abhyanker says, referring to EULA violations.
The emergence of an unlicensed Mac clonemaker is a sign of Apple's growing market power. The Cupertino company sold more than 2.3 million Macs during the first quarter of 2008 -- a growth rate that's more than 2.5 times that of the overall PC market, according to research firm IDC. Apple had an official clone-licensing program in the mid-1990s, but Steve Jobs killed it in 1997 after returning to lead Apple. [by Brian Gardiner, Wired] UPDATE
You know the promotional clips you can find for practically any movie online? Well, Paramount has found a way to monetize its collection. Oh, and it gets better -- the film giant has earmarked its stash for sale within two virtual worlds.
Okay, so here's how it all comes together: Paramount, seeing an opportunity to monetize its promotional clips like ring tones, has dipped into its vault of promotional clips. The plan is to make them available for $1 each for users of the There.com and vMTV virtual worlds. After a user purchases one of the seconds-long clips, he/she can have it play over their avatar's head while surfing through the virtual world.
Don't get us wrong, it'd be great to have a one-liner from "Beverly Hills Cop" accent everything we do in real life. But, we're skeptical of Paramount's insistence on charging for what're clearly promotional clips in a virtual space. Repackaging snack-sized content as a tool for self-expression worked for the music industry, but charging for promotional video clips in a social space just seems silly for Paramount -- especially when it already has a Facebook app (VooZoo) that offers the same clips for free. [by Terrence Russell, Wired Magazine]
Marci Alboher of the New York Times writes an article about Christopher Penn's idea for a 'social media resume.' Tired of the warnings that people's online presence will come back to haunt them, Penn believes that people should highlight and promote their online lives to potential employers in the digital age... Christopher's Online ResumeUPDATE
Social media optimization is a term thatís been floating around a lot lately, and there are certain strategies at your disposal that can help you use social media to successfully market your website or blog. Here is a list 16 of the strategies that are used most which, if used correctly, will help you optimize your social media efforts: LINKUPDATE
Nicholas Negroponte is to give the keynote speech at an event in Harvard Business School on March 2nd. The subject matter will be Social Entrepreneurship. Here's an exerpt from the Social Enterprise Club website:
Social Enterprise brings together the nonprofit, private, and public sectors - and puts best practices from across industries and around the globe to work toward the common good.
The 2008 Social Enterprise Conference is a forum for sharing ideas to create a better world. We are in an exciting time for social enterprise - each week brings news of multi-billion dollar philanthropic initiatives to solve global problems and new corporate strategies fostering sustainability and social responsibility. Social enterprise offers not only economic resources, but also the strategic and management expertise to ensure that change is long-lasting and large-scale.
As students and practitioners - and as present and future leaders - it is up to us to turn these ideas into reality.
The world's top software company could boost its online presence dramatically if Yahoo accepts a
$44.6 billion bid to be purchased.
Microsoft has offered Yahoo shareholders a 62 percent premium on their shares to sell the company.
Yahoo's latest disappointing earnings announcement helped to depress the stock price, making it a
renewed target for a takeover.
"We have great respect for Yahoo!, and together we can offer an increasingly exciting set of solutions
for consumers, publishers and advertisers while becoming better positioned to compete in the online
services market," Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said in a statement.
With online advertising projected to grow to $80 billion by 2010, Microsoft can grab a larger slice of
that pie if it can pull in Yahoo, which ranks as the world's heaviest trafficked web property.
[from Web Pro News] UPDATE
Thank god for that. Amazon's controversial patent of their 'one-click' business method has been thrown out thanks to legitimate objections. Allowing patents on such broad business practices as this can only have one effect - to chill innovation. Amazon should have known better, but perhaps they ignored their conscience on this one. Hopefully, this example will do well to thwart other greedy attempts to monopolise 'business methods' that should be free for all to build on. UPDATE
A very interesting article by Bernard Lunn on how creative types are the future of business. Creative Entrepreneurs in particular have been empowered by the internet to self publish, thus bypassing the traditional toll keepers, e.g. publishing and record companies, hollywood studios etc. Content creators are in a much more powerful position in the 21st century... UPDATE
A new social network from Digg creator, Kevin Rose allows users to combine messaging with file sharing. Pownce also contains the usual ablities to add photos, music and videos to your profile, but it's the file sharing aspect that makes it unique. At the moment, it's invite only. UPDATE
Paris based Daily Motion is turning some heads in the States as a genuine YouTube challenger. Offering a very similar service of uploading and hosting digital video content, Daily Motion has to date been YouTube's shady little brother. Media attention seems set to change that as they make deals with NCB to try to sort the chaff form the wheat... UPDATE