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  • The 24 hour work day, disruptors and the quest for quality journalism

    Henry Blodget, the founder and chief editor of Business Insider, an online news company based in New York City, is notorious for his role in Wall Street's dotcom saga. Now he is becoming equally notorious for his shakeup of news reporting and traditional roles in journalism. Blodget's poster boy for the new age of new media is his deputy editor Joe Weisenthal, recently profiled in the New York Times' "Joe Weisenthal vs. the 24-Hour News Cycle". The article describes a day in the life of Mr Weisenthal, which starts at 4am and runs to almost 9pm. During that day he will...

  • 10 famous novels transformed into tweets

    Way, way back before the internet was invented, there was a crude and ancient way that people used to share information on a primitive form of parchment made out of crushed trees. The parchment was called 'paper', and on the parchment words would be printed, forming what people would refer to as a 'book'. As a youngster, I remember that, before bed, my father would tell me of wondrous things from times long ago. As well as other things, such as penny-farthing bicycles, horse-drawn carriages and 'the plague', he told me about these quaint and loveable things called 'books'....

  • How Google and its partners are making the web safer for SA kids

    Google South Africa recently launched an initiative to co-ordinate the efforts of government, industry and civil society to make the internet a safer place for children in South Africa. The launch coincided with Child Protection Week and International Children's Day on 1 June. It was applauded by a range of stakeholders, including the Department of Women, Children and People with Disabilities; the Department of Communications; the Film and Publications Board and Childline SA. As well as the co-ordination effort, the search giant also launched the South African version of its Family Safety Centre which is available in English, Afrikaans and...

  • Reviewed: A real life thriller in The Dream Machine

    With an unusual art style of clay and cardboard, people might be put off The Dream Machine. What a shame that would be, because between the oddball visuals and the rough-around-the-edges gameplay lies an engrossing story that is both dark and surreal. Dr. Who? Not unlike the popular Machinarium, The Dream Machine (Cockroach Inc.) has the guise of a straightforward point-and-click adventure, yet it has startling aspects that make it well worth your gaming while. Coming out episodically in five chapters of which three are already available, the game’s unusual claymation aesthetic, its eerie atmosphere, not to mention its dark and...

  • Salesforce goes social with Buddy Media buy

    Business software company Salesforce has confirmed that it will buy Buddy Media for nearly US$700-million in cash and shares. According to The Next Web, that means it'll be forking as much as it generated in sales in the first quarter of this year for the social media campaign specialist. It's also a little lower than the US$800-million AllThingsD predicted Salesforce would pay towards the end of May. Founded in 2007 by serial entrepreneur Michael Lazerow, Buddy Media helps 1 000 plus companies -- including big names like HP, Mattel and Ford -- maintain their social presences. Salesforce reckons that...

  • Sina Weibo drives censorship on Tiananmen Square anniversary

    Twenty three years ago today, the Tienanmen Square Protests were put down in bloody fashion by Chinese authorities. Given that the government refuses to acknowledge that the event happened, it's hardly surprising that users on Sina Weibo -- the country's immensely popular microblogging network -- have found their opinions on the event quietened. As well as user accounts being banned, Chinese news site The Shanghaiist reports that a number of emoticons have been banned. The candle emoticon, which is often used by Sina Weibo users to mourn deaths reported in the news, was withdrawn late on Sunday. After discovering...

  • Nando’s ad banned by SA national broadcaster

    A Nando's ad which seeks to remind South Africans that they're all foreigners has been pulled by South Africa's national broadcaster. The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) claims that it pulled the ad because it contravenes broadcasting regulations, adding that it had "xenophobic undertones". In the advert, a narrator says, "you know what's wrong with South Africa? All you foreigners". Various population groups from Zimbabweans, and Nigerians, to Indians and Chinese are shown disappearing in puffs of smoke. Eventually Afrikaners, Zulus, and various other language groupings are shown disappearing until only a Khoi San man is...

  • Innovative #CloseTheTap campaign ends 10k tweets later

    Only 2.5% of all the water on Earth is fresh and only half of that is available for us to drink. It's a scarce resource that needs to protected. That's precisely the message South African-based digital agency Native spread with its #CloseTheTap campaign. The innovative social media campaign opened in March, and only closed after achieving its stated goal of 10 000 tweets. In order to give the campaign a visual element, Native created a live FlowCam connected to Twitter that monitored a flowing tap, rigged to a rotational water supply, everyday since its launch in March. With every...

  • Win a snazzy Hugo watch with Gearburn and Kalahari.com

    To celebrate the DVD release of Martin Scorsese's epic, Hugo, Gearburn is giving away a Hugo branded watch courtesy of our friends over at Kalahari.com. Here's how you can win it. How to enter: Having a decent watch means never being late again. Tell us about a time when you were late. The funniest story wins the watch. Leave your answer in the comments below. The competition runs from 4 till 11 June 2012. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • 3 key reasons Facebook won’t be releasing a phone any time soon

    Analysts do what analysts do, they analyse and project but mostly speculate, and before you point out that that’s obvious, let me highlight all the rumours and half-baked stories about the recent employment of former iPhone hardware and software engineers by Facebook. The buzz and speculation amongst the analyst community is that finally, as Facebook is now public and needs to bolster its revenue making operations, it will have to come out with a Facebook phone. Tons of clever reasoning and lots of convoluted dot-connecting has ensued. I must disagree, and there are three great reasons why Facebook will not bring...

  • 6 golden rules for ensuring your social campaign has a great digital footprint

    Believe it or not, if you want your social media campaign to be successful, it is crucial that you understand that everything you do online is public. Every blog post, every tweet, and every update adds to the total sum of your "digital footprint" and your reputation online. If you are new to the open and connected world of social media, always try to put your best foot forward when posting or sharing something online. Your digital footprint is what you leave behind online and what others will see about you. This plays a massive role to increase your online...

  • All hail King Chrome: Google’s browser celebrates first month on top

    We saw it coming. Chrome's been destined to take the lead in the browser wars for some time now. A couple of weeks ago, it finally did -- ousting Microsoft's Internet Explorer along the way. It wasn't a mere blip on the radar either. According to StatCounter the good people at Googleplex can now celebrate being top of pops for a full month. For the full month of May according to data the company pulled from over 15-billion page views, Chrome took 32.43% of the worldwide market compared to 32.12% for IE and 25.55% for Firefox. According to StatCounter CEO Aodhan...

  • Alan Knott-Craig Jr: How I nearly missed out on buying Mxit

    In the first of a series of extracts from the opening chapter of his new book "Mobinomics", South African-based entrepreneur Alan Knott Craig Jr speaks about what it was about Mxit -- the massively popular youth-based social network he now owns -- that turned him into "an evangelist, an unpaid, unofficial ambassador for the network". He also offers a glimpse of the respect he has for the company's former owner Herman Heunis and how difficult it was to turn down opportunities for a stake in Mxit. Twice. Run a small business. Find a job. Educate a child....

  • Google wants the .lol domain name. Yes, really

    Haha. Sorry, but it seems that Google thinks that .lol has "interesting and creative potential" -- which is why the search giant has applied to have the domain registered with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). In a blog post, Vincent Cerf ('father of the internet' and Google's chief internet evangelist) said that the company had applied for a number of new domains -- including .google, .youtube and .docs -- as part of ICANN's open call for suggestions for new generic top-level domains (GTLDs). Previously, if you wanted to buy a domain name, you could only choose...

  • Foursquare teases new maps, major redesign

    Foursquare is changing. Okay, that might be a little dramatic, but it is promising a major redesign. The first of those changes is set to come in the form of a new maps feature. The company sent out a tweet, previewing the feature. Maps. There are many others like it, but this one is yours. The #allnew4sq is coming soon! bit.ly/L0fbOy— foursquare (@foursquare) May 31, 2012 The tweet came just a day after another one showing off the new splash screen: Put on your fanciest fancy pants. The all new foursquare is coming soon! Get excited! #allnew4sq...