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  • Google in early talks to buy Hulu

    Google has entered preliminary talks to acquire the online video site Hulu, the LA Times reported on its website Friday, citing anonymous "sources familiar with the discussions". Hulu's owners have met with Google and other prospective buyers including Yahoo! and Microsoft, the newspaper reported. The site, which broadcasts television shows through on-demand streaming, is owned by a trio of traditional media giants -- Disney, NBC Universal and News Corp. -- and private equity firm Providence Equity Partners. Founded in 2008, Hulu is only available in the United States. It lets users watch a selection of television shows for free with...

  • 5 things to consider when building a team vested in your success

    People matter to organisations. While we may get a headache from those who overplay the importance of relationships against the basics of operations and the bottom line, there is no doubt that your team’s personal investment to your startup matters. So, how do you actually set a team that works effectively? One way is by giving an actual share of your startup to employees -- more commonly called staff equity, or a staff shareholding. Memeburn found five things to consider around the issue staff equity, where you make employees part of the team and comfortable with periods of lower than...

  • Vatican goes online in fight against child abuse

    The Vatican is turning to the internet in its struggle against child abuse with a new website allowing clergy around the world to share information on eradicating the problem. This is the second major online move by the Vatican in recent days, following the launch of the official Vatican news service by papal tweet. A key figure behind the initiative is German psychologist priest Hans Zollner from the Vatican's Gregorian University, who spoke about the need for fundamental changes in how the Catholic Church handles abuse cases. "Bishops have to give priority to victims," said Zollner, a member of the order...

  • Sony to fully restore PlayStation Network

    Japanese electronics giant Sony announced on Monday that it would fully restore all PlayStation Network and Qriocity online distribution services in Japan on Wednesday, after shutting them down in April due to hacker attacks. In the wake of the cyber attacks, Sony shut down those services on April 20 to conduct an investigation and boost the overall security of the network infrastructure, it said in a statement. Except for Japan, the Japanese electronics giant had already restored the services in all other countries and regions where they operated before the shutdown, including the Americas, Europe, Hong Kong and South Korea. The hacking...

  • HP iPad-killer launches: A dollar short and a day late

    Hewlett-Packard rolled out its new TouchPad tablet computer on Friday, seeking to get a bit of the iPad tablet action and revive its slumping fortunes. Better late than never, eh HP? The TouchPad went on sale in major US retailers such as Best Buy and Walmart as well as on Amazon.com, HP said. It is expected to go on sale shortly in Britain, Ireland, France, Germany and Canada, and later this year it will become available in Italy, Spain, Australia, Hong Kong, New Zealand and Singapore. Unlike the iPad, the TouchPad supports Adobe’s Flash video format. It runs the webOS operating...

  • Will in-stream advertising kill the Twitter experience?

    Twitter's recent announcement that it is going ahead with in-stream ads is yet another attempt by the microblogging platform to effectively monetise without losing its opt-in/opt-out appeal. This follows the removal of Quickbar, a form of intrusive promoted tweets that appeared in Hootsuite users’ timelines, in March. Users quickly voiced their frustration by using the #dickbar hashtag and Twitter promptly removed this feature, saying via its blog: Rather than continue to make changes to the QuickBar as it exists, we removed the bar from the update appearing in the App Store today. We believe there are still significant benefits to...

  • Microsoft and Skype set to allow backdoor eavesdropping

    Skype and Microsoft have managed to leapfrog common sense and build a backdoor into your favourite VOIP application. It is called Lawful Interception and is part of a new patent which Microsoft filed back in 2009, but is now preparing to unleash itself into our world due to its recent approval. Lawful Interception means that government agencies can, without your permission, begin tracking your Skype conversations. Calls can be covertly recorded and used against you in any circumstance. It is legal, it is frightening and it is coming to a voice over IP application near you. I understand where Microsoft...

  • The BlackBerry PlayBook: Like dating someone with a drinking problem

    Living with The BlackBerry PlayBook is like dating someone with a drinking problem. When you first meet, things are great. She seems fun. A lot of fun. I mean fun, like she can drink you under the table, and sometimes when you’re under it, she’ll be dancing on top of it. After a while though, the violent mood swings and the smell of whiskey on her breath at noon on a Monday isn’t endearing anymore. She’s a hot mess, and you’re sort of over it. 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");

  • From MySpace to viral mother-in-laws: This week in tech and web news

    Hurrah, hurrah, another week has gone and though it seemed questionable -- particularly around Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday -- Friday has managed to roll around. As was explained in the first installment last week, though Memeburn readers -- smart as they are -- are always on top of things, the breakneck speed at which tech and web news goes by, invariably means we all miss something. As such, we here at Memeburn are giving you, our dear readers, this weekly tech and web news wrap-up column. We still strongly advise you read everything -- and we mean every last...

  • Multi-million dollar SA company buys US cloud enterprise

    South African IT giant, Dimension Data, has acquired Californian based-cloud enterprise OpSource. The path to the deal is reported to have been paved by the Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation (NTT) , of which Dimension Data is a subsidiary. The acquisition is expected to help the US$4.7-billion ICT services and solutions provider accelerate its cloud offerings. OpSource will be absorbed into Dimension Data started own cloud service, Cloud Solutions Business Unit, which will report directly to the company's CEO, Brett Dawson. In a statement released to the press, Dawson explained the decision to acquire OpSource: "OpSource brings...

  • Skype video calling comes to Android

    It may be a little late to the video calling party, but as the 800-lb gorilla, Skype can be. The VoIP behemoth has just introduced video calling in its latest version of the Skype client for Android phones – although as is so often the case with Andoid apps that use peripheral hardware, device support is still a bit spotty. Currently video calls are only supported on Video calling supported on the following handsets: Samsung Google Nexus S, HTC Desire S, Sony Ericsson Xperia neo, Sony Ericsson Xperia pro. Skype is promising to add more soon. 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");

  • A much needed (Song)kick to online concert bookings

    South Africans may have noticed the influx of international acts venturing tours to their fair shores. Until now, we have generally had a poor showing with regards to big artist concerts (with the exception of the ill-fated Coke festivals). Artists have to fly all the way to the south of Africa, where there are only three cities that can really support large scale concerts, and then have to span an entire continent or ocean to get to their next stop. Locally, we're simply not that financially viable. Nevertheless, with acts like U2, Coldplay, Kings Of Leon and Kylie Minogue...

  • Broadband for the people — The next generation of mobile data access

    Qualcomm is one of those companies that you've heard of, but that few people outside of the telecommunications industry know a huge amount about. That's not completely surprising considering its primary focus is research and development and its primary clients are big telecoms players. I chatted to James Munn, vice president of Qualcomm in South Africa, about why they're establishing offices in Africa. Qualcomm is the world's largest "fabless" chip supplier. That means that it designs chips and then outsources their production to specialist chip manufacturers called foundries. Qualcomm, which was founded in 1985, has been instrumental in the development...

  • Google Places combined with SEO can help your business

    Until recently, having an organic website rank in Google results with mapping was an easy feat if you knew what you were doing. The market, however, has become flooded with spammers. Google has once again stepped in, cleaning up mapping with actual premises; phone activation codes that verify a business’s actual location. Enter, Google Places. The fact is, one can gain incredibly high rankings on Google by using Google Places (maps). Below is an example of maps that I personally built for two business clients. Here you can see that the first company ranks 3rd and the second company ranks...

  • News Corp. cuts its losses with MySpace for $35-million

    News Corp. officially sold Myspace after much speculation on Wednesday for a mere fraction of what it paid for the social network, bringing the curtain down on Rupert Murdoch's engagement with the one-time social networking star that was ultimately eclipsed by Facebook. Myspace, which was bought by News Corp. in 2005 for US$580-million, was bought by Specific Media, a digital ad-targeting platform, which said financial terms were confidential. The News Corp.-owned technology blog All Things Digital put the purchase price at US$35-million, however, and said the deal includes slashing about half of Myspace's staff of between 400 and 500 people. "Myspace is...