An offer made earlier this month to pay whistle blowers US$1 million for reporting companies using unlicensed software has met little or no public outcry, unlike lawsuits initiated by the music industry against illegal music downloaders.The Business Software Alliance (BSA), a global organization representing leading software manufacturers, is intensifying efforts to battle software piracy in the workplace by increasing its current rewards incentive from $200,000 to $1 million from July to October.The announcement launched the organization's new nationwide radio and Internet advertising campaignentitled, "Blow the Whistle." The campaign encourages employees or former employees to report employers who they suspect are running unlicensed software products.However, some lawyers prominent in intellectual property litigation warn that the promise of big cash payouts will prompt some employees to go on witch hunts within their companies and could pose added security risks to confidential … [Read more...] about Spying in the Workplace: Big Money?
Make big money online
Amazon's stock price reached an all-time high of US$268.98 per share on Monday -- a far far cry from its debut at $16 per share 16 years ago. The stock was off only slightly on Tuesday, closing at $266.38.The company's share price has been steadily climbing. Monday's spike of 4 percent followed an upgrade from Morgan Stanley analyst Scott Devitt, who raised his target for Amazon to $325.The e-commerce titan's appeal to consumers is clear.The ease of one-click shopping, especially for items customers buy repeatedly, cannot be overstated, said Eric Steiman, a Covestor model manager."In addition, you can read product reviews, ask questions, [and] compare competitive prices in order to get the most out of your shopping experience," he told the E-Commerce Times.However, there is more to Amazon's success story -- much more -- than that. Amazon has carved out a unique role for itself in the e-commerce space by building a global order-fulfillment infrastructure that is unmatched by other … [Read more...] about Amazon’s Big Wheels Keep on Rollin’
Open source hardware startup Ouya looked to kickstart funding of its Android-based game console, and the effort has resulted in more than nine times the amount it sought.Ouya had asked to backers to pledge US$950,000 through the Kickstarter website, and the total climbed to nearly $8.6 million as of Thursday, the day the campaign was scheduled to end.In addition to individual pledges, the company has gotten support from large game publishers including Square Enix, the developer of the "Final Fantasy" series, and Namco Bandai, the developer of the "Soul Calibur" franchise. Last month, Ouya also announced a partnership to provide content from the OnLive game streaming service.With the money all but in the bank, Ouya reportedly plans to launch the console in April of next year, and has begun taking pre-orders via its website.The system could also change what has been the traditional dynamic for video games since the days of the Atari in the late 1970s."The TV/Console combination is a … [Read more...] about Oh Yeah! Ouya Raises Big Money for Open Source Game Console
When Integrated Direct needed to drive registrations for one of its clients' New York City events, the company included popular social networking site MySpace.com in its online marketing initiatives."Online registrations doubled compared to previous years just by using MySpace and some other similar free sites," Chris Consorte, owner and operator of Integrated Direct, an interactive marketing agency, told TechNewsWorld.Like Consorte, more companies are using online social networks to accelerate their sales, raise money, recruit star employees and find jobs. A recent Pew Internet study lends credibility to the concept. Pew researchers report that more people are using the Internet to strengthen social ties that they maintain in the offline world.Increased travel costs and a depressed economy are two factors driving the trend. Time being money, online social networking is also winning favor with time-stretched business folk. It costs less and takes less time to network online than in … [Read more...] about Businesses Tap Into Online Social Networks
Larry Sanger was an early participant in Wikipedia, and in 2006 he founded the Citizendium, which bills itself as "the citizens' compendium."Like Wikipedia, Citizendium is an encyclopedia that invites the public to contribute. The two share other similarities as well, but they are distinctly different as well. LinuxInsider spoke with Sanger about the project and how it stands apart from other wiki encyclopedia sites.LinuxInsider: First off, describe the Citizendium and tell me what it is, and what it is not.Larry Sanger: The Citizendium is a wiki encyclopedia project to create the world's finest free encyclopedia and general reference source. It involves the general public but it makes a gentle guiding role for experts. Another different unusual feature of the project is that our contributors use their own real names. I like to think the people are pretty friendly. The whole project is largely vandalism-free, largely because of the use of real names. In addition to being a general wiki … [Read more...] about EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW Citizendium’s Larry Sanger: Experts Make It Better
Such onetime high-profile visionaries as Thomas Middlehoff, Jean-Marie Messier and Robert Pittman have lately departed their firms in droves, leaving corporate spectators to wonder whether broadband is broken. Messier's vision of seamless media convergence may still have life at Vivendi-Universal, however.Vivendi subsidiary MP4.com is taking a retro route to the future, featuring Web-based short films and animations -- better suited to Internet downloads and streaming than full-length feature films, and first introduced to theWeb by pioneers like Mika Salmi, founder of AtomFilms, in 1999."We want MP4.com to do for digital video what MP3.com (whichVivendi-Universal acquired in 2001) has done for digital music,"Natasha Rabe, general manager of MP4.com, told the E-Commerce Times. "MP4.comwill be a destination, community and hosting service for amateur videohobbyists, independent filmmakers and animators, as well as apromotional platform."Some 125 small firms with venture funding and … [Read more...] about Big Studio Takes Short Films to Web’s Little Screen
It is widely known that Google has become a dominant player in the search engine space. Founded in September 1998, the company is at least three years younger than most of its competitors but already has surpassed its rivals in terms of popularity.Google regularly draws enough visitors to rank it among the top five most-visited sites on the Web, trailing only established Internet goliaths, such as MSN, Yahoo! and AOL, according to Nielsen//NetRatings traffic data."People turn to search engines more and category sites less as they become more familiar with the Web, and Google has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of that in the past year or so," NetRatings director and senior analyst Lisa Strand told the E-Commerce Times.But as scores of failed dot-coms can attest, big crowds do not always mean big money. Will all that traffic translate to long-term business success for Google? Can the company leverage its popularity to reap long-term profits?Google is confident that it can.Omid … [Read more...] about E-BUSINESS SPECIAL REPORT Can Google Do Big Business?
As analysts have recently pointed out, leading portal site Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO) has no problem getting people to come to its site. Now Yahoo! is working toward getting its visitors to stay awhile. Today, Yahoo! announced a deal with online bank Telebank (Nasdaq: TBFC) that will allow Telebank customers to view their account information on Yahoo!.This new feature will be integrated into the personalized My Yahoo! section, as well as Yahoo!'s finance area, which is the Internet's top financial site, according to Media Metrix. Telebank customers will be able to check account balances and transaction histories for savings accounts, checking accounts and CDs. Yahoo! users will also be able to open a new Telebank account."Yahoo! users understand the enormous benefits of online account access, and we believe this makes the new online account access service a powerful account acquisition tool for Telebank," said Mitchell H. Caplan, president and CEO of Telebank.Yahoo! and Telebank, which also … [Read more...] about Yahoo! Taps Into Online Banking
Child's play just got a whole lot more serious on the Net as two more big-name companies intensify their efforts to transform little Web surfers' parents into big online spenders.Consolidated Stores Corp. (NYSE: CNS) weighed in with its announcement that its KB Toys division is teaming with BrainPlay.com, Inc. to form a major new e-commerce toy site, kbtoys.com.The move comes as online toy retailer eToys (Nasdaq: ETYS) goes public Thursday with an offering at $20 a share, jacked up from $12 to $14 a share on Wednesday. The 8.32 million shares are expected to raise about $166 million (US$).And just two weeks ago, Toys "R" Us, which has lagged in developing a strong Web presence, promised to change that with an $80 million investment supporting a new online unit to be based in Silicon Valley. Toy Industry Slow to Go Cyber Though the toy industry has been slow to build e-commerce when compared with, say, books and music, that's expected to change quickly as major players strive to gain … [Read more...] about “Littlest” Net Surfers Mean Big Money
The battle between Napster and the recording industry is still a David versus Goliath proposition. But with a steady diet of venture capital flowing into Napster and its cousins, David is laying on some serious muscle -- and getting harder to cheer for every day.This week, the Wall Street Journal reported that venture capital (VC) firms are beginning to take a closer look at so-called "P-to-P," or peer-to-peer technology, encouraging speculation that the maverick industry may become the next darling of the financiers.First content sites came and went. Then business-to-consumer and business-to-business sites flitted in and out of fashion. Now the "can't-lose" luster of Internet services firms is beginning to crack and peel.So P-to-P is in ascendancy, at least among some of the more cutting edge funding firms ensconced in startup havens like Silicon Valley. That means the debate over whether Napster survives is now about much, much more than shipping digitized music between dorm room … [Read more...] about Will Big Money Spoil Napster?