Introducing lGoogle (The L is for Lobbyist)

google-logoWe have talked on several occasions here at Marketing Pilgrim about Google’s Washington, DC connections. Some wonder if there is too much Google in the capitol while others just think it’s the normal course of big business. Either way you look at it there is no denying that Google is as much a part of the Beltway Bunch as Democrats and Republicans.

According to the Wall Street Journal Google spent $950,000 in the second quarter on lobbying efforts

The sum tops the $880,000 it spent in the first quarter and represents a 30% increase from the second quarter of 2008, when it spent $730,000.

While Google continues to raise its presence in Washington the money that they spend is still less than Microsoft ($1.9 million in Q2) and AT&T ($3.1 million in Q2).

Facebook Allows Username Do-Overs – Just Once!

Facebook IconFacebook has milked the vanity URL deal for all its worth until this point so why not try to get a little more mileage out it, right? Over the past few months Facebook has been allowing individuals to choose their username but has put the rather strict caveat on the practice that it is a “one and done” proposition. In other words, when you make that fateful decision to make your vanity URL something that was something funny but not very practical you were stuck with it. Well, the mighty Facebook is showing its merciful side by allowing users to pick another username. Beware though, you only get one shot …… again.

ReadWriteWeb outlines the process for us

Yahoo Looking to Sell HotJobs, Buy Xoopit

yahoo-logoWith their Q2 results out—and better than expected—Yahoo seems to think they’re now in a prime position to review their holdings. In their portfolio, and on the chopping block: HotJobs and Yahoo Small Business. But Yahoo may also be looking to invest, most likely in Xoopit.

According to Reuters, Yahoo may be looking to divest itself of HotJobs, a job search website, as well as the division over Hot Jobs, Yahoo Small Business. YSB covers Yahoo! Domains, Yahoo! Web Hosting, Yahoo! Merchant Solutions, Yahoo! Business Email, and Yahoo! Store, which could net the company a big bonus. Yahoo has been looking to sell for 2-3 months in an effort to focus on its core business.

Meanwhile, Yahoo is rumored to be in the final stages of acquiring Xoopit for around $20M:

Ning Rings VC Bell Again

Ning Logo 2With all of the talk regarding social media it seems that the inordinate amount of the attention goes to the big 2; Facebook and Twitter. While they do tend to generate significant drama and even some real news there is more to the social media space. In fact, there are those who see the social media universe fragmenting into very specific verticals so those of like mind can gather online without having to see that your friend just had a great breath of air. There’s got to be more right?

Yahoo Had Some Results Too, You Know

yahoo-logoWhile everyone was busy admiring the performance of Apple during the second quarter of this year, other companies were trying to do some business as well. Among those was Yahoo. While Apple seems to trip over good news Yahoo has to work hard to keep itself out of the news for the wrong reasons. Yesterday it reported its Q2 numbers and the folks over at ZDNet filled the world in on some better than expected results

The company reported second quarter net income of $141.4 million, or 10 cents a share, on revenue excluding traffic acquisition costs of $1.14 billion. Wall Street was expecting Yahoo to report earnings of 8 cents a share on revenue of $1.14 billion. Non-GAAP second quarter earnings were 16 cents a share, on par with expectations (statement). In the same quarter a year ago, Yahoo reported earnings of 9 cents a share on revenue of $1.34 billion.

Apple Has Best Non-Holiday Quarter Ever

Apple SilverWhile it should come as no surprise, Apple is doing very well, thank you. Amidst all of the gloom and doom, the hand wringing and the concern over the future, Apple is simply rolling along as if to say “What recession?” In what will likely be a classic case study in business schools for the future, Apple has taken an approach to the market that is so revolutionary that it has to be examined. You see, they are providing high quality products that fill needs for their customers. In the process they have even created even more need due to the nature of their products and the possibilities they offer. That is just brilliant.

Barnes and Noble Wants Your E-book Biz

Plastic LogicBarnes and Noble is no stranger to the eBook business. The first ‘go round’ was shelved six years ago but yesterday the retail bookseller announced it is reentering the market in a big way. As the storefront book business continues to fight for survival in the continuing move to online purchases and other formats Barnes and Noble is looking to make sure it is in the fight. All Things D covers the development:

On Monday afternoon, the bookseller announced what it describes as “the world’s largest eBookstore,” an online storefront that boasts 700,000 titles. That’s substantially more than the 300,000 available for download on Amazon’s Kindle service, though half-a-million of them are public domain books provided by Amazon (AMZN). They’ll be compatible with Apple’s iPhone and iPod Touch, BlackBerry smartphones, and, when it finally arrives at market, the Plastic Logic eReader — a Kindle DX-sized E-book reader for which it will be the exclusive storefront