Both Sides Claim a Victory in the FTC Case Against Google

googleThe 19-month, FTC investigation into Google’s policies and practices has come to an end and both parties are declaring themselves the winner.

Here’s the announcement from the Official Google Blog:

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission today announced it has closed its investigation into Google after an exhaustive 19-month review that covered millions of pages of documents and involved many hours of testimony. The conclusion is clear: Google’s services are good for users and good for competition.

Here’s the FTC’s version:

Google Inc. has agreed to change some of its business practices to resolve Federal Trade Commission concerns that those practices could stifle competition in the markets for popular devices . . . as well as the market for online search advertising.

Facebook Rules the World and Here’s the Map to Prove It

A couple of times a year, Vincenzo Cosenza prepares a new World Map of Social Networks. Before perusing the maps, I would have said, what’s the big deal? There are only a few social networks in the world and they haven’t changed all that much in the last few years.

If I had said that, I would have been wrong. You see, I’m looking at things through red, white, and blue colored glasses. Here’s a look at where the world was in June 2009.

world map june 2009

There were seventeen social networks and thought Facebook (the dark blue) had a good foothold on the world, there’s still plenty more to look at.

Jumping ahead to the newest map, December 2012, we see quite a change.

Ahead of FTC Antitrust Ruling on Google, Fairsearch.org Whines

No More Fair SearchI have never been a fan of Fairsearch.org.

The free market is a tough place especially in the Internet search space since it is a relatively new industry and the best player out of the gate has become dominant. That player is obviously Google.

Fairsearch.org (which is really a very thinly veiled Microsoft ploy to attack Google) is trying to get out in front of a supposed result in the FTC investigation of Google that has been ongoing for about 20 months.

Bloomberg is reporting

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission is poised to announce that Google has agreed to voluntarily change some business practices and settle allegations it misused patents to thwart competitors in smartphone technology, said the people, who asked not to be named because the decision isn’t public.

If You Can’t Beat ‘Em: Polaroid Launches a Fotobar in Florida

Thanks to cell phone cameras, people are taking more photos than ever but the majority of them never make it out of cyberspace. That’s a problem for the pioneers like Kodak and Polaroid who once made their money on film and processing.

Polaroid is trying to take some of that back with a concept they call the Fotobar. It’s all about taking your favorite photos and turning them into works of art. You can do it online and soon, folks in Delray Beach, Florida, will be able to do it in their hometown.

Store_Image1

The Polaroid Fotobar store looks more like an art gallery crossed with a hip internet cafe.

The Marketing Pilgrim 2013 Shape-Up Plan for Marketers

shape upLike many Americans, I greeted the new year watching the ball drop in Time Square on “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve.” It was an enjoyable experience except for the commercial breaks which were dominated by Weight Watchers. Not surprising, since getting into shape and losing weight always makes the list of top 3 New Year’s resolutions.

With that in mind, I put together a shape-up plan for marketers that will help you get a fresh start in this new year.

Review your website

When was the last time you read your own website? Doesn’t matter how perfect it was when you put it up five years ago, things change. Review every page of the site, read the text for typos and click to find broken links.

Shocker! Facebook’s Biggest Underwriters Say Buy The Stock

Banker and BrokerOne of the biggest stories of 2012 was the Facebook IPO. Priced at $38 and falling at times into the high teens the stock is now sitting at about two-thirds of the IPO price. If you bought in early this is still a dog. If you bought when it was around $19 you look like Gordon Gekko.

No matter where the stock is though, the Wall Street pitching machine is still screaming “buy!”. This comes from the Wall Street Journal

Facebook Inc. has gotten a thumbs-down from investors since its initial public offering. But securities analysts who work at the investment banks that did the deal have never wavered in their enthusiasm.

Since the social-networking company went public in May, analysts at Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan, Chase & Co. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc.—Facebook’s three biggest underwriters—have issued 40 reports on the stock.

You Know Internet Industry News Is Slow When New iPhone Rumors Start

iphone rumorsI am ashamed.

I am about to aid and abet in one of the most heinous crimes that the online industry perpetrates on the poor unsuspecting masses for what seems to be 365 days a year now.

I am going to help perpetuate the, gulp, “We’ve seen next iPhone!” machine. My apologies but really, there isn’t anything else to say.

The Next Web says

Currently under development, traces of Apple’s new iPhone and iOS software have begun surfacing in app usage logs. Developers have contacted The Next Web to share references to a new iPhone identifier and the next big operating system update for the smartphone and tablet devices: iOS 7.

Cue the dramatic music. Start running those typewriter sounds in the background. It’s going to happen. Mashable says with apparent great certainty (insert Muttley laugh here).