Facebook and Securities Fraud?

Seems like Mark Zuckerberg is experiencing a serious dose of ‘when it rains, it pours’ these days. The scrutiny that he and the Facebook bunch is facing for their privacy concerns has become a true thorn in the side of the biggest social networking player on the planet. Many have said that it is unfair to continually put Zuckerberg in the cross hairs but reports of movies being made and more of late has put him in a less than flattering light. I see it as the price of fame and fortune in a world gone silly over any kind of celebrity but that’s just my take.

ESPN Joining Social Gaming Party

While I realize that many of our readers are not sports fans (your reactions to some of my sports themed posts in the past are a clear giveaway on that front) I feel it is important to share with you that ESPN is joining the social gaming fray.

Why is it important? As far as brands go, ESPN is one of the strongest ones on the planet. You don’t have to watch SportsCenter to know what ESPN does. It’s just one of those that things that can either make people react with excitement or a full roll of the eyes. Either way, ESPN is a business and everyone knows about it.

So why would a brand that is cemented in the American psyche turn to producing games for social networks like Facebook and others? I suspect it’s because they are smart. Mashable reports

Worldwide Mobile Phone Sales Up 17% in Q1

Whether it’s the real year of mobile or not doesn’t matter much really. Although we like to try to pinpoint these types of ‘movements’ by some magical moment in time where the switch was suddenly turned on it’s not how it happens. What does happen is year over year signs and hints appear saying that shifts are truly taking place and we just slide into a new era of communication regardless of what name we give it.

A study by Gartner shows that in year over year numbers there was increase worldwide in number of mobile phones purchased. In fact that number was up 17%. In these uncertain economic times it is of interest to see what people view as essential beyond the obvious food, clothing and shelter. Apparently, having a mobile phone is pretty high up the food chain.

Yahoo Buys Associated Content and $5 Per Article ‘Journalists’ Celebrate

It looks like Carol Bartz has decided that the way for Yahoo to survive is to add to the proliferation of content that is being produced for the sole purpose of garnering search traffic. That ‘content’ is often just glorified keyword wrappers that do little to actually help a reader but plenty to sucker them into an advertising trap. Oh happy day. The deal for Yahoo to purchase the content factory Associated Content was reported yesterday and is said to be for $100 million. Just imagine how many $5 dollar articles can be sourced with that kind of money!

Associated Content is well-known for its producing content on the cheap. Some might even say it is infamous for its concern for high quality ‘reporting’. Advertising Age reports

Foursquare Check Ins Growing Rapidly

While the numbers are nowhere near those of Facebook (really whose are anyway?) foursquare is experiencing some significant jumps in number of check-ins. This is a double-edged sword of sorts though since more and more people are discovering that when they have checked in they have essentially done everything they can do.

The Business Insider tells of the numbers that foursquare is reporting

Foursquare, the hot mobile “check-in” app, has basically doubled in usage over the last two months.
Responding to criticism for Foursquare’s recent downtime, the company said it’s now handling an average 600,000 “check-ins” per day.

That’s basically double the less than 400,000 check-ins per day in late March — just two months ago — and up about 5X from when it hit 1 million check-ins a WEEK in February.

Google Buys VOIP Service That Powers Some Yahoo, AOL Offerings

Google continues to plow forward swallowing up whatever it needs to do whatever it wants. Google will acquire Global IP Solutions Holding which will give it control of the voice over IP (VOIP) engine that sits behind offerings by competitors like Yahoo and AOL. The company makes processing software for voice and video over IP solutions.

If you are Google this is just another day in the world of M & A but for the rest of the world it’s another day in watching Google control just a little more of the things that others need to run their operations. Good for Google but for the others maybe not so much.

ZDNet reports

MySpace Wants to Become Your Privacy Buddy

OK, it’s 2005. Imagine you are the reigning social media champ, MySpace. You are the number one social networking site and you get all the great press. It appears as if there was no way to stop you. You even get purchased for some serious scratch from one of the premier media companies in the world, News Corp. Sure there are some bothersome startups around like those kids over at Facebook but this is a done deal. You are the king of the mountain. What can go wrong?

Fast forward 5 years. You are a social media also ran. You are white knuckling your existence. Those “kids” over at Facebook have not only passed you but they have basically made you obsolete. You are the butt of social media jokes and no self respecting person or company (unless you are promoting music) talks about their “presence” on your site.