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Netscape, We Hardly Knew Ye

Netscape logoNetscape is backing off their “social experiment.” On the Netscape blog yesterday, they announced:

Visitors to will see a more traditional news experience very soon. Don’t worry, the social news site isn’t going away! We will keep you updated on where you will be able to find the social news site as we get closer to making the switch.

At first glance, this may seem like a giant step backwards into Web 1.0. However, the blog post claims:

We received some feedback that people really do associate the Netscape brand with providing mainstream news that is editorially controlled. In fact, we specifically heard that our users do have a desire for a social news experience, but simply didn’t expect to find it on

Will Facebook Adhere to OSW Bill of Rights?

A predictable clash of interests is brewing.

Mark Zuckerberg – programmer and founder of the social networking site Facebook – has taken yet another controversial decision, this time to integrate profile searching, in an effort to drive more traffic from name-based searches across the major search engines.

Although users will be able to exclude their profiles and the facility will be restricted to over 18’s, initially many participants will be concerned for their privacy.

The Public Search Listing of a profile shows the profile picture thumbnail and links to interact with a user on Facebook. People will always have to log in or register to poke, message or add someone as a friend. A user can also restrict what information shows in their public listing by going to the search privacy page.

Yahoo Social Network To Get KickStart

Forgive the title pun – CNet reports that Yahoo! are currently working on a concept social networking service called – you guessed it – KickStart. A LinkedIn style job network to connect college students with potential employers.

Yahoo! KickStart Concept Screenhsot

The features you see in screenshots, like the one above, may never materialise – but if this concept were to get the Sunnyvale green light, never will there have been a truer statement than “it’s who you know, not what you know” — to get an “in” to the company of your dreams you will need an invite from an employee who was also a previous alumnus of your college.

Research surveys are already being conducted among students to discover exactly what they think of this new idea. A Yahoo! spokesperson commented:

Adjust Your Rankings with a Few Clicks

If you could influence or manipulate your search ranking, would you? Of course you would. That’s our main goal as search marketers. Sproose, a search engine that allows users to vote and rank the listings in their index, has just launched their voting technology for their video search.

Sproose delivers a “human popularity voting” model where each user may influence the ranking of the index creating improved search results. The more users that vote a site the further up in the ranking it moves. The same voting technology is now being applied to the Sproose video search index.

So basically, here’s how it works:

Net Evangelist Rejects Regulation

BBC Radio 4In a BBC Radio 4 interview [podcast], Vint Cerf – known as one of the founding fathers of the Internet – protested that the Internet is merely reflecting society not leading it…

[The net] should not be used as a scapegoat for society’s ills

Cerf, now Vice President and Chief Internet Evangelist for Google, confirms the Search giant does not have nor wants the responsibility of censoring the Internet, but will respond appropriately to legal issues identified by relevant authorities – citing Google’s position in China as a prime example.

Anyone regulating beyond what was clearly illegal put themselves on a “slippery slope” that could limit freedom of expression.

Plaxo Offers Naked Social Networking

image Yes it’s true. Contact management service Plaxo wants to strip down and reveal all for its new Pulse social networking aggregator. OK, so we’re talking about its decision to open up some of its source code–and not actually encourage nakedness on its network–but that wouldn’t make for an interesting headline, would it? ;-)

The company has released the code for its new “Online Identity Consolidator,” which can automatically discover a user’s social-networking accounts across the Web and embed their related RSS feeds on a Plaxo Pulse profile.

You can get access to the open source code at

Google Goes Social on Facebook

The Wall Street Journal may have moved on, but Google is just getting to the Facebook party. Mashable covers yesterday’s launch of the Google Facebook application. Because, of course, it’s far more convenient to use an application within Facebook than the search box or toolbars in our browsers.

Google Facebook application screenshot from
Google Facebook application screenshot, courtesy of Google Operating System.

Mashable also points out that the timing of the application couldn’t be better. Just days after Robert Scoble raved that Facebook’s social aspect (along with Mahalo and Techmeme) will supplant Google in four years, Google’s new application takes on social search.

Currently, you can perform searches from within Facebook and share your favorite results in your Mini-Feed (on users’ profiles). According to Google Operating System, the application also highlights the most popular shared items.