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11:05 AM ET, March 21, 2008

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Paul Miller / Engadget:
Sony hates you, offers $50 “Fresh Start” option to build your laptop crapware-free  —  Sony has quite the history of crippling excellent, beautiful hardware with horrible, useless software.  The company's UX UMPC bluescreened on us the first time we turned it on, and crashed the first time we tried …
Mark Hendrickson / TechCrunch:
LinkedIn, Now For Companies  —  LinkedIn, the boring social network that won't find you a date but may land you a job, is expanding beyond people profiles.  —  On Friday morning they will launch company profile pages that partly serve as fact sheets for about 160,000 companies and partly serve …
RELATED:
Caroline McCarthy / The Social:
LinkedIn's business directory goes live  —  Professional networking site LinkedIn has launched the beta version of its business directory, called LinkedIn Company PRofiles, with data provided by BusinessWeek and Capital IQ supplementing LinkedIn's member information.
Discussion: The Social Times and Coop's Corner
Danis Dayanov / The LinkedIn Blog:
The Engineering component |  LinkedIn Company Profiles  —  Over the course of the last years there were several important features that we've brought to you.  The past few months in particular has seen the rapid deployment of features such as these: Profile photos, Redesigned Homepage …
Discussion: Contentinople and Web Strategy
Maisy Samuelson / The LinkedIn Blog:
Now Companies too have profiles on LinkedIn!
Farhad Manjoo / Salon:
The Wall Street Journal's Web site is already (secretly) free  —  Late in January, Rupert Murdoch put an end to speculation that he would set free the Wall Street Journal's subscription-only Web site.  —  While he planned to “expand” the site's free offerings, “the really special things …
Discussion: TeleRead
Erick Schonfeld / TechCrunch:
Breaking: FCC Confirms that Big Winner in Spectrum Auction is Verizon.  So Why Is Google Smiling?  —  The big winner of the FCC's $19.6 billion auction of wireless spectrum that ended yesterday is Verizon.  That was pretty much everyone's guess.  —  At a press conference today …
RELATED:
Associated Press:
AT&T to pay FCC $1.3B down payment  —  NEW YORK - AT&T says it will pay an initial down payment of $1.3 billion to the Federal Communications Commission for its portion of wireless spectrum licenses it won in a government airwaves auction.  —  AT&T says it will pay the down payment …
Katie Marsal / AppleInsider:
Apple pushing Safari downloads on Windows users  —  In an apparent bid to rapidly gain share of the online browser market dominated by rival Microsoft, Apple is leveraging its vast iTunes install base to recommend that Windows users also download and install the latest version of its Safari web browser.
RELATED:
Ryan / CyberNet:
Apple Pushes Safari “Update” on Windows
Caroline McCarthy / CNET News.com:
Gibson turns volume up to 11 with new ‘Guitar Hero’ lawsuit  —  Legendary guitar manufacturer Gibson Guitar has sued six major retailers—Wal-Mart, K-Mart, Target, Amazon.com, Gamestop, and Toys-R-Us—for selling Activision's Guitar Hero video game series, MarketWatch reported Friday.
Discussion: Engadget, Geek Gestalt and Kotaku
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Associated Press:
Gibson Guitar sues retailers over ‘Guitar Hero’ game  —  NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gibson Guitar Corp. on Thursday sued Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT:, , ) and five other major retailers that sell the Activision Inc. (ATVI:, , ) “Guitar Hero” game, claiming it violates a patent it holds.
Discussion: CrunchGear
Stefanie Olsen / CNET News.com:
Q&A: Battelle talks blog roll-ups, Google, and Federated Media's future  —  John Battelle knows tech booms and busts.  He's been at the forefront of them for nearly two decades.  —  In 1993, he co-founded Wired, a print magazine that set a standard in technology coverage and spawned popular sites …
Thomas Ricker / Engadget:
Little old lady suing Sony, Samsung, Nokia and everyone else for infringing on her laser patents  —  Oh sure, she looks friendly enough.  But don't let her matronly, argyle looks fool you.  Retired Columbia University Professor, Gertrude Neumark Rothschild, is looking to extract some cold …
Discussion: Reuters, eWeek, Inquirer and Electronista
RELATED:
Nivi / Venture Hacks:
Getting Recommended … On April 1st, we started publishing the best damn term sheet hacks we could find.  Why?  Because a lot of entrepreneurs ask the same question: … We're trying to make everything we've learned—from other entrepreneurs, investors, and lawyers—readily available.
Discussion: VentureBeat
RELATED:
Mark Hendrickson / TechCrunch:
Venture Hacks Branches Out From Blogging, Launches Recommendations System
Discussion: MYBLOG by Ouriel
Sarah Lai Stirland / Threat Level:
Stanford Law Professor Larry Lessig Bets ‘Wikipedia’ Approach Will Transform Congress  —  Stanford law professor Larry Lessig plans to use collaborative software to change Congress.  —  Courtesy Larry Lessig  —  A prominent Stanford law professor on Thursday launched an ambitious project …
Eric Bangeman / Ars Technica:
DirecTV DVR clampdown: a sober reminder of DRM suckitude  —  DirecTV DVR owners got some bad news from the satellite TV provider recently when the company announced that it will break some of the existing functionality of the DVRs.  Effective April 15, subscribers will only have 24 hours …
 
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 More Items: 
Dave Winer / Scripting News:
What's wrong with Wikipedia
Discussion: Glass House
Phil McKenna / New Scientist:
Climbing robot throws its weight around
Discussion: Switched, Engadget and Digg
Business Wire:
SplashCast Closes Over-Subscribed Series A Funding and Appoints …
Andrew Schotz / Herald-Mail:
Proposed Md. bill would make intentional theft of wireless Internet access a crime
Discussion: Techdirt and DSLreports
Ernesto / TorrentFreak:
Publisher Posts Mac Books on The Pirate Bay
Discussion: MacUser, CrunchGear, Epicenter and Digg
Paul Boutin / New York Times:
So You Want to Be a Blogging Star?
Discussion: Valleywag
Steven Clift / MediaShift Idea Lab:
Is Citizen Media Skipping Small Town America?
Discussion: MediaVidea
Zach Epstein / The Boy Genius Report:
FliXee and YouTube Integration Added to Flixwagon
 Earlier Items: 
Glenn Derene / Popular Mechanics:
The 10 Video Formats HD DVD Will Meet in Heaven: Buzzword
Discussion: Digg
Ben Jones / TorrentFreak:
Get BitTorrent on Your TV with Myka
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch:
Ning: All Our Charts Point Up And To The Right
Ionut Alex Chitu / Google Operating System:
Google's Broken Bookmarking Systems
Discussion: louisgray.com
Sarah Perez / ReadWriteWeb:
The Conversation Has Left the Blogosphere
David Pogue / New York Times:
Camcorder Brings Zen to the Shoot
AppleInsider:
Apple researching autostereoscopic 3-D display hardware
Ben Lisbakken / Google AJAX Search API Blog:
Introducing the AJAX Language API - Tools for Translation and Language Detection