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2:35 PM ET, December 13, 2006

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Matt Richtel / New York Times:
Skype's Free Phone Call Plan Will Soon Have Annual Fee  —  Skype, the Internet calling service owned by eBay, said Tuesday that as of Jan. 1 it would begin charging $30 a year for unlimited calls to landline and mobile phones within the United States and Canada.  Those calls had been free since last spring.
RELATED:
About Skype:
Skype Announces New Skype Unlimited Calling Plan  —  Offers 12 Months of Unlimited Skype Calls to Any Phone Within the US and Canada for a Flat Annual Rate  —  Skype, the global Internet communications company, is now offering U.S. and Canadian consumers the new Skype Unlimited Calling plan …
Andy Abramson / VoIP Watch:
Skype 3.0 Goes Live, New Cheaper Disruptive Calling Plans Announced for USA  —  Skype users received an early holiday present, at least those in the USA and Canada, with a new year long pricing scheme that provides twelve months of unlimited calls from the USA and Canada to numbers in the USA …
USA Today:   Skype expands calling options
Scott Martin / Red Herring:
Yahoo Dethroned By MySpace  —  Fox Interactive Media, largely thanks to MySpace, has edged into No. 1 for Internet page views.  —  Yahoo is getting good at being No. 2.  News Corp.'s Fox Interactive Media has now edged the search giant out of its long-held perch at the top position for Internet page views.
RELATED:
Anick Jesdanun / Associated Press:
ComScore: MySpace tops Yahoo in November  —  NEW YORK — The online hangout MySpace got even more popular in November, beating Yahoo (YHOO) in Web traffic for the first time, a research company said Tuesday.  —  News Corp.'s MySpace recorded 38.7 billion U.S. page views last month …
Discussion: Search Engine Land
BBC:
Apple denies download sales fall  —  Apple has denied a report which claims US sales at its iTunes Music Store fell by 65% in the first half of 2006.  —  Research group Forrester said it was too soon to say whether its findings showed that buyers were "reaching their saturation level for digital music".
RELATED:
CIO.com:
IBM, Yahoo Launch Free Enterprise Search Tool  —  IBM and Yahoo have developed a free, entry-level, enterprise search application that at least one analyst believes will seriously disrupt the low-end segment of this market where Google has been selling many of its Mini search devices.
RELATED:
Sprint:
Sprint Powers Up Faster Mobile Broadband Network in 10 More Markets, Upgraded Coverage Reaches 60 Million People  —  Users in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Detroit, Denver, Baltimore, Providence and New Jersey now have the power of significantly faster upload speeds …
RELATED:
Chris Ziegler / Engadget:
Verizon's EV-DO Rev. A network launches Friday?
Discussion: GigaOM and broadbandreports.com
Elinor Mills / CNET News.com:
Google unveils unorthodox stock option auction  —  Google plans to start an unorthodox stock options program in April that will allow employees to sell their vested options in an online auction, the search giant announced late Tuesday.  —  Traditionally, employees have two ways to deal with stock options …
RELATED:
New York Times:
Google to Offer Variation on Stock Options
Discussion: Valleywag
Ryan Paul / Ars Technica:
A first look at Firefox 3.0  —  Mozilla has officially released the first public alpha build of Firefox 3.0.  Codenamed Gran Paradiso, Firefox 3 includes the new Gecko 1.9 rendering engine which leverages the open-source Cairo rendering framework and features heavily refactored reflow algorithms …
Ewan / The All New Ewan's Musings:
LeWeb3 Fallout.  As A Speaker, I'm Not Happy  —  I was a speaker at LeWeb3, from which I have just returned.  As the conference opened, I was on a panel with three others, for a 30 minute session, where I would talk about Combat Cards (the collectible card game for Second Life) …
Heather Champ / FlickrBlog:
Ho ho ho!  Flickr Gifts and Upload Limit Changes  —  It's now easier than ever to spread joy this holiday season by giving the Gift of Flickr.  You can purchase a special activation code that you can give to anyone, whether or not they have an existing Flickr account.
Annie Sullivan / Official Google Blog:
Nifty Toolbar upgrades for Firefox  —  Ever since the latest version of the Google Toolbar for IE came out, Firefox users have been asking when they'll see the same new features in their favorite browser.  Well, we've been hard at work on a new version of the Toolbar for Firefox …
Yahoo!:
Yahoo! Search Marketing Platform Opens Online Sign-up for New Customers  —  U.S. Businesses Can Now Sign Up Online To Take Advantage of Yahoo!'s Powerful New Search Marketing System  —  BURBANK, Calif., Dec 12, 2006 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq:YHOO), a leading global Internet company …
Katharine Q. Seelye / New York Times:
More Journalists Join Political News Venture  —  Mike Allen, a reporter who covers the White House for Time magazine, and Roger Simon, the chief political correspondent for Bloomberg News, are joining the new multimedia political news venture being overseen by two former Washington Post journalists.
Discussion: PaidContent
Chris Pirillo:
A Tablet PC Wedding  —  A few weeks ago, Ponzi suggested that we could read our marriage vows from our respective laptops during the ceremony.  I was amazed that she would suggest such a thing, but it just goes to show you that she really understands me (and respects my unhealthy fascination with technology).
 
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 More Items: 
Steve O'Hear / The Social Web:
Do ordinary users care about data portability? …
Lifehacker:
Pluck, tag and save the good stuff from YouTube videos
Plesstv / Beet.TV:
Beet.TV Has Sponsors...Blinkx and The NewsMarket Join the Party....
Sam Sethi / TechCrunch UK & Ireland:
Putting my money where my mouth is!
Barry Schwartz / Search Engine Land:
Yahoo Answers Birthday: One Year Old
Chris Anderson / The Long Tail:
WHAT WOULD RADICAL TRANSPARENCY MEAN FOR WIRED? (PART 2)
Google Blogoscoped:
Does Google Allow Cloaking When They Like the Site?
Discussion: digg
techeblog.com:
(Video) Self-Parking LEGO Car
 Earlier Items: 
Pete Cashmore / Mashable!:
YouTube.tv, anyone?  —  Will the rise of online video spark …
Richard MacManus / Read/WriteWeb:
Search 2.0 - What's Next?
J Mark Lytle / Digital World Tokyo:
Legs everywhere rejoice as dog humps USB port silly
Kasper Jade / AppleInsider:
Adobe Photoshop CS3 beta to drop this friday
Discussion: Apple Gazette and digg
Zach's Journal:
google's own cornershop
Hilary Goldstein / IGN:
Halo 3 Beta Signup Success
Discussion: Opposable Thumbs, You NEWB and digg
Forbes:
Mac Envy  —  Are Apple computers better than Windows PCs?
Clay Shirky / Many-to-Many:
Second Life: What are the real numbers?