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10:15 PM ET, February 18, 2010

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Matt / WordPress.com News:
WP.com Downtime Summary  —  Today WordPress.com was down for approximately 110 minutes, our worst downtime in four years.  The outage affected 10.2 million blogs, including our VIPs, and appears to have deprived those blogs of about 5.5 million pageviews.  —  What Happened …
RELATED:
Zee / The Next Web:
Wordpress.com is down, taking over 9.2 million blogs with it.  [Update: It's Back Up]  —  This is a rarity but Wordpress.com, the Internet's largest blogging platform is down taking over 9.2 Million blogs with it.  —  The good news is that the team are aware and hard at work attempting to get things back up and running.
Discussion: TechCrunch, Podcasting News and Mashable!, Thanks:martinsfp
Yahoo! Search Blog:
News about our Search Alliance with Microsoft  —  Today we issued a press release announcing that we've received clearance from both the U.S. Department of Justice and the European Commission for our search agreement with Microsoft.  Now that we're full steam ahead, I'd like to share what we at Yahoo! …
RELATED:
Peter Chapman / Bloomberg:
Microsoft, Yahoo Deal Wins European Union Antitrust Approval
Rafat Ali / paidContent:
Microsoft & Yahoo Get Regulatory Clearances in U.S. & Europe …
Cory Doctorow / Boing Boing:
School used student laptop webcams to spy on them at school and home  —  According to the filings in Blake J Robbins v Lower Merion School District (PA) et al, the laptops issued to high-school students in the well-heeled Philly suburb have webcams that can be covertly activated …
RELATED:
Dr. Christopher McGinley / Lower Merion School …:
LMSD response to ‘invasion of privacy’ allegation  —  Last year, our district became one of the first school systems in the United States to provide laptop computers to all high school students.  This initiative has been well received and has provided educational benefits to our students.
Ryan Tate / Gawker:
What Steve Jobs Said During His Wall Street Journal iPad Demo  —  We know that Apple's CEO is no fan of Flash, the Web animation software.  But it sounds like Steve Jobs really unleashed on the Adobe system to try and convince the Wall Street Journal to ditch it for the iPad.
Business Wire:
PayPal is Now a Way to Pay for Facebook Ads and Facebook Credits  —  PALO ALTO, Calif. & SAN JOSE, Calif.—(BUSINESS WIRE)—Facebook and PayPal today announced a strategic relationship to offer PayPal in key parts of Facebook's advertising and developer systems.
RELATED:
Eric Eldon / Inside Facebook:
Facebook's Increasing Focus on Credits Prompts Developer Speculation
Discussion: The Register and Erictric
Harry McCracken / Technologizer:
Exclusive: TheStreet.com's Tech Exclusives Are a Crapshoot  —  TheStreet.com's Scott Moritz has an exciting exclusive: Northeast Securities analyst Ashok Kumar has learned that Microsoft is working on a Microsoft-branded phone based on its Windows Phone 7 Series OS.
Discussion: Daring Fireball
RELATED:
Scott Moritz / TheStreet.com:
Microsoft, Asus Team on Phone: Exclusive  —  NEW YORK (TheStreet) — Apple (AAPL Quote) did it.  Google (GOOG Quote) did it.  Now it's Microsoft's (MSFT Quote) turn.  —  The Redmond, Wash., software giant is working with computer hardware manufacturer Asustek to build its own phone.
Philip Elmer-DeWitt / Brainstorm Tech:
Apple conceals iPad freight records - report  —  Moves to hide ocean shipping data from competitors and prying reporters, according to trade privacy group  —  In preparation for the scheduled March delivery of Apple's (AAPL) new iPad tablet computer, the company has blocked its bills of lading …
Vladislav Savov / Engadget:
Sony Ericsson CEO: Google asked us to build the Nexus One, we refused  —  Aw, why don't these CEOs say stuff like this in press conferences?  Sony Ericsson's head Bert Nordberg has shared with Swedish publication Sydsvenskan the rather salacious news that his company was asked to build …
Raj Dash / All Facebook:
Report: Facebook Served As Primary Distribution Channel For Botnet Army  —  Internet security company NetWitness has just published a report that reveals an 18-month-long widespread hacker attack on computers worldwide whose topmost method of malware delivery was Facebook.
RELATED:
Siobhan Gorman / Wall Street Journal:
Broad New Hacking Attack Detected
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Google Reader Recommendations Swap Popularity For Personalization  —  Back in October of last year, Google Reader rolled out a nice little update that added a new “Popular items” feed to the “Explore” area of the service.  In here, you would find items from around the web that were gaining popularity fast.
New York Times:
Two Chinese Schools Said to Be Tied to Online Attacks  —  SAN FRANCISCO — A series of online attacks on Google and dozens of other American corporations have been traced to computers at two educational institutions in China, including one with close ties to the Chinese military, say people involved in the investigation.
Discussion: Fast Company and VentureBeat, Thanks:crossloop
Peter Kafka / MediaMemo:
CBS: We'll Cut iTunes Prices for Some Shows [UPDATE]  —  Steve Jobs's effort to cut prices on TV shows sold on iTunes has found at least partial backing from CBS.  CEO Les Moonves says the broadcaster will mark down the price on some of its shows from $1.99 to 99 cents.
MG Siegler / TechCrunch:
Google Voice Launches A Series Of Videos To Explain Its “Awesomeness,” Gibberish  —  Google Voice is a great service, one of the best things Google has released in a long time.  Unfortunately, most casual web users have no idea what it is.  Or more specifically, what it's purpose is.
Justin Scheck / Digits:
Dell Goes Small in Tablets as It Prepares iPad Competition  —  It's like Groundhog Day for touch-screen PCs. … Yesterday's device of tomorrow (see Bill Gates's 2001 prediction that tablet PCs would outstrip laptops and of course the Apple Newton) is once again hot stuff, thanks to Apple's iPad launch last month.
Discussion: Engadget, eWeek, ChannelWeb and AppleInsider
Ellen McGirt / Fast Company:
#1 Facebook  —  It was quite a year for Mark Zuckerberg and crew, whose site added a whopping 200 million users.  Now, as they brush off the crumbs of MySpace and other competitors, it's time to look for their next meal.  They're very, very hungry.  —  The photos and updates began appearing …
Discussion: Fast Company
foursquare:
On foursquare, location & privacy...  Why hello!  —  A lot of you asking for our thoughts in light of the “People can use foursquare to rob houses!” thesis making the rounds so we figured we'd weigh in with our perspective.  Two things:  —  #1. We take your privacy very seriously.
Discussion: TechCrunch, IBD Click and AppScout
Mike Masnick / Techdirt:
Nathan Myhrvold's Intellectual Ventures Using Over 1,000 Shell Companies To Hide Patent Shakedown  —  It's no secret that we think Nathan Myhrvold's Intellectual Ventures is a dangerous, innovation harming monstrosity.  The company used a bait and switch scheme to get a bunch of big tech companies …
Sponsors of Elliot / Elliot's Blog:
Sex.com For Sale in Foreclosure Auction  —  In exactly one month from today, we may see a new record set for the price of a domain sale.  I just received an email from a friend with a link to a notice stating that SEX.com will be up for auction.  The foreclosure auction will be held …
Discussion: TechCrunch
Frederic Lardinois / ReadWriteWeb:
The Most Popular YouTube Videos and the Bloggers Who Embed Them  —  YouTube is, by far, the most popular online video service, but we actually know very little about how bloggers use the service to embed videos on their own sites.  Sysomos, the Toronto-based social media analytics and monitoring firm …
Discussion: Sysomos and Sysomos Blog
Alexander Vaughn / App Advice:
Huh, Apple Opens The App Store To Lottery Apps  —  For those of you with compulsive gambling tendencies, owning an iPhone might soon become somewhat of a problem.  In what looks like a very strange move, Apple is now allowing lottery-style applications in the App Store.
Michael Learmonth / AdAge:
Google Names New Head of Display Advertising  —  Salzman to Oversee All U.S. Non-Search Business, Including YouTube and DoubleClick  —  NEW YORK (AdAge.com) — For years, Google has said display advertising is its next billion-dollar business.  Now they're bringing in another executive to make that a reality.
Discussion: paidContent
 
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 More Items: 
Softpedia News:
NEC's LSI Technology Three Times Faster than USB 3.0
Sarah Perez / ReadWriteWeb:
Social Networking Now More Popular on Mobile than Desktop
Jim Louderback / AdAge:
Pre-Roll Video Ads Still Hated, Here to Stay
Discussion: NewTeeVee
Andy Greenberg / Forbes:
For Pentagon Contractors, Cyberspying Escalates
Thanks:atul
 Earlier Items: 
Fred / A VC:
How Unique Is A Unique Visitor?  —  I access the web each …
Discussion: Scout Analytics™
Michael Steen / Financial Times:
TomTom unfazed by free navigation apps
tdgresearch.com:
Half of Netflix ‘Watch Instantly’ Users Are Streaming to the TV
Discussion: DSLreports
Motoko Rich / New York Times:
Apple's Prices for E-Books May Be Lower Than Expected