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1:20 AM ET, December 31, 2011

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Mark Gurman / 9to5Mac:
Sir Jonathan: Apple's design mastermind Jonathan Ive awarded knighthood in the United Kingdom  —  Apple's Senior Vice President of Design Jonathan Ive can add a new title to his resume: Sir Jonathan Ive.  According to BBC, Ive has been granted knighthood in the United Kingdom in the New Year Honours List.
Horace Dediu / asymco:
The curious case of slowing US growth for Android  —  The latest data from comScore MobiLens is showing an uncharacteristic slowing in smartphone growth.  In the survey period ending November, the number of smartphone users in the US was 91.4 million.  This is equivalent to 39.1% penetration …
Ina Fried / AllThingsD:
Christy Wyatt on How Motorola Plans to Stand Out From the Android Pack  —  Even as it prepares to be swallowed up by Google, Motorola Mobility is hardly standing still.  —  One of the key driving forces behind the company is Christy Wyatt, a former Palm and Apple executive, now corporate vice president and general manager
Discussion: The Verge, Electronista and PhoneArena
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Dropbox Automator Is Like IFTTT For Dropbox  —  Thirty-six hours ago, the recently founded software development firm Wappwolf launched Dropbox Automator, which is sort of like an IFTTT for Dropbox.  IFTTT, for those of you not up to speed on the latest Internet trends (where have you been? …
Matt Brian / The Next Web:
“Official” Siri app hits the Android Market, highlights Google's marketplace issues  —  With the launch of the iPhone 4S, Apple introduced its new voice-activated virtual assistant Siri to early acclaim, immediately sparking a rush for developers to offer the same functionality on Android smartphones.
Alex Wilhelm / The Next Web:
Internet Explorer 9's growth on Windows 7 highlights Firefox's weakness  —  Microsoft put out a rah-rah blog post today, touting its various victories with Internet Explorer for the year, mostly discussing Internet Explorer 9′s performance on Windows 7.
T.C. Sottek / The Verge:
Verizon drops $2 ‘convenience fee’ due to customer feedback  —  Just a day after it confirmed that it would be adding a $2 ‘convenience fee’ for paying bills online or over the phone, Verizon's cancelled the charge, citing negative customer feedback as the reason for the shift.
Electronista:
Nintendo, Sony back off of SOPA support  —  Nintendo and Sony rethink unpopular SOPA bill  —  A quiet update to the list of Stop Online Piract Act supporters (PDF) has shown that Nintendo and Sony have backed away from the proposed bill.  Both were originally endorsing the bill as of November …
RELATED:
Ernesto / TorrentFreak:   Presidential Candidate Ron Paul Slams SOPA
Bryan Bishop / The Verge:
Nokia Ace LTE Windows Phone potentially revealed in holiday video card  —  We knew Nokia was readying an LTE Windows Phone for AT&T called the Ace, and now we may have our first look at the device— thanks to a holiday video greeting.  According to PocketNow, one of Microsoft's partners sent out the video …
Mike Masnick / Techdirt:
Can A Company Keep An Employee's LinkedIn Account After They're No Longer Employed?  —  Venkat Balasubramani has the story of a bizarre fight between a company, Sawabeh Information Services, and the founders of Edcomm, a company that Sawabeh bought in 2010.  A few months later …
Jordan Kahn / 9to5Mac:
More Apple retail stores planned for historic buildings in 2012; Stores approved in Germany, Canada, and Spain  —  Apple is not slowing down when it comes to opening more iconic brick-and-mortar retail locations.  Three new retail locations all received recent approval …
David Meyer / BBC:
Hackers plan space satellites to combat censorship  —  50 years after Russia's first piloted mission, hackers plan to send their own people beyond orbit  —  Computer hackers plan to take the internet beyond the reach of censors by putting their own communication satellites into orbit.
 
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 More Items: 
Dan Levine / Reuters:
U.S. court upholds telecom immunity for surveillance
Discussion: Electronista
Élyse Betters / 9to5Google:
LG to unveil first Intel Medfield-powered Android smartphone at CES 2012; LG expects March release date
Josh Ong / AppleInsider:
Apple again rumored to switch to IGZO displays for ‘iPad 3’
 Earlier Items: 
Bloomberg:
Google Backs Israeli Startups After Local Financing Hits 12-Year-Low: Tech
Discussion: 9to5Google
Jessica E. Vascellaro / Wall Street Journal:
Top Stories of 2011: All Apple All the Time
Discussion: Fortune and AppleInsider
David Kravets / Threat Level:
2011: The Year Intellectual Property Trumped Civil Liberties
Discussion: Techdirt
Gabe Donnini / Chitika Insights:
Traffic for Google+ on the Rise Along with User Count
Discussion: VentureBeat and WebProNews
Mike Masnick / Techdirt:
GoDaddy Boycott Fizzles; Twice As Many Domains Transfer In As Out