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11:15 AM ET, January 3, 2012

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Alexia Tsotsis / TechCrunch:
This Month's Apple Event To Focus On Publishing And iBooks  —  Apple will be holding a product event later this month in New York, Kara Swisher is reporting, and we've confirmed independently with a source.  —  According to the source the event will not involve any hardware at all and instead …
RELATED:
Kara Swisher / AllThingsD:
Not the iPad 3 or New TV — But Apple Planning Media-Related Event in the Big(ger) Apple This Month  —  According to sources close to the situation, Apple is planning an important — but not large-scale — event to be held in New York at the end of this month that will focus on a media-related announcement.
Danny Sullivan / Search Engine Land:
Google's Jaw-Dropping Sponsored Post Campaign For Chrome  —  Google, the company that has been fighting against paid links and “thin” content, seems to be behind a campaign that's generating both on behalf of its Chrome browser.  File this under “what were they thinking.”  —  “This Post Sponsored By Google”
RELATED:
Peter Kafka / AllThingsD:
Google's Ad Company (Which Isn't Google) Explains What's Up With Those Chrome Ads  —  Google is paying bloggers to run posts promoting its Google Chrome browser.  —  Is that a big deal?  Depends on who you ask.  —  Search Engine Land's Danny Sullivan, who sussed this out yesterday, has two big problems with the notion.
Discussion: eWeek
Financial Post:
RIM leaning toward new chairman: sources  —  Under intense pressure from a group of shareholders, Research in Motion Ltd. is preparing to unveil a corporate shakeup at the beleaguered BlackBerry maker that could see co-founders Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie relinquish their titles as co-chairmen of the board, according to sources.
Electronista:
RIM cuts all PlayBooks to $300, gets ad hoc Android Market  —  BlackBerry PlayBook drops to 300 on company store  —  RIM has started running a new sale for the BlackBerry PlayBook on its own store.  Every version of the tablet costs the same $300, making the 64GB version the best option until stock runs out.
Jon Mitchell / ReadWriteWeb:
The Verified Twitter Account for Rupert Murdoch's Wife Was Fake  —  Rupert Murdoch joined Twitter last week.  So did his wife, Wendi Deng Murdoch.  “Joining my husband @rupertmurdoch in our new digital adventure on Twitter,” reads her bio.  Cute, right?  Rupert was verified, Wendi was verified …
Philip Elmer-DeWitt / Fortune:
If Android is so hot, why has Java ME overtaken it?  —  Ranked by Internet market share — rather than unit sales — Google is now No. 3  —  Data: NetApplications.  Chart: PED  —  From the perspective of NetApplications, which has been measuring browser usage data since 2004 …
Harrison Weber / The Next Web:
Google+ just had its biggest traffic month of all time, up 55% from November.  —  According to Experian Hitwise, Google+'s total monthly US visits have grown 55% since November. 49 million visits were recorded in December 2011 — the biggest month to date.  —  But regardless of the actual numbers …
Rick Martin / Tech in Asia:
‘Lucky Bags’ a Popular Apple Store Tradition in Japan  —  In Japan, ‘lucky bags’ are a New Year's Day shopping tradition that offers up a mystery bag of items usually at a discounted price.  And perhaps one of the most sought-after lucky bags comes from the country's Apple Stores.
Mike Butcher / TechCrunch Europe:
SoundCloud raises $50 million round led by Kleiner Perkins  —  SoundCloud has raised a new fundraising round led by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.  The amount was not released but TechCrunch understands it to be $50 million.  This would give the company a $200 million pre-money valuation.
Telegraph:
Facebook IPO: the £64bn question of 2012  —  If it ever happens, Facebook will be the frenzied float of 2012, with a possible valuation of $100bn (£64.4bn).  —  An IPO will make founder Mark Zuckerberg one of the world's richest men and many of Facebook's 3,000 employees exceedingly wealthy.
Discussion: VentureBeat, TechCrunch and ITProPortal
Tony Smith / The Register:
The Commodore 64 is 30  —  Commodore took the wraps off the Commodore 64, one of two immediate follow-ups to its popular Vic-20 home computer, 30 years ago this week.  —  The 64 made its public debut at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), though it wouldn't go into production until later …
Discussion: GadgeTell and TechCrunch
Barb Darrow / GigaOM:
Twine project blows by funding goals thanks to Kickstarter  —  When Supermechanical turned to Kickstarter to crowd source funding of its Twine project, its cofounders were no doubt optimistic.  But it's hard to believe that even they would have expected that pledges amounting to nearly a half …
Discussion: SlashGear and @cdixon
Harrison Weber / The Next Web:
New law requires all restaurants in Malaysian city to provide Wi-Fi  —  According to Malaysian editorial, The New Straits Times Press, restaurants in Kuala Lumpur (the largest city in Malaysia) are now required to have Wi-Fi.  Enforcement of the new law will begin in April of this year …
Wall Street Journal:
PC Firms Bet on Ultrabooks  —  New Sleek, Thin Laptops Make Stylish Push Toward Mainstream Price Points  —  Intel Corp.'s crusade to redefine the personal computer is entering a crucial phase, as a new breed of sleek skinny portables jostle with tablet-style devices and smartphones for consumer attention.
Discussion: Digits
 
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 More Items: 
Jordan Kahn / 9to5Google:
Larry Page named ‘CEO of the year’ by Investors Business Daily
Dante D'Orazio / The Verge:
New ClockworkMod app offers free tethering to Android phones, sans root
Matt Hamblen / Network World:
Mobile campaigns to be hot in 2012 presidential race
Kristian Davis Bailey / The Stanford Daily:
University explains NYC withdrawal
 Earlier Items: 
Matthew Panzarino / The Next Web:
A new record high of 1.2 billion apps were downloaded in last week of 2011
Eric Slivka / MacRumors:
Mac Pro Build-to-Order Ship Dates Slip as Future Remains Uncertain
Harrison Weber / The Next Web:
It is now illegal to access any foreign website in the Republic of Belarus
Mary Jo Foley / All about Microsoft Blog:
Microsoft to enable Linux on its Windows Azure cloud in 2012
Gabe Rivera / Techmeme News:
Techmeme's biggest stories of 2011, literally, as measured by height
Discussion: Pulse2 and TechCrunch