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I mentioned this earlier today on the blog: “There was a bit of a huge argument between Hasselback and O’Donnell this morning on the View. I don’t have any links on that yet, but I will. It was truly a joy to watch as Hasselback served O’Donnell. Someone must be giving that girl some debate lessons.” Here’s the link I talked about in the show, where you can find almost all of the argument/cat-fight. Art an I started the show talking a bit about this, and the conversation devolved a bit into the pure crappitude of daytime TV. After that, we got to the actual news of the day, beginning with privacy issues:
Google wants to maximize the personal information it is capable of capturing – and storing indefinately – on its users. The company even envisages a day when it can tell people what jobs to take and how they might spend their days off.
Eric Schmidt, Google’s chief executive, said gathering more personal data is key for Google’s expansion and believes it is the logical extension of the company’s stated mission to organise the world’s information.
But privacy rights advocates are concerned that the personal information Google is capturing and storing can also be used to compile a detailed portrait of a person’s behavior.
Indeed. HSToday.us first reported that Google reputedly has been working with the US Intelligence Community – with whom it has long enjoyed a close relationship and which helped the then fledging company get off the ground – to provide it with search engine user data which, in conjunction with other datamining efforts, is used to identify suspected terrorists.
In media monitoring news, more death-throes of the Old Media, a topic which spawned a really interesting discussion on the nature of our presence and public face in the Middle East:
Ok someone tell me what exactly does the AP think it is doing by mentioning that Muslims are praying for rain? Does the AP just not give a shit about the fact that CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations) has been a den of terrorist supporters? Maybe they think that Barbara Boxer is a Neo Con Stooge?
Last month, U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer rescinded an award her office gave to the head of CAIR’s Sacramento office, saying her staff had turned up a “laundry list” of problems with the Islamic advocacy group. “We made a bad mistake not researching the organization,” Boxer told the Sacramento Bee. Among Boxer’s concerns were the convictions of two former CAIR members — Ghassan Elashi and Ismail Royer — for engaging in financial transactions with the leader of Hamas and supporting overseas terrorist operations.
So then explain why AP thought it was a good idea to include this bit of nonsense in an article about the fires raging in Florida?
Jim Harrell, a spokesman for the Florida Division of Forestry, said the situation hadn’t changed throughout the day Thursday. But another official says there is concern about winds picking up and fanning the flames. As of Friday, the number of active fires has dropped from 236 to 223, with about 140 square miles —- over 87,000 acres — burnt. Seven homes in the state were destroyed. Other large fires are burning in Bradford and Collier County.
Meanwhile, the Council on American-Islamic Relations says Florida Muslims are offering special prayers for rains at mosques on their religion’s day of rest.
In northern Minnesota, high wind fanned a fire around the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, prompting more evacuations. Bill Paxton, a spokesman for the firefighting effort, said the fire was “challenging” the containment lines. “They’re
holding right now,” he said. “We’re having some difficulty holding them, but they’re holding now.” The fire had burned more than 45 square miles and destroyed about 45 structures since it started Saturday. The shifting winds Thursday put another 100 buildings at risk, fire officials said.
What is the point?
Turning to technical news, yesterday’s rumors ring true:
$100 Million Payday For Feedburner – This Deal Is Confirmed
Rumors about Google acquiring RSS management company Feedburner from last week, started by ex-TechCrunch UK editor Sam Sethi, are accurate and are now confirmed according to a source close to the deal. Feedburner is in the closing stages of being acquired by Google for around $100 million. The deal is all cash and mostly upfront, according to our source, although the founders will be locked in for a couple of years.
The information we have is that the deal is now under a binding term sheet and will close in 2-3 weeks, and there is nothing that can really derail it at this point.
Huge congratulations to Feedburner. The company was founded in 2003 and has raised just $10 million in capital over two rounds. Portage Ventures funded their $1 million Series A round in 2004. The $9 million Series B round was closed in mid 2005 (second close in 2006), from Mobius Venture Capital and Union Square Ventures.
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