Tag: internet

You can have Ebola.com for $150,000

Tuesday, 14 October, 2014 0 Comments

“We are an Internet real estate investment, development, and brand assistance firm,” claims Blue String Ventures, Inc, which numbers Fukushima.com and Soursoup.com among its notable “successes”. The same Blue String Ventures, Inc. is also sitting on the Ebola.com domain and is looking for $150,000 to transfer ownership of the site.

“Ebola.com would be a great domain for a pharmaceutical company working on a vaccine or cure, a company selling pandemic or disaster-preparedness supplies, or a medical company wishing to provide information and advertise services,” Jon Schultz, Blue String’s president, told CNBC. “There could be many other applications as well. With so many people concerned about the disease, any advertisement referring people to Ebola.com should get an excellent response.”

When you type Ebola.com into a browser and hit Enter, “Welcome to Ebolavirus.org” is what pops up at the URL. There’s a mish-mash of Ebola-related links and right at the bottom in the smallest of print is the message: “Copyright 2014 Ebolavirus.org Ebola.com Is For Sale All Rights Reserved.”

Today in Parasitic Capitalism: Ebola.com Squatter Wants $150K for Domain,” writes Slias Groll in Foreign Policy. It should not be surprising that who saw profit from Fukushima, could imagine making a killing with Ebola.


Very slow (sometimes no) net connection here

Monday, 23 June, 2014 0 Comments


Mary Meeker: Internet Trends 2014

Thursday, 29 May, 2014 0 Comments

Like Christmas, Mary Meeker’s annual internet trends report is greatly anticipated. Instead of children and parents, however, the audience for this treat is technology and business managers. Her big talking point for 2014? Enterprises need to think mobile first as it’s increasingly likely that all commercial internet contacts with customers will be via mobile connections. And messaging is changing from broadcasting a few posts to a large audience on Facebook to frequent interactions with smaller groups of people on the likes of Snapchat, WhatsApp and Tencent. Enjoy!


The emergence of connected cars and drones

Thursday, 30 May, 2013 0 Comments

Yesterday: Desktop PCs. Today: Samsung’s growth. Tomorrow: Wearable tech. Just three take-aways, as they say, from Mary Meeker’s must-read annual Internet Trends presentation at the D11 conference.


Keep the UN and its agencies away from the internet

Monday, 26 November, 2012 0 Comments

On Monday, 3 December, representatives of the world’s governments will meet in Dubai to update a key agreement with a UN agency called the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). Press reports suggest that the Russian Federation, Iran, China, Zimbabwe and other notorious champions of totalitarianism want control of key internet systems passed the ITU. “Member states […]

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The Man-Computer Symbiosis of J.C.R. Licklider proceeds apace

Thursday, 1 November, 2012 0 Comments

The news that Microsoft sold four million Windows 8 updates since the new operating system went on sale last Friday was put in context nicely by MG Siegler in a post titled “4 million in 3 days” when he noted, “Apple sold 5 million iPhones 5s in the first 3 days. Yes, Apple sold more […]

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We’ve got to talk about Hollywood

Friday, 27 January, 2012

Backgrounder: “What Happens At Y Combinator” is a lengthy and informative post written by Paul Graham in September 2010. Snippet: “The overall goal of YC [Y Combinator] is to help startups really take off. They arrive at YC at all different stages. Some haven’t even started working yet, and others have been launched for a year or more. But whatever stage a startup is at when they arrive, our goal is to help them to be in dramatically better shape 3 months later.”

And this segues nicely into the recently issued Y Combinator RFS, where “RFS” stands for “Requests For Startups”. It was the title wot done it: “RFS 9: Kill Hollywood“. Typical of the tenor of the piece: “How do you kill the movie and TV industries? Or more precisely (since at this level, technological progress is probably predetermined) what is going to kill them? Mostly not what they like to believe is killing them, filesharing. What’s going to kill movies and TV is what’s already killing them: better ways to entertain people. So the best way to approach this problem is to ask yourself: what are people going to do for fun in 20 years instead of what they do now?”

This is pretty incendiary stuff and, sure enough, is has generated some heated responses. The entrepreneur and blogger Jason Calacanis has just kicked back with, “We Need to Empower Hollywood–Not Kill Hollywood“. As always, Calacanis is entertaining: “What if YC’s screed winds up on the desk of some angry or delusional CEO or studio head’s desk with a list of stolen files in Dropbox folders and says, ‘These guys are trying to kill us, let’s unleash a trillion dollar lawsuit on them and harass them to death!’ That’s what Hollywood does — it harasses startups to death and YC’s post is EXACTLY what those lawyers are looking for: the smoking gun that internet people want to kill them.”
Y Combinator is right in demanding a creative response to the increasingly legalistic, stultifying, predictable, biased Hollywood output, but Calacanis is on the money when he points out that no amount of Angry Birds can match the magic of Hollywood when the result is something like Drive.