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OMG, sorry about 'poor comms' on Facebook secret emoto-meddle tests. Laters!

A top Facebook chief has admitted the firm did a poor job of informing its users about a controversial 2012 experiment that manipulated the emotions of nearly 700,000 people on the free content ad network. COO Sheryl Sandberg told reporters during a meeting in India on Wednesday that Facebook had made a hash of the secret test …
Kelly Fiveash, 3 Jul 2014
Pigeon crapping on statue

Amazon reseller lobs sueball at etailer and Apple over listings yank

An Amazon electronics reseller has filed a lawsuit against the mega-etailer alleging that the firm "conspired" with Apple to put it out of business because it was selling iPad covers at a cheap price. Hard 2 Find Accessories (H2F) claims that Amazon revoked its seller’s privileges, effectively closing its operations down, …
Ultimate Ears Boom

We need to talk about SPEAKERS: Sorry, 'audiophiles', only IT will break the sound barrier

Feature Today’s loudspeakers are nowhere near as good as they could be, due in no small measure to the presence of "traditional" audiophile products. In the future, loudspeakers will increasingly communicate via digital wireless links and will contain digital processing. Indeed, the link between IT and loudspeakers is destined to grow …
Kindle Big Brother

Google buys shagadelic playlist biz Songza

Analysis Google has acquired music streaming biz Songza for its data-harvesting capabilities. The Pandora-like website creates "mood music" playlists for specific contexts, so it will suggest a playlist of songs for when you're about to, say, have a shower - or have sex. Songza's CEO rather gave the game away when he told CNET: There …

Golf bloke to Richard Branson: Get on board the future bus, where there's 'NO WEATHER'

George Orwell once said the future would be like a "boot stamping on a human face – forever". It turns out that he was totally wrong. There won't be any stamping, but there'll certainly be shoes. Some of these will be 3D-printed, whilst others will be able to beam data back to Richard Branson – or rather a squad of number- …
Jasper Hamill, 2 Jul 2014

Twitter swallows BEHAVIOURAL AD firm TapCommerce

Twitter plans to buy mobile behavioural ad outfit TapCommerce for an undisclosed sum. It's the micro-blogging site's latest strategy to attempt to turn around a profit at the company, which floated on to Wall Street late last year. Twitter said in a blog post that TapCommerce was "a leader in mobile retargeting and re- …
Kelly Fiveash, 1 Jul 2014
Peter Capaldi in costume as Doctor Who

BBC offers briefest of teasers for the next Doctor Who

The BBC has released the briefest of brief teasers for the new series of Doctor Who, coming in at just 15 seconds of Peter Capaldi’s first turn behind the wheel of the Tardis. Youtube Video We can, I suppose, count ourselves lucky that the teaser features some actual talking, although there’s only some time to squeeze in a …

Google Glass faces UK cinema ban: Heaven forbid someone films you crying in a rom-com

Moviegoers in the UK will be asked to remove their Google Glasses and similar camera-fitted wearable computers over privacy and piracy fears. The Cinema Exhibitors Association (CEA) – which represents virtually all theaters in Blighty – fears bootleggers will don the devices to record and illegally distribute films. As such, …
Shaun Nichols, 30 Jun 2014
Monty Python foot UHDTV

And now for someone completely brilliant: Stephen Hawking to join Monty Python on stage

Renowned physicist and boffin of the highest order Stephen Hawking is to join famous 1970s British surrealist comedy group Monty Python on stage in the comedians' first live show in decades. Youtube Video A video intro at the press conference featured some gentle ribbing from Mick Jagger about the fact that the Python crew – …

Amazon offers Blighty's publishing industry 'assisted suicide'

Amazon wants to dictate book prices, and even print copies of publishers' books itself, a report in trade mag Bookseller suggests. UK publishers are, we're told, none too happy. Over in the US, Amazon is already locked in battle with Hachette, the first publisher whose terms with Amazon are coming up for renegotiation: Amazon …
Andrew Orlowski, 27 Jun 2014

Indie labels: 5 reasons why we're hauling YouTube before Euro antitrust watchdog

Exclusive Independent music association Impala has disclosed to The Register a little more detail about its complaint to the EU competition authorities on YouTube's new music contracts. The trade group outlined five areas where it believes Google, which owns YouTube, breaches Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European …
Andrew Orlowski, 27 Jun 2014
Yahoo search results refined

Yahoo!: Yes you, YouTube content-maker. GET IN MAH BELLY!

Yahoo! has put in a bid of $250m for YouTube content creator Fullscreen as it continues its policy of gobbling up firms to try to bolster its presence. The Purple Palace is in competition with existing shareholder The Chernin Group for the media company, Sky News reported. Chernin Group is an investment vehicle that was launched …
LG 77EC980V Ultra HD 4K OLED TV

What a whopper, LG: Feast your eyes on this 77-inch bendy TV

Pics LG gave the UK press its first gander at its world’s first curved 77-inch 4K OLED TV in London yesterday, choosing a live World Cup football match to show off its handiwork. Indeed, screening the beautiful game was somewhat fitting, given footballers will be among the few likely to afford its £19,999 price tag when it goes on …
Bob Dormon, 27 Jun 2014
Frodo and the One Ring

BBC: Bumpkins, hobbits need fairer coverage

The strange Hobbit-like creatures rumoured to populate the barren wasteland between Islington and the Cotswolds must be reported better by the BBC, a report for the BBC Trust has concluded. The report recommends the restoration of the post of a Rural Affairs Editor to find and interview the creatures, to discover how on earth …
Andrew Orlowski, 27 Jun 2014

MPAA, meet the Streisand effect: Picture ass. slaps Reddit with takedown

The Motion Picture Ass. of America has shot itself in the foot by issuing a copyright takedown notice against a corner of Reddit – and promptly turned a virtually unused subredit into a popular forum. The discussion board, /r/FullLengthFilms, is a place for Redditors to post links to films available for streaming or download, …
Iain Thomson, 27 Jun 2014
Roku Streaming Stick

WORLD CUP TRAUMA? Just Streaming Stick a Roku in it

Review If you share telly viewing with a masochistic soccer fan, you might well be tempted to consider alternative goggle box entertainment... er, Wimbledon perhaps? At least Blighty's entrant into the southwest London tennis competition stands a chance of winning – having prevailed last year. There’s more to telly than sport, though, …
Bob Dormon, 26 Jun 2014
Felix Dennis, MD of Dennis Publishing

Farewell Felix Dennis, deal-maker supreme of tech publishing

Obituary There's quite a bit that comes to mind when you think about Felix Dennis: the Oz mag obscenity trial, Maxim, drugs, women and dodgy poetry… But we're not going to do these here - at least, not yet. Felix Dennis, who died last weekend aged 67, was a pivotal figure in tech publishing: a super-smart dealmaker whose judgment and …
John Lettice, 26 Jun 2014
Google protest at Moscone Center

Occupy Google: Protesters attack ad giant as I/O gets underway

Google's I/O dev conference is traditionally a time when the company basks in the love of its community: but some other Bay Area residents have been making their displeasure with the Chocolate Factory known in a very vocal fashion. Occupy Google protestors "Give me a G..." A group working under the hashtag Occupy Google …
LIDL's soft toy showing circular saw blades

Aaah, what's that smell, Nook? Yes, it's death: Barnes & Noble to jettison e-book biz

Barnes & Noble has announced plans to spin off its floundering Nook e-book business as its revenues continue their long decline. On Wednesday, the bookseller reported retail revenues of $956m for the fourth quarter of its fiscal 2014, more or less flat from the year-ago quarter. Meanwhile, revenues from the Nook division were …
Neil McAllister, 25 Jun 2014
Supreme Court Building

US Supremes just blew Aereo out of the water

The US Supreme Court has ruled against TV-streaming biz Aereo in its copyright case with US broadcasters. The 6-3 opinion (PDF) upholds a lower court ruling that found the company in violation of US copyright law. Aereo essentially has data centers in ten US cities, each fitted with miniature antennas and hardware that pick up …
Shaun Nichols, 25 Jun 2014

Apple wins patent to pump ads to your iDevice while you're watching TV

Apple has been granted a patent for a "second screen" scheme for providing associated content – ads, info, and the like – to a secondary device such as a smartphone or tablet when you're viewing content on your primary display, e.g. your big-screen TV. Apple patent illustration for 'System and method for delivering companion …
Rik Myslewski, 24 Jun 2014

REVEALED: Google's proposed indie music-killing contract terms

A leaked version of one of YouTube's controversial secret contracts with independent record labels has been published for the first time - and it appears to be stuffed with clauses that could land Google in trouble. Google wants to launch a new Spotify-style streaming service under its YouTube brand, and so requires music labels …
Andrew Orlowski, 24 Jun 2014
Game of Thrones Season One Blu-ray disc set

AT&T plays Game of Thrones: Every bit as ruthless as HBO version

Comment There is that great promotional line in the first season of Game of Thrones which goes, “In the game of thrones, you either win or you die.” Well, it applies just as much to the Game of the ever-converging, ever-thrilling US telecommunications and network market. With the news this week leaking out that Softbank has more or less …
Faultline, 23 Jun 2014
Photo by Hugo Glendinning: Ibsen's Ghosts – Almeida Theatre Production

For one night only – Ibsen classic gets the Dolby Atmos treatment

The last time I sat in Dolby’s private Atmos theatre in London, I was treated to the audiovisual feast that is X-Men: Days of Future Past. This time around, the production values are very different. Photo by Hugo Glendinning: Ibsen's Ghosts – Almeida Theatre Production Lesley Manville (Helene Alving) and Jack Lowden (Oswald …
Bob Dormon, 23 Jun 2014

YouTube in shock indie music nuke: We all feel a little less worthy today

Comment Yet another argument has brewed up between independent record companies and a wholesale customer, in this case YouTube. The accusation, that YouTube had given the major labels better terms than they were offering indies, was wearyingly familiar; as was YouTube’s reported response. That response was an offer of “take it or leave …
Paul Sanders, 23 Jun 2014
HbbTV logo large

Rejoice, Australia! SBS trials SOCCER AND SEX on ONE SCREEN tech

Australian broadcaster SBS, which during the 2014 FIFA World Cup ran a movie promo called “Sex Before Soccer”*, has quietly launched an HbbTV beta to the tiny handful of viewers that have suitable TVs. HbbTV – Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV – lets people with suitably-equipped Internet-connected TVs or set-top-boxes navigate …
eworld

20 years on: eWorld, Apple's spectacular online 'portal' failure

On June 20, 1994, Apple launched eWorld. The ambitious project sought to link Mac owners into an online community, connecting with one another and the Cupertinian mothership. Less than two years later, the project was dead. Customers were handed over to America Online and the plug was pulled at midnight on March 31, 1996. In …
Shaun Nichols, 20 Jun 2014
Arapaho warrior with Twitter logo

9 Dark Social Truths That Will Totally Blow Your Bowels!

BuzzGasm! 1: 51 Per Cent Of Internet Traffic Is Stealth Paedophile Music Filesharing Jimmy Savile on TOTP How's about that then, guys and gals?!?! 2: Another 43 Per Cent Is TORtastic Brummie Trojan Horse Black Ops! Email from alleged Trojan Horse Islamist Won't someone think of the children?!?!?!?! 3: 91 per cent of Whatsleft® is …
BitPay Bowl

US footballers set to vie for BITCOIN BOWL

The cryptocurrency world has struck another high-profile sponsorship deal: this year two US college football teams will compete in the Bitcoin Bowl. Payments firm BitPay says that it had agreed to sponsor the game for three years, this year to be played on December 26 in St. Petersburg, Florida. The sponsorship deal will include …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Jun 2014
Google Chocolate Factory

Canada to Google: You can't have your borderless cake and eat it too

Google-watchers young and old will savour the latest twist in the corporation's attempts to avoid laws it doesn't like. It's a landmark judgment in Canada that's unusual in several ways - not least for the argument that Google advanced. The case – Equustek Solutions Inc. v. Jack, presided over by Justice Lauri-Ann Fenlon – was …
Andrew Orlowski, 19 Jun 2014

DANGER MOUSE is back ... and he isn't half a GLASSHOLE

They call themselves explorers, but we all know there's a better word for anyone who wears Google Glass. Youtube Video Now the legendary kids' telly character Danger Mouse is set to return to Britain's screens, only this time he's a fully paid up Glasshole. A new series will air next year, with the rodent's eye-patch replaced …
Jasper Hamill, 18 Jun 2014
Dunce

REALLY? Can 10 per cent of Aussie jobs be threatened by pirates?

Nearly one-in-ten Australian jobs are at risk from Google, if the co-chairman and co-CEO of Village Roadshow Australia is to be believed. That's the datum that appears in this opinion piece Graham Burke over at The Age, which continues the copyright industry's leave-no-data-unmolested attack on every threat, real or perceived …

YouTube will nuke indie music videos in DAYS, says Google exec

Google will nuke its bridges with independent record labels and pull their music videos from YouTube, the advertising giant has told its favourite newspaper – the Financial Times. The dispute is over royalty terms for Google's forthcoming and as-yet unannounced music-streaming service, believed to be a Spotify clone. Two weeks …
Andrew Orlowski, 17 Jun 2014

Unicode ideogram list-site Emojipedia goes titsup. Wow. Did you just give us the finger?

An online encyclopaedia of emojis has been chucked offline after vast numbers of people visited the site to gawp at 250 new pictographic symbols. Industry standards body Unicode has just released a Version 7.0 of the Unicode Standard, adding 2,834 new characters including 250 "emoji" ideograms which range from a charming middle …
Jasper Hamill, 17 Jun 2014

Apple settles ebook price-fixing damages lawsuit with US states

Apple has settled out of court with the 33 US states and territories that had been seeking up to $840m in damages for its ebook price-fixing shenanigans. The fruity firm, which was found guilty of engaging in the price-fixing conspiracy with five major book publishers in a separate trial, has always maintained its innocence and …
TalkTalk YouView set top box launch

YouView loses YourView trademark fight, may have to pick new name

The £100m BT and TalkTalk-backed set-top box venture YouView™ may be forced to change its name after losing a trademark scrap today against Cheltenham-based telecomms provider Total. The latter had registered the trademark Your View™ for its billing platform – which it advertises here – before BT and TalkTalk had registered the …
Andrew Orlowski, 17 Jun 2014

WORLD CUP SHOCK: England declared winner in 2-1 defeat to Italy

Spud-faced footie ace Wayne Rooney may not face the chop – after England was declared the WINNER in its World Cup opening match against Italy. The quick-tempered, woodwork-bothering Liverpudlian's fate was said to be hanging in the balance after the Italians scored two goals to England's one on Saturday night. Even though he …
Team Register, 17 Jun 2014

Wikipedia insists paid editors reveal their bits in public

The Wikimedia Foundation has changed its terms of use to insist that anyone paid to edit Wikipedia articles discloses their affiliation Section 4 of the terms of use, Refraining from Certain Activities, now includes a sub-section titled “Paid contributions without disclosure” that includes the following language: “ … you must …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Jun 2014

Latest casualties of Iraq fighting: Facebook and Twitter

Iraqis appear to have been blocked from using Twitter and Facebook after the Islamist insurgent group ISIS, now in control of much of the country, thanked Allah for social networking. Known for using extreme violence in its bid to set up a medieval Islamic state on the borders of Iraq and Syria, ISIS is as prolific on social …
Jasper Hamill, 13 Jun 2014
Tom Hanks as Forrest Gump waxwork. Pic: Shawn Perez

Tom Hanks NICKED my COPYRIGHTED PIC, claims Brit photog

Hollywood film actor Tom Hanks' WhoSay page is attributing copyright of a photograph to the millionaire rather than to the British photographer from Cornwall to whom it actually belongs - and the plucky Brit is now fighting for the recognition he deserves. The photo was taken by snapper Tim Martindale last year, and features his …
Andrew Orlowski, 13 Jun 2014
Twitter girl

Move over, John Pilger, let us IT scandal-mongerers stick it to you

Something for the Weekend, Sir? Many thanks to the gentle readers who wished me well over the last couple of weeks as I lay in bed watching the ceiling spin. For those of you who enjoy listening to people whose name you are familiar with but whom you don’t really know talk at length about their petty illnesses as if they were life-threatening events of …
Alistair Dabbs, 13 Jun 2014
Star Wars: The Complete Saga

Han Solo headed for lengthy stay in bacta tank after Bay Door Control cockup

Someone at Pinewood Studios' equivalent of Bay Door Control is probably in a good deal of trouble after septuagenarian Hollywood heart-throb Harrison Ford had his ankle broken "by a garage door" on the set of the new Star Wars movie. Ford, 71, is to reprise his role as interstellar smuggler scamp turned Rebel general Han Solo. …
Lewis Page, 13 Jun 2014