1/19/2005

Apple, Pepsi partner for second iTunes promotion

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Apple and Pepsi have teamed up to offer a new iTunes promotion, the second in as many years for the companies. The promotion, offering a one-in-three chance of winning, runs from January 31, 2005 to April 30, 2005 and will include free iTunes songs and a sweepstakes for approximately 1,700 iPod minis.

The new promotion will double the amount of iTunes songs offered by the companies to 200 million. Each redeemed song will automatically get you one entry for the special iPod mini (silver-colored case with the Pepsi logo). One Apple iPod mini will be awarded for each hour in the previous day for a total of 24 winners selected in each daily drawing.

Game pieces will be printed underneath bottle caps on specially-marked “iTunes” 20 oz. and 1 liter bottles of Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Pepsi Wild Cherry, Mountain Dew, Diet Mountain Dew, Mountain Dew Code Red and Sierra Mist and under the rim of specially-marked 32 oz. and 44 oz. fountain cups available at participating locations.

Source: Yahoo

Spammers Sue Spamee

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A man who claims he has been receiving unsolicited emails from a US company for two years is now being sued by them, for branding them spammers and reporting their actions to ISPs.

Jay Stuler is now on the receiving end of a lawsuit from New Hampshire firm Atriks, which alleges Stuler caused financial harm to the firm and caused it to lose contracts. The suit also states that Stuler had been making defamatory statements, including calling CEO Brian Haberstroh a “criminal” and the company “a notorious spam gang”, which the suit denies.

Stuler, however, says on his website the case is a “frivolous lawsuit designed to harass and intimidate” and claims the reason he’s been sued by Atriks is because, after complaining to his ISP about the alleged spam, the company saw its accounts closed down by the service providers.

“They apparently are angry that spamming has become difficult for them and blame me,” he said. “If I can be sued simply for complaining about spammers, then anyone can be.”

In the court filing, Atriks states that: “The activities of Atriks, in providing internet hosting, and DMC, [a company registered at the same address as Atriks] in sending commercial email, meet the requirements of the CAN-spam Act.”

Anti-spam foundation SpamHaus has listed Atriks on its register of known spam operations (ROKSO), which states the company has violated the act by using misleading subject lines.

SpamHaus also says it has had complaints that software is being installed by Atriks on users’ computers without their permission - which is a felony.

“Spamhaus has received numerous reports of the VirtualMDA software discovered running on people’s computers without their permission, they have no idea what it’s doing or how it got installed there, and they are certainly not getting paid for the use of their computer [as Atriks/Sendmail claims to do],” the ROKSO says.

Stuler is appealing for help from the public in fighting the suit and has set up a PayPal account to pay for his legal fees and is asking for donations.

“If and when my legal bills are paid in full, any donations received will be passed on to others being harassed by frivolous lawsuits from spammers,” he adds.

Source: Silicon.com

WD Enters Miniature Hard Drive Market

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Serving a rapidly expanding base of customers for mass storage, Western Digital Corp. announced today that the company will enter the market for miniature hard drives with a family of 1-inch drives that enable a variety of handheld consumer devices, which are experiencing explosive demand.

An increasing number of current applications, such as MP3 players, PDAs, digital still cameras and digital video cameras, rely on 1-inch hard drives. Newly available and future products enabled by innovations in rotating magnetic storage, such as 1-inch drives, have driven demand in the quickly developing market segment that includes combination digital video/still cameras and cell phones.

WD 1-inch HDD
WD 1″ Drive (Source)

WD’s miniature drive entry is expected to ship in the second calendar quarter of 2005. The 1-inch hard drive will spin at 3,600 RPM and will be available in capacities up to 6 GB. This new hard drive will be offered with the standard CF II interface and form factor, which enables it to fit into the millions of currently available devices accepting CF II cards, as well as easily integrate into future products. It will feature WD’s anti-skip
technology that supports uninterrupted audio and video playback. The drive also will incorporate WD’s patent-pending advanced power management techniques to enable the longest possible battery life.

Microsoft Reverses Plan, Will Patch Media Player

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Microsoft will patch its Windows Media Player after all.

One week after saying it had no plans to change the way WMP (Windows Media Player) handles the download of DRM licenses, Microsoft now says it will release an update in the next 30 days to help thwart the threat of spyware infection.

“While this issue is not the result of any exploit of Windows Media DRM, we do recognize it may cause problems for some of our customers,” the company said in a statement.

“To help mitigate these problems, Microsoft is committed to providing an update to Windows Media Player in the next 30 days that would allow the end-user more control over when and how any pop-ups display in the license acquisition process.”

Source: eWeek

Google Steps Up to Stop Comment Spam on Blogs

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Search engine and web leader Google have announced their efforts to cut down on the amount of spam seen on blog comments. A problem that afflicts and annoys many bloggers, it’s also a major issue for Google and other search engines. The logic behind the spam is that as Google indexes the web, a link from one site to another is a “virtual” vote; websites who spam their URL’s on blog comments found that they could boost their place in search listings in quite a simple manner. Google hopes to put an end to it by removing the incentive of improved ranking.

Users are advised to add “rel=”nofollow”" to URL’s which can be entered by users (see read more for an example). When Google’s robot indexes websites, on seeing this it will ignore the link. Google have worked with major blog service providers (including Blogger, Spaces, LiveJournal, WordPress and more) to get this code implemented in upcoming versions of their software. Google recommend that the code not only be added to comments page on blogs, but to any page (e.g. guest book) that allows users to enter URL’s.

For this initiative to truly work, Google needed backing from the major search engines which it appears to have recieved. Google noted that it wished to “thank MSN Search and Yahoo! for supporting this initiative”. One would hope spammers get the message fast yet can’t but wonder what the next method/target will be.

Source: Neowin.net

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