Joost Goes Public

joost_logo.pngJoost finally goes public. If you don’t know what Joost is, it’s IPTV. Basically higher than youtube quality but lower than OTA on-demand interactive tv from the guys that brought you Skype. I haven’t played around with Joost lately, but I saw it when it was in early beta and there wasn’t any content that really excited me. But now, there’s a TON of content on the Joost network. I don’t find the interactive features particularly useful but I do like the fact that I can now get free on-demand video on my PC that is NOT whiny Britney Spears fanboys.
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Big Media Sued by The Pirate Bay

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I’ve been following this story as of late and it’s now boiled over into actual legal action by The Pirate Bay against Big Media.

The charges are infrastructural sabotage, denial of service attacks, hacking and spamming, all of these on a commercial level.

The companies that are being reported are the following:

* Twentieth Century Fox, Sweden AB
* Emi Music Sweden AB
* Universal Music Group Sweden AB
* Universal Pictures Nordic AB
* Paramount Home Entertainment (Sweden) AB
* Atari Nordic AB
* Activision Nordic Filial Till Activision (Uk) Ltd
* Ubisoft Sweden AB
* Sony Bmg Music Entertainment (Sweden) AB
* Sony Pictures Home Entertainment Nordic AB

How did it get to this point? MediaDefender is a company out of LA which specializes in guerrilla tactics to thwart piracy on the Internet. The most common method is poisoning BitTorrent trackers or other P2P networks with fake files of movies, games, and music. Their client list includes Fox, Universal, HBO, EMI, etc…

They also launched a video sharing site called miivi.com whose sole purpose is to catch people uploading copyright material. The site was exposed for what it really is by almost immediately and has since been taken down. (TorrentFreak story)

Recently, on Sept 14th, almost all of the company’s internal emails were leaked on torrent sites. You can read them all at MediaDefender-Defenders.com. The emails included server logins, tactics, projects, basically everything the company has been doing for the past year.

On Sept 20th, all the source code for the company’s software used against P2P networks where also released. Programs with names such as BTInflationDest, KazaaSwarmerDistributedSource, and PioletPoisoner. It was obvious that the company was using illegal tactics in their fight against piracy.

Today, TPB filed legal action against the companies listed above. Even though The Pirate Bay has been found to be operating within Swedish law, I can’t say there isn’t a more clear cut case of the pot calling the kettle black.

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This Should be the Default YouTube Player

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Click for this player

I’m sure this is older news, but there are a few videos on youtube that use this new player. The major improvements are the ability to jump to any point in the video even though it hasn’t loaded yet. Also you can jump and scroll to different parts of the video more precisely, where as the older player wasn’t very accurate. I’m guessing they’re not using this new player for all videos because they’re not encoded properly. Sad because this should be the default player!

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Mobile Monday – Social Software

Just got back from Mobile Monday where the theme this month was about mobile social apps. The companies that presented were, bebo.com, loopt, and Nokia’s Mosh. It was a huge turn out and there was a line out the door with many people being turned away. (Congrats to Mike Rowehl for such a great event, not to mention for getting me in!)

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Bebo’s Jordy Mont-Reynaud started off presenting Bebo’s upcoming mobile offering. A WAP based mobile version of the social network Bebo is due to premier on Orange UK. Obvious move since Bebo dominates the social networking arena in that market.
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Loopt’s Sam Altman previewed their social networking app which concentrates on location, location, location. The app offers a powerful location based downloadable social application and Altman previewed the upcoming AIM integration. LBS applications usually need to partner with carriers to gain access to that valuable data and Loopt already has signed up with Boost and Sprint. Verizon is rumored to be announced in the next couple months.

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The last presentation, Mosh, was a great disappointment. Mosh is Nokia’s cross carrier, cross platform social network concentrating on sharing media from pictures to video to applications. The part that’s missing is the ‘social’ aspect. The only social aspect is that you can add people, comment on items, and that’s about it. Missing are groups, private messaging, testimonials, discovering other friends, you know basic social network functionality. Even when you add someone to your network, they’re not called friends, simply My People.

Maybe Nokia isn’t trying to build a social network and simply trying to build a media sharing site. If that’s the case than the marketing language needs some work because a Google search for mosh nokia social network turns up over 350k results, many that call Mosh a social network.

It’s pretty clear, that a big giant like Nokia just doesn’t get social networking while smaller startups like Bebo and Loopt are posed to lead the way.