Technology News

FBI: Hundreds Of Thousands May Lose Internet In July

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Cybersecurity

WASHINGTON (AP) — For computer users, a few mouse clicks could mean the difference between staying online and losing Internet connections this summer.

Unknown to most of them, their problem began when international hackers ran an online advertising scam to take control of infected computers around the world. In a highly unusual response, the FBI set up a safety net months ago using government computers to prevent Internet disruptions for those infected users. But that system is to be shut down.

The FBI is encouraging users to visit a website run by its security partner, http://www.dcwg.org , that will inform them whether they’re infected and explain how to fix the problem. After July 9, infected users won’t be able to connect to the Internet.

Most victims don’t even know their computers have been infected, although the malicious software probably has slowed their web surfing and disabled their antivirus software, making their machines more vulnerable to other problems.

Last November, the FBI and other authorities were preparing to take down a hacker ring that had been running an Internet ad scam on a massive network of infected computers.MORE

Facebook S-1 Amendment: New Stats From Q1 2012 And More

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Facebook S1 Amendment

Facebook on Monday filed an amendment to its S-1 documents originally submitted to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on February 1.

With its IPO date reportedly set for May 17, the social networking giant has published new stats that reflect growth and revenue over the last fiscal quarter, which ended on March 31. In addition, Facebook recently announced plans to acquire photo-sharing app Instagram and to purchase a large number of AOL patents from Microsoft.

Here are some key stats from the amendment:

  • Monthly active users now total 901 million (up from 680 million a year ago).
  • Daily active users are up to 526 million (up from 372 million last year).
  • Monthly mobile users now total 488 million.
  • 300 million photos are uploaded to the site each day.
  • 3.2 billion Likes and Comments are posted daily.
  • 125 billion friendships are forged per day.
  • Facebook will pay $300 million in cash, plus 23 million shares of common stock for photo-sharing app Instagram.
  • If the Instagram deal falls through, Facebook will pay $200 million.
  • Revenue for the first quarter of 2012 was $1.058 billion, up from $731 last year.
  • Net income dropped to $205 million for the quarter, down from $233 last year.MORE

Facebook Users DROP In U.S.: Millions Left The Social Network In May 2011

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Facebook Traffic

Facebook is almost at 700 million users, but it recently experienced big dips in U.S. and Canadian growth.

According to Inside Facebook, the social networking site hit 687 million monthly users in June, though the growth rate overall has been slower than normal for the past two months. Though for the past year Facebook has grown by at least 20 million users each month, in April and in May, it grew by 13.9 and 11.8 million respectively.

And in the U.S. and in Canada, Facebook actually lost users.

U.S. accounts fell by close to 6 million, from 155.2 million at the beginning of May to 149.4 million at the end. This marks the first time American Facebook membership has dropped in the last year. Canadian users also fell by about 1.5 million.

Inside Facebook notes that once about 50 percent of a country’s population is on Facebook, growth basically stops. Indeed, losses over 100,000 were recorded by the U.K., Norway, and Russia.

Meanwhile, Facebook’s growth was bolstered by gains in developing countries like Mexico, Brazil and India, each of which picked up about 2 million users from May to June.

TechCrunch also pointed out that Twitter and LinkedIn are making big gains in many of the surveyed countries, with Twitter coming in as the number two social network for the U.S., the U.K., Canada, Australia, Germany and France.

French Ban Words ‘Twitter’ And ‘Facebook’ From TV, Radio

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France Ban French Twitter Facebook Word

How do you say Twitter and Facebook in French? You don’t say them at all.

France has banned the names of both social networking sites from being spoken on radio or television, unless they are part of a news story.

The reason for the ban goes back to a 1992 decreethat says mentioning such services by name is an act of advertising. Therefore, using the terms “Twitter” and “Facebook” constitutes preferential treatment.

Christine Kelly, a spokesperson for France’s Conseil Superieur de l’Audiovisuel (CSA), explained the ban.

“Why give preference to Facebook, which is worth billions of dollars, when there are many other social networks that are struggling for recognition,” she toldL’Express. “This would be a distortion of competition. If we allow Facebook and Twitter to be cited on air, it’s opening a Pandora’s Box– other social networks will complain to us saying, ‘why not us?’”

But critics highlight the absurdity of such an edict.TechCrunch writes:

Instead of referring to specific social networking pages, like saying “Find us at Facebook.com/Audi” or follow us on “Twitter.com/Pepsi” brands will have to skirt around the issue, saying things like “Find us on social networking sites!,” or directing viewers to their community pages and hoping that viewers will just pick up on where to go.

Ex-pat blogger Matthew Fraser attributed the new restrictions to traditional French protectionism when it comes to the spread of American culture.

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“Facebook and Twitter are, of course, American social networks,” he wrote. “In France, they are regarded — at least implicitly — as symbols of Anglo-Saxon global dominance — along with Apple, MTV, McDonald’s, Hollywood, Disneyland, and other cultural juggernauts. That there is a deeply-rooted animosity in the French psyche towards Anglo-Saxon cultural domination cannot be disputed.”

Back in 2003, the French banned the use of the word “email” in all government communications and publications.

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