Ryan Fitzgerald is just an ordinary guy in Southbridge, Massachusetts, who had the extraordinary idea of publicizing his cell phone number on YouTube. The unemployed store clerk says he started the experiment to see how many people would call and to see if he could offer a sympathetic ear to any and all callers. He posted the above video on YouTube last Friday, and he has since received more than 5,000 calls and text messages. His follow-up YouTube video indicates that he has received all kinds of calls, from people who just wanted to say Hi, to people who … Read more
It seems like outed Lonelygirl15 actress Jessica Rose's 15 minutes of fame aren't quite up yet. The fictional YouTube video blog series has a United Kingdom-based spin-off coming up, and Rose has a small role in an upcoming Lindsay Lohan movie.
It's also been recently announced that production has recently wrapped on Rose's "first major theatrical role," in a movie called Perfect Sport that's slated to be released (in one capacity or another) this fall. It doesn't look particularly "major," though; it's created by a year-old production company called … Read more
The Electronic Frontier Foundation has dropped a lawsuit that it filed against Viacom on behalf of a group that posted a parody video of The Colbert Report on YouTube, which Viacom demanded be removed citing U.S. copyright law.
The lawsuit, filed in March in federal court in San Francisco, accused Viacom of misusing the law and infringing on the free-speech rights of the makers of the video--activist group MoveOn.org Civic Action and Brave New Films. When contacted by CNET News.com last month, Viacom claimed that it had not asked YouTube to remove the video. However, Viacom later … Read more
On Friday, we reported that YouTube erroneously deleted a video of presidential candidate John McCain singing an impromptu ditty about starting a war with Iran.
McCain had joked about it during a a campaign stop in South Carolina last week, singing: "That old, that old Beach Boys song, Bomb Iran. Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, anyway."
There was a song called "Barbara Ann," first performed by The Regents and made popular by the Beach Boys.
But a group called Vince Vance and the Valiants actually released the "Bomb Iran" song during the 1979 hostage crisis, … Read more
Suzie Reider, YouTube's chief marketing officer, told an audience at the Advertising Research Foundation's Rethink conference this week that YouTube will launch in a few weeks its first user study, according to trade publication Advertising Age.
"By Q3, we'll have a tremendous amount of metrics and data around every video," Reider told the audience. "There's lots you can glean from looking at who's … Read more
YouTube has announced a new series on content for political candidates, called Spotlight. Candidates will be able to ask the YouTube community a question and monitor comments and video responses sent in from users. They'll then get a chance to respond to the group discussion later in the week. The goal is to provide an open forum for users to know candidates a little better, and for people to ask questions directly--an option that's historically been out of reach (outside members of the press or those involved in campaign events). The project is also taking advantage of a … Read more
Old-school Mac users might remember a little application called HyperCard. Originally a database application, it doubled as a casual animation tool--letting users create fairly basic cartoons, frame by frame. This morning I've been playing around with AniBOOM's ShapeShifter, a Web-based animation creation tool that brings back those old feelings of black-and-white computing, with a new social bookmarking twist.
ShapeShifter is pretty simple to use. There are four shapes to choose from, and you can place them wherever you want on the canvas. Each shape can be rotated, resized and grouped together to make new forms. When you're … Read more
It's a little late, but I want to wrap up the Stirr event I emceed last week. As with all other Stirr gatherings I've been to, this event included four carefully chosen presenters pitching their new Web companies. These were the companies we heard from last week:
MetaWeb, makers of Freebase, had the most popular presentation, judging by the silence of the audience during the pitch and the applause meter at the end of it. The MetaWeb database platform underpins the Freebase application and is designed to be a shared repository of structured knowledge. The blogosphere loves it, … Read more
We got the tip today about a brand new service called Bubble Guru. Its goal is simple: to give your blog or Web site visitors a short pop-up video message that runs and closes without any user interaction required. You can also record and send message to friends via e-mail. For viewers, there's no escape--the talking bubble will follow them as they scroll down the page.
The service is by no means a full-fledged video blogging tool; it falls into a strange subcategory between video messaging and a pop-up advertisement. It's also a little early in development, offering no way to save and track the messages you've created. For now the service is free, but a paid subscription version is on the way for about $10 a month.
We thought long and hard about the usefulness of this for the casual user. In truth, video embedding services from YouTube or Viddler is much more user friendly. Users can turn those videos on and off at their discretion and pass any interesting ones along to a friend. That, however, isn't the point of Bubble Guru. This service is all about grabbing your attention, which it does very well. We've embedded one for you: to see what it looks like, click "read more" below.… Read more
Mog, the music recommendation tool and social network left beta this morning and launched a new video channel called Mog TV. The video service scans your music library and offers YouTube music videos that it thinks you'll like. There's also a kitschy feature called "The Magic Button" that can randomly bring up content related to your musical tastes. The button has been placed site-wide, and can be found on user profiles, Mog TV, and artist pages. The only bummer here is the need to install the Mog-o-matic software on your machine for access to personalized recommendations, … Read more