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Digg, which is in the midst of a hot-button redesign, has hired a new CEO, long-time Amazon executive Matt Williams, as TechCrunch first reported today and Digg has confirmed to us. Williams was most recently general manager of Amazon’s payments initiative. Read more »

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Google has acquired the assets of Angstro and added co-founder Rohit Khare to its yet-to-be-launched Google Me social team, led by Vic Gundotra and Max Levchin. Angstro built tools for users to receive integrated and disambiguated feeds of news and up-to-date contact information from social sites. Read more »


Though every street corner in San Francisco seems to house a startup incubator these days, Y Combinator is at the top of the heap. Tonight, Silicon Valley prince Facebook bestowed its endorsement on YC, announcing a relationship with the program to mentor its startups. Read more »

Americans: Addicted to Mobile Email

Yes, Flowtown is yet another social media marketing company, but it’s not just another tool for monitoring customer feedback through their tweets. Flowtown helps small businesses engage with existing customers through email and social networks. Today it is announcing $750,000 in seed funding. Read more »

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Facebook launched last night a feature called Places that enables users to share their location. Before the launch event had even concluded, the ACLU of Northern California had fired off a missive about how the product fails to protect user privacy. Read more »

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Market analysts are spying on us from above. UBS Investment Research has started incorporating analysis of satellite images of the parking lots of big-box retailers into its earnings estimates, forecasting an uptick in sales based on parking lot traffic where a drop was previously expected. Read more »

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Back when I joined Facebook in the spring of 2004 as a college student, it had a location feature. There was a space on each user’s profile that automatically indicated the dorm cluster from where they last logged in. It was WAY before its time. Read more »

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Social gaming powerhouse Zynga has acquired yet another game development shop, this time Cambridge, Mass.-based Conduit Labs, it announced this morning. The deal, which will turn Conduit into Zynga’s Boston studio, was an all-stock transaction, according to’s Scott Kirsner. Read more »

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Staying at a tech startup for more than four years — the default stock option vesting schedule — is a rare thing. But it seems notable that at 6-year-old Facebook many early and influential employees have moved on, and many of them recently. Read more »

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Redbeacon is just a year and a half old, until recently was bootstrapped, and has deployed its local services marketplace in only one region. But something about what it’s doing makes people think the company’s on to something big. CEO Ethan Anderson explains the appeal. Read more »

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Facebook is buying Chai Labs, a small startup founded by the former product manager and launch engineer for Google AdSense that makes a content management system for publishers in the travel, local, shopping and entertainment verticals to help them algorithmically create interesting content. Read more »

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Still hoping to plan a last-minute summer getaway? There’s no lack of great web and mobile travel tools, like Kayak and TripIt, but here are a couple of new ones you might find worth checking out: TravelPost’s new Q&A feature and Tripline maps. Read more »

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Two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash is preparing himself for a second career in investing, and is currently raising $20 million for a new New York City-based VC firm called Consigliere that will invest in early stage companies in categories including e-commerce and sports. Read more »

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Google this morning confirmed what had already been widely reported — that it has bought Slide, the social application maker. Google’s blog post on the matter is incredibly vague as to what Slide will actually be doing for Google, but let’s read the tea leaves. Read more »

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Solariat today launched an advertising platform for forums, social media and Q&A sites called AdLib, which uses linguistic analysis to automatically generate sponsored replies to users’ questions. It’s a twist on search-style contextual advertising to seem more native to online communities and conversations. Read more »

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Facebook bought the entire Friendster portfolio of social networking patents earlier this year. The company bought the patents from Friendster acquirer MOL in a deal that included advertising,a partnership for payments for virtual goods and cash, and was valued at $40 million. Read more »

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Scribd just emailed us to let us know that today’s California Proposition 8 ruling is the most viral document in the history of the site. The document is currently receiving more than 1,000 reads per second, with nearly 150,000 total readsan hour after the ruling. Read more »

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Vic Gundotra, who as Google VP of engineering was been responsible for areas of the company’s mobile and developer relations, has been charged with leading the company’s efforts on social, TechCrunch reports this morning and I’ve heard as well independently. Read more »

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Rapportive this week announced $1 million in funding from a long list of angel and early stage investors including Dave McClure, Paul Buchheit and Jason Calacanis. The startup makes a Gmail plug-in that gives dynamic social web profile data about the people with whom you’re emailing. Read more »

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Amidst widespread discussion and fear of collecting personal data for ad targeting, one of the leading marketplaces for such audience data has raised a big round of venture funding. New York City-based eXelate today announced a $15 million Series B round led by Menlo Ventures. Read more »

Facebook said it is adding 160,000 square feet to the 147,000 square-foot data center it’s currently building in Prineville, Ore. The company cited a need for more servers to accommodate its 500 million users, up from 350 million when the data center was first announced. Read more »

OneRiot laid off seven employees Friday, dropping it to a total of 23 with the intent of sharpening its focus on building a real-time ad network. The Boulder-based company elevated president Tobias Peggs to the role of CEO, and moved him from San Francisco to Colorado. Read more »

This week Twitter rolled out User Streams to its users for the first time, a significant architectural change that should make Twitter much faster and more reliable. I talked to members of Twitter’s product and platform team about User Streams at length for GigaOM Pro. Read more »

An ambitious startup named Enole is trying to bring the spirit of OpenID to the mobile environment, by building a near-field communications (NFC) platform that developers can build on to get devices to carry their owner’s identity. It’s sort of like OpenID for your phone. Read more »

Facebook beta-launches Questions today, a way to ask friends and friends of friends for advice and recommendations on any topic. What’s most surprising about this product is it’s entirely public — and that it’s awfully similar to Quora, the startup founded by former Facebookers. Read more »

GameStop, the world’s largest game retailer with nearly 6,500 stores, is acquiring Kongregate, the free online game aggregator. The move brings GameStop into the casual, mobile and browser gaming world, with the promise it will market Kongregate to its customer base. Read more »

Triangulate has raised $750,000 to help people use their own data — to start with, for dating. Its Wings app looks at signals such as what you “like” on Facebook and using Facebook’s tools around the web, crunches the numbers, and recommends people you’re compatible with. Read more »

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