Friday night the nation will be tuning into the first live broadcast of Big Brother, but will the servers be able to cope with interest in the Web site? The site has been receiving 21,878,333 hits and around two million page impressions a day. With the servers running on more than 30 percent capacity Chris Short, content manager of the show, is amazed that it hasn't fallen over more. "Our biggest challenge has been coping with the volume -- there was no television programme to follow the launch of the production for four days, so the site had to cope with phenomenal interest at the very start," he says. With the first eviction happening Friday, tensions are rising not only in the Big Brother household, but also amongst the crew of the Web site. The site has set up an infrastructure that will allow it to take six million page impressions a day (based upon the five million page impressions that Germany's equivalent site peaked at). If the UK is able to produce more obsessive voyeurs … [Read more...] about Big Brother Live
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Facebook is watching you. The social media giant won the "Big Brother" Award in Belgium on Thursday. The award is named after the dystopian government surveillance in George Orwell's "1984," and given to the "biggest privacy-offender of the year," according to the Flemish League for Human rights, which runs the awards, and its partners.Facebook, nominated by international digital advocacy group EDRi, won after being criticized for its default privacy settings in a unanimous decision. The social network didn't respond to requests for comment. "Facebook has access to a wide range of personal data, and it tracks your movements across the web, whether you are logged in or not," EDRi said. "And the devil is in the default: To opt out, you are expected to navigate Facebook's complex web of settings."Facebook beat out three other candidates for the anti-privacy award, including Belgium's data retention law, paperless cash and the Belgian government's lack of transparency for criminal … [Read more...] about Facebook wins ‘Big Brother’ award in Belgium
Apple's iPad Mini won't cannibalize too many fourth-generation iPad sales, a new study has found. Analyst Cowen and Co. recently conducted a survey of 1,225 U.S. adults on their upcoming tablet buying preferences. According to All Things Digital, which obtained a copy of the survey's results, just 12 percent of respondents said that they would buy an iPad Mini within the next 18 months. Out of that group, just 16.6 percent said that they were buying the tablet to replace it with another tablet. Moreover, just 29 percent of those folks said that the tablet they were replacing was an iPad. Given that, Cowen analyst Matthew Hoffman argued that the "iPad Mini creates more demand than it cannibalizes." Not all analysts would be quick to agree. Last month, for example, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster wrote to investors that the iPad Mini will have a 20 percent cannibalization rate. "For every five million smaller iPad [sales], you lose one million standard iPads," Munster said. Munster … [Read more...] about iPad Mini won’t eat into its big brother’s sales, analyst says
As the tangle of privacy and security issues tightens in the aftermath of Sept. 11, Jack Palmer forges ahead, claiming to put a kinder, gentler face on Big Brother.Palmer is the CEO of ICaughtYou, a private Bonita Springs, Fla.-based company that allows corporations to monitor their employees' Internet usage. His company has been one of the unsuspecting beneficiaries of the terrorist attacks. Even before Sept. 11, the downturn in the economy led to a heightened interest in worker productivity and Internet security. Now, a new emphasis on national security has put corporate security in the spotlight and has led to a quadrupling of hits on the ICaughtYou Web site.The company was born two years ago, when a tech guru for a government agency suspected his wife was cheating on him. He recruited fellow programmers from America Online and Coca-Cola to help him figure out a way to monitor her instant message sessions. The technology fulfilled its mission and became the core product of … [Read more...] about Big Brother’s watching
"Big Brother" entered into the lexicon and so vividly into the public imagination through George Orwell’s 1984. The main character, Winston, lives under totalitarian rule in a country named Oceania. His every movement and even thought are under surveillance. Any involvement by a government in what its citizens believe to be a private exchange is inevitably viewed in the context of this dystopia. Technology, particularly social media, augments the modes and means of communication—but also the ease with which it can be monitored—causing privacy, the law, and public opinion to clash. This is further complicated by the tools of protest and the ways of quelling it also being one and the same. Among those inserting themselves into the fray is Anonymous. On November 5, in what it's calling "Operation Fox Hunt," Anonymous is seeking retaliation for "Fox News' propaganda" regarding Occupy Wall Street by taking over the cable channel's website. The chosen date is a nod to plots … [Read more...] about Anonymous and Big Brother: Spy vs. Spy?