Net@night 188

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Episode 188

Net@night 188: Sprouter

AOL buys HuffPo, Ze Frank launches, playing homeless, Sprouter, and more.



  • AOL buys Huffington Post for $315M - VIDEO HERE
    • Monday, afterAOL announced the purchase of The Huffington Post for $315 million, Arianna Huffington spoke out about the purchase and what she has to gain from the sale. Arianna is co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post which was founded in 2005. She will take over as the new president and editor-in-chief of both The Huffington Post and AOL media content.
    • The Huffington Post website currently boasts 26 million unique visitors each month, while AOL has 110 million in the US and 250 million worldwide.
    • Monday, Huffington said she plans "to do so much more in the living space especially for women, (and) to do more and more original reporting telling the stories of our time and putting flesh and blood on the economic data."

  • Ze Frank launches - VIDEO HERE
    • A personal profile is like an splash page with visible signs of how much people like you. It features a collection of things that people have taken the time to give you, that they think represent you. In a direct attempt at connecting virtual goods and human relationships, your profile reveals “Stars sent” and “Stars received” as well as inventory you still have to give. When you click on “Give A Star” in the top right of your dashboard you are presented with a palette of unique options which you can choose to distribute to your friends via auto-populating user names from, Facebook, Twitter and email.

  • How to be homeless
    • It’s one thing to feel bad for homeless people; it’s another to be forced into their shoes. Advertising agency McKinney has teamed up with Urban Ministries of Durham (UMD), a non-profit based in North Carolina, to create SPENT, an online game that guides users through what it feels like to be homeless.
    • Here’s how it works: If you accept the challenge to play, you enter a simple point-and-click game, navigating multiple choice questions about your livelihood. The site says you have been stripped of your savings and are currently unemployed, asking, “Can you make it through the month?”
    • You’re given simple choices with varying consequences. Do you want to try working in a restaurant? A factory? If you live far from the city your rent will be cheap, but, as you’re informed through pop-ups, you’ll have to pay more for gas or transportation.
    • The game’s integration with Facebook is its best feature. When faced with some choices, (like your landlord raising your rent) the game will ask you to decide whether to ignore the claim, pay it or ask a friend. The last option opens up a pre-written statement in Facebook where you can email one of your actual friends for “help,” bridging the gap between virtual reality and the real uneasiness of having to ask a friend for assistance. This simple act also helps spread awareness for the game by attaching a logo and small description to your request.

Picks of the Week


  • FOR A GREAT TRENDING POST, perhaps "How to avoid Foursquare users" and the rise of antisocial software


Notable Quotes

Significant Products

  • Link URL and optional brief description




Production Information

  • Edited by: Tony
  • Notes:
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