jkOnTheRun Gets Better, Easier to Use!

A primary goal for the GigaOM family is to provide the best experience for visitors, and that means keeping the sites performing as well as possible. We have rolled out site changes to make things better, and easier to find. It happens to look nice, too.

Do You Do Web Work During Weekends?

I called one of my friends earlier this week and asked her if we could have lunch on Sunday. I was surprised that she said she couldn’t make it, since she had to work. “What kind of evil forces are making you do this?” I asked her. Then again, who was I kidding? I was planning to write a couple of blog posts on Sunday evening. Like my friend, I was going to work during the weekend.

As I reviewed my own work habits, as well as those of other web workers, it became evident that working during the weekends is becoming more common.
Read More about Do You Do Web Work During Weekends?

HP Magic Giveaway Offers Huge Prizes

Thanks to our friends over at jkOnTheRun for letting us know about the huge HP Magic Giveaway contest. They are one of 50 participating sites that are each giving away a $6,000 prize package containing some great stuff for the Web Worker. The package includes notebooks, desktops, printers, netbooks, software and more.

The jkOnTheRun portion starts on December 16th but you can start entering on the other sites today. More details are available from HP and on each of the sponsoring blogs.

Good Luck!!

Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Tofel!

tofelKevin Tofel, co-editor of jkOnTheRun, which joined our little family when he and James merged their wonderful community with ours, married his long-time sweetheart, Barb, this past weekend. Of course, like any blogger worth his social network, the wedding festivities were shared on Facebook, Twitter and FriendFeed. And James Kendrick, the “j” in jkOnTheRun, jokes that like all true gadget nerds, Kevin registered at Circuit City. The newlyweds undoubtedly have a brighter future ahead of them than the retailer does. Please join us in wishing the new couple a lifetime of happiness. (And congrats to jk for getting a big plug for their Mobile Tech Roundup Podcast in the UK-based Webuser magazine.)

GigaOM Acquires jkOnTheRun

As part of growing our company and increasing our footprint into the mobile domain, we have acquired jkOnTheRun blog, a nifty and intelligent resource for all things mobile. It is first of the many efforts on our part to grow the company into complementary and adjacent sectors. Continue Reading the story….

Dogster Gets Big Eyes

Dogster, the social network for dog owners, has raised $1 million in funding from a strong list of angel investors: Michael Parekh, Joshua Schachter, Adam Beguelin, Michael Tanne, Jim Young, Mike Jones, George Sarlo, Frank Caufield, Aydin Senkut, Robert Simon, Brad Feld, and Jeff Clavier. The two-and-a-half-year-old company is profitable based on $100,000 raised last May. It makes 95 percent of revenue from advertising and sponsorships and the rest from premium subscriptions.

With 250,000 registered users, and about a quarter of them very active on the site, Dogster CEO Ted Rheingold thinks he’s mastered the art of building social networks for adults. For example, Dogster orients itself around dogs, not people — with no requirement to share your name, your email address, or even your hometown. Some more tricks are to use lots of puns, and to be very careful about canine breed nomenclature and categorization. 🙂

What’s next? Lots more pets sites, says Rheingold (Catster has been live since August 2004). And why stop with pets? Other affinities and hobbies are on the way. “What we’ve cracked the nut on is how adults want to communicate online about what they’re passionate about,” he says. “There are a lot of things that aren’t Adult FriendFinder.” But being so specific is what’s kept Dogster from being lumped into the hypefest; branching out is a whole different ballgame.

News Corp To Mobile: You Need Us

CTIA, Los Angeles: News Corp’s COO Peter Chernin is certainly getting a lot of attention this week after emphasizing MySpace’s weight in the web 2.0 world. This morning, however, he was concentrating on Mobile as part of his keynote at the CTIA wireless convention in Los Angeles.

Chernin talked a bit about News Corp’s recent purchase of a controlling share of mobile company Jamba and how bullish the company is on mobile as an entertainment medium, but his most interesting comments dealt with the harsher realities of the mobile content business in the U.S. Finding mobile entertainment on cell phones is basically a joke right now, he said, adding some reality to the mobile lovefest going on in the convention hall.

His perspective coming from the entertainment industry: we’re selling something no one really needs so companies have to work hard and figure out a better way of making people want that content.

News Corp’s wireless push will likely be good for more than just the company’s bottom line. The mobile content ecosystem in the U.S. needs a heavy weight like News Corp to counter balance the carrier-centric system. And of course Chernin had a few ideas on how to improve it: The industry needs better and more simple business models, more attractive marketing, much easier ways to find the content on or off phones, as well as more standardization between handsets, Chernin says.

Any consumer who has tried to download ringtones or mobile games, would heartily agree. I test this stuff for a living and sometimes being able to just access and find the content is like pulling teeth. What do you think? Any mobile entertainment experiences you’d care to share?

WhoseSpace is MySpace

Peter Chernin, Chief Operating Officer of News Corp., according to Multichannel News dropped the proverbial hammer on those who he sees are leaching off the MySpace ecosystem.

“If you look at virtually any Web 2.0 application, whether its YouTube, whether it’s Flickr, whether it’s Photobucket or any of the next-generation Web applications, almost all of them are really driven off the back of MySpace.”

There is a good chance, a lot he said was left on the cutting floor, but if (and only if) he means what he says, then all those tiny start ups that are betting the farm on MySpace economy better watchout.

Read More about WhoseSpace is MySpace