Vudu’s iPad App, Groupon Revises S-1, Walmart Shuts MP3 Store, Bing’s Search Market Share, Anonymous Plots Against Facebook

This and more important news from your Fast Company editors, with updates all day.


Groupon Strikes Unorthodox Accounting Measure From Its S-1. The daily deals company submitted a revised version of its S-1 today, removing all mention of “Adjusted consolidated segment operating income” (ACSOI). The measure had been used to strip out certain marketing costs from the company’s profit calculations. The company argued that the amount it was spending to acquire customers today would not continue in years to come, and therefore including that did not accurately reflect the company’s long-term viability. Following regulatory pressure and general outcry in the market, Groupon today replaced the measure with more conventional metrics. In his revised letter to potential stockholders, CEO Andrew Mason wrote:  “While we track this management metric internally to gauge our performance, we encourage you to base your investment decision on whatever metrics make you comfortable.” –EBB


–Updated: 1:00 p.m. EST

Twitter Won’t Close London Rioters’ Accounts: Twitter has refused to close the accounts of tweeters who used their accounts to escalate the riots in London the week. After rioters began using encrypted BlackBerry messages to connect during this week’s riots, RIM said it would release BlackBerry Messenger data to the Metropolitan Police if asked. London citizens also used Twitter to rally for riots, and then later to host a cleanup. It’s not known if Twitter is assisting the London authorities to identify tweets or tweeters, but for now they insist that the tweets must flow. –NS

–Updated 9:20 a.m. EST

AOL’s Struggles Continue. The weakened brand, known more for dial-up sounds and software mailed on CDs, is looking to reinvent itself as a global content provider. But as was made clear during an earnings call yesterday, the company has a long way to go. AOL reported losses of $11.8 million, or 11 cents per share, for the quarter the ended June 30–analysts had expected a gain of 4 cents per share. Worse yet, display advertising declined 16% internationally, despite the recent acquisition of the Huffington Post. Perhaps that’s why AOL should be pushing more of its own content rather than simply aggregating others’. –AC

–Updated 8:20 a.m. EST  


Vudu Goes Web-App Too. Like Amazon (see below) Vudu has tweaked its service to allow delivery of streaming TV content to the iPad via a web app, dodging Apple’s 30% snare of revenues–and it simplifies its log-in process, without having to use any Apple protocols on the iDevices Vudu serves. The iPad is also the first tablet with a Vudu optimized front end, but support for Android tablets and various smartphones is coming soon. –KE

Walmart Shuts Its MP3 Store. Walmart has made the simplest of business decisions, right in line with its usual strategy, and is shuttering its music download store as of the end of August after an eight-year run. All content will be disabled, no longer available for download, but the mega store will keep selling CDs in its bricks and mortar shops and online, and its streaming Soundcheck service remains. The reason, we believe, is simple: Apple’s sewn up the downloads game. –KE

–Updated 7:15 a.m. EST


Bing Dings Google’s Market Share. It’s a minor ding, not a dent nor a big bump, but Microsoft’s Bing search engine is definitely grabbing some of Google‘s massive search engine market share. New data shows that its share has risen from 11.8% in November 2010 to 14.4% at the end of July–while Google’s share has slipped from 66.2% to 65.1%. The cost to MS is large, though, with its online group losing $2.6 billion at the end of the fiscal year in June on revenues of just $2.5 billion. MS is playing the long game. –KE


Remember, Remember The Fifth Of November, Facebook In A Plot. Hacktivist group Anonymous borrows some of its public identity from V for Vendetta, including the iconic Guy Fawkes mask–and now it’s taking its British history literally, with a plot to bring down the establishment scheduled for November 5th. In this case the establishment is Facebook, and the intent is to “kill” it. It’s being targeted, Anonymous says, because of privacy matters, the fact it’s been “selling information to government agencies” and that it retains data even if an account is deleted. –KE

Amazon Takes Kindle To Cloud. Amazon, as well as having its iPad Kindle app, now has a new solution that circumvents Apple‘s strict no in-app store linking policy: It’s taken its e-reader to the cloud as Kindle Cloud. It works with desktop Safari and Chrome and also Mobile Safari on the iPad, and it even does page caching so you can read books when you’re not in range of a Net connection. Is this the start of a subtle move to web content for e-publishing on the iPad? –KE

[Image: Flickr user bargainmoose]

–Updated 6:00 a.m. EST

Yesterday’s Fast Feed: RIM Hacked in London, LinkedIn Price Tumbles, Facebook’s Messaging App, CERN’s LHC @ Home…and more…



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