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Filter - Cynthia L. Webb
Kerry Gets Cozy Online

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_____About Filter_____
Filter looks at the day's top technology news through snapshots and analysis of what the world's media outlets are covering. Washingtonpost.com's new Mon.-Fri. feature is penned by technology reporter Cynthia L. Webb. If a technology story breaks, a company falters or triumphs, or there's a new trend in technology, Filter wants you to know about it.

_____Filter Archive_____
Hollywood's Internet Avenger? (washingtonpost.com, Jul 2, 2004)
Microsoft Unbuttons Its Lawsuits (washingtonpost.com, Jul 1, 2004)
Court Pours Cold Water on Porn Law (washingtonpost.com, Jun 30, 2004)
Divorce Court, Toy Story Style (washingtonpost.com, Jun 29, 2004)
Microsoft's Momentary Reprieve (washingtonpost.com, Jun 28, 2004)
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An MSNBC newscaster this morning already compared the NY Post's goof to the Chicago Daily Tribune's "Dewey Defeats Truman" headline. That said, there were a lot of potential choices floating around. Political newsletter Hotline had a lengthy list of all of those on the short list, which the San Francisco Chronicle picked up in an article today. "The National Journal's Hotline, an online newsletter that tracks political coverage, has kept a tally of the potential running mates named by major media outlets. As of Saturday, the list stood at 71," the paper reported.
San Francisco Chronicle: Golden Age of The Second Banana

Blogging for President

Keeping the Internet and campaigns theme going strong, bloggers will be out in abundance this year at the Democratic and Republican conventions. "The Democratic Party plans to give media credentials to a select group of bloggers who want to cover the event, where Sen. John F. Kerry (Mass.) is expected to accept his party's presidential nomination. The group has not announced which bloggers might get the passes, but that information will come in the 'next few weeks,' an event spokeswoman said. The convention begins July 26," The Washington Post reported, noting that the Republican Party also has decided to let bloggers with credentials cover its convention.

"The Web sites, which are essentially online journals, have become a prominent campaign tool this election season – ever since former Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean's official blog caught on. Since then, scores of other candidates have developed similar sites. Some candidates have begun advertising on other independent blogs – especially sites that feature commentaries, usually partisan, on the political news of the day," the paper said. "But neither party has ever allowed bloggers to cover one of its presidential conventions firsthand – and the decision seems to promise a clash of two very different cultures. The conventions have become carefully staged productions intended, primarily, to reintroduce the parties' nominees to the general public. Independent blogs – especially those focusing on politics – are far more freewheeling, their authors mixing fact with opinion and under no obligation to be either fair or accurate."
The Washington Post: Parties To Allow Bloggers To Cover Convention For First Time (Registration required)

News organizations, meanwhile continue to jump onto the blog bandwagon. "The Associated Press will launch its first Web log at the political conventions in Boston and New York, utilizing Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Walter R. Mears, AP officials announced," Editor & Publisher reported on June 28. "Mears will pair with Washington-based AP reporter Nancy Benac to provide running commentary, insight, and news tidbits from the Democratic and Republican conventions, the news cooperative said."
Editor & Publisher: AP To Launch Its First Blogs At Pol Conventions

How to Tell a Democrat From a Republican

The New York Times yesterday ran an article on the kinds of software Democrats and Republicans use to beam their messages through cyberspace. "The Web sites of Senator John Kerry and the Democratic National Committee run mainly on the technology of the computing counterculture: open-source software that is distributed free, and improved and debugged by far-flung networks of programmers. In the other corner, the Web sites of President Bush and the Republican National Committee run on software supplied by the corporate embodiment of big business – Microsoft," the paper said. "The two sides are defined largely by their approach to intellectual property. Fans of open-source computing regard its software as a model for the future of business, saying that its underlying principle of collaboration will eventually be used in pharmaceuticals, entertainment and other industries whose products are tightly protected by patents or copyrights. ... Microsoft and other American companies, by contrast, have long argued that intellectual property is responsible for any edge the United States has in an increasingly competitive global economy."
The New York Times: Knowing Their Politics By The Software They Use (Registration required)

Match Point: Oracle

Oracle's strategy to beat the Justice Department's antitrust rap might be working. The company's defense strategy "has laid the groundwork for the broader roll-up of the business-software industry planned by Chief Executive Larry Ellison. In a four-week trial in San Francisco, Oracle cast itself as an underdog in a global battle with Microsoft Corp., International Business Machines Corp. and SAP AG to provide integrated software systems to business and government customers. In so doing, Oracle sought to transcend concerns of the Justice Department over the impact a takeover of PeopleSoft would have on competition in a narrower niche of the software market," The Wall Street Journal reported today. "Legal observers say Oracle could hand government antitrust lawyers a rare courtroom defeat. ... Oracle still faces a possible antitrust challenge from the European Commission in Brussels. But a favorable ruling in the U.S. case would increase pressure on PeopleSoft executives to enter into takeover talks with Oracle."
The Wall Street Journal: Oracle's PeopleSoft Defense Could Make Waves (Subscription required)

The San Jose Mercury News had a Saturday report on Oracle's strategy. "After a four-week antitrust trial, Oracle's chances of winning the court fight that would let it pursue PeopleSoft appear far better than at the outset, said several legal and industry observers. That in itself was a remarkable achievement for Oracle, these experts said, considering the long odds the company faced when it took the unusual step of fighting the Justice Department's efforts to block its hostile takeover bid for rival PeopleSoft. The government only rarely loses such cases and many questioned whether Oracle's move was driven by management ego," the paper reported. "The case remains too close to call. But after four weeks of testimony, there is a growing feeling that Oracle's legal team did a credible job of muddying what by all accounts was a very complex case for the government to prove."
San Jose Mercury News: Oracle's Chances Improve At Trial (Registration required)

Filter is designed for hard-core techies, news junkies and technology professionals alike. Have suggestions, cool links or interesting tales to share? Send your tips and feedback to cindyDOTwebbATwashingtonpost.com. (Yes, those spammers have been having a lot of fun with my e-mail address lately.)

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