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The Circuit: Facebook’s mobile problem, tech companies remove content in India, bit torrent site closes‘voluntarily’

LEADING THE DAY: Facebook is reportedly looking at putting ads on mobile devices, the Financial Times reported. Last week, Facebook filed its paperwork to go public and identified mobile platforms as problematic because the social network doesn’t generate ad revenue from mobile.

The Washington Post reported last week that Facebook listed this inability to generate ad revenue as a risk factor in its IPO paperwork, but the Financial Times report says that the company will start pushing “featured stories” ads in users’ news feeds. The newspaper, citing people familiar with the company’s plans, said the ad initiative is likely to begin in March.

Facebook, Google agree to remove content in India: Facebook and Google have agreed to remove content from their services in India, Reuters reported, due to a court order.

The companies are two of 21 that were asked by the nation’s government to remove images ruled as offensive to Hindus, Christians and Muslims. Last year, the report said, India passed a law that holds companies responsible for content that their users post. The law gives companies 36 hours to comply with a request to remove the material.

Samsung on the rise: Electronics maker Samsung is tightening its hold on the smartphone market, Bloomberg reported, as Japanese electronics companies brace for a $17 million loss. The Korean electronics giant is doing well even as rival companies such as HTC report heavy losses. Once the leading maker of Android phones, HTC reported Monday that it expects to post lower-than-expected revenue numbers for its first quarter, Reuters reported, in part because of competition with Samsung.

Samsung is also locked in a smartphone battle with Apple, going after the Cupertino, Calif.,-based company in court over patent disputes and in the consumer market with ads clearly aimed at disenchanting customers with the iPhone.

BTJunkie shuts down: The bit-torrent site BT Junkie has shut down, leading bloggers and technology writers to posit that federal officials are making strides in the war against online piracy, ZDNet reported.

The site, which has been in operation for seven years, allowed users to search for .torrent files. In a message on the site, BTJunkie’s founder said that the site was shut down “voluntarily.”

“We’ve been fighting for years for the right to communicate, but it’s time to move on,” read a message on the Web site’s home page.

According to the blog Torrent Freak, BTJunkie made the decision following the shutdown of Megaupload — a similar site — in January.

Super Bowl is a social affair: In the last three minutes of Sunday’s Super Bowl matchup between the New York Giants and the New England Patriots, an average of 10,000 people — about one-seventh of the spectators that fit into Indianapolis’s Lucas Oil Stadium — per second were sharing their thoughts about the game on Twitter, the company said via Twitter shortly after the game.

Tweeting or updating Facebook while watching TV has become a major trend, and, as All Things Digital reported, sports fans sent about 11.5 million comments during last night’s game over social media networks. According to the report, that’s about six times as many messages as “social TV” analysis firms found last year during the Super Bowl, indicating that more people are using social networks as a second screen during live TV events.

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.



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