theEweekly Wrap 5 June 2009
Making friends with Microsoft
Microsoft has said that it intends to launch social networking sites Twitter and Facebook on its Xbox 360 console. The announcement, made at this week’s E3 computer game conference, means that players will be able to access the site via the Xbox Live software on their consoles.
New features for the Facebook service include the ability to take screenshots during games and send them directly to contacts. Users will also be able to link the service to their Xbox Live profile. A spokesperson for Microsoft said it would “change the way you experience games”. Both the Twitter and Facebook applications are set for launch in the autumn.
Google Analytics is the market leader in website tracking according to a study published by students at the University of California, Berkeley. The research found 81 per cent of the top 100 websites used Google Analytics to monitor user visits. DoubleClick, which is also owned by Google, was in second place having been recorded on 71 per cent. Atlas, the Microsoft tracking software was found on only 60 per cent of these sites.
Bing back Google
Microsoft caused controversy this week when it was discovered its new search engine, Bing, was overriding the default search provider set by Internet Explorer 6 users. Just days after the launch of the website, many internet browsers discovered that Bing had automatically been set as their default search tool. The malfunction also prevented users from manually fixing the issue.
Microsoft launched Bing early in June
It is believed that a bug in the browser’s software caused the problem. Microsoft has since reported that the issue has been resolved and the complication has not been reported on any other internet browsing applications. Just over 18 per cent of web users still use IE 6 to browse the web.
Crouching Twitter, hidden Digger
The Chinese government has been accused of internet censorship after it blocked a number of websites in the run up to the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests. The Chinese authorities denied access to a number of sites this week, including the social-networking service Twitter, photo-sharing site Flicker and email client Hotmail.
The move came two days before the anniversary of the pro-democracy protest in which hundreds died. It is thought the Chinese authorities were keen to quell any anti-government sentiments which may have been expressed on the sites.
“Twitter is a tool which can put all the sensitive things and sensitive guys together, very quickly. That’s the very thing that the Chinese government doesn’t want to see in China,” commented one blogger.
The internet is heavily monitored in China and a number of websites have been permanently blocked by the government. Blogger.com was banned in May and video-sharing portal YouTube has been unavailable since March.