Kevin Burton, the snooping entrepreneur with a buggy website, has a new problem: Tailrank, his Web news aggregator, is supposed to deliver users the latest dope. But recently, it's been doing so a bit too literally, serving up drug-spam ads rather than the usual assortment of tech headlines. Tipster Micah Lerner writes: "If I funded Tailrank, I would be very upset right now. How will they get investors now?" Oh, I don't know, Micah: Will his investors really be that mad? Or just grateful for the leads on where to score?
Congrats to Michael Arrington; the TechCrunch editor got a comment on an article from that story's subject. What made commenter Kevin Burton's rant so funny is the line, "I told you via email that there was NO story here but for some reason you decided to post anyway." Yes Kevin, that lack of censorship is what makes blogging fun! (By the way, you really oughta check out Kevin's whole rant, complete with capitalized phrases and exclamation marks hinting at insanity. Then read the one-line comment after it, which made me snort.) Photo of Kevin Burton by Scott Beale
NICK DOUGLAS — Okay, okay, you're sick of hearing about Kevin Burton, but this is hilarious. Kevin commented on Valleywag and denied peeping at women's AIM conversations at wifi cafes, saying he was "joking" to the Wired writer who wrote this as fact in 2004. "If I'm guilty of anything here, it's trust," he told Valleywag. "I expect you to correct your article and update the story." Ahaha, not so fast. Kevin's a long-time chatter on an IRC channel named #joiito. And in 2004, he sounded honestly proud of the "alleged" spying tactic. In fact, he said it was how he wanted to be remembered. Here's a chat log.
The O'Reilly Emerging Technology Conference (or ETech for the impatient) is in full swing today, after a rousing start on Monday. The event sold out ages ago, but through the magic of Scott Beale's photography, we can pretend we made it in. (If you want to pretend you met Cory Doctorow and he loved your sci-fi story idea, have that fantasy on your own.) Here are highlights from Scott's meticulous Monday photojournalism.
The effort to invade some innocent wifi cafe continues. Tailrank creator Kevin Burton wants to run a "San Francisco Wifi Bedouin Flash Mob" (which would make a great electronica collective name). Basically, a couple dozen people descend on a wifi cafe, making a show of purchasing power and feeling trendy while doing so.
After the New York Post reported that Google would buy Napster, a Google spokesperson denied any such plans. Looks like someone's trying to float a rumor and sell their stock. Meanwhile, Technorati's looking to sell its search tools, Six Apart might stay solo, and Digg.com is fighting lucrative sale rumors.