14 Mar 2015

10 web design trends that will change everything in 2015

By Craig Grannell at CreativeBloq:

Some of the web's smartest thinkers reveal what they believe will transform the web.

In 2014, the biggest web design trends included: grid layouts, flat design, background videos, and the increasing capabilities of HTML5 APIs.

So which trends, technologies and techniques will define 2015? net magazine set out to uncover them by asking 20 of the web's brightest designers, developers and thinkers.

Here's our list of 2015's defining trends. Some ideas are featured in net magazine's feature. Most contained here are exclusive, and you won't read them anywhere else.

01. Huge background images

Front-end developer Benjamin Hollway expects more massive background images in 2015, "used alongside rich typography and subtle parallax effects", largely due to the lead taken by massive brands such as Apple and Google Nexus.

02. Card-based design

Creative director Haraldur Thorleifsson says card-based design will be big: "Content needs to fit on different types and sizes of screen, and cards are the easiest way to make that work across platforms." He adds this presents a design challenge, since cards can be dull, "but we're seeing fun, clever takes on this from companies like Google".

03. Digital-first branding

Clearleft founder Andy Budd (clearleft.com) says "as more companies realise their customers' primary experience with them is online, we'll see more digital-first-approaches to branding". He predicts companies "ditching traditional branding agencies who treat the web with the same care as a branded mug", instead "commissioning digital agencies to conceive a brand that works first online before filtering down to other channels."

Ghostly Ferns founder Meg Lewis (darngood.co) adds this may result in "more brands with responsive, fluctuating logos," which will "force designers to think about a logo from 'big picture' to 'minute detail' as it scales".

04. Open data

Sally Jenkinson says open data's been on the rise, but many digital spaces remain "more closed than ever" and so "leaders such as The Open Data Institute are working to promote more openness". She reckons this will gain public awareness in 2015, and projects will respond accordingly, in terms of publishing and consumption.

Clearleft's Andy Parker says we'll therefore see "more public and private companies making data and content available". In turn, this will result in "some pretty spectacular services being created, like the Cern sandbox".

05. Responsive design – evolved

Designer Victor Erixon (minimalt.se) expects the industry to "continue maintaining simple and minimal aesthetics," with the web "becoming fully customised for different viewports".

But others see responsive design going further. Jonathan Smiley (jsmiley.me) thinks we'll see "responsive design practices become more important in native apps," in part through a proliferation of wearables. "Apple Watch, for example, relies on a responsive-like flow to accommodate a small screen, and so while 2015 isn't the year the web and native become the same, it'll get us much closer."

06. Privacy

Designer Laura Kalbag (laurakalbag.com) says we've long "designed for security, so people can trust forms and checkouts with their information". Now, as people become aware of how data can be exchanged with third parties, "they'll be reluctant to share it without good reason — and rightly so".

07. Isomorphic JavaScript

Web design author and practitioner Aaron Gustafson has an alternate take on investment in frontend JavaScript frameworks like Angular and Ember: "Development benefits can be great in terms of speed of development, but there are costs to using this approach. JavaScript is the single biggest point of failure in any web-based product. Unlike on the server side, we do not control the execution of code in the browser."

He therefore reckons we'll see more use of isomorphic JavaScript, for companies that have heavily invested in JavaScript for their site infrastructure: "It offers improvements in the areas of performance, SEO, and maintainability to boot. Airbnb and Twitter have moved to this approach. Others will surely follow."

08. Iteration

Designer Robby Leonardi mulls that perhaps 2015's big trend will be iteration on what we already have: "We just had trends such as responsive and flat design, and it will take time for another big thing to happen."

By contrast, he sees enhancements on existing concepts and technologies, with increasingly sophisticated web layouts, better typography, and more designing in the browser.

09. Vibrant design

BaseKit co-founder Richard Healy believes Google's Material design specification – intended to combine the texture and tactility of paper and ink with the 'imagination and magic of digital' – will inspire designers.

He told us: "Think bold, graphical and intentional. We're talking vibrant, unexpected colours, contrasted with subdued and muted environments; large-scale typography, soft directional lighting and shadow; the use of responsive design best practices; and meaningful motion – carefully choreographed animation that provides fluid, seamless touch transitions and, more importantly, delights users."

10. Web components meet adaptive design

Developer Aaron T Grogg predicts "web components and adaptive development will combine to create a new style of web development". Someone will then fashion a "snappy acronym for this approach, which will cause all job ads to now require it".

By adaptive, Aaron clarifies he means making decisions on the server regarding mark-up to send a user, usually depending on the device being used. "When you combine the power of adaptive development with the flexibility of web components, I think we are going to see very creative solutions from designers and developers.

Hopefully, we will still be creating mobile-first, responsive, one-site-for-all-devices, but making subtle differences will be powerful tools in our toolboxes."

6 Changes Your 2015 SEO Strategy Must Focus On

By Jonathan Long at Entrepreneur

SEO is constantly changing. New updates are released, new trends are discussed and new strategies are developed. It is something that will constantly evolve.

In 2014 alone, there have already been 13 updates to Google’s algorithm, according to Moz’s change history. These are just the notable and more public ones -- there are refreshes and changes almost daily behind the scenes.

My company, Market Domination Media, is constantly adjusting SEO strategies for our clients based on a number of factors. We recently sat down and discussed the biggest changes that SEO efforts are going to need to adjust to as we enter 2015. Let’s look at six of them right now:

1. Create and optimize for mobile traffic

Back in 2012 ComScore predicted that mobile traffic would exceed desktop traffic in 2014, and they were correct. Google has always said that it feels responsive websites provide the best user experience, and recently starting including a “mobile-friendly” notation next to websites in mobile search results that are indeed mobile friendly.

You can see if your website passes Google’s mobile-friendly test by clicking here. Bing has also stated it prefers a single responsive URL

2. Optimizing for Bing, Yahoo and DuckDuckGo

Could 2015 be the year that some other search engines begin to take more market share? It seems like this is the million-dollar question every year, but some recent developments suggest that it could be possible.

Firefox kicked Google to the curb and Yahoo will now be the default search engine for the browser. Google’s deal is also up with Safari in 2015, and reports have both Bing and Yahoo trying to secure that spot. The option to switch default browsers in iOS 8 and OS X from Google to DuckDuckGo also exists.

With options other than Google becoming more popular and accepted it will make it important to have visibility across these search engines in addition to just Google.

3. Switch your focus from keyword rankings to ROI metrics
If you or your SEO company is still putting an emphasis on keyword rankings and determining the success of the campaign based on keyword positions, then it is time for a major wake up call. Ranking reports can be made to look pretty and some SEO companies will even target useless keywords just to say, “Hey look -- you are ranking number one!”

If you are a business owner spending money every month on SEO, what would you rather hear from your SEO agency?

“Congratulations, you are ranking number one for ‘buy blue widgets online’ but we aren’t sure what that translates into dollar wise.”
“The infographic that we published last month resulted in earning 67 links and it was also responsible for 45 conversions and $22,480 in revenue.”

Do you want a fancy PDF ranking report or do you want to know what your return on investment was?

4. More focused social-media approach

Social media was once just a platform to share content, so businesses would sign up for every social platform under the sun and blast their content everywhere. Social media is now a marketing channel as well as a customer-service channel. Your social audience expects your brand to engage with them on a more personal level.

It is more effective to focus on two or three social-media platforms and be very active and accommodating. This not only helps you generate more leads, sales and revenue, but it also helps to build a very loyal following that will share your content. This can introduce new people to your brand and even present opportunities to earn links.

5. Earning links rather than building links

Through all of the updates and algorithm changes over the years one thing remains the same: inbound links are the most influential signal of trust and authority. This isn’t going to change -- not in 2015 or anytime soon.

The days of building links on irrelevant blogs and chasing large quantities of links to game the search results are over. Earning a single link on a high-quality relevant website is valuable for multiple reasons including SEO, attracting referral traffic, leads, sales and branding exposure. Look for traditional PR and SEO to work closer together in 2015.

6. Targeting more precise keywords and search phrases

The days of targeting broad keywords are coming to an end. While they tend to have a huge search volume, they don’t attract highly targeted traffic and they are expensive to rank. Targeting long-tail search queries not only attracts qualified “buyer” traffic, but these terms will typically have much less competition. Keyword research along with understanding the shopping and purchase patterns of the target consumer can help to identify search terms and phrases to go after

7 Social Media Marketing Trends That Will Dominate 2015

By Jason DeMers at Forbes

It’s that time again: When I look ahead to 2015 to predict social media marketing trends we can expect over the coming year. If you want to see what I predicted for 2014 (and whether those predictions came true), you can do so here:

But without further ado, here are my top 7 social media marketing predictions for 2015!

1. We’ll witness the rise of Ello

What we couldn’t have predicted last year was the emergence of a new social platform intended to go head-to-head with social media giant, Facebook. The platform, which is still in public beta (meaning invite-only), has caused quite a stir; dubbed by some as the ‘hipster social network’, Ello offers a forever ad-free experience and promises to never sell its users’ information to third parties. Their website states: “Collecting and selling your personal data, reading your posts to your friends, and mapping your social connections for profit is both creepy and unethical. Under the guise of offering a “free” service, users pay a high price in intrusive advertising and lack of privacy.”

It’s unclear at this point whether the extreme buzz around the platform is simply because of its positioning as the ‘anti-Facebook’, or whether it has the substance, design and functionality to actually become a serious competitor for Facebook. Engagement on the platform doesn’t seem to be high at this point, and some are pointing out the current weaknesses of the platform, including the lack of video-integration and meaningful conversation and engagement.

Regardless, Ello is likely to grow in 2015, both in terms of numbers and engagement, and many will be watching closely. For more background on the platform, see my article,

Ello: What Is It and Why Does Everyone Want an Invite?

2. Facebook ad pricing and demand will significantly increase

It’s no secret that Facebook post reach is significantly decreasing, and has become a serious problem for business owners who are using the platform for marketing purposes. This steady decline in reach is what has been coined the Filtered Feed Problem.

As Facebook continues to limit the number of posts page fans actually see, the demand for promoted posts and ads will continue to increase. And with this increased demand will come increased pricing. According to an Ad Week article earlier this year, 2014 Q1 Facebook ad pricing was up 10% over 2013 Q4 pricing. This trend is likely to continue into 2015 as organic post reach continues to fall.

3. Twitter’s new business advertising model will skyrocket in popularity.

With Twitter’s move to offering businesses more choice and flexibility in how and what they pay for in terms of advertising, more small and medium sized businesses will jump on the Twitter ad bandwagon.  The new fee structure allows businesses to pay for certain performance-based actions rather than just retweets or clicks.

These objective-based campaigns, which are still currently in beta, will offer more flexibility including tweet engagements (retweets, replies, etc.), website clicks or conversions, app installs, new followers and leads. These campaigns will be particularly appealing to small business owners who want to pay for results, not just for brand visibility.

4. Google+ will begin to fade into obscurity

With the failure of Google’s Authorship experiment, Google+ now brings no unique value that Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook don’t already provide. After the highly publicized departure of Google+ chief evangelist Vic Gundotra earlier this year, along with TechCrunch declaring Google+ “The Walking Dead”, the platform is quickly making the descent into obscurity.

In fact, according to Tech Crunch, Google+ will “no longer be considered a product, but a platform — essentially ending its competition with other social networks like Facebook and Twitter.”

For an in-depth conversation on the rise and fall of Google+, see my post Is Google+ Really Walking Dead?.

5. Instagram will become essential for image-based social media marketing

Instagram isn’t showing any signs of slowing down; not by a long shot. With 200 million monthly users, Instagram has become the network when it comes to image-based social media marketing. Research confirms this, although perhaps not to the same extent: According to the Social Media Marketing Industry report, 42% of marketers are planning to increase their use of the platform this year, compared to 38% in 2013.

Instagram will also continue to grow in the micro-video space. With both Vine and Instagram vying for billing as the top video networking site, the platforms have continued to differentiate themselves from the other offering different features, video lengths and editing capabilities. However, I believe we’ll see Instagram begin to outpace Vine as we enter 2015.

And with the recent emergence of Instagram’s in-feed video advertising, marketers will now have the option of paying to target their 15-second videos to users based on age, gender and country. While some have called the new video ads incongruous, the new feature is a welcome addition for marketers looking to promote their wares to Instagram’s young, affluent user base.

6. LinkedIn will widen the gap as “the” B2B social network

LinkedIn has been the top network of choice for the B2B crowd for years already, and I believe we’ll see the gap between LinkedIn and other networks continue to widen in 2015.

While B2C marketers report LinkedIn as being significantly less important than Facebook or Twitter for their marketing efforts, the numbers are quite different for the B2B crowd: according to the 2014 Social Media Examiner survey, 88% of B2B marketers are using LinkedIn, compared to 89% for Facebook and 86% for Twitter. I believe 2015 is the year LinkedIn will surpass Facebook for B2B marketing.

For guidance on using LinkedIn for your business, see my article, The Definitive Guide to LinkedIn Groups for Marketing.

7. Social media marketing will finally be embraced as a core pillar of content marketing

In 2015, marketers will finally realize that there are two core pillars of a content marketing strategy: publication and distribution. Marketers will learn that social media is the most effective method of expanding the reach and visibility of their content, and because of this, will come to view social media as more of an “amplifier” for their published content rather than as the content itself.

In 2014, we saw marketers succeed at realizing the importance of creating and publishing content with the rise of “content strategy” as a buzzword and core focus of online marketers, but many failed when it came to designing and executing a successful content distribution strategy. I discussed this trend in my article, Why No One’s Reading Your Marketing Content.

So, while the content marketing buzz continues to pick up steam, marketers needs to remember that a distribution strategy for that content is just as important, if not more important, than the content itself.


These predictions aside, I’m curious to see the state of social shopping in 2015, particularly as it relates to Pinterest and to Facebook’s new ‘Buy’ button. I’ll keep an eye on this and other trends, and keep you posted as we venture into 2015 and beyond.

9 Sep 2014

Here’s How to Watch Apple’s iPhone 6 Event

By Josh Wolford at WebProNews:

The tech world turns to Cupertino today, as Apple is holding yet another September press event expected to showcase new hardware.

The event is scheduled to kick off at 1 pm EST (10 am PST) and Apple has chosen to put a stream online.

That’s the good news. The baddish news is that you can’t stream the event on Chrome or Firefox.

Instead, you’ll have to use Safari. Live streaming of today’s big event requires Safari 5.1.10 or later on OS X v10.6.8 or later, or Safari on iOS 6.0 or later.

You can also stream the event using the second or third generation Apple TV with software 6.2 or later.

Here’s where you should head.

What can you expect? Well, new iPhones for one. Apple is expected to unveil multiple sizes of the new iPhone 6, possibly in 4.7 and 5.5 inches. There’s also a lot of speculation surrounding Apple’s much-discussed wearable device (you may have heard it called the ‘iWatch’).

All will be revealed in a few hours, so you don’t have to sit there and speculate.

Ah, who am I kidding – it’s an Apple launch. Speculate away!

5 Rules for Super Effective Hashtags on Twitter

By Jennifer Bourne at Social Media Today:  

Want to get noticed on Twitter? Use hashtags! Using the right hashtag(s) in your tweets will bring you the relevant audience and exposure. This is also with those that you will be able to follow conversations known as chats.

How to use hashtags efficiently? How many is too many? Let's have a look at hashtags best practices on Twitter.

1. More than 3 is too many.

Social media professionals all seem to agree that 3 is the maximum number of hashtags that you should include in one tweet. Don't overwhelm your followers with too many hashtags. Instead, choose them well, the more relevant the better.

2. Stay away from irrelevant popular hashtags.

Yes, they are widely used for a reason, and you'd like to jump on that wagon. But if your tweet has nothing to do with the hashtag you use, as trending as it is, you or your brand will become instantly irrelevant to both your current and potential followers.

3. Size does matter.

When it comes to hashtags, the shorter the better. First, it will save you space in your tweet. 140 characters are not a lot, so don't use half of those for your hashtag only. Two to three words are enough, no need to make a full sentence out of it. Use capital letters for each words so it's easier to read.

4. Go specific.

Stay away from hashtags that are too general. Using #marketing or #business in your tweets won't bring you more exposure as they are widely used words. Target specific conversations instead with hashtags like #TwitterTips or #NativeAdvertising, depending on your topic. Creating a hashtag for yourself or a specific campaign is tempting. It has to be well advertised and shared though so you are sure it is used correctly... or used at all!

5. Do a pre search

Search the hashtag on Twitter first to see if it is used and by who. What kind of conversations does the hashtag trigger? Is it where you want to go?

Happy hashtagging!

28 Jul 2014

Turn your selfie Into an Emoji With The New iPhone App Imoji

By Jason Hahn at Digital Trends:

That standard set of yellow-faced emojis is so 2013. If you really want to leave your emotive mark on your text messages, consider downloading a new iPhone app called (what else) imoji, which lets you turn your selfies or other beloved images into stickers you can send to your friends.

“Imoji makes your texts more you,” the app’s website declares. The way it works is straightforward enough: Take a selfie or upload a photo of your choice, crop and edit it, and turn it into a sticker you can include in your text messages.

To be clear, imoji isn’t a standalone messaging app like WhatsApp, KakaoTalk or Line. Rather, it’s an app that links itself to the iOS iMessage app. User-created imojis can be made private or public, the latter being visible to all the app’s users, who can also search through a preexisting selection of imojis set up and shared by other users.

Imoji was tested with 100 “content creators” ahead of its official release as a free iOS app on July 24, and the app boasts thousands of stickers already. Users can expect the app to roll out more features in the future, including an Instagram-like “follow” feature, enabling users to keep up-to-date on their preferred imoji creators. Brands will eventually have the opportunity to sponsor imojis.
“Where we think things are heading is a more flexible and creative form of communication, one which adds a new dimension to a text message,” said creator Tom Smith, formerly of Apple. “We’ve designed imoji to be just that.”

Amazon Launches A 3D Printing Store With Customizable Goods

By Darrell Etherington at TechCrunch:  

Amazon has launched a new store for 3D-printed goods, which include items that can be customized to change their size, color, material and even aspects of their design. The store covers a range of types of products, including jewelry, electronics, toys and games, home decor and kitchen supplies, and items are supplied by a number of partners including Mixee, Scupteo and 3DLT.

Amazon is touting this as the debut of a new way for the ecommerce giant to offer even more specialized inventory that can better cater to specific customer tastes. “The introduction of our 3D Printed Products store suggests the beginnings of a shift in online retail – that manufacturing can be more nimble to provide an immersive customer experience,” said Amazon Marketplace Sales director Petra Schindler-Carter, in a press release announcing the new storefront.

Along with the launch of the store, Amazon is introducing a new personalization tool for customizing some of the 3D-printed designs, which opens up a widget that lets you choose from a number of basic designs, pick the color and finish of your plastic/metal material, and preview what it will look like with a 360-degree 3D preview. You can also tweak individual aspects of the design with some items, including thickness and other dimensions.

Prices on items vary, but the most affordable tend to fall into the $30 range, and they go upwards from there depending on size and material.

The introduction of the store does indeed mark a potential turning point in the sale of online goods – it means the largest online retailer in the English-speaking world is endorsing a means of direct production and selling that could change how future products are conceived and planned. One-offs and small runs are much more affordable via 3D printing, so theoretically the sky’s the limit on the range of things customers could order, provided 3D printing technology keeps evolving.

It’s worth noting that Amazon only sells a set catalogue of 3D-printed items so far – it hasn’t yet offered a way for customers to upload their own design and have them printed as does Shapeways, for instance. Amazon likely wants to maintain some kind of quality control and not have to concern themselves with educating customers about the ins and outs of 3D printing custom designs, however – and this doesn’t necessarily mean that refinements in the process wouldn’t open the door to this kind of thing in the future.

25 Jul 2014

Google Launches Translate Community

By Chris Crum at WebProNews:  

Google just announced the launch of a new Translate Community aimed at helping the company improve its translation quality for the 80 languages it already supports.

The community is aimed at multi-lingual language enthusiasts, who will also be tasked with helping Google launch in additional languages.

“In the new community, you’ll find options to help with a variety of things, including generating new translations and rating existing ones,” says Google Translate program manager Sveta Kelman. “Over time, you’ll find more ways to contribute, as well as get more visibility into the impact of your contributions and the activity across the community. We will also localize Community pages to support your preferred display language. If you have feedback and ideas about improving and growing our community, we’d love to hear it so please don’t hesitate to submit it via “Send feedback” link on the bottom of the page.”

Translate Community will also give people who don’t necessarily want to volunteer their time to dedicate to the cause a place to let the team know about problems they encounter while using Google’s products.

Users can click an “Improve this translation” button, and then “Contribute” to submit a suggestion. It will incorporate corrections over time.

#INFOGRAPHIC: The Landscape of Social Login

By Kimberlee Morrison at Social Times:

Facebook is indeed a powerful force on the Internet. Not only have recent reports indicated that the social networking behemoth refers more traffic than any other social site, according to Q2 data from social identity management software provider Gigya, Facebook is regaining its lead — and taking market share from other networks, too.

Gigya director of marketing Victor White attributes this trend to the fact that Facebook makes it easy to auto-populate data across a wide range of services. This is done to create personalized experiences.

There’s also a trust factor at play. During the F8 developer conference, Facebook announced that it was giving users granular social login control, effectively enabling them to control what information they share with business. Of course, we’ll have to wait for the Q3 data to find out if the controversy over recent experiments have had any impact on user trust.

White also notes that the social component is not to be underestimated.

“When users log into a site, they intuitively want to share their experiences with networks of real friends,” he says. “Users know that when they log into sites with their social network credentials, they will be able to share seamlessly with their friends.”

On the other side of the spectrum is Yahoo, which has seen its share of social logins decline steadily over the last few quarters. In March, Yahoo disabled Facebook and Google+ identity management on its online properties — a move that hasn’t had any impact on the free fall in consumers using Yahoo to manage their social identity. White says that Yahoo’s only chance is to provide real value to both businesses and consumers.

“They’ll need to consider how identity can be used to power on-site personalization, social graph integration and potentially even payments,” he says. “Until the company can offer substantial benefits for consumers as an identity provider, Yahoo will continue to lag far behind companies like Google and Facebook.”

Check out the infographic below for Q2 social login data from Gigya:

26 Questions EU Regulators Want Google to Answer

By Sam Schechner at WSJ:

PARIS—European Union privacy watchdogs grilled Google Inc. and other search engines for two hours on Thursday on how they are implementing the bloc’s new “right to be forgotten” online–and then gave them homework to do by next week, too.

The main body that joins together the EU’s national data-protection regulators called the Brussels meeting with Google, Microsoft Corp and Yahoo Inc. amid rising discontent from some regulators over elements of Google’s application of the surprise May court decision that gives Europeans the right to ask for the removal of links from search results for their names in some cases.

Regulators  touched on some hot-button issues in six oral questions and another 26 written ones, with answers due by next Thursday. They asked Google to describe the “legal basis” of its decision to notify publishers when it approves right-to-be-forgotten requests, something that has led to requesters’ being publicly identified in some cases. They also asked search engines to explain where they take down the results, after complaints from some regulators that Google does not filter results on google.com. That means that anyone in Europe can switch from, say, google.co.uk to Google.com to see any removed links.

In response to another question, Google told regulators Thursday that it has been removing just over 50% of the items that people have asked to be unlinked from searches for their names, while rejecting just over 30% of requests, and asking for more information on 15%.

But for the most part, data protection officials avoided a more in-depth, controversial discussion during Thursday’s meeting, saving the tough decisions and orders for a set of guidelines the regulators aim to publish in late September or early October, attendees said.

“We didn’t tell the search engines to do anything. We were gathering information,” said Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, head of France’s data-protection authority, and chairman of the pan-European group of authorities.  “The goal was to help inform our decision on the guidelines.”

Read the full list of questions here, as provided by France’s data-protection authority:

Questions asked during the meeting

1. What information do you request from a data subject prior to considering a delisting request e.g. URLs, justification? Do you ask further motivation from the data subjects to substantiate their request?
2. Do you filter out some requests based on the location, nationality, or place of residence of the data subject? If so, what is the legal basis for excluding such requests?
3. Do you delist results displayed following a search:
a. Only on EU / EEA domains?
b. On all domains pages accessible from the EU / EEA or by EU/EEA residents?
c. On all domains on a global basis?
4. What criteria do you use to balance your economic interest and/or the interest of the general public in having access to that information versus the right of the data subject to have search results delisted?
5. What explanations / grounds do you provide to data subjects to justify a refusal to delist certain URLs?
6. Do you notify website publishers of delisting? In that case, which legal basis do you have to notify website publishers?

Additional questions to be answered in writing by July 31

7. Do you provide proper information about the delisting process on an easily accessible webpage? Have you developed a help center explaining how to submit a delisting claim?
8. Can data subjects request delisting only using the electronic form that you provide, or can other means be used?
9. Can data subjects request delisting in their own language?
10. If you filter out some requests based on the location, nationality, or place of residence, what kind of information must be provided by the data subject in order to prove his nationality and / or place of residence?
11. Do you ask for a proof of identify or some other form of authentication and if yes, what kind? For what reason? What safeguards do you put in place to protect any personal data that you process for the purpose of processing delisting requests?
12. Do you accept general claims for delisting (e.g. delist all search results linking to a news report)?
13. When you decide to accept a delisting request, what information do you actually delist? Do you ever permanently delist hyperlinks in response to a removal request, as opposed to delisting?
14. Do you delist search results based only on the name of the data subject or also in combination of the name with another search term (i.e. Costeja and La Vanguardia)
15. How do you treat removal requests with regard to hyperlinks to pages that do not (no longer) contain the name of the data subject? [Examples: hyperlink to anonymised ruling, hyperlink to page where name of data subject was removed]. Do you immediately recrawl the sites after a removal request?
16. Does your company refuse requests when the data subject was the author of the information he/she posted himself/herself on the web? If so, what is the basis for refusing such requests?
17. Do you have any automated process defining if a request is accepted or refused?
18. What technical solution do you use to ensure that links to material to which a removal agreement applies are not shown in the search results?
19. Which of your services do you consider delisting requests to be relevant to?
20. Do you notify users through the search results’ page information that some results have been removed according to EU law? In that case, which is the legal basis for this? What is the exact policy? In particular, it appears that this notice is sometimes displayed even in the absence of removal requests by data subjects. Can you confirm or exclude that this is actually the case and, if so, could you elaborate on the applicable criteria?
21. Have you considered sharing delisted search results with other search engines providers?
22. What is the average time to process the requests?
23. What statistics can you share at this stage (percentage of requests accepted / partially accepted / refused)? How many have you answered in total? How many per day?
24. Will you create a database of all removal requests or removal agreements?
25. What particular problems have you faced when implementing the Court’s ruling? Are there particular categories of requests that pose specific problems?
26. Could you please provide us with contact details in case we need to exchange on a specific case?

Lisa Fleischer contributed to this article. 

Bose Sues Beats Over Noise-Cancelling Patents

By Daisuki Wakabayashi at Wall Street Journal Digits Blog

Bose is suing Beats Electronics, the headphone and speaker maker that Apple agreed to acquire for $3 billion earlier this year, for infringing on patents related to its noise-cancelling technology.

Bose filed the lawsuit on Friday in U.S. District Court in Delaware, saying that Beats – known for its colorful and flashy headphones – had infringed on five of its patents pertaining to its noise-cancelling headphones. Bose also filed a complaint to the U.S. International Trade Commission, seeking to halt the sale and import of certain Beats products.

In the lawsuit, Bose asks for damages and an injunction against Beats.

“We are committed to protecting our investment, protecting our customers, and defending the patents we own,” a Bose spokeswoman said in a statement. Spokespeople for Beats and Apple declined to comment on the lawsuit.

The complaint doesn’t affect the closing of the Apple deal scheduled for September, according to one person familiar with the matter.

23 Jul 2014

Windows 9: One OS For Desktop, Mobile & Xbox

By Chris Smith at BGR:  

Unlike Apple, which thinks merging iOS and OS X would be a “waste of energy,” Microsoft wants one single Windows operating system to be available to all its device users, whether they’re Windows Phone handset owners, Xbox fans, or rely on a Windows computer for work or play. Business Insider reports that CEO Satya Nadella said on the company’s FQ4 earnings conference call that a future version of Windows will merge all current Windows versions, becoming an “operating system that covers all screen sizes.”

“In the year ahead, we are investing in ways that will ensure our device OS and first party hardware aligned to our core,” Nadella said. “We will streamline the next version of Windows from three operating systems into one single converged operating system for screens of all sizes.”

“We will unify our stores, commerce and developer platforms to drive a more coherent user experience and a broader developer opportunity,” he added.

Microsoft already revealed at Build 2014 in early April that it will let developers create apps that will work across devices, including Windows Phone smartphones, Windows computers and Xbox consoles, but the company is apparently ready to go even further.

However, that doesn’t mean Microsoft will have a simpler way of selling Windows products to users.

“Our SKU strategy will remain by segment, we will have multiple SKUs for enterprises, we will have for OEM, we will have for end-users,” Nadella added. “And so we will – be disclosing and talking about our SKUs as we get further along, but my statement was more to do with how we are bringing teams together to approach Windows as one ecosystem very differently than we ourselves have done in the past.”