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Trending Tech: Apple Dominates News, Google Acquires Motorola and Olympus Employees Get Jail Time

February 17, 2012

Once again, Apple has shown how much its company news can control the tech news cycle by making product announcements, setting financial landmarks and experiencing regulatory problems. After much speculation and anticipation, regulators cleared Google’s acquisition of Motorola Mobility. Zynga shares fell after a lackluster earnings report, and seven former Olympus employees were arrested in connection to an earnings scandal.

10. MySpace Adds 1 million New Users In 30 Days
Driven by the launch of their new music player, MySpace grew its user base by 1 million in January.

9. Yelp Expects Its I.P.O. to Price At $12 to $14 a Share
The offering, which is being led by investment banks Goldman Sachs and Citigroup, could raise as much as $100 million for the company.

8. To Avoid An IPO, Twitter Makes Its Top Employees Keep 80% of Their Stock
Internal emails were leaked revealing that Twitter forbids employees from selling more than 20 percent of the company stock. The rule exists to prevent the company from having to disclose financial earnings, something it would have to do if more than 500 people invest in the company.

7. Cisco’s Mood Message: Not Happy With Microsoft/Skype Deal; Appealing To EU
Cisco is contesting Microsoft’s acquisition of Skype to the European Union with concern Microsoft will unfairly limit how competing video VoIP services can be used on Windows. Cisco Senior Vice President Marthin DeBeer argues that Cisco is not against the acquisition, but it wants to make sure Microsoft will treat competing services in a fair manner.

6. Google Confirms Its Encrypted Services Have Been Blocked in Iran Since February 10th
GMail, Google Docs and YouTube are among the properties that are being blocked in Iran. The Iranian government claims it is not behind censoring encrypted sites.

5. Path Controversy Sparks Debate About Data Security
Path, a mobile app that lets users share videos, photos and short messages with friends, made headlines when a programmer discovered that the app was collecting personal information and sending the data to the developer’s servers. Om Malik argued that developers need to respect users’ privacy, and Forbes contributor Kirsten Bischoff says developers should ask users to “opt in” to sharing data versus being forced to “opt out.”

4. 7 Arrested in Olympus Accounting Cover-Up
Prosecutors arrested three Olympus executives and four other ex-Olympus employees connected to an accounting cover-up. Former board chairman Tsuyoshi Kikukawa and former Executive Vice President Hisashi Mori were among those apprehended.

3. Google cookies ‘bypassed Safari privacy protection’
The Wall Street Journal reports that Google monitored Safari user’s browsing activity by bypassing the browser’s restrictions on cookies. Google disabled the code after media reported on it, but the search giant insisted that it only used features that signed-in Google users had previously enabled.

2. Regulators Clear Google’s Deal for Motorola Mobility
Antitrust regulators in Europe and the United States have given Google the green light to acquire Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion. The acquisition will give Google several patents to leverage in the mobile patent wars.

1. Apple was all over the news cycle this week: Stock prices surpassed $500 per share; Chinese officials confiscated iPads in the city of Shijiazhuang amid allegations of trademark infringement; Apple announced independent inspections of its production factories; rumors began to circulate around  iPad 3; and developers and bloggers got a sneak peak of OS X Mountain Lion.

Disclaimer: Motorola is a Weber Shandwick client.