A handful of players -- one of them named Facebook -- have worked hard over the past year to create a new category of business known as social gifting. Facebook saw enough opportunity that last spring it snapped up a startup called Karma and built what became Facebook Gifts -- a way for any of Facebook's billion-plus users to send a gift a friend, whether it's a bottle of wine, an iTunes gift card or an item of clothing.
In its ongoing pursuit to strike back at hackers, U.K. courts have convicted a member of Anonymous for conspiracy.
A London jury found Christopher Weatherhead, a 22-year-old self described "hacktivist," guilty of carrying out a campaign of Distributed Denial of Service attacks against major credit card companies that refused to process online donations to WikiLeaks, according to the U.K.'s Crown Prosecution Service. The conviction came after guilty pleas of three of Weatherhead's co-conspirators.
"Christopher Weatherhead is a cyber criminal who waged a sophisticated and orchestrated campaign of online attacks on the computer systems … Read more
The online auction site operator today revealed that Sunday, December 2 was the biggest mobile shopping day ever for eBay Marketplaces in the U.S. and PayPal globally.
That seems to defy conventional wisdom, but eBay says it actually makes a lot of sense.
Steve Yankovich, vice president of mobile at eBay, said that Sunday typically is a "day of relaxation," but because consumers always have their smartphones in hand, it's easy to shop … Read more
Cyber Monday this year took the trophy for the biggest online shopping day ever in the U.S.
ComScore reported that U.S. online spending on Cyber Monday 2012 reached $1.465 billion, up 17 percent from a year ago, "representing the heaviest online spending day in [U.S.] history and the second day this season (in addition to Black Friday) to surpass $1 billion in sales."
Breaking the total down, ComScore said that the top category for sales was digital content and subscriptions (up 28 percent), followed by consumer electronics (up 24 percent and "buoyed by … Read more
In honor of Cyber Monday, the feds cracked down on Web sites allegedly selling counterfeit goods. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security said it joined forces with international law enforcement authorities to nab 132 domain names that were supposedly hawking bogus sports jerseys, DVD sets, jewelry, and clothing.
"Our partnerships enable us to go after criminals who are duping unsuspecting shoppers all over the world," Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement director John Morton said in a statement. "This is not an American problem, it is a global one and it is a … Read more
With the holiday season bearing down on the calendar, Jake Vance needs to know how many cupcakes he should make every day. Make too many, and the rats that frequent his dumpsters are happy. Don't make enough, and customers walk away without getting to enjoy their favorite treat.
Vance runs Sweet Avenue, a small bakery in Rutherford, N.J. So small, in fact, that it doesn't make sense to spend hundreds and hundreds of dollars on point-of-sale software or professional cash registers that are routinely used by larger businesses to generate smart data on sales patterns.
Until even … Read more
PayPal is getting competitive for the holidays. The payment service will refund customers up to $1,000 if they find that an item purchased through PayPal is advertised for cheaper elsewhere during the holiday season.
From today through December 31, PayPal will price-match your purchases with a limit of $250 on a single item, according to a blog post from PayPal Shopping Specialist Claudia Lombana.
"If the item you purchase is advertised for lower with any merchant within 30 days of purchase, you can receive a reimbursement for the difference," Lombana writes. "It doesn't matter if … Read more
Hot on the heels of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer's revelation that Microsoft has sold more than 4 million copies of Windows 8, PayPal has unveiled today a Windows 8 developer API
The PayPal API lets developers tie in-app purchases to PayPal, which claims more than 100 million active accounts. Microsoft pointed to the free Crowdstar game Fish With Attitude as an example of a Windows Store app that uses PayPal for in-app purchases of game characters.
The API lets people pay from a more familiar, better-established system than Microsoft's neophyte in-house one. This isn't Microsoft's first … Read more
Payments giant PayPal will shed about 325 employees as part of a major shakeup of its organization by the firm's new president, David Marcus, exactly seven months after he took office.
The full-time jobs will be cut as PayPal merges nine product-development teams into one, making PayPal a "more agile organization." The company will also shed a further 120 contractors. Most of the cuts will come out of PayPal's product and technology units.
Investor and PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel is in talks with Airbnb about putting $150 million into the online room- and house-rental service, The Wall Street Journal reported today.
According to the Journal (subscription required), Thiel's Founders Fund and current Airbnb investors Andreessen Horowiz and Sequoia Capital are all expected to participate in the round, which would give Airbnb a valuation of about $2.5 billion.
"The talks represent a new milestone for Airbnb, a high-profile startup and one of the young technology companies that investors widely considered [to be] on deck to go public in the next year … Read more