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Google and Mozilla are friends againFacebook's plans to sneak ads into our newsfeeds, what our tweets say about the world's collective mood, and why Mozilla can rest easy, thanks to a renewed friendship.
It's Wednesday, December 21st, 2011. I am Kara Tsuboi on CNET.com and it's time to get loaded. Google and Mozilla have finally struck a deal ensuring that Google will be the default search engine for the browser Firefox for the next 3 years. The financial terms have not been disclosed but as we reported earlier this month, Google has been paying Mozilla $1 a placement to have that little search box at the top of each browser window. Add it all up and you get 100 million dollars a year, more than 80% of Mozilla's total revenue. In the last year Research in Motion or RIM has seen its value drop 77%. That's why the maker of the Blackberry has seen several offers for a buy out. Now that list includes Amazon as was reported yesterday afternoon. RIM reportedly turned down the offer opting to try to solve its problems alone but Amazon who does not currently make mobile phones is still in talks with the Canadian company about partnering more of their services. Oh that Facebook team is at it again. This time starting in January they'll be sneaking paid advertisements into your news feed. The format, wording and even the photographs will look like a post from your buddy or a relative but in fact will be from a sponsor. You won't be able to opt out from seeing these ads and really the only way you'll be able to tell the difference is through the small sponsor tag in the comment line. Again wish the word Dislike button for this one. Word of the cash register is that PayPal may soon be getting into the mobile payment game ala Google Wallet. According to TechCrunch, the service is experimenting with near field communication technology that would allow users to pay for goods through their PayPal accounts. While tests may soon be coming to select American retailers that company says mass adoption is still a ways away. Give yourselves a hand American consumers, you've been setting online shopping records this holiday season. According to comScore, since November 1st, 32 billion dollars has been spent online and for the week that ended last Friday December 18th, shoppers set a record nearly 6-1/2 billion dollars was spent online and finally according to a new study we are what we tweet. A team of researchers at the University of Vermont analyzed the world's Twitter activity over the last year to gauge the mood and their findings indicate that collectively we're getting more miserable. They assigned point values for certain words and tweets. For example laughter got a happiness score of 8-1/2 out of 9 where as (terrorists?) got less than 1-1/2. The researchers also charted the tweets and found that users were generally happier before holidays and on days leading up to the weekend. Hopefully that means that this broadcast finds you in a happy place. Those are your headlines for today. I'm Kara Tsuboi for CNET.com.