TED Blog

February 27, 2009

TED Blog

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MIVA DIRECT ADDS LIVE COMMUNITY FEATURES TO ALOT FOLLOWING SIGNING OF MEEBO AGREEMENT

February 19, 2009

NEW YORK – February 19, 2009. MIVA Direct, Inc., the toolbar, homepage and content division of digital media and advertising company, MIVA, Inc. (NASDAQ:MIVA), today announced the roll out of live community features across its ALOT Toolbar and Homepage products following the signing of a new agreement with Meebo, one of the Web’s fastest growing social media companies.

Under the terms of the agreement, MIVA Direct is using Meebo’s technology to facilitate real-time social interactions between users via chat rooms that are promoted across ALOT Toolbar and ALOT Home. Meebo is serving social ads into the technology and MIVA Direct will earn a share of the revenue generated from these ad units.

In addition to the expected revenue it will generate, the functionality is also designed to extend ALOT’s mission of ‘Making the Internet Easy’ by delivering further value to the brand’s existing vertical audiences. Chris Dessi, MIVA Direct’s VP of Sales and Business Development, explains:

“Since launching ALOT we’ve been building up users across a broad range of different verticals – our ALOT Toolbar for Recipes, for example, currently has over 335,000 live users[1]. We believe there are significant potential benefits in offering vertically focused chat rooms that enable these like-minded users to communicate directly with each other, and believe that Meebo is a great application to help us kick-start this process.”

Added Stephanie Quay, Meebo’s Director of Business Development: “The scale and vertical focus of ALOT’s customer base makes them a great fit for Meebo. We look forward to working with them to roll out and monetize our solution.”

http://www.alot.com

http://www.miva.com

http://www.meebo.com

-ends-

About MIVA®, Inc.

MIVA, Inc. (NASDAQ:MIVA) is a global digital media company with a mission to deliver valuable digital audiences to advertisers. MIVA has two focuses to its business: owning and operating toolbar, homepage and desktop products, through its MIVA Direct division; and running a third-party contextual Pay-Per-Click ad network through its MIVA Media division. MIVA, Inc. operates across North America and Europe.

About Meebo, Inc.

With over 40 million people sharing over 5 billion messages and 75 million links every month, Meebo is one of the Web’s fastest growing social media companies. Founded in September 2005, Meebo enables real-time social interactions with instant messaging and group chat at meebo.com and on partner sites across the Web. Meebo is headquartered in Mountain View, CA. Visit meebo.com to connect with friends live on the Web.

Forward-looking Statements

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements that are based upon current expectations and involve certain risks and uncertainties within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words or expressions such as “anticipate” , “plan,” “will,” “intend,” “believe” or “expect'” or variations of such words and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks, uncertainties, and other factors, some of which are beyond our control and difficult to predict and could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or forecasted in the forward-looking statements, including (1) our ability to successfully execute upon our corporate strategies, (2) our ability to develop and successfully market new products and services, and (3) the potential acceptance of new products in the market. Additional key risks are described in MIVA’s reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Form 10-K for fiscal 2007 and our most recently filed Form 10-Q.

®Registered trademark

MIVA Contact:

Alex Vlasto

(212) 736-9151

Alex.Vlasto@miva.com


[1] Source: Internal statistics: 2/8/09


Top 5 Birthdays (so far)

February 18, 2009

Yesterday was my 34th birthday, and I have to say it was one of my best.  More on that later.  Sunday night I was laying in bed thinking about how lucky I am to have such a great family when I started to think about past great birthdays.  So here’s a fun recap of some of my best, and why:

10 – While it may not seem obvious why becoming 10 is the coolest thing ever – let me share why I was so pumped.  Two words – Double Digits. Plus I received the best gift – a boom box from my parents. I went nuts when I opened the gift, believe it or not I still have it (well my Dad does), he keeps it in his garage.  It was the beginning of my love affair with music – first tape? boom-boxHuey Lewis and the News.  Not the best way to start, but c’mon – I was 10. Good times – Back to the double digits… I remember bounding down the hallway whooping and hollering DOUBLE DIGITS!! I’m not sure I’m really proud of that, nor am I really sure why I was so excited (maybe it’s because Alyssa Milano was 10 and I now felt comfortable enough as a sage young man of 10 to write to her fan club and let her know once and for all “who’s the boss”..) but I digress.

13 – At 13 I was the same height I am now (which isn’t really saying much) but I was a full head taller than everyone. I’m convinced it’s where I get my confidence.  For some reason when you’re bigger than everyone there’s an odd unspoken reverence for said large person.  I never grew another inch, but that one year – I was a God (at least I thought I was). I was captain of my wrestling team, I shaved for the first time, and my parents threw me a surprise party at my house. It was the coolest.  We had a lip sync contest and the grand finale was a full party rendition of Paradise City by GNR.  There were girls at the party too and that played well into the  serge of hormones coursing through my lanky 5 foot 9 inch body.  That ruled.  On a less exciting note – I spent 3 months of that year grounded whilst dealing with said serge of hormones…..once again….I digress…

21 – I’d already been drinking legally for a few months because I was living in Leuven Belgium for a year long study abroad program.  For those of you that aren’t familiar with Leuven, it’s in the Guinness Book of World Records for most pubs per square meter – a great place to study.  30,000 students from all over the world and lots of Belgian Beer.  That weekend I knew my Mother, brother Mark and cousin Trish were coming to visit. What I didn’t know was that my Father was joining them. I remember waiting at the airport for them to land (they were delayed due to a huge snow storm back home in New York). I was lying down on a row of chairs when I said to my good friend leuvenSteve Rossi “I wonder when they’ll get in”. My Dad answered the question as he stood over me.   I was bewildered, and thrilled at the same time.  Everyone arrived safely and the “kids” decided to hit the bars that first night in Belgium. I’d been bragging to my brother and cousin that I had a great tolerance for Beer now because I’d been drinking legally and that there was no way I’d get sick.  Big mistake.  I remember running to the bathroom after a round of shots. I calmed myself and felt the urge to throw up pass. That’s when Paulo Antonio Ribeiro Montero walked in (I swear that’s the kids name, odd that I remember, but really, could you ever forget a name like that?).  When he came into the bathroom he had a pint glass of soda. I asked him for a sip because I was on the verge of projectile vomiting and I needed to settle my stomach.  He happily obliged me.  I chugged, chugged….then spit out the straight Jack Daniels.  Bummer.  Commence Vomiting.  I ran home screaming “I’m 21” at the top of my lungs.  Not sure I’ll ever brag to my cousin and brother again about much anything let alone being able to drink them under the table.  But man, it was fun.

30 – This was the biggest mind blower of all time.  While at the mall with my wife Laura one evening, we were set to leave and invite my brother and his wife out for dinner with us.  When we called my brother was stand-off ish, and not interested in leaving the house. I tried to persuade him to no avail. I hung up and told my wife Laura (then my girlfriend) that they were in for the night and not interested.  We started to drive a bit when Laura suggested we call him and tell him we’ll visit them and bring over some pizza. I called back and my brother hesitated a bit, but then said fine, just get some pizza and come over.  When we walked into the house it was packed with friends and family.  I was seriously so confused when I walked in. I thought I’d invited myself over, not the other way around. I was played, and had the best surprise ever.  This was one of the many  “she’s a keeper” events that Laura pulled off over the years.

34 Sunday the whole family came over to celebrate, and it was a fantastic time.  My cousins Trish and MK joined in the fun, and the my nieces and daughter made it a total blast.  Thanks guys!fam


Flip Video Mino Series Camcorder

February 16, 2009

My family pulled through this Sunday when we celebrated my 34th birthday.  They all chipped in and got me the “object that I covet” Flip Video Mino Series Camcorder, 60 Minutes (Black)

I blogged about this sweet little piece of machinery a few weeks ago, and I gotta tell you, this is one cool little gadget.  I’m sure I’ll post a few videos here to show off the quality. The ease of use is unreal, just point and shoot, then hook up to your computer to download.  It’s super light as well. I’m excited to use it.


An Open Love Letter to My Wife

February 13, 2009

I was 5 when I first met her, 29 when I first kissed her and 30 when she accepted my proposal to be my wife.   At 33 she gave me a perfect baby girl.  I’m blessed.  I have the love of an amazing woman.

I thought I knew about life, Laura taught me how to live.  I thought I knew how to treat people,  she shows me daily how to give more.l1

Laura Jean Guiglotto, or LJ as we used to call her when she was a little girl is the love of my life.  I’d just returned from living in London for a year when we went on our first real date.  I told her I’d marry her two weeks into our new relationship.  I’d never been so sure of anything before in my life.

I always knew she’d be a great mother; I get choked up when I see her holding our daughter Talia.  She makes me laugh, and we laugh together.  We play together. We learn together. We experience life together.funny

When I first started dating her I felt I was well rounded. I had done some traveling and I thought I could show her the world. Instead she opened my eyes to a new world of beauty and understanding that I didn’t think existed.

When we went to Europe together I could actually see her thirst for knowledge about every place we visited.  She approaches new things with child like wonder.

She teaches me how to trust. She shows me how to give love unconditionally.  Did I mention she makes me laugh? I mean REALLY laugh that laugh that makes you lose your breath.  That’s pure. That’s love.  Oh yeah, plus she bakes too.  Her brownies will make your toes curl in ecstasy.  She’s my friend.  She’s got my back.  She laughs at my bad jokes. She tells me how smart she thinks I am, and then makes fun of me and tells me I’m too cocky.  She’s perfect, for me.

I love to surprise her because she never expects anything from me.  I love to make a fuss over her because nobody every did. I love to rub her feet for her (seriously, I’m not sure why but I actually enjoy rubbing her feet….odd, I know).

She treats her family like gold. She honors her Grandfather with respect that I admire.  She thinks of everyone before she thinks of herself, and I love that we have a child together.

I love that Talia has her gentle big brown eyes. I love that my baby girl has Laura as her role model. I love that my wife has a masters degree. I love that she cries every year on the last day of school (she’s a school teacher).  I love how much she cares about her students.  I love that she decorates the house in accordance to any appropriate holiday she can think of, and that she has place mats to match (actually I don’t love that, I just think it’s funny).  Finally, she’s an amazing kisser and she looks phenomenal in a bikini. 🙂laura1

Happy Valentines Day!


9/11 Widow Killed in Plane crash near Buffalo MSNBC Reports

February 13, 2009

A few weeks ago when Sully landed in the Hudson river we all had our moment to “go there”.  We imagined what we would do, how we would react. My wife Laura and I cringed at the thought of having to deal with a situation like that with our 10 month old along with us.  We watched in relieve as each passenger was pulled from the plane safely.  60 Minutes did a phenomenal follow up story that I watched earlier this week. During the show we met a passenger who had lost a brother in the 9/11 attacks.  He said that as the plane was decending to crash land in the Hudson he thought that his family couldn’t handle the loss.  He tearfully thanked Captain Sully.  It was chilling, and moving. Today that scenario has horribly come true in the loss of Beverly Eckert.  Ekhert lost her husband in the Attacks on the World Trade Center and was among those who perished Thursday.  I pray for her family.  MSNBC Reports the following:

A widow of a victim of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center was among those killed in a plane crash near Buffalo, N.Y., late Thursday, her sister told a local newspaper.

Eckert’s husband, Sean Rooney, was a native of Buffalo, th090213-eckert-vmed-245awidece newspaper said. Eckert was flying to Buffalo for celebrations with relatives marking the 58th birthday of her late husband, the paper said.

“We know she was on that plane and now she’s with him,” Beverly Eckert’s sister Sue Borque told The Buffalo News.

Beverly Eckert, left, shown here with fellow 9/11 widow Mary Fetchet outside the U.S. Congress in 2004, was among those killed in the crash of Flight 3407, her sister said.


FTC Crackdown on Behavioral Targeting

February 13, 2009

FTC in the News:

Federal Trade Commission staff today issued a report describing its ongoing examination of online behavioral advertising and setting forth revisions to proposed principles to govern self-regulatory efforts in this area. The key issue concerns how online advertisers can best protect consumers’ privacy while collecting information about their online activities.

The FTC is on the hunt again. This time it’s behavioral targeting. I’m sure heads will roll and companies will be put out of business, but really for what?  Consider when a user is targeted properly by an advertiser the ad that they see is based upon their past interests, and surfing 1history.  This should be a good thing, right? I delight when I see a well place ad from ESPN, because their ad agency has done some research and understood how to best communicate with me. I understand there needs to be regulation, and I support the FTC’s efforts regarding most endeavors, but are they upholding their tag line of “Protecting Americas Consumers” on this one?

What do you think?