Need to make a decision in a hurry online, with a group of people? Doodle's got your back. It bills itself as a scheduling and choice-making site, and it pretty much does that - and nothing else - which is a breath of fresh air compared to most sites.
The question-asker just puts in the details, and up pops a link which he or she can then send to anyone they want to get input from. You can choose whether your poll is private or whether anyone can see anyone else's answers - which will reassure the privacy-conscious.
Doodle's free, and you can try it out right now. Registration is optional, but it's quick and simple. It's ad-supported and the company is based in Zurich, Switzerland. Go try it.
I can understand people not having the time to update a blog. To grow a blog properly it needs time, effort and careful feeding of the community. A Twitter account, on the other hand, requires considerably less effort - 140 characters, perhaps twice a day? Well, if even that's too much for you or your business, then Twit4Hire is the company for you.
It's targeting business who want to "get on the Twitter" but haven't got a clue how to go about it. Or they might have a clue, but can't spare the resources. Either way, Twit4Hire will sit there and chat to legions of followers about nothing your business on your behalf.
I'm not sure I could recommend employing Twit4Hire. Do it yourself. For top tips on how best to use Twitter for marketing and PR, visit this handy site, instead.
Twit4Hire (via TechRadar)
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I know what you're thinking, yet another business review site. On the face of it, that's true - at first glance there's nothing separating Helphound from Yell, WeLoveLocal or TouchLocal. Look closer, however, and you'll find plenty to like.
Much like the aforementioned sites, Helphound provides a community centered around reviewing organizations and businesses. Helphound's differentiating factor, though, is a dispute resolution mechanic, where businesses can dispute a bad review, allowing them to remove it temporarily from the site and try to engage the customer instead. If they fail, the review goes straight back up.
Live music fans have a tough time of it. You've got to contend with awful ticket agencies, heavyhanded security, and crap listings services, and even when you get inside there's always the risk that you'll be stood in front of some drunk idiot who'll hurl abuse and beer at the band throughout the show, ruining your enjoyment.
Well, music fans, there's a new website that aims to solve at least one of those problems. That of the rubbish listings services. Gigjunkie.net is a "the UK's definitive and independent Gig Listing". It aggregates data from loads of sources, and then allows fans, venues and bands to add anything extra.
Kosmix.com is a new startup that's trying to shake Google's dominance of the search market. Good luck with that, guys. However, I rather suspect that their real agenda, to take an analogy with politics, is more similar to the Green Party's approach to Labour and the Conservatives. It's trying to change things not by grabbing a majority share, but by innovating and passing popular ideas up to the people at the top.
Kosmix is trying to change search by providing context to your results. On the results page, you get a list of (Google's) search results, as well as relevant forum posts (from Omgili), Q&As (from Yahoo! Answers), Videos (from BlinkX, YouTube and Trueveo), Images (from Yahoo!) and News and Blogs (from MeeHive). There's other resources too, depending on what you search for.
Eggs. Flour. Milk. Teabags. Oranges. Ice cream. Organic Sunflower Seeds. Are you tired of the same old shopping lists? Me neither - I just tend to buy frozen pizza, cider, and supernoodles on my weekly shop, and I don't need a list for that. If I had a wee bit more concern over my diet, however, I'd sign right up for Zeer...
A new UK startup called Phreadz offers a mix of social networking and multimedia blogging tools, and is currently in Alpha testing phase.
Video and images can be created directly on the site, or uploaded from a Nokia N95 or iPhone, and then cross-posted to a blog account, Flickr, or other video sites, as well as remaining on the Phreadz site where people can interact with the content and view various subject channels. Video can also be viewed on a mobile using Flash Lite...
Following yesterday's news that Virgin Media is planning to crack down on illegal downloaders, new UK startup JOY Internet has vowed to stand up for the rights of UK Internet users.
"We're totally against this collusion between the British Phonographic Industry [BPI] and Virgin Media," said JOY's Managing Director, Ken Jowes. "We don't advocate the mass illegal downloading of music and film, but we believe that innocent people will have their Internet connections terminated, without recourse. Those downloading small amounts of content for personal use will also be criminalised, when the real problem of organised gangs working from outside the UK is totally ignored. That's why we've set up JOY Internet."...