Two major topics were discussed this afternoon:
New York's attorney general and state legislative leaders presented a bill on Tuesday aimed at protecting people from sexual predators on the Internet, and Facebook, MySpace, and Yahoo backed the effort. The goal is to make sure that predators can't stalk minors. It would require convicted sex offenders to register their e-mail addresses, instant message screen names, and any other online identifiers with the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services. That data would then be made available to social-networking companies and other online services so that they can then block access to sexual offenders and remove them from their sites. It would also ban many sex offenders from using social-networking sites. We talked about how effective these efforts might be, and whether there were privacy issues involved.
The second big story was Yahoo's results. A sharp drop in 4th quarter results, plus a disappointing outlook for next year added up to heavy losses in the after hours market yesterday. Jerry Yang is going to focus on making the company a top starting point for consumers on the web, advertising revenues, and opening up the network to third parties… with three CEO's on the phone, we ask what Yang might do differently.