More Mahalo Spam 

Mahalo 4.0 coming on Tuesday--you will be blown away. _-)
Originally uploaded by franzstehrn
Even the most recent announcement of Jason Calacanis new iteration of Mahalo - dubbed Mahalo 4.0 - is spam infested. Hope they improve on dealing with spam in new product which will presented at DLD 2011 in Munich next week.

Also we're a week in now since we have exposed the latest Mahalo spam issue and they still have not cleaned up the site. Troubling future for Calacanis's project ahead!

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mahalo.com spam 

mahalo.com spam
Originally uploaded by franzstehrn
unfortunately mahalo.com keeps on being spam infested: the screenshot shows the page for How to Get Your Kids to Stop Watching Too Much TV . This would be such a great page for many parents to get help on the issue, only that they will be confronted with in your face useless spam corrupting the entire page. We always thought mahalo.com was prime standard with dealing spam, but obviously they simply cannot keep up with black hat intrusions and fails to provide a clean and useful page of advice.

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Mahalo Spam 

Mahalo Spam
Originally uploaded by franzstehrn
also kind of sad: mahalo is already recognized as misused and spam related domain - it seems.

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Jason Calacanis Riding Coat Tails 

In view of the recent Leo Laporte vs Jason Calacanis ThisWeekIn/TWiT ballyhoo: we are proud to point to an argument which was initially censored by Mahalo. They initially started a site twitquestions.com, where user mactrainer asked whether Jason was riding Leo's coat tails. We replied, of course:

@Jason is definitely riding on @leolaporte's coat tail!! he's a lagtard. since he desperately trys to employ poker jargon, we're sure he understands! never having been able to build a >30mill $ business, he keeps on building on the ideas of others. we're always wondering why these 250mill + people keep meeting him an equal grounds on his #twist show!

Then in an instance of fanboism the mob started to vote our argument down and ironically chose master Calacanis's statement as the best answer. Big LOL!

So we went back into the ring, blowing the horns for our reasoned post:

Seriously, this is ridiculous. Why are you voting me down for expressing an honest opinion which is shared by many among the tech crowd. No need to go all fanboi on us just because we hit the nerve right there, obviously! Rather than vote us down you could engage in developping some arguments. This thought seems to have evaded your fanboism completely, and instead you opted for the childish route. Fair enough! It only renders the Mahalo answers community useless at the end of the day, which by the way is self evident anyway. After all the only people distributing M$ are Mahalo staff members who got their credits to incentivise the system. That system, however, has remained a closed culture ecosystem. Also, as VC involved in Mahalo funding we'd be worried about Jason spending so much time on side projects (OAF, This Week In, etc.). It's clearly a sign that Jason should have remained in the publishing business. That's what he does best. Entepreneurshipwise he's not even a Kevin Rose.

Still, mactrainer deemed it necessary to justify his mob actions: "This is Mahalo answers not Mahalo opinions." Big LOL again since most questions on Jason's answer service are about opinions from religion to weed, least of all mactrainers own question for an opinion.

By now it should be obvious that Mahalo.com is a huge SEO engineering effort - best exemplified by the most popular pages leaderboard: coupons, coupons, coupons! It seems pretty clear that quora.com, hunch.com and now facebook community pages will kick Mahalos butt!

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OMG. The Spiers Newsletter 

so, this is what blogging has come to: university classes, entrepreneurship lectures, advisory board positions. When Spiers started out with and endgameresearch email address no-one knew what would come of this frenzy. Now Spiers has signed up for the Calacanis newsletter approach doing her own. First edition:

...your resource for all things Spiers. Or at the very least, an update on
what I'm doing professionally at the moment.

Eventually, I'd like to add some newsletter component that actually adds
some value above and beyond my SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION. Unfortunately, I
haven't figured out what that's going to be yet. But I'm taking suggestions!
If you have one, contact me at espiers AT gmail.

I launched a new site last week called Crushable.com for b5media, a
Toronto-based blog network that's in the process of re-tooling its editorial
offerings. I'm an advisor and consultant to the company and am helping them
with a few new site launches--conceptualizing, hiring and developing
editorial content, with some light business advisory work around
monetization and advertising on the side. Crushable is an entertainment and
lifestyle site that targets women ages 15 to 25, and it's helmed by Erin
Carlson (formerly an entertainment reporter for the AP), assisted by deputy
editor Amanda Ernst (formerly of FishbowlNY.com) and associate editor Jean
Bentley (formerly of EW.com.) Some first week features:
An interview with Rob Kardashian (the "nice" Kardashian):
Erin's replication of Mena Suvari's bizarre fashion week hairdos:

Jennifer Wright on Being The Wingwoman:

I teach two classes for SVA's Design Criticism MFA program. This
semester it's a 15 week blogging workshop for first-years. Next week I'll
be publishing all of their blogs, where you can read about everything from
Brunch in Brooklyn to the deconstruction of ad campaigns to reviews of dog
parks from the perspective of a dog. This week, I also guest lectured two
classes at Duke University (my alma mater), which is developing a new
program in entrepreneurship and expanding its journalism offerings. I also
took the drunken-student-late-night shuttle van from East Campus to West.
Just for old times' sake.

Most people who know me know I'm very interested in genetics and at one
point (pre-Gawker) contributed to a genetics blog that's now owned by Seed.
So I'm happy to be an advisor to Counsyl, a relatively new San
Francisco-based genetic testing company that makes genetic testing for rare
diseases accessible and affordable.
Here's a recent _New York Times_ profile of the company:

Wall Street Cheat Sheet is a finance site that has some Venn diagram
overlap with Dealbreaker, but is far heavier on market analysis and
commentary. It's a fairly new site and is looking to expand. It got a nice
honorable mention from David Weidner in his "[10]Ten Wall Street Blogs You
Need to Bookmark Now" feature in last week's _Wall Street Journal_:


I just started reviewing business books for CBS Moneywatch. First up,
Daniel Pink's Drive:
Next up: a fairly atrocious how-to investment
book by ... oh, you'll just have to wait for it. If anyone has relevant
books to send me, email me and I'll give you my mailing address (assuming
it's not showing up in the footer of this email, as annoyingly and
anachronistically required by ICANN.)

I'm casually looking for an editor-in-chief for a potential men's
site--preferably someone with blogging experience who knows how to write,
edit and conceptualize stories. If you have recommendations or know someone
who'd be interested, send them to me at espiers AT gmail.


I have a few more site launches in the hopper and will be talking about them

I also just agreed to write a column for TheAwl.com from the perspective
of Choire Sicha's cat, which is descriptively if literally named "Cat." For
this I will be paid the ongoing Awl freelance rate of $0.00 a word. Which is
almost what I got paid at Gawker. Cat welcomes topic suggestions, which can
also be sent to espiers AT gmail.

I get asked for book recommendations pretty regularly, so I just condensed
my favorites into one post:

My pal _Sloane Crosley's_ second book, HOW DID YOU GET THIS NUMBER? is
coming out in June and is now available for pre-order at Amazon:

My boyfriend is on a board of a theater company called _Curious Frog Theatre
Company_ that has a mission "to present new, modern and classical works with
the goal of showing a new, multicultural perspective through non-traditional
casting" and they're doing a spring production of Jean Genet's "The Maids."
You can get tickets here:
http://curiousfrog.org/index.php Last
spring they did Sam Shepard's "True West" with an all-Asian cast and it was

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Mahalo Downward Spiral 

Mahalo, Jason McCabe Calacanis's latest venture, is heading for the deathpool as it seems. While Jason tries to get some PR through his paid-slot-on-twitter-suggestion meme his front row is leaving the company one after another. After recent examples of key Mahalo employees leaving now his product director Eric Stephens is leaving just shortly after his Mahalo Daily anchor Leah D'Emilio quit because Jason needs to turn the daily show into a weekly one. According to Jason it's because the show ain't making any money. So he failed with the show which was supposed to help people, give advice, and present fun activities going along with Mahalo's tagline: We're here to help. Not anymore. From now on it'll be a compilation of youtube clips. We'll see how long Lon Harris will stick with it. Will he be the next to turn his back on Jason?
Meanwhile vanity prevails on Jason's side: He wants to join the Gumball 3000. Still, we are looking forward to his new show "This week in startups". It's been a while since he failed to fulfill his initial commitment for his first series of podcasts.

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Mahalo Fail Whale - Prevalent Flaws 

Let there be a Fail Whale for funwebreneur Jason Calacanis's Mahalo, too. We've pointed out several flaws in the Mahalo system, and due to ever prevalent system immanent flaws there is always more: update fail - even acknowledged by Mahalo employees.

Random examples we've come across recently: In the course of the 2008 Beijing Olympics Mahalo claims to have up-to-date coverage, yet they fail to keep pages like the medal count updated as one user pointed out. This was only resolved after baffled Calacanis himself forwarded the request to his team. Apparently, according to the tweet, Lon Harris seems responsible for this task, but he is obviously having more fun doing the Mahalo Daily show.
The Olympic Gymnastics team event is over, but no news on how the US team is faring on its very own Mahalo page. (screenshot) The news on the page date June, mid July, no event news so far. There's many more Mahalo Olympic fail.

Just the other day we were looking up London related pages on Mahalo and noticed they still have the old Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, named on them. The new one was elected back in May. So we tweeted. They acted swiftly, but sloppy: removing any reference to any London mayor from the fast facts on the London page. (screenshot) Usually they have info on a city's mayor, e.g. New York. People will be even more confused, because all other London related pages, like 'London Vacation' (screenshot) still report Linvingstone as mayor of London. Fail.

One more: Public figures, e.g. the Pope: news date back months if not years (screenshot). Are you serious? No important news in recent months about the Pope? What about his Sydney visit, relevant controversy over Latin America?

The verdict: epic fail! Bet Jason didn't mention this scenario in his pitch to Sequoia et al. At least Mahalo employees openly admit to the problem. Former Mahalo geek Sean Percival agreed once: "You know I agree, keeping these pages is going to be more difficult over time."

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Calacanis Mocks The Wack Pack 

We have to call out Josh Chandler for being among the worst, a stupid interviewer without any sense of how to formulate proper questions, just jerking along the wave of the technology blogosphere, without the slightest hint that he might have put some sort of effort into investigating and finding out stuff about his guest. This is the Technology Gazette interview with Jason Calacanis.
Entertaining, though, is when Jason rambles on about his contempt for the techmeme crowd, especially Allen Stern from CenterNetworks and that Mathew Ingram: "they are these wacky guys ... they're bitter and angry", "these people are not actually doing stuff", "Allen Stern is basically a nobody", "these guys are famous for writing 'trolly' kind of posts ... and now they're A-list LOL", "they have not done anything incredible in their careers, not somebody you should listen to". And Josh is one of them, too.

update: wack pack member Howard Lindzon loses his cool and calls Jason "asshat"

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