“Twittersphere” Enter the Oxford Dictionary

As of this week, you’ll be able to justify the word “Twittersphere” using the Oxford Dictionaries Online. The word is on a long list of new additions to the dictionary, many of which have origins in technology and social media.

“The world of computers and social networking continues to be a major influence on the English language,” explains the online dictionary’s blog. (The Oxford Dictionary Online is affiliated with the OED, but they are not one and the same. The difference is explained here.) Other newly official words include “social graph,” “permalink,” “paperless,” “lifehack” and “lappy.”

Dictionaries have been acknowledging emerging Internet vocabulary since 2004 or before. That year, “blog” made the top of Merriam Webster’s Word of the Year list. “Facebook” was Collins’s top word three years later, and in 2009, “unfriend” was the Oxford Dictionary’s top pick.

Perhaps “unfollow,” which Oxford also included in its recent online updates, will follow in its Facebook counterpart’s footsteps.

Google Acquires PostRank

Friday, social engagement data start PostRank announced that it had been acquired by Google.
Specific terms of the deal were not disclosed.PostRank released in 2007 in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. PostRank staff will move to the Bay of San Francisco to join other Google users in the main Google campus in Mountain View. Last year, PostRank Analytics added activity streams, which the company calls "a FriendFeed for the content." The analysis service launched last year as a way of tracking the data in a large number of social media platforms like Twitter, Digg, Delicious and more.

PostRank CTO and founder of Ilya Grigorik blog wrote today in the implementation of, "We are extremely excited to join Google. We believe that there is simply no better company on the web today that both understands the value of the participation data that have focused, and has the platform and the power to bring its benefits to countless millions of daily users, active Internet . "

Grigorik said more details on the progress PostRank within Google coming in a few months.

Syria closes Internet

Internet traffic has come to an end in Syria after the government blocked Internet services in an attempt to quell a growing rebellion in the nation in the Middle East.
"From 3:35 UTC today, approximately two thirds of all networks of Syria became unreachable from the global Internet," said Renesys Internet intelligence firm in his blog today.

"Over half an hour, the routes to 40 of 59 networks were withdrawn from the global routing table."

Most mobile phones and Internet networks are affected by the blackout. According to The Wall Street Journal, Web sites run by government, such as the website of the Ministry of Petroleum is still running.

Syria has been the prohibition of social media services in recent months, but this is the full time has been cut all to the Internet.

The decision comes as protests have intensified in the troubled nation. 34 people were killed on Friday after security forces opened fire. The uprising, which began in late January, has focused on the dismissal, Bashar Al-Assad and his role as President of Syria. Al-Assad became president in 2000 after 29-year rule of his father.

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, close Internet services during the Egyptian revolution protesters were not easy to organize. Do not put down the revolt, however, and on February 11, Mubarak resigned.

U.N. Report Declares Internet Access a Human Right

A United Nations report said on Friday that people disconnect from the internet is a violation of human rights and against international law.

The report criticized France and the United Kingdom, which have passed legislation to eliminate accused copyright infringers on the Internet. They also protested by blocking access to the Internet to quell political unrest.

While blocking and filtering measures to deny users access to specific content on the Internet, the states have also taken steps to cut off Internet access altogether. The Special Rapporteur considers that cut access to Internet users, regardless of the justification provided, including on grounds of violating intellectual property rights, is disproportionate and therefore a violation of Article 19, paragraph 3, of the International Covenant Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

The report continues:

The Special Rapporteur urges all States to ensure that Internet access is maintained at all times, even during times of political turmoil. In particular, the Special Rapporteur urges States to repeal or amend the laws of intellectual copyrights that allow users to disconnect from Internet access, and to refrain from adopting such laws.

The report, prepared by the UN Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression, comes the same day an Internet monitoring company found that two thirds of Internet access in Syria has sharply dark past, in what is likely a government response to the unrest in that country.