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Google 'plans European recruitment drive'

Bad news for online ad companies battling a shortage of skilled workers - Google is apparently planning a big recruitment drive to create an R&D team in Europe as large as the one it has in the US.

The FT reports that the web giant aims to expand its workforce by a third, with most of the new staff to be based in Europe as it bids to improve its image on this side of the Atlantic.

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Local.com launches in the UK

Local.com has just launched a UK version of its site, providing searchable local listings for a range of products and services.

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Steve Case launches PayPal competitor

US company Revolution Money has launched MoneyExchange, a free online money transfer service, as a direct competitor to PayPal and Google Checkout.

The service is backed by AOL founder Steve Case and has also received funding from Citi, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley.

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Evening Standard unveils new website

The Evening Standard launched a new website this week with news, blogs and comment from the London daily.

Evening Standard

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Behavioural targeting – ask your wine waiter

In marketing technology, it’s important not to get carried away by your own spin. Behavioural targeting sounds quite complex, but the idea and the source of the uplift is really quite simple and it happens in the real world every day.

Picture your favourite restaurant. If you’re lucky enough to have a switched-on wine waiter, he will remember the wines you’ve enjoyed in the past and intelligently suggest new vintages as they come onto his list.

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TUI Travel buys holiday review site - report

TUI Travel, the holiday group that includes major travel brands Thomson Holidays and First Choice, has reportedly acquired holiday user review website Holidays Uncovered.

Travolution reports that a deal was concluded within the past few weeks and will soon be officially announced.

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Amazon launches music download site in beta

Amazon has launched a beta version of its much-anticipated DRM-free music download store.

The etailing giant claims it will have the world's largest collection of DRM-free music downloads, with 2m songs available from over 180,000 artists.

However, it is not yet available in the UK.

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Study: Facebook is now the UK’s biggest social network

Facebook has overtaken MySpace for the first time in the UK in terms of unique visitors, according to new stats from Nielsen//NetRatings.

The social network, which has been experiencing phenomenal growth recently and is reportedly a target for investment by Microsoft, had 6.5m unique visitors last month compared to 6.4m for its News Corp–owned rival.

At the start of the year, its audience was just a fifth of the size of MySpace’s, and even in May, Facebook had just 3.2m unique vistors compared to its rival’s 6.5m.

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Q&A: Capital One's Justin Basini

Capital One's European head of brand marketing Justin Basini talks about the challenges of resourcing and measuring multi-channel campaigns, as well as ways in which the web has affected how consumers research and buy financial services.

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Glam Media launches Distributed Media Platform

Online fashion and lifestyle publisher Glam Media has launched a number of new features and widgets to make its network of blogs and websites easier to navigate.

Glam's platform is designed to distribute media content across its network of more than 400 sites and partners, with the aim of increasing the network's traffic and page views.

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US online ad spend rises by 23%

US ad spending fell by 0.5% in the first half of this year, but internet ad spend continues to rise, growing by 23.6%, according to new data from Nielsen.

TNS Media Intelligence paints a similar picture, with its figures putting total US online ad spend at $5.5bn (£2.7bn) for the first six months of the year, up 17.7% from $4.69bn (£2.3bn) in the same period last year. 

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Consumers say no to mobile TV, will get it anyway

Just a few months after predicting the adoption of mobile TV as a mainstream service by 2010, a new survey of mobile consumers by Gartner has found little consumer enthusiasm for the medium in Europe.

Earlier in the year Gartner predicted that mobile TV would provide an additional revenue stream for operators, with the market growing from 38m users in 2007 to 356m in 2010.

But a new survey by the same firm has found that only 5% of Europeans are likely to watch mobile TV in the next 12 months.

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