Wires Crossed #89 – June 22

Departing Blackberry Co-Founders Get $12 Million Payout
There seems to be a bit of hoo-ha going around about the co-founders of Blackberry – Mike Lazaridis and James Balsillie – getting $12 million between them as a payout for leaving the company. To the Average Joe that is a lot of moolah, but to a company that size of Research In Motion, it is hardly a drop in the ocean considering how much revenue it has generated over the years. Oh, we know the company is suffering a market share drop due to the nder pressure from Apple and Samsung, yet their payout pales in comparison to what some tech companies pay execs.  For example, there’s Oracle’s Mark Hurd, whose package is over US$78 million, which is more than the company’s owner, Larry Ellison, whose package came to just over US$77 million. Then there is Apple’s current CEO, Tim Cook, who pocketed around US$59 million last year. $12 million, even though it’s a payout, not salary, is still chump change for a multi-billion dollar company started by the two gentlemen in question.

Next Xbox Details Leaked
It’s hard to keep a secret these days, as Microsoft is finding out after alleged details of the latest version of the Xbox 360 gaming console were leaked all over the Internet. If the 56-page document is the real deal, then for all appearances it seems like the console is in for a massive overhaul. New features include multiple power modes; cross-media capabilities with smartphones, PCs and televisions; a next-generation camera; as well as a full support web platform. To which we say, “hold on minute, haven’t most next-generation devise – whether they be TVs, smartphones, MP3 players or whatever – been heading down this path for the past couple of years anyway?” Sounds more like they are in catch up mode…

Google Removes Terrorist YouTube Videos
Google has removed more than 600 YouTube videos at the behest of the UK government, which claims the clips taken down are from terrorist organisations around the world. These videos were highlighted in Googles’ latest Transparency Report, which is available to anybody who wants it and shows the number of government requests they have received from around the world to remove content from YouTube and other search websites.  All government can request such removal, but doesn’t necessarily mean Google will acquiesce to the request.

Atheist Jailed Over Facebook Page Comment
Indonesian man Alexander Aan has been sentenced to 2.5 years in prison for espousing his religious beliefs – or lack thereof – on his Facebook page. The devout atheist from Sumatra posted that “God does not exist” on his wall. While some religious tolerance is accepted in the majority Muslim country, the court ruled that he was inciting religious hatred because he also posted cartoons of the prophet Muhammad having carnal knowledge with a servant.

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