1. Google Acquires Opinion Poll Service Polar For Google+: Google today announced that it has acquired Polar, the highly graphical opinion poll service, for an undisclosed sum. Read more here.

2. U.S. threatened massive fine to force Yahoo to release data: The U.S. government threatened to fine Yahoo $250,000 a day in 2008 if it failed to comply with a broad demand to hand over user communications — a request the company believed was unconstitutional — according to court documents unsealed Thursday that illuminate how federal officials forced American tech companies to participate in the National Security Agency’s controversial PRISM program. Read more here.

3. Failed e-singles startup Byliner acquired by digital publisher Vook: Byliner, which aimed to find a new model for selling longform journalism online, crashed and burned this summer. Now the NYC-based digital publishing site Vook has acquired it. Read more here.

4. Dropbox transparency report: 268 law enforcement requests, up to 249 national security requests (updated): Dropbox announced its first six-month transparency report today, revealing 268 law enforcement requests “for user information” and between 0 and 249 national security requests from January to June 2014. Read more here.

5. EBay Prepping New Mobile Ad Network: EBay is set to launch an advertising network for its mobile app in this year’s final quarter, opening up a new avenue for marketers to reach the app’s roughly 4.6 million daily visitors. Read more here.

6. Verizon’s internet TV service coming in mid-2015, may let you pick only channels you want: Verizon’s internet-based TV service will arrive sometime in mid-2015, CEO Lowell McAdam said today. And apparently the company is finding broad support for its effort. At that time, consumers will be able to subscribe to a programming bundle that includes the big four networks (ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC), and also “custom channels.” McAdam didn’t expand on this much, according to Deadline, but he gave a nod to “very exciting” programming like DreamWorks Animation’s AwesomenessTV, which will presumably factor into Verizon’s plans. Read more here.

7. BlackBerry acquires virtual SIM startup Movirtu, plans to support ‘all major smartphone operating systems’: BlackBerry today announced it has acquired Movirtu, a UK startup that allows multiple numbers to be active on a single device. The Canadian company’s hope is to boost its device management offerings in bring-your-own device (BYOD) and corporate owned personally enabled (COPE) environments. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Read more here.

8. Viber introduces videos calls to its mobile chat apps for Android and iOS: Viber, the mobile messaging app bought by Japan’s e-commerce giant Rakuten for $900 million, is spreading its wings beyond voice calling on mobile after it introduced video calling to its Android and iOS apps. Read more here.

9. Facebook Will Now Ask People Why They Hid An Ad, Banish Offensive Ones: Facebook needs to know if you just thought an ad was annoying, or if it was actually inappropriate and no one should see it, so it’s now asking people why after they hide ads they see on the service. Read more here.

10. Festival Travel Site Festicket Raises $2.7M Series A: Festicket, the UK startup that offers a travel booking and discovery site for festival goers, has closed a $2.7 million Series A round. The new funding, which adds to a $680,000 seed round raised in March 2013, is being led by European VCs, Wellington Partners and PROfounders Capital. Read more here.

Prasant Naidu

Founder and Editor at Lighthouse Insights.

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