Twitter Essential Tool for Iranian Election News: MediaBytes with Shelly Palmer June 17, 2009

The State Department asked Twitter to delay a "critical network upgrade" scheduled for yesterday in order for civilian reporters in Tehran to use the micro-blog as a means for communication. Meanwhile, thousands of Twitter users have changed their time zone stamp to GMT 330 and location to Tehran in order to clog Iranian censor boards.

MySpace announced that it will decrease its workforce by approximately 30%. CEO Owen Van Natta said "Simply put, our staffing levels were bloated and hindered our ability to be an efficient and nimble team-oriented company." The cuts come months after Facebook surpassed MySpace in active users.

Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia unveiled a "how to" site dubbed "Matha University." The video course site, backed by iAmplify, will sell video instructionals on everything from cooking to wedding decor. Students will pay between $5.95 to $12.95 per download.

Members of the Senate are urging the FCC to review agreements between wireless providers and cell phone manufacturers. The Senators, including John Kerry, want to examine how exclusivity agreements limit consumer choice and whether or not they limit functionality of new technologies. The Commerce Committee will hear the issue next week.

ABC will broadcast a primetime special with President Obama on health care reform. Charlie Gibson will host the program from the Blue Room of the White House. Former ABC News reporter Linda Douglass is now the DOC of Health Reform at the White House and may have been influential in ABC broadcasting the special.

Shelly Palmer is a consultant and the host of MediaBytes with Shelly Palmer a daily show featuring news you can use about technology, media & entertainment. He is Managing Director of Advanced Media Ventures Group LLC and the author of Television Disrupted: The Transition from Network to Networked TV. Shelly is also President of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. You can join the MediaBytes mailing list here. Shelly can be reached at For information about Get Digital Classes, visit