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August 5, 2008 | Greg Johnson, Times Staff Writer
An online operation that has failed to deliver promised Beijing Games admission tickets to hundreds of consumers worldwide unexpectedly closed down Monday, hours before a federal judge in San Francisco approved a restraining order aimed at halting the websites. U.S. District Judge Jeffrey S. White's order prohibited Xclusive Leisure & Hospitality Ltd. from using more than a dozen website names, which include, and
August 5, 2008 | Alana Semuels, Times Staff Writer
The slowing economy is starting to hurt an unexpected segment of the advertising world: the Web, which has been growing fast for half a decade. Once thought to be immune from cutbacks, online advertising -- especially at Web portals and information sites such as those run by newspapers -- is experiencing a slowdown as marketers tighten their belts and make tough decisions about where to spend their leaner budgets.
August 4, 2008 | Scott J. Wilson
Looking for the right place to open a store or set up a company? Better look outside California, judging by's annual ranking of the best cities for doing business. The top cities in this year's list are Midland, Texas; St. George, Utah; and Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. California isn't represented until Bakersfield comes in at the No. 38 spot. The Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale area ranks No. 274 (out of 335) -- a slight improvement over last year's 283.
July 31, 2008 | James Rainey
The Washington Post published a smart, thorough takedown Wednesday of the baseless charge that Barack Obama spurned a visit with wounded troops because he couldn't turn the trip into a public relations coup. Reporters Michael D. Shear and Dan Balz showed that Obama never planned to take the media to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany, putting the lie to charges from John McCain that the Democrat was on the prowl for a cheap photo op.
July 27, 2008 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Shakespeare at sea? Poker cruise? Antiques on board? A new website,, can help you locate a cruise themed on whatever interests you. There are cruises dedicated to golf, cruises about religion and cruises featuring concerts from various musical genres. While some cruisers prefer general-interest trips where the focus is on a destination, others enjoy meeting people with similar interests or spending their time on board learning about a subject that interests them rather than relaxing.
July 21, 2008 | Scott J. Wilson
Just a few years ago, Yelp was used primarily by San Francisco-area residents to exchange opinions on local restaurants, bars and nightclubs. The idea caught fire, and Yelp has successfully expanded to include other cities, including much of Southern California. The range of businesses reviewed has also ballooned, making Yelp a good place to find opinions on a wide assortment of neighborhood services, including dry cleaners, bakeries, hair salons and even churches.
July 20, 2008 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
The National Park Service has launched a website for visitors with disabilities and other special needs to help them find accessible trails, programs and activities at national parks. The website is called "National Parks: Accessible to Everyone." Many individual parks have sections on their websites about accessibility, and the new national database is a work in progress, incorporating information as it becomes available. The site lists places where signed interpreters can be arranged for the hearing-impaired and visitors centers that have captioned movies or services for visually impaired parkgoers.
June 28, 2008 | From Times Wire Services, the Public Broadcasting Service website, attracted more U.S. visitors than any of the sites of the six commercial broadcast TV networks for four straight weeks, according to online monitor Hitwise. Among Web users visiting the broadcasters' sites, 24.2% chose in the week ended June 21, followed by ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox, each with less than 20%, PBS said. CW and MyNetworkTV ranked sixth and seventh. For the 2007-08 television season, ranked third behind ABC and NBC with 19% of U.S. viewers, up from 15% the previous year.
June 12, 2008 | From the Associated Press
Google Inc. Chief Executive Eric Schmidt said Wednesday that the Internet search leader hoped its recently acquired advertising service DoubleClick would aid newspapers as they struggled to corral more online revenue. "It's a huge moral imperative to help here," Schmidt said at an event hosted in San Francisco by Syracuse University's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.
June 8, 2008 | Erin Weinger, Times Staff Writer
BAG BORROW OR STEAL -- the website that rents out status handbags and gets a glam-cameo in the "Sex and the City" movie -- is getting into the designer sunglass rental biz. It sounded a little creepy to us, too. But here in L.A., where the right shades actually do matter, it's tempting to think of scoring a pair of saucer-size Fendis for as little as $22 a week. So we repressed the cringe and clicked on There were more than 170 pairs to choose from, searchable by size, color or designer, and not just the flashy logo brands.
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