Interesting read about how the governing principles of marketing communications are still present, even in shiny new channels.
So Google may be trying to eat Facebook's lunch (see below), but it seems the network is really onto something with a combination of their advancements. Combining open graph with a search/recommendation capability means that Facebook is very close to creating a possible semantic search engine. The internet of things may be a ways from fully developed, but projecting Friends data on search result rankings as relevance is a good start.
So after going after email (Google Wave), microblogging (Google Buzz) & previous social networking (Yes, I remember you Orkut)...Google has set its sights squarely on Facebook with Google ME. No real details about this yet, aside from its existence, but three things should hold true:
1.) It will get buzz in the same mysterious way Wave did
2.) It will get tough competition from Facebook's 500 million settled users' network effect
3.) It will probably anger a few folks over privacy through some of its integration
Google Me seems interesting, but I imagine Facebook's counter attack has a better chance of landing a serious blow (see above)
MSNBC.com Puts on the Banner Ban
Intriguing to see MSNBC.com take the banner ad out in favor of more interactivity. Seems an interesting confluence of UX consciousness, greater content flexibility and a better user tech capability has finally driven simple display out for some.