Endpoint Briefs

Monopoly-the cyber space version

Hasbro Inc. in East Longmeadow, Mass. has released a new version of its Monopoly board game, enabling players to purchase companies such as Yahoo! instead of properties like Park Place. Monopoly, The .com Edition, features Web sites for sale instead of properties. Web sites up for grabs include Lycos, Alta Vista, Ask Jeeves, eBay and Sportsline.com. Connectivity providers, such as Sprint and AT&T, have replaced the railroads. The bank, which normally carries denominations up to $500, has been revamped to deal “in hundreds of millions of dollars,” according to Hasbro. The game pieces have also been redone. Players have the choice between a mouse, a computer terminal, a Web page, a cursor, a computer chip, a surfboard (for Web surfing), a computer chip and an “E-mail Just In” icon. The new edition will be available for approximately US$29.99.

Pamela launches on-line venture

She just might give cyber-queen Cindy Margolis a run for her money. Canadian-born actress Pamela Anderson launched her Web site, PamTV.com, last month. She has noted that it is not just a fan site, but more of an entertainment company. The former Bay Watch star, who now appears on the television show VIP, plans to produce syndicated content for TV and magazines on the site. When visitors first arrive at the site, an animated version of Pamela pops up and asks for a name. Keying it in personalizes everything the animated Pam has to say throughout the rest of the site. Visitors can click though to see Pamela’s schedule, send her e-mail, see her photo gallery or access video clips, which she promises will be updated regularly. There is also a link to the VIP Web site.

Home-grown site a budding venture

Vancouver-based Pot-TV has been broadcasting on the Internet since last spring, producing things such as a daily marijuana news show. The site is run out a basement, and has been getting approximately 25,000 hits a month. Visitors can tune in to such programs as Cannabis Common Sense, or Shake ‘n Bake, a cooking show. The site’s producer has indicated that Pot-TV earns no revenue, and that he supports it by selling marijuana seeds. He is adamant that the site is doing nothing illegal, but the cops are reportedly still concerned. While it is against the law to possess or distribute information that helps people use drugs, the law does not include the Internet. The police are apparently trying to address the loophole with new laws.

Saving Chretien’s (domain) name

Last month, the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) began to accept applications for .ca domain names under a new set of rules. While you formally had to be federally incorporated or own a registered trademark to obtain names such as www.JeanChretien.ca, that all changed. One Canadian Internet company noticed that the Prime Minister’s name was up for grabs, so it went ahead and registered it with the intentions of protecting it from cybersquatters. The company, Momentous.ca, has said it has no plans to develop a site with the registered name, and it will turn the domain over to Jean Chretien for free if he wants it.

First free love…now free portals

It won’t take you years and millions of dollars to create your own portal, thanks to Moveo.com, a new site which allows visitors to create their own Web portals for free. Users can name their portal and then fit it into a category listing on the site, such as Celebrities, Health and Politics. It is up to the portal’s creator to come up with and add the links to the portal. Down the road, the creators of the portal-creating site hope to license the Moveo software out to businesses to allow them to create their own portals.