US-TECH Summary

Google buys Zagat to vie with OpenTable, Yelp

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Google Inc has bought popular dining ratings authority Zagat, adding a valuable brand to its content offerings and bolstering its push into the rapidly growing local commerce market. Local commerce offers services such as finding a discount from a nearby store, or a review of a neighborhood eatery, and the world's No. 1 search engine plans to compete in this market against Yelp and OpenTable.

Twitter ramps up ad efforts, no rush for IPO

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Twitter is preparing to broaden the areas of its service where ads appear, but the company is in no hurry to undertake a hotly-anticipated initial public offering. "We want to be able to remain independent, grow the business the way we want to, and not be beholden to public markets until we feel like we want to be," Twitter Chief Executive Dick Costolo told reporters at a briefing at the company's San Francisco headquarters on Thursday.

Major Yahoo shareholder calls for new board

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Shareholder activist Daniel Loeb has scooped up shares of Yahoo Inc and is demanding that the company overhaul its board, saying the directors have made "serious misjudgments" and "destroyed value" for stockholders. A "reconstituted board with new directors who will bring fresh eyes, relevant industry expertise and increased investor alignment to the table is immediately necessary," wrote Loeb the chief executive of hedge fund Third Point LLC, which has about $8 billion under management and now owns about 5 percent of Yahoo shares.

Amazon sales tax deal in California may help rivals

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc's agreement to start collecting sales tax in California next year may help brick and mortar rivals compete on prices with the world's largest Internet retailer. In a meeting on Wednesday of Amazon representatives, members of the state legislature and the California Retailers Association, the parties reached a "handshake" agreement on the issue, according to Mark Hedlund, a spokesman for Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg.

South Korea police probe Samsung Card over data breach

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korean police said they had begun investigating Samsung Card <029780.KS> over the alleged leakage of personal information on its customers. The Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency said in a statement on Thursday that a Samsung Card employee was suspected of leaking the personal details of 800,000 customers.

Insight: Cisco suits on China rights abuses to test legal reach

BEIJING (Reuters) - Two lawsuits by three Chinese dissidents and a human rights group accusing Cisco Systems Inc. of abetting imprisonment and torture could have far-reaching impact on how U.S. technology companies conduct business in authoritarian regimes. The lawsuits filed in May and June target a second technology company for complicity in human rights abuses in China after Yahoo Inc. in 2007 paid to settle a case in which it was accused of aiding the prosecution of dissidents.

SAP reaches plea deal in Oracle criminal case

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