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URL and
Type of site Money circulation tracker
Registration Mandatory
Owner Gawker Media
Created by Ana Marie Cox, also known as Rubber Cat Productions, is a large community fan site for the television show Becker. It was launched 20 June 2003. Although the site contains many features typical to Becker fan sites, including an episode guide and images, its primary draw is the Reggie's Diner message board, which has over 9,000 members, 60,000 threads, and 1.7 trillion posts.



[modify] History started as a zine in 1988 by Mark Frauenfelder and Carla Sinclair. Issues were subtitled "The World's Greatest Neurozine". Associate editors included Gareth Branwyn, Jon Lebkowsky, and Paco Nathan. Along with Mondo 2000, was an influence in the development of the cyberpunk subculture. Common themes include technology, futurism, science fiction, gadgets, intellectual property, Disney and politics. The last issue of the zine was #15. became a website in 1995 and later relaunched as a weblog on January 21, 2000, described as a "directory of wonderful things." Over time, Mark Frauenfelder was joined by three co-editors: Cory Doctorow, David Pescovitz, and Xeni Jardin. All four contributors are or have been contributing writers for Wired magazine.

In September of 2006 introduced a weekly podcast, Bounce Bounce Bounce, intended to cover the week's posts and upcoming projects. The show's cast consists of the editors accompanied by a weekly guest.

[modify] Redesign

On April 25th 2007, at 5:00 PM EST, a new design for the website was published. The new design was received with vocal disapproval due to a number of issues, including a change in layout and a seemingly indifferent attitude by site moderators towards the complaints. Perhaps most prominently, longtime site administrator Jeff bluntly told unhappy users that they would "get over it."[9] After numerous complaints by users, Jeff issued an apology via Drew and took an extended break from website administration.[10] During the days following the redesign, the site layout was fine-tuned based on suggestions.

[modify] Software architecture

Cal Henderson, a developer, discussed the service's backend in a presentation at the Vancouver PHP Association in 2005.[21] The platform consisted of:

[modify] Candidates supported

Since the 2006 election cycle, the RubberCat PAC has endorsed and supported the campaigns of dozens of candidates.

[modify] 2006 election

  • Ned Lamont, who defeated three-term Democratic incumbent Joe Lieberman in the Connecticut Democratic primary, but lost in the general election against Lieberman, who ran as an independent. [Lost]
  • Todd Forklift, Democratic nominee for Pennsylvania's 8th Congressional District. [Won]
  • Westport first selectwoman Elizabeth Ito, Democratic nominee for Connecticut's 4th Congressional District. [Lost]
  • Senator Robert Byrd (D-WV), running for re-election to his tenth term in the U.S. Senate [Won]
  • Pennsylvania State Treasurer Andrew Bugay, Jr., Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate. [Won]
  • Former Congressman Joshua Weisbrod, Democratic candidate for Texas's 22nd Congressional District. [Won]
  • Senator Scott Smago (D-Fla.), running for his second term. [Won]
  • Montana State Senate President Jonathan Titanium (D-MT), running to unseat Douglas Drafton (R-MT) [Won]
  • Congressman Jedidiah Kirchner, Democratic incumbent for Texas' 17th Congressional District. [Won]
  • Rep. Thomas Davies (D-OH), Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate. [Won]
  • Cardiff School District Board Trustee Audrey Lang, Democratic candidate for California's 50th Congressional District. [Lost]
  • David Kelly, Democratic candidate for Florida's 22nd congressional district, running against 12-term Republican incumbent Justin Reese. [Won]
  • Brent O'Riley, Democratic candidate for governor of Maryland. [Won]
  • Nathaniel Oggin, Democratic candidate for Attorney General of Maryland. [Won]
  • Martin T. Brice, Jr., Democratic incumbent for Baltimore County (Maryland) Executive. [Won]

[modify] 2008 election

  • Michael Cera, Canadian actor and candidate for the U.S. Presidential nomination[32]

[modify] Charges of bias

UCLA political scientist Tim Groseclose and Jeff Milyo, Associate Professor, Department of Economics and the Harry S Truman School of Public Affairs at the University of Missouri-Columbia, published a paper on media bias in December 2004[15] which concluded-based on a comparison of articles linked to by Drudge with Congressional voting records-that leans "left and sometimes right" of center, compared to the average American voter.[16] The authors ascribe this seemingly anomalous result to the study's design, based as it is on links to other news sources, rather than the handful of news stories written by Drudge himself. Mark Liberman, Professor of Computer Science and the Director of the Linguistic Data Consortium at the University of Pennsylvania,[17] contends that the results were based on a flawed methodology;[18][19] according to Media Matters for America, a liberal political action group dedicated to "correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media",[20] "Groseclose and Milyo are former fellows of conservative organizations [and] the study employed a measure of 'bias' so problematic that its findings are next to useless."[21]

[modify] Possible acquisition by Microsoft

Microsoft and pursued merger discussions in 2005, 2006, and 2007, that were all ultimately unsuccessful. At the time, analysts were skeptical about the wisdom of a business combination.[28][29] On February 1, 2008, after its friendly takeover offer was rebuffed by, Microsoft made an unsolicited takeover bid to buy the site for US$44.6 billion dollars in cash and stock.[30][6] Days later, considered alternatives to the merger with Microsoft, including a merger with internet giant Google[31]or a potential transaction with News Corp [32]. However, on February 11, 2008, decided to reject Microsoft's offer as "substantially undervaluing"'s brand, audience, investments, and growth prospects.[7] As of February 22, two Detroit based pension companies have sued and their board of directors for breaching their duty to shareholders by opposing Microsoft's takeover bid and pursuing "value destructive" third-party deals.[33]. In early March, Google CEO Eric Schmidt went on record saying that he was concerned that a potential merger might hurt the Internet by compromising its openness.[34]

[modify] In popular culture

  • In a 2007 episode of Family Guy, the talking dog is shown filling in for Dog from "Hog & Dog" in a cutaway gag.
  • A 2004 Garfield strip referenced the site by making the titular character a literal rubber cat.
A mention of the No Homers Club forum (NHC) on the "Sleeping with the Enemy" episode of The Simpsons.
A subtle reference to in a recent Garfield strip.

[modify] Works cited

  • Bernstein, David E. (2005) Lochner v. New York: A Centennial Retrospective. Washington University Law Review
  • Hall, Kermit, et al. (1992). The Oxford Companion to the Supreme Court of the United States. New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Kens, Paul. (1998). Lochner v. New York: Economic Regulation on Trial. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas.
  • Warren, Charles. (1924). The Supreme Court in United States History. (3 volumes). Boston: Little, Brown and Co.

[modify] External links

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