Are your business plans more secure than Twitter’s?

lockIt’s not every day that a privately-owned company’s internal financial laundry is scattered across the Web for all to see.

But that’s the unfortunate scenario microblogging startup Twitter found itself in on Wednesday after technology news site TechCrunch published a slew of the company’s confidential business documents.

The files, sent to the site by a hacker who managed to gain access to some of the company’s servers, included everything from plans to launch a Twitter reality television show to notes from its executive meetings to a detailed financial outlook from February.

Reuters tech columnist Eric Auchard provides a bit-by-bit breakdown of the financial forecast here. The outlook reveals that Twitter projected to grow to 1 billion users and rake in a $1.1 billion net profit on $1.54 billion in revenues by the end of 2013.

While Twitter co-founder Biz Stone seemed to take the news in stride, saying the financial projections are now out of date, you can bet the startup’s competitors are poring over the documents with some pleasure.

Competing for buzz and cash: Startup 2009 conference

It’s too late to get tickets for today’s Startup 2009 conference in NYC, but you almost don’t even need to be there. Event co-host Silicon Alley Insider, a NYC tech blog, is streaming the entire conference via live video now (watch below) and attendees inside are busy giving a blow-by-blow on Twitter.

The one-day conference features interviews with seasoned entrepreneurs and presentations by 10 emerging online companies carefully chosen by a panel of venture capital judges to compete for “bragging rights, buzz, and a $50,000 prize.” Here are the companies in the running: Advanced Marketing and Media Group, Adzoomi, Article One Partners, BeliefNetworks, Expensify, GlobeFunder Ventures, Good Health Advertising, Micronotes, Path 101, and Portfolio Monkey.

Update: Article One Partners, a startup that helps company’s establish patents or fight already existing ones, took the prize at Startup 2009.  Watch an interview with the company’s founder Cheryl Milone moments after the win (via The Deal).

from MediaFile:

A familiar name in real time search

The Musk name is famous among techies thanks to high-profile companies like PayPal and Tesla Motors, the electric car maker, which were founded or funded by entrepreneur Elon Musk.

Now another Musk-backed start-up is looking to make a splash. Only this time it’s younger brother Kimball at the helm, as CEO for OneRiot.

OneRiot is launching a real time search engine on Tuesday that combs through the flood of messages and Web links that are shared through services Twitter and Digg, as well as in OneRiot’s existing browser toolbar product, to determine the hottest topics on the Internet.

Is it time to get Twitter-fied?

twitterYou know something has buzz when it makes the leap from noun to verb. Like Google before it, Twitter — a social networking site that lets users follow and communicate with each other via 140 character messages, known as “tweets” — is raising the eyebrows from the big business gurus at Starbucks to small businesses like the local bakery.

Can 140 characters revolutionize your business?  If that possibility isn’t already on the mind of every marketing whiz across the globe, then maybe it should be.

Twitter aims to keep people connected by asking one basic question: What are you doing? Naturally, this invites an avalanche of answers of the banal “clipping-my-toenails-on-the-couch” variety.  On the flipside, businesses are starting to recognize it can be a free, highly-effective tool for communicating with customers. (Emphasis on free.)