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Former Late Night with Conan O’Brien sidekick Andy Richter will join Conan as part of the Tonight Show. Richter, who left the show years ago to pursue a film career, will take on the role of announcer at the Tonight Show. Of the news, O’Brien said “We have a proven chemistry that will be an incredible asset to The Tonight Show. I’m looking forward to working with Andy on a daily basis again, particularly since he owes me $300.”

Yesterday the Senate’s anti-trust subcommittee began its first hearing on the Ticketmaster-Live Nation merger. The hearing focused on the merger of the two conglomerates, how it will affect consumers and, ultimately, the future of the concert business. Meanwhile, in New Jersey, Ticketmaster settled charges brought on the NJ Attorney General Anne Milgram, over an issue where fans were directed to the company’s auction site for Bruce Springsteen tickets, which were selling for hundreds of dollars more than face value. Ticketmaster will pay New Jersey $350,000 and will give users involved in the dilemma a second chance at buying tickets.

Google experienced a plethora of problems yesterday with its GMail service. First the email system crashed in the morning, leaving users unable to access their inbox. Then, GoogleTalk users were bombarded with attempts by scammers to steal their login information. If you get a message that reads “Hey check out this video! http://tinyurl.com/bska5z”, do not click the link.

Microsoft is set to continue to invest in research and development despite tough economic times. Chief research and strategy officer Craig Mundie noted that Microsoft’s efforts to bolster its R&D is essential to its “long-term survivability.” Mundie also said “Particularly in times like this, the disparity between the relatively short term view of the investment community and what the management view is of what it takes to have the company succeed for the long term stands in the starkest contrast.”

In an effort to cut costs, the NY Post has fired Page Six columnist Liz Smith. Through dumping the 86 year old gossip columnist, whose column was cut from six days a week to just three last year, the Post will save $125,000. Liz Smith’s final column will appear tomorrow on Page Six.

About Shelly Palmer

Shelly Palmer is the Professor of Advanced Media in Residence at Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and CEO of The Palmer Group, a consulting practice that helps Fortune 500 companies with technology, media and marketing. Named LinkedIn’s “Top Voice in Technology,” he covers tech and business for Good Day New York, is a regular commentator on CNN and writes a popular daily business blog. He's a bestselling author, and the creator of the popular, free online course, Generative AI for Execs. Follow @shellypalmer or visit shellypalmer.com.



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