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"Though I've worked many years to make marriage more equal, I never expected to take advantage of it myself." -- Gloria Steinem, at age 66, getting married for the first timeEdited by Robert McNattReturn to top

Media Melee, Junior Division

The gloves are off. After months of insisting that there was no ill will between his family and rival media mogul Richard Li, Rupert Murdoch's son James has let loose. In an Aug. 27 speech in Scotland, James Murdoch, CEO of News Corp.'s Asian-satellite broadcaster, Star TV, loudly slammed the interactive broadcast of Li's Hong Kong Pacific Century CyberWorks (PCCW), calling it an "English-language rehash of circa-1980s MTV." He also bashed it for originating its programming in London. Declared Murdoch: "The emperor, I have to say, has no clothes."

Prince James vs. Prince Richard has long had the makings of a royal feud. Earlier this year, Richard, son of Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing, bested Murdoch by acquiring Hong Kong's Cable & Wireless HKT. And the Lis had formerly sold Star TV, a major money-loser, to News Corp. for $1 billion. PCCW's broadband offering is in English in a region where few speak it. But the Lis are powerful in Asia, enjoying the support of China's elite. Publicly embarrassing them may earn Murdoch points in Britain or the U.S., but it won't help him much in Asia.By Bruce Einhorn; Edited by Robert McNattReturn to top

It's Cramer vs. the Peanut Gallery

They don't call him TheStreetfighter.com for nothing. James Cramer, hedge-fund manager and columnist for TheStreet.com, has taken on a new enemy: TheStreet.com's stock message board on Yahoo!, on which he says short sellers want to ruin him and his company.

Cramer has said: "Nothing is beyond attack in that cesspool. It's all personal." Starting in late August, he began staging a counterattack, responding to the messages under the alias Creme_Delacramer. He told the posters that the board "has all the elements of a conspiracy to humiliate and discredit me and to drive down the stock price." He also writes: "I am not hyping [the stock] as we have made many, many mistakes at TSCM. I am just tired of reading fraud."

Cramer may be on to something. On Sept. 6, the Securities & Exchange Commission charged 33 companies and individuals, including a chauffeur and a mechanic, with Internet frauds such as posting false information on message boards. The SEC won't say if it is investigating Cramer's charges.

Some postings are serious. Many say that, contrary to his company's policy, Cramer shorts stocks that he knocks in his columns, and that he even shorts The Street.com itself, charges Cramer denies. He says there have also been threats to his family. Yet some other postings are merely catty. Reads one: TheStreet.com is "the online financial equivalent of the National Enquirer, only without the profits." An angry Cramer has obtained and revealed one poster's real name. He won't say how he got the name but says he may get others and publish them, too.By Marcia Vickers; Edited by Robert McNattReturn to top

TABLE

The New New Things

Ten years ago, most people had never heard of the Internet. How will the next technological revolution affect consumers? Marketers, get ready: Here's a peek at the future, based on actual corporate research and development.GENETIC-BASED MEDICINE VIA NANOMACHINE

Drugs designed for a person's genetic makeup will be injected into the blood stream through tiny machinesULTRAPERSONAL COMPUTERS

Consumers will use tiny, wireless, computers embedded in clothing--or even skin--to access dataPERSONALIZED PRIVATE TRANSPORTATION

Info tech will guide your car around traffic jams and make sure you don't ever run out of gasSUPER SENSES

Implanted sensors and genetic aids will reverse vision and hearing impairmentHIGH-POWERED LITTLE ENERGY PLANTS

Microgenerators of electricity will allow machines and computers to travel pretty much anywhere

DATA: BATTELLE MEMORIAL INSTITUTE/WORLD FUTURE SOCIETY/GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY SCHOLARS; AMERICAN DEMOGRAPHICS' FORECASTReturn to top


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