Stalking website vows to launch next week

Posted by Staff writer

A new celebrity-stalking website that tracks its victims in real time is launching next week, despite having been repudiated by Twitter.

Justspotted.com applies natural language filters to data from Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare pull out celebrity sightings. It then monitors the movements of 7,000-odd celebrities, tracking them on a world map. The site will also aggregate news stories about celebrities.

The company denies that the site will be much help to real stalkers. "The information isn't real-time enough for you to run over there and see them," founder and CEO AJ Asver told Hollywood Reporter.

But unless the victims are particularly fast eaters, that won't be the case, as the information published can include restaurant names.

Twitter, aghast at the idea, has dissociated itself from the venture. The last thing it wants to do, after all, is jeopardise its relationship with celebrity tweeters such as Ashton Kutcher and Lady Gaga.

It says it's terminated the deal giving Justspotted access to its firehose data feed of public updates. But Justpotted says it doesn't need this, as its system can aggregate tweets by scraping, using the publicly available APIs.

Asver says he has lots of ideas about how to monetize the site - including getting celebrities themselves to pay to promote their movies and even the products they endorse.

Somehow, we don't think the A-listers are likely to be doing a lot of that sort of thing.