Ina Fried

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Angry Birds Have Reasons to Smile

The Angry Birds are finding some new ways to cash in.

Rovio, the Finnish company that develops the popular mobile game, is planning a Christmas version of the program and is also selling stuffed animal versions of both the birds and their porcine nemeses.

The Christmas-themed Angry Birds game follows in the footsteps of a popular Halloween version of the program, which was a top seller in the iTunes App Store. Not everyone will have to pay to see their favorite birds all decked out for the season. The Christmas Angry Birds app will be a free upgrade for those that bought the Halloween Angry Birds program for iOS. It will also be free and ad-supported on Android (as has been the case with other editions of Angry Birds for Android).

“Both should hit in next few days,” according to Peter Vesterbacka, “Mighty Eagle” for Rovio.

As for the stuffed animals, the $14.95 stuffed birds will ship in December, Rovio says, while the pigs won’t be ready until early next year. (Mobilized has already been told to put a few stuffed Angry Birds on the holiday shopping list.)

The company is also aiming to get its fans to support an Angry Birds Day on Dec. 11, with meetups at spots across the globe, including London’s Trafalgar Square and Times Square in New York.

One company that won’t be getting any of the holiday cheer is Microsoft. Vesterbacka confirms that the company won’t have a Windows Phone 7 version of the game this year, although one is planned for next year, I’m told.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work