Dead cat bounce or Dell cat bounce?
It was comforting to see shares of Dell Computer (NASDAQ:DELL) climb 9% on Wednesday. The stock -- which happens to be a recommendation in both the Stock Advisor and Inside Value newsletter services -- had been battered for way too long.

The increase was earned, too, as Dell rocked past analyst profit targets on better than expected margins. However, was I the only one ticked off that Dell decided to put out its quarterly numbers without a conference call? We realize that the company has had a rough few quarters and that its CEO is on the hot seat. Isn't that the ideal time to come on out and take the heat from analysts and investors?

It just feels wrong, especially when the company description at the end of the press releases begins with "Dell Inc. listens to customers . "

You can't listen when you're not willing to hear.

Someone else's space?
Is News Corp. (NYSE:NWS) really about to part with CEO Rupert Murdoch recently saying that the definitive social networking site could be sold for $6 billion these days may indicate as much, even though it's probably just a ploy to get institutional investors to value the parent company a bit more. News Corp. has already outpaced most of its media peers, but there's nothing wrong with milking the MySpace publicity cow.

MySpace can't count on explosive growth forever. We saw social networking take a hit recently when both MySpace and Facebook entertained fewer visitors in September than in August. It may have been a seasonal thing, but I always keep wondering where the next few million registered users will come from for MySpace and whether the notoriously fickle ways of youth make any kind of virtual success fleeting.

Hello Cyber Monday
Finally, if arriving at your local department store to land some of those 5 a.m. doorbuster deals has you in a groggy state, don't forget about online shopping. Companies like (NASDAQ:AMZN) and (NASDAQ:OSTK) are hoping that buyers remember to hit cyberspace for more convenient deals, especially if crowded shopping mall parking lots and chain store Santas that smell like moldy cheese still haunt you at night.

Cyber Monday will never replace Black Friday. You can bet on that. However, you are starting to see traditional retailers harness the power of online shopping with aplomb. They are the ones taking advantage of advertising online specials in their weekly ad circulars and allowing convenient pickups and returns at local stores.

So here's hoping you made it out safe and sound on Friday. That gift list doesn't get any shorter over the next few weeks.

Until next week, I remain,

Rick Munarriz is a Stock Advisor selection. For more stocks from the top of Tom and David Gardner's list, try a free 30-day guest pass. Overstock used to be a Rule Breakers recommendation.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz recommends windshield wiper fluid when trying to look back. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. The Fool has a disclosure policy.