Author: Richard Maven

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Richard Maven helps run the Econsultancy blog as well as contributing to our Buyer’s Guides and other reports. He’s has several years’ experience in the telecoms/media/ecommerce space, both in the UK and the Middle East.

Windows Live Spaces launch hits problems

The launch of Microsoft's revamped blogging and social networking service has got off to a bad start after a flood of user complaints.

The Windows Live Spaces service, an updated version of blogging site MSN Spaces, was hit by problems with the statistics page and emoticons, as well as issues with email publishing, Friends Explorer and Firefox.

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Brand associations on both sides of the Atlantic

Online measurement company Hitwise has run a comparison of search terms associated with Yahoo!, MSN and Google in the US and UK, highlighting some differences in consumers' attitudes to the three portals on different sides of the Atlantic.

The study found that US consumers, for example, largely associate MSN with its portal content while in the UK, the brand is better known for communications tools Messenger and Hotmail.

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.eu watchdog probes more "abnormalities"

The .eu watchdog said it is investigating evidence of further breaches of its registration rules since the launch of the top level domain (TLD) in April.

After confiscating over 70,000 Cyprus-based domain names last month, EURid said it is "looking into" relatively high numbers of registrations in other European countries such as Malta and Luxembourg.

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Web blamed as Powerhouse shuts shop

Administrators of electronics chain Powerhouse have blamed rising competition from e-tailers after the firm closed its UK stores yesterday.

"Internet retailers and increased competition on the high street, coupled with the ongoing deterioration in the UK electrical retail market, has led to Powerhouse being unable to sustain its position in the retail marketplace," BDO Stoy Hayward said in a statement.

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Web launch delays blamed on lack of content

A survey of digital agencies reveals that website launches are delayed by as much as three months because content isn’t ready or suitable.

Priorities cited for website projects were design (75%), development (55%) and search engine optimisation (65%), with only 10% of agencies questioned saying website content was top of their agenda.

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PartyGaming snaps up sports betting firm

Online casino and poker firm PartyGaming has branched out into bookmaking with the £70 million purchase of Gamebookers.

The deal will see PartyGaming paying Gamebookers' owner, Isle of Man-based Trident Gaming, £55 million on completion and £15 million in 18 months' time.

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Ipwalk study shows more .eu domain irregularities

More evidence of irregularities in the registration of .eu domain names has been uncovered in a study by internet monitoring group Ipwalk.

The research, which comes after the suspension of over 70,000 names by the .eu watchdog, shows a "very high" number of registrations in certain countries with smaller populations and lower internet uptake.

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Kids to get online ID card

Manufacturers have launched a virtual ID card aimed at protecting children on the web.

Its makers hope the NetIDme system, which will cost £9.99-a-year, will reduce opportunities for paedophiles to hide their age when online.

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Wippit hits back over Apple's Coke deal

Coke’s announcement of a partnership with Apple’s iTunes yesterday has received a show of support from one unlikely source: Wippit, the UK’s second largest music download site.

An email sent out by the firm said it welcomed the Coke and iTunes promotion, arguing that it will drive more people to its service.

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T-Mobile offers mobile internet access for £1 per day

T-Mobile has started offering its pre-pay customers web access from their mobiles for a maximum of £1 a day.

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Search engines to form anti-click fraud alliance

Search engines including Google, Yahoo and MSN have teamed up with The US’ Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) to develop ways of better measuring click fraud, according to the Associated Press .

Set to be announced later today, the initiative will attempt to develop guidelines that would introduce more accountability into PPC advertising.

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Online card payments rise in UK

More than 50% of UK adults made an online purchase with their credit or debit cards last year, according to new  research .

Payments association Apacs says 25 million adults (52% of all adults and 74% of internet users) bought goods online during 2005, an 11% rise over the previous year.

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