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Sir Martin Sorrell’s WPP has made a series of investments in the online space this year, most recently the purchase of a 10% stake in Spot Runner, the US-based online ad agency which had also attracted the attention of Google.
He told us why...
Former Google France boss Franck Poisson has hooked up with Yahoo!, which will provide advertising and search services on Webwag, his new customisable homepage venture.
The deal will see Webwag displaying sponsored links from Yahoo!, as well as launching what it claims is the sector’s first ‘personal wide web’ search feature – through which users can sift through their chosen content as well as the web as a whole.
Digg has clamped down on a new service which claims to allow publishers to manipulate ratings on the social bookmarking site.
Gord Hotchkiss, chair of search marketing association SEMPO, is bullish about the industry's prospects, saying 2007 will be a "watershed year" for localised advertising and that various other revenue channels will drive growth.
But in an exclusive interview, he also points to challenges facing the sector, including the lack of transparency over click fraud and an upcoming "showdown" between consumers and advertisers over search data.
More than 50% of Myspace’s US visitors are now over 35 years of age, according to a report that shows the site’s appeal to older internet users is increasing as its mainstream popularity grows.
The research, by comScore Media Metrix, shows the site’s teenage visitors form a much lower percentage of its audience compared to last year, while over four in ten Myspace users are now between the ages of 35 and 54.
Skype founders Janus Friis and Niklas Zennstrom are working on a secretive project which will see them compete with YouTube in the online video market.
The website, currently under the working title of the Venice Project, will aim to combine the video sharing of YouTube with the added attraction of professionally produced TV and video content.
Social networking site Bebo could be set to take over from eBay as the UK’s most searched for site, according to a study by Hitwise .
The analyst group says the number of UK web searches for 'Bebo' has tripled in the past six months and risen by 17.6% in the past quarter alone.
Web 2.0 startups shouldn’t bother seeking VC money, according to Neil Sequeira of General Catalyst Partners, because “there have not yet been these type of exits that generated venture capital type returns”.
Neil is a VC who made these comments at the AjaxWorld Expo in California, but I’m not sure he’s entirely correct in his observations.
Bebo is in discussions with mobile operators over the launch of a range of text messaging services in the first quarter of next year.
The companies plan to use SMS to extend Bebo’s functionality onto mobiles, unlike the WAP-based services being developed by some of its rivals.
This summer saw David Miliband, secretary of state for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, launching the government’s first experiment with wikis, only for the move to be scrapped after the “accidental or malicious editing or removal of material” by pranksters.
But the wiki is now open again, albeit with tighter moderation and registration policies, and Miliband has promised to continue testing new ways to engage with the public via the web.
We talked to him to find out more...