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NetRatings Daily Sydney Olympics Website Report

Contacts: Brian Milnes, ACNielsen eRatings.com
brian.milnes@eratings.com


Robert Mannion, Botica Conroy & Associates
robertm@bca.co.nz

Nielsen//NetRatings Launches Daily
Sydney Olympics Website Report

Web Olympics Index the First Global Monitor of Olympics Online Traffic

Auckland: September 13, 2000 – Nielsen//NetRatings, the fastest growing Internet audience measurement service in the world, today announced the launch of the first comprehensive daily global monitor of Internet traffic to websites covering the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. The service will begin reporting web traffic from the opening ceremony this Friday until after the close of the Olympics.

The Nielsen//NetRatings 'Web Olympics Index' will provide extensive daily reports of Internet traffic to key Olympics sites across 14 countries covering Asia Pacific, North America and Europe.

Announcing this ground-breaking service, ACNielsen eRatings.com president William Pulver said the Sydney 2000 Olympics would be the most watched sporting event in history and the first ‘Internet Olympics’.

“Because of the significant time difference between Australia and the major sporting nations of Europe and the Americas, we anticipate fans will generate an enormous level of web activity to obtain Olympic results and updates,” he said.

“There is huge international interest in the role the web will play in the Sydney Games because despite all the communications advances of the last few decades these Olympics will be the first broadcast via delayed transmission since 1960. In many cases, people will log on to the web rather than wait for the delayed broadcasts to be screened.

“As such, the Sydney 2000 Games represents a defining moment in the development of the Internet as a communication medium. The global interest in the Olympics provides the perfect platform for the web to showcase its ability to capture information and deliver it in real time direct to a worldwide audience.”

Just two days out from the Games’ opening, Nielsen//NetRatings data shows global web traffic surging to key sites. The number of unique visitors in Australia heading to the official IBM-hosted site www.Olympics.com has grown from 36,000 in May to almost 200,000 in August and page views have soared from 440,000 to over 4.4 million.

Similar spikes in web traffic are also occurring in other markets, particularly the US and UK. In the US, for instance, unique visitor numbers to the official Olympics site has hit 180,000 off a low base just a few weeks ago and that figure is expected to grow significantly once the Games begin later this week.

The Nielsen//NetRatings 'Web Olympics Index' will provide analysis of global web traffic to the official Olympics site, plus details on Net activity to a range of related sites including major broadcasters, sports portals, publications, Olympic sponsors and regional and international news sites.

In all, the 'Web Olympics Index' will report daily on the Internet activity of more than 165,000 panellists across more than 100 key sites in Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Finland, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Norway, Sweden, Singapore, UK and the USA.

“The sites will include the official TV networks such as the host broadcaster, the Seven TV Network in Australia and NBC in the US, a wide range of sport and news sites like ESPN and Sports Illustrated, national newspapers, portals carrying Olympics results and even ‘unofficial’ sites which might attract user interest,” Pulver said.

“Nielsen//NetRatings is the only service that can deliver comprehensive global data on Internet activity on such a scale within such a compressed timeframe. In most instances, we will be reporting web-related activity in relation to the Games even before the delayed television broadcasts go to air in the US.

“The global reach of the Nielsen//NetRatings service means that we can capture this information from web users in real time and provide analysis across a wide range of audience measurement criteria within hours.”

Pulver added the Sydney 2000 Olympics would reinforce the fact that the Internet was a borderless medium. “The Olympics will show how far the web has advanced in the last few years,” he said. “It will also offer Nielsen//NetRatings the ideal opportunity to demonstrate the global reach of its service and its ability to report data that cuts across geographic borders and time zones.”

The Nielsen//NetRatings Web Olympics Index
The Nielsen//NetRatings Web Olympics Index will measure online user activity from 14 countries at key Olympics and related sites during the Sydney Games from the opening on September 15 until early October. Data will be delivered on a daily and weekly basis across a number of key categories ranging from official sites to broadcast sites, news and information sites to portals.

About Nielsen//NetRatings
Through strategic partnerships between NetRatings, Nielsen Media Research and ACNielsen, the Nielsen//NetRatings audience measurement service collects real-time data from more than 165,000 Internet users around the world. These panels collectively represent the largest media research sample of Internet users in the industry. Nielsen//NetRatings uses unique technology capable of measuring both Internet use and advertising to provide the most timely, accurate and comprehensive Internet usage data and advertising information in the global marketplace.

Nielsen//NetRatings tracks the entire spectrum of Internet user behavior, leveraging proprietary data-collection technology from NetRatings, Nielsen Media Research's 50 years of expertise in research and audience measurement, and ACNielsen’s international leadership in offering market research information covering more than 100 countries. For more information, please visit www.nielsen-netratings.com.

About ACNielsen eRatings.com
ACNielsen eRatings.com is a venture between ACNielsen (NYSE: ART) and NetRatings Inc. (Nasdaq: NTRT). ACNielsen is the world's leading market research firm, offering measurement and analysis of marketplace dynamics, consumer attitudes and behavior, and new and traditional media in more than 100 countries, and NetRatings is the leading provider of Internet audience measurement technology and analysis. Through the Nielsen//NetRatings service, ACNielsen eRatings.com is creating the first global service for tracking audiences, advertising and user activity on the Internet in more than 30 countries worldwide.
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