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Showing posts from 2007

Making India ready for web 2.0

Web 2.0, the term commonly used to herald the shift from producer-related content to user-generated or user-contributed content, among many other technological leaps, has been one of the core talk points of anyone related to the digital space. With the digital sector now covering Internet and even mobile, the buzzword has given rise to connotations like ‘Telephony 2.0’ and similar others, to indicate a shift towards the next generation of technology.

The rising popularity of blogs, podcasts, wikis, social networking sites, etc. has managed to raise a lot of attention from advertisers. The numerous options that have been thrown open with these developments are immense and unaccountable.

Arguably one of the early people to define Web 2.0, Tim O’Reilly, Founder and CEO, O’Reilly Media, Inc., explained the concept in numerous occasions with comprehensive articles citing specific features to identify a Web 2.0 website. In a compact definition in one of his online posts, he noted, “Web 2.0 is…

How to write a good blog

Blogging is all about writing. Writing is all about grammar, language, presentation, etc.

Given below are the golden rules for good riting:

The 19 Rules for good Riting:
Each pronoun agrees with their antecedent.
Just between you and I, case is important.
Verbs has to agree with their subject.
Watch out for irregular verbs which has cropped up into our language.
Don't use no double negatives.
A writer mustn't shift your point of view.
When dangling, don't use participles.
Join clauses good like a conjunction should.
And don't use conjunctions to start sentences.
Don't use a run-on sentence you got to punctuate it.
About sentence fragments.
In letters themes reports articles and stuff like that we use commas to keep strings apart.
Don't use commas, which aren't necessary.
Its important to use apostrophe's right.
Don't abbrev.
Check to see if you any words out.
In my opinion I think that the author when he is writing should not get into the habit of mak…

Photo of Chilled Beer Pub

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Hi,

This is a real picture taken in rural Bihar, India.





Cheers,

Santosh

13 Pillars for Internet Marketing

Hi,

This is wonderful piece of article I saw about Internet Marketing written by David Bain. Well The video download (Appx 2.15 hrs) costs about $127...

In case you have the inclination to know about Internet Marketing, and the monies, you could buy the same here.

The 13 Pillars - A Summary
The 13 Pillars of Internet Marketing gives you 2 ½ hours of video recorded live at a recent seminar in April 2007. It's jam packed with up-to-date information on how to run your own Internet marketing campaign as effectively as possible. But what exactly are the 13 Pillars?
Pillar #1: Website Design
• Simple coding you need to know
• How to appeal to search engines
• How to improve your search engine visitor click-through-rate
• How to structure your website navigation links
Pillar #2: Keyword Research
• What keyword phrases are
• How to research your keywords
• Where to position your keywords
• How to brainstorm 10 top keyword phrases for your business
Pillar #3: Blog Technology
• What a blog is and w…

Beautiful Vizag

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Visakhapatnam (aka Vizag) - is a place i grew up. Some of my best moments in life has been in this town. I just love this place. They say pics speaks a thousand words. See. and you too will fall in love with Vizag.

Santosh



The entry to Vizag port




Vizag Steel Plant at sunset



The tourism cottages at Rushikonda



Kailashgiri



Kailashgiri




Sea Vizag



Another view of the sea



View of the sea and beach from Kailashgiri




The fishing boats




The Borra caves



Borra Caves - Close to Araku Valley





Araku Valley - 110 Kms from Vizag



The Botanical Gardens - Araku Valley



Araku Valley - Pitcure for a Postcard.

Getting back at the telemarketers

Who has been spared so far by them? Not me. I get these calls almost everyday. Sometimes 2 to 3 calls from the same organization. They are the most impersonal and impolite people to call you. They are becoming parasites, who thrive on technology. The telemarketers call you - when you are at home - unwinding from a hard day's work, when you are driving, when you are in a meeting (most irritating), when you are at work... just about any time of the day or week.

The Do Not Call Registry by DoT is not effective. So what is the best you can do. The old adage - " If you can't beat them, Join them."

Amy S. Quinn had sent me this wonderful link. Check it out

" Flip the Script: 34 Scripts and Ideas for Getting Back at Telemarketers "


Cheers

10 Lessons for Marketers Using Viral Videos

In this Adage article, Kevin Nalts, explains how you can help your brand thrive online.

Online video is changing the way we market, and it requires skill sets they don't teach in business school (at least they didn't a decade ago, but now I'm dating myself). On one hand we have marketers believing their "unique selling proposition" is as interesting as the "Numa Numa" kid. On the other, we have today's ADHD-prone video viewers demanding short entertainment whether it is promotional or not. So the rules are fairly simple: Keep your promotion short, interesting, edgy and give us a surprise that makes us want to forward your clip. After all, it's not a "viral video" if nobody wants to share it.

Lesson one: Tap into the video community
We online-video creators and watchers are a community that's not shrinking and not growing slowly. Your customers are among us unless you're targeting the maybe 10%-20% of people that haven't watch…

Kerala Trip

All I wanted was 1 week of pure laziness. Do nothing and just while the time. But that was not to be :(

My trip to kerala was all about One Wedding and One Funeral.


I started from Bangalore to Palakkad on Nov 8. Left Bangalore around 4.30 AM. Took the inner ring road (Koramangala) and hit Hosur Road at Madivala. The road was busy even at that time. There was a huge traffic of trucks and lorries. It took about 45 mins to reach Hosur... Then the roads cleared :). The road from Hosur to Krishnagiri is excellent. From Krishnagiri, the road to Dharmapuri was bad in patches... but heck, you can still maintain 80-100 KMPH.

The hell started once we crossed Dharmapuri... till Toppur the roads are baad... (there is construction work on the National Highway)... and to make the matter worse... a looong line of traffic... i could see vehicles lined up upto 2 kms... it was crawling at snail pace...

Once off Toppur.. taking the right towards Mettur... it a beautiful drive, considering that you had bee…

Wishing you all a happy Diwali

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I am going to Kerala and the net connection would be intermittent... hence an advance Diwali wishes to all of you - Santosh






PS: Shall try and upload some photos from my visit to kerala soon

"Direct a movie" winner in BigAdda.com

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Filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar, who had recently created a community called ‘Direct a Movie’ on BigAdda.com to encourage the aspiring movie directors and script writers to share their videos and scripts on the social networking site, has selected Siddharth Sengupta as the next-gen director who will get an opportunity to work with Bhandarkar. According to BigAdda, the ‘Direct a Movie’ adda attracted 290 videos and scripts which were uploaded on the site from across the country.

More of this article read here

Online Diwali sales to zoom

Online shopping has come of age. Due to dearth of time and tedious ways of traditional shopping, customers are increasingly seeking the convenience of shopping from their home.

And this Diwali the online marketeers are busy wooing the 37 million strong Indian net users with festival packages and Maha Diwali sales.

According to a report by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IMAI), this Diwali the online sales are expected to go up by more than 100 per cent.

In 2006, online business conducted during Diwali was around Rs 115 crore which is expected to cross the Rs 250 crore mark this year, according to the report.

Even the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham) in its press release said e-shopping is a preferred mode this Diwali as it has already registered a growth of 40 per cent and is expected to register a growth of 130 per cent.

As per Assocham, more than 30 lakh consumers in order to avoid security threats and physical movement will be using internet for…

A Wonderful Message by George Carlin

I loved this piece. Hope you like it too.

Subject: A wonderful Message by George Carlin:


The paradox of our time in history is that we have
taller buildings but shorter tempers, wider Freeways ,
but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less,
we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and
smaller families, more conveniences, but less time. We
have more degrees but less sense, more knowledge, but
less judgment, more experts, yet more problems, more
medicine, but less wellness.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too
recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too
angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too
little, watch TV too much , and pray too seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our
values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate
too often.

We've learned how to make a living, but not a life.
We've added years to life not life to years. We've
been all the way to the moon and back, but have
trouble crossing the street to meet a new nei…

Marriages to be made on Mobile

Nokia today announced a tie-up with BharatMatrimony that will allow Nokia device owners in India to use their services through Nokia Catalogs, a mobile ‘shopping mall’ that offers a wide variety of content, applications and services on Nokia devices.

Murugavel Janakiraman, CEO, BharatMatrimony Group says "We at BharatMatrimony firmly believe in the power of technology and have been continuously innovating features to simplify the process of match making.

Through this collaboration with Nokia and Mobile2Win, we are happy to take our matrimony services into a new platform, thus benefiting customers on the move. This will also help us reach out to a wider audience."


For complete news go to ciol.com

Manage-Mentally 5

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Hi,

I had this interesting image forwarded to me. In Management paralence, I would say -" Blowing your air too much might put you in an akward position"

Enjoyyy!!

Santosh

SMS 2.0

People are so gung-ho about the Internet and the miniscule revenues it generates -2.5 Billion INR. Mobile on the other hand is having a phenomenal run in terms of their revenues apart from the core activities. VAS is pegged around 20 Billion INR.

There are about 32 Million Handsets in India that are GPRS/WAP enabled. About 1 Billion Page views happen through the mobile sets. The number of SMSes received for the Indian Idol Final is rumored around 40 Million.

But then, why is mobile advertising not taking off in India?

Is it because of TRAI regulation that you cannot push advertising? Or is it because the service providers feel that there are more monies in VAS for which the customer is willing to pay.

I am not aware of any campaign done through Mobile, in India, that has been effective or a case study spoken about in the industry circle.

At the most Mobile advertising has been stuck to things like Shortcode, SMS (taken from some unrelated database)… and yeah, couple of banner ads on Airte…

The Online World

The brilliance of online marketing is not the new technology developments that happens. It is the way you can go about doing the conventional things in a digital world. I mean look at all the marketing tools you had been using earlier... the same is adapted into the online sphere.

A marketing catalog - it became a website;
Mailers - EDMs
Retail shop - Online store
Display ads - banner ads
Telecalling - online chat

The best thing is the simplicity at which you can adapt it online. Who would have thought that Internet - what was considered a technology advancement would soon become a marketing advancement. Strange, but true.

I was reading an interesting article on the mini series on MySpace in imediaconnection:

"Roommates," an original web series designed to engage fans with the characters online and involve them in plot development, launches today on MySpaceTV, the video wing of the online community network. Ford Motor's 2008 Focus is sponsoring the content, which will run in t…

Paid Content in India

A recent IAMAI-IMRB survey on e-commerce in India reveals that in 2006-07, the online paid content subscription market was worth a mere Rs 20 crore, a fragment of the Rs 7,080 crore e-commerce market, which is made up of online travel, e-tailing, paid content subscription and digital download sites.

In a paid content or subscription model, a content owner provides consumers access to content for a subscription fee. In India, paid content subscriptions are offered across various categories like news, legal or financial information, online games, audio books or research reports.

For example, Indian Petro Group (IPG) is one such company that offers information related to the oil, gas, power and fertiliser sectors to its clients – ONGC, Lehman Brothers, KPMG and ABN Amro, among others – for a monthly subscription fee of $500 per month. Indian Petro Group owns sites such as Indianpetro.com, Energylineindia.com and Indianfertilizer.com.

Says Santanu Saikia, executive editor, IPG: “Paid content…

Small towns drive Internet boom in India

Internet usage in India has grown more than 11 times over the last seven years. The boom is being driven not by metros, but by smaller and non-metro towns, where the number of users has risen by a whopping 69 times and 33 times respectively since 2000.

The number of users has grown in all socio-economic categories, as well as in all metros and non-metro towns. In absolute terms, the top eight metros still have the largest numbers. However, the growth has been the fastest in the smaller and non-metro towns. In fact, small towns have the second largest number of total users after the top eight metros put together, where the total number has grown by just over five times.

These are the findings of an internet usage survey, done by the e-technology group of IMRB International. The I-Cube 2007 survey was conducted across 30 cities and towns covering 65,000 people.

The usage profile was prepared by studying active internet users, defined as those who accessed the internet at least once in the …

13 reasons why your facebook account will be disabled

Hi,

Thought I would share with you something I had read couple of days back.

I saw these 13 reasons your Facebook account will be disabled and
thought I'd share them with you for your consideration:

1. You didn't use your real name
2. You joined too many groups
3. You posted too many messages on a wall or in a group
4. You posted in too many groups, too many user's walls
5. You friended too many people
6. Your school/organization affiliation is doubtful
7. You're poking too many people
8. For advertising your app on wall posts
9. Using duplicate text in multiple messages
10. You are a cow, dog, or library
11. You are under eighteen years old
12. You wrote offensive content
13. You scraped information off Facebook

More details about the 13 reasons can be found on the original site, here:

Facebook
Santosh

On Indian Railways

It has been more than a year since I traveled by Indian Railways. Most of my travels now-a-days are on road (if I happen to go from Bangalore to my native place in Kerala) or by flight in case I need to travel far.

Couple of weeks back, I had one off work in Chennai. I had taken the same day return ticket for the Shatabdi Express from Bangalore-Chennai-Bangalore.

The train was scheduled to leave at 6.30 AM; and dot on time it left the platform 6 of Bangalore City Station. The Chair car was comfortable – the AC not too cold, soft carnatic music being played through the pipes.

The attendant was well dressed and presentable, something I never related to Indian Railways – where cleanliness is only for slogan purpose. Along with the welcome drink, I had the option to choose from 3 English Dailies. There was a public announcement mentioning the travel distance, the travel time, and the important stations in between; reminded me of the pilot in a plane giving out the temperature and altitude, a…

The Moving Target

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The customer is no longer a sitting duck. He is a moving target. In fact in today's digital world he is the hunter...


http://www.slideshare.net/guest379ed7/moving-target/1

Have a gllimpse in a day in the life of the Moving target

Cheers


| View | Upload your own

Why lie to Fly?

Hi...

Couple of days back, I had a bad experience on Flying in Jet Airways (Bangalore to Delhi)... It reminded me about another incident that happened to me about a year earlier with another Airlines - Kingfisher.

I had reached the Jet Airways counter at Bangalore Airport, and asked the customer service lady there to give me a window seat, as I wanted to take a quick nap during the flight. The lady mentioned that I was kind of late and there were no Window seats available and the only option was middle seats... Well, I cursed my luck and took the middle seat...

Once I boarded the flight, and saw there was a vacant window seat available next to me, I wondered how is it possible that the lady at the counter mentioned that there were no window seats available... when there was one next to me...(of all the rows in the plane:)

The other incident was with Kingfisher... I needed to reach Bangalore urgently. I went to the Hyderabad Airport, and asked at the Kingfisher counter, if there were ticke…

Digital Agencies in big Demand in India

This article appeared in exchange4media.com


Global media holding companies are making many statements on their plans for India. And what emerges from these statements is the serious intent to acquire digital agencies in India. The only problem is that even as media agencies are bullish about this, the hunt isn’t turning out to be as simple as it sounds.
Some of the recent international heads, who have unveiled their digital objectives in national and international interviews, include WPP’s Global Strategy Director Mark Read; Havas CEO Fernando Rodes Vila; Publicis Worldwide COO Robert Pinder; Aegis Media Asia CEO Richard Halmarick; IPG’s Steve Gatfield (CEO, Lowe Worldwide); and Omnicom Vice Chairman Michael Birkin.
Some of the recent initiatives seen on the digital front in India include Aegis Media announcing the launch of its digital arm, Isobar, in India by the year-end; Dentsu and ConnecTurf launching interactive joint venture ‘Clickstreamers’ that would provide Dentsu’s Indian clie…

The Juggernaut called Google

Hi,

I was just reading an article on the new ad agency that Google plans to launch. Got me thinking - The way this 10 year entity is going, it will soon encompass all that is digital and will change the way we consume this media.

What has Google done:

Google Search - The largest Search Engine
GMail - E Mail service provider
G Docs - Online collaborative documents
AdWords - PPC model
Google Ad Network - Large and still growing
Google Analytics - Web page analytical tool
Gtalk - Instant Messaging
Google SNS - Orkut

What Google is doing:

GPhone: Mobile Phone
Google Search on Mobile
Google Gadgets - Widgets
Google Ad Agency

These are some of the things that I can think about... Google wants to be in all the space that an online user is. What next is the question

Maybe Google will come up with a GPaper - that will replace newspaper. It would be a tablet, that will get updated with the current news. You can create your own format and the type of news you want. Soon it will be goodbye to the newspaper boys, …

Hutch is now Vodafone - Advertising

I was keenly waiting for the change of name advertising of Hutch to Vodafone. The Media and agency circles were abuzz with the media innovation of Roadblock on Star Network for 24 Hrs.

Well, honestly, I did not find any media innovation, except for the fact that the media agency has picked up all the available ad inventories for one day.

The creative was by any standard mediocre. Not an O&M ad...:(

Well it has been a long journey for this telcom service provider in India... from Max-Orange-Hutch-Vodafone.

I was disappointed. Hope they have some good digital innovation in terms of re-branding on the Internet and Mobile space

Cheers

Santosh

Google Creates Creative Lab; Launches Widget Ads

as appeared in Paidcontent.org
Andy Berndt, co-president of Ogilvy & Mather in New York, is departing the WPP Group agency after eight years to head up a new global marketing unit at Google (NSDQ: GOOG), AdAge reported. The new unit is described as a lab focusing on “innovation” and dedicated to finding ways advertisers, agencies and entertainment companies can intersect. Before his tenure at Ogilvy, Berndt helped create ads for Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) at Weiden & Kennedy. After that, he went to TBWA/Chiat/Day and was the account executive on Apple’s (NSDQ: AAPL) “Think Different” campaign. -- Adweek: Citing a Google representative, the new unit is called Google Creative Lab and Berndt will be its first managing director. As described in the Adweek article, Berndt will oversee the marketing of Google’s brand and services, and strike deals with agencies to use Google’s products as part of their campaigns. -- WSJ: Berndt’s hiring is likely to unnerve some on Madison Avenue, who…

IAMAI – Wake up and smell the coffee

I was there at Intercontinental, Delhi for the IAMAI summit. This is the first IAMAI summit I attended. My reaction – let us learn to brew the coffee, before we talk about smelling it.Maybe I am a die hard digital fan… following are some of my views on the seminar and a few thoughts on what we can do –1)If IAMAI is looking at being the torchbearer of the internet and digital marketing in India, then this seminar had to be an online seminar. You cannot tom-tom about the greatness of your convictions, unless you put it into practice. It would have been the first of its kind of seminar in India had the whole thing be conducted online.2)Digital Marketing is NOT Internet Marketing… please someone explain this FACT to the people who matter.3)If we are to address the core issues - Why is there no proper audit conducted on the websites? A Comscore or eABC audit would give credence to all what we say about impressions and unique visitors etc4)On creativity – we say this is the only audio visua…

Bitching about a Pitch

Hi..

Been a bad day so far....

Went for an 'integrated' pitch. The client is a FMCG major in India.

We had 3 concepts for digital. Unfortunately, we had only 10 Mins to go through our presentation.

Bad... people talk at length about the youth being online, social networking, IMs etc, etc, etc... but the majority for the focus of the advertising campaign is led offline - through print and TV. 10 Minutes for 3 concepts... I guess I need to master the art of Elevator Selling.

Can Online make a substantial impact on the marketers campaign focus?

What would it take to make the marketers and advertisers take note of the Internet, as a lead medium for their marketing strategy. A 100 Million users? or more specific and credible data on the demography, or maybe how they consume this medium.

I am searching for these answers... till then, I will think that Internet is a child of lesser god.

Started the week on a wrong note. Hope tomorrow is better.

Amen

Santosh

A Digital Strategy

Hi,

It is quite funny to know that though 'Digital' is the most happening thing in the advertising world... it is usually left at the end of the pitch. After hours of gazing at agency presentation, the facts, figures, research findings, and then the big Idea - how it looks on print and TV.... Internet/Digital marketing is left at the end.

Clients all want to be in the digital space.. Why ?? If it is an MNC - then their counterparts or parent company are doing a lot of great stuff on the Internet.. hence India should not be left behind. Or if it is an Indian company - they have to be online, because the companies in the west are online... and there should be some reason why they are online.

None of the clients, I have met, ever have a digital strategy in place... The whole digital presence, are offshoots of some tactic.. with minimal exposure on the Internet. It is funny to note - I had asked a client, during a presentation, what the company digital strategy was? the reply - "…

Mobile Ringtones Migrate to Full Track and Subscriptions: iSuppli

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Mobile music is emerging as a new revenue stream not just for mobile phone operators and handset manufacturers but also for companies involved in producing and distributing content for mobile phones. Initiated by the desire of users to personalize their ringtones and call back tones, the users' preferences are now shifting towards full track music, with Asia and Europe showing the fastest adoption of full track music among users.

Highlights of the report

* The mobile music market revenue is expected to grow from $7 billion (2006) to $15.7 billion (2010) with full track music download contributing nearly $5 billion to the total mobile music revenue.

* Users are migrating from polyphonic ringtones to ringtunes (real music tunes) in advanced countries while polyphonic ringtones are still growing in developing regions. iSuppli study projects that total polyphonic ringtones market will be reduced to just $1 billion by the year 2010.



* Mobile full track music downloads represent the greate…

Ad Networks

Advertising networks are ‘in’ thing. Everyone is talking about it. I have been reading news articles about Yahoo picking up stake in Tyroo. Komli starting a new ad network based on behavioral targeting. And Google ad network increasing its footprint in the Indian market.In India, like in many countries, it makes sense for the many small and medium publishers to be part of one or many ad networks, as it is an incremental revenue through banner advertising for them. I am told, that of the 250 crores of ad revenue, most of the revenue goes to the top 10 sites, and the remaining is split amongst the thousands of smaller sites.What is it in for the advertiser? A single window shop for him to reach out his target audience based on various select criterions. He can choose his ad display based on the type of website (Industry vertical), demographics, time of day and most importantly a single dashboard to check the campaign performance.Ad Network is basically an infomediary, which servers betw…

The rise of Social Networking Sites in India

If there is any revolution that is taking place in the India online space, it is the rise of Social Networking Sites (SNS)There is an explosion of users registering on the popular social networking sites. Orkut boasts of almost 8.5 Million users of Indian origin. Orkut had close to 7.2 Million unique visitors from India during June ’07. According to Comscore – during the same period Facebook had close to .78 Million unique visitors, and Myspace had close to .4 Million UV on their site. Our very own homegrown SNS like minglebox, bharatstudent.com, and yaari.com, has substantial usersThe number of Active Internet users in India is safely assumed at 22 Million. Would it mean that every 2nd Indian is having their profile in one of the popular Social Networking Sites?Internet is now no longer an information highway. It is becoming a platform for conversations. But the big question is how many are talking and how many are listening? We Indians by nature are very expressive people. We commun…

Tata Indicom broadband customer service sucks

God..

Today is the fifth day of my complain to Tata Indiacom - VSNL broadband guys, that my internet connection is not working...

They still say it is work in progress....

Their service sucks...sucks... and Sucks

I will change my ISP... in couple of months....

My only hope now is prayer :|

Santosh

Describe Internet in one word

Hi,

Been a while since I put some bytes in my blog. The reason being I was trying to squeeze the whole essence of the Internet into one word.

What is Internet?

Some of the thoughts I have when I say Internet is

Information
Entertainment
Connectivity
Quagmire
Puzzle

There are various words to describe the Internet... but the ONE perfect word still eludes me.

I guess we are so used to the Net, that we take things for granted. I have over 5000 mails in my gmail ID... i would have read about a quarter of them. The others I skip, or plan to read later...(which has not happen in the last couple of years)... but, what if, i lose all my mails? I never gave it a thought. I am sure neither would have you given a thought about it.

If you have any thought about how you would describe the Internet; please leave your comment

In the meantime, i shall explore more about this virtual reality.

Cheers

Santosh

Google Named Most Significant E-Biz Development

This news article appeared on webpronews


Google properties made up three of the top 10 most significant
e-commerce developments of the last decade, according the Software
& Information Industry Association.

The SIIA unveiled its top-ten list on the 10th anniversary of the
White House eCommerce Framework.

"Electronic commerce has provided a significant engine for the
growth of the global economy and has sparked the delivery of a
multitude of innovative products and services," said Ken Wasch,
President of SIIA. "These developments reflect the unique nature
of the Internet, which has allowed creativity, ingenuity and
entrepreneurship to flourish."

The Top Ten of the Last Ten Years

1. Google (1998): With a third of all Internet users searching on
Google, and half of Americans, the SIIA says the company "did more
to fundamentally change the way we use the Internet than any other
event in the last 10 years.
2. US Broadband penetration reaches 50% (2004): Until this happened
in 20…