This came across my virtual desk yesterday. I find it most interesting
and think it has some thought-provoking implications.
Date: Wed, 17 Jan 1996 22:36:38 -0800 (PST)
From: "Maurice A.Mines" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: netnews (fwd)
---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Wed, 17 Jan 1996 13:11:11 -0800
From: Joe Usenet <news@news>
From: email@example.com (NB / MSP)
Subject: ****Nearly 20% Surf The Web Without Graphics - Study 01/17/96
Keywords: Bureau-MSP, Online & Internet
Organization: Copyright 1996 by Newsbytes News Network
Date: Wed, 17 Jan 1996 12:40:42 PST
NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK, U.S.A., 1996 JAN 17 (NB) -- When people
"surf the Web," nearly one-fifth do so with either their graphics
capabilities turned off, or with non-graphical browsers, a study
from the people who are behind the Jumbo Internet World Wide Web site
said. This could mean a serious problem for Web advertisers who use
"graphical banners" for their ads, Jumbo officials said.
For the study, Jumbo used a special software program to measure
users who were not using graphics when they visited Jumbo's Web site,
which contains more than 64,000 shareware programs. Jumbo officials
said this is the first time any hard numbers have been available
regarding non-graphical Web surfers.
While about 20 percent didn't have graphics on while visiting the
Jumbo site, a Jumbo official said that number might even be low on
other sites, especially those that are viewed by Web users as slow
and graphically intense. Plus, a lot of the time "you've already seen
the graphics" at particular sites, Jumbo Project Manager Dick Firestone
told Newsbytes, "so you don't need to see them again. What you're
looking for is speed, and graphics slow you down."
If Jumbo's study results can be translated to the Web in general,
"This means out of 10 million Web users, two million aren't using
graphics," Firestone said. Because of the findings, Jumbo has lowered
its advertising rates because "it's impossible to get the same ad
impact you get with full graphics versus no graphics."
There is one way around the graphics/no graphics problem, Firestone
said -- a command in hypertext markup language (HTML -- the "language"
of the Web) called "ALT." With ALT, Web programmers can make text
appear in place of a graphical ad that can not only be the same size
as the original, but can even contain additional copy, Firestone said.
Jumbo's own site is located on the Web at http://www.jumbo.com/ . The
company is also making available the measuring program it used for its
own site. The software is called "GraphicTrak," and it is available, at
no charge, directly from Jumbo's homepage.
"Now that the problem is out in the open and now that the software is
available, media directors will be insisting on reports from every Web
site on which they advertise regarding the percentage of users browsing
without graphics," Firestone said. "It'll be an eye-opener."
(Bob Woods/19960117/Press Contact: Ellen Sanders, Poppe Tyson,
201-539-0300 ext 215)
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