FutureWire - futurism and emerging technology

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Blogs, Wikis, Social Networks Driving Web Growth

Yahoo and Google may still be the big dogs of the Web, but plenty of powerful upstarts are nipping at their tails. While Yahoo remains the Web's biggest brand (115 million unique visitors as of February, according to a recent ComScore Media Metrix survey), it saw a modest 5% growth rate from the previous year (in line with overall growth in Internet traffic). Growth at MSN and AOL was virtually stagnant, while eBay traffic actually fell 3% from 2005.

So where are all the netizens? They're visiting blogs, wikis, online communities and social networks. According to ComScore, the web properties enjoying the greatest growth from 2005 are:

  1. Blogger.com (528%)

  2. MySpace (318%)

  3. Wikipedia (275%)

  4. Citysearch (185%)

  5. Whitepages.com (60%)

"The growth in blogging reminds us the Internet is fulfilling its original promise about participation," said Gary Arlen, a research analyst and president of Arlen Communications Inc. "This medium empowers users in such a way that they can do what they want and be heard." Experts also note greater interest in local search, as more small businesses and local groups go online.

However, growth can be a dual edged sword, as increased traffic to MySpace and Wikipedia may be attributable in part to controversies associated with those sites.

Source: Washington Post