Just when you thought it was all doom and gloom for internet publishers, some good news from teen music site Popworld (www.popworld.co.uk). The online offering is taking its blend of news, reviews, features and gossip into print by teaming up with The Mail on Sunday to offer a free magazine called Popworld. The move is the latest by an online publisher to get a footing in print. Earlier this year, celebrity site PeopleNews was said to be venturing into print as well as TV, and last year internet provider Madasafish produced a lifestyle magazine in association with Future Publishing.
ITV is now redirecting users from its itv.co.uk site to the new itv.com main site. The move comes as news supplier ITN is to provide a rolling news service on the ITV offering. Meanwhile, ITN has decided to enhance its own website by offering more audio and video to users. For the past year, ITN has showcased its talents by broadcasting its News Channel live on the web. The quality of this has been impressive and gives a pointer to what the future of online news could be.
Wellbeing, the health site backed by Boots and Granada (www.wellbeing.com), is to start providing content for MSN’s own health channel. The move will allow Wellbeing to become a premier provider to Microsoft’s popular portal.
Despite its US parent filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, Excite UK, owned by Excite and BT, continues to expand its portal by teaming up with Virgin Radio. The move will allow Excite to offer the Virgin station to its users, which on reflection sounds good but, in reality, Virgin Radio listeners are more likely to go straight to Virgin’s own offering. A few years ago, it was thought that sites should have as much content and services as possible and that the sheer ‘stickiness’ of content would mean users staying much longer. Of course, the end result in most cases is that when people find out where the content they enjoy comes from, they will end up with that supplier direct.
Users of Sky Active digital service will soon be able to access their Yahoo! mail accounts directly on TV. Currently, Sky has a deal where people can open and access the BT-backed Talk 21 web-based e-mail service. Now, Sky is to allow access to the Yahoo! service. As someone who has used Yahoo! since it started, I think it has always proved to be one of the more reliable free web-based e-mail services, with some very useful functions, such as being able to send auto-reply messages.