However tough it is to return from vacation, it's tougher still to return to an e-mail in-box filled with hundreds, or even thousands, of messages that have piled up in your absence.
Americans spent considerably more of their holiday shopping budgets online this year, according to preliminary reports from web merchants and internet traffic measurement firms. In the first six weeks of the holiday season, which spans November and December, shoppers spent an estimated $16.7 billion online, according to a report by Goldman Sachs, Nielsen/NetRatings and Harris Interactive. Overall spending was up 28 percent from a year ago, based on survey data.
The Air Force has launched an instant messaging service for enlisted people stationed abroad to communicate with their families and loved ones.
America Online is betting on the "network effect," audience growth and broadband-oriented content and ads, as it engineers a comeback within the advertising community in the coming year. "Our big goal for next year, really, is to continue to expand the audience of AOL and AOL Inc.," said Mike Kelly, president of AOL Media Networks. "Our ability to succeed with advertising is much more dependant on our audience and not so dependant on our subscriber count."
Netflix Inc will not cut its price for online DVD rentals to match lower fees set on Wednesday by rival Blockbuster Inc. in an escalating battle for online subscribers, Netflix Chief Executive Reed Hastings said.
Marketers usually try to slip their names into every conceivable venue - like cellphone screens, bathroom posters and TV shows via product placement. But there are times when an ad that almost disguises its sponsor can be more effective.
A Scottish firm is looking to attract web surfers with a search engine that reads out results. Called Speegle, it has the look and feel of a normal search engine, with the added feature of being able to read out the results.
Wall Street is getting a version of Hokey Pokey Elmo, a chief executive who takes his subsidiaries in, then spins them back out. Barry Diller, the chairman and chief executive of IAC/InterActiveCorp, said yesterday that his Internet conglomerate would spin off its travel unit to shareholders, slightly more than a year after completing the purchase of Expedia and several other online companies that it had partly owned.
A federal judge refused to accept a guilty plea Tuesday from a former America Online software engineer accused of stealing 92 million e-mail addresses and selling them to spammers.
Interactive marketing agency Meandaur changed its name to Proceed Interactive. The Chicago company serves clients such as Omni Hotels, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, Choice Hotels International, Wells Fargo, General Motors Corp., Kaplan Learning's SCORE! Educational Centers and Great Expectations.