Aardvark Daily aardvark (ard'-vark) a controversial animal with a long probing nose used for sniffing out the facts and stimulating thought and discussion.

NZ's leading source of Net-Industry news and commentary since 1995
Australasia's "New Economy" News And Commentary Site
Headlines | XML feed | Contact | New Sites | Press Bin | Job Centre | News Search | For Sale
Note: This column represents the opinions of the writer and as such, is not represented as fact
Pigs Can't Fly 6 November 2001 Edition
Previous Edition

Million $ Ideas
At last, the contents of Aardvark's "million-dollar ideas" notebook are revealed for all to see!
Click To See
According to the NZ Herald this morning (see headlines below), the future of NZ's most hyped online retailer -- Flying Pig hangs in the balance.

Nobody I've spoken to in the past few days seems surprised that the site may be headed for the knackers' yard, and regular readers will recall that I was strongly critical of the "me too -- let's copy Amazon.com" strategy adopted by its founders.

Actually, I guess that me-too approach has probably been part of its potential undoing.

Need Cutting-Edge Copy?
As NZ's longest-running online commentator, I'm looking for extra syndication opportunities for this daily publication -- or I'm happy to write casual or regular material specifically to order for print or Net-based publications. If you're interested, drop me a line

CNet today reports (see headlines below) that Amazon.com is starting to slide backwards in terms of its ranking in the online bookselling marketplace and that can't be good news for the Pig's prospects.

To be honest, online retailing (with only a few noteable exceptions) seems to have been a bit of a bust -- particularly here in New Zealand.

Many of the companies that once spent tens or hundreds of millions building "online shopping experiences" are now little more than a memory.

Readers Say
(updated hourly)
  • Online Retail... - Tim
  • Flying Pig is Rubbish... - Camryn
  • Have Your Say

    So is online retail a lame idea -- or is it just that the vast majority of players got the formula wrong?

    I don't profess to have all the answers, but I do know that those operators who are actually spinning a profit tend to be smaller operators.

    Hell, even my own little online retail operation selling pulsejets (order now for Christmas ;-) is doing a roaring trade and must be the most cost-effective way anyone could sell such esoteric products.

    Amongst the profitable operators, a high percentage appear to be companies that are using the web to sell their own products (like me) rather than those who are trying to be pure retailers buying and selling other people's products.

    Of course there are exceptions to that rule, such as NZ's own Cranium Music which operates as a pure retailer -- but once again tends to deal in product of a more esoteric nature.

    I don't expect the larger "pure" online e-tailers to make profits any time soon. They simply have too many overheads and face too much competition (as Amazon have discovered).

    However, if you're selling Biafran nose-flutes to a small, dedicated, and geographically dispersed group of collectors and players then an online store is probably just what the doctor ordered.

    Save The Aardvark Fund
    Yes, I have had several donations to the Aardvark fund and I thank those who put their money where their mouse is :-)

    If guilt is gnawing away inside you then there's still time to donate.

    Just drop by and hand over your loot.

    Free News Syndicated From 7amNews.com
    Add it to your own site


    Add Aardvark To Your Own Website!
    Got a moment? Want a little extra fresh content for your own website or page?

    Just add a couple of lines of JavaScript to your pages and you can get a free summary of Aardvark's daily commentary -- automatically updated each and every week-day.

    Aardvark also makes a summary of this daily column available via XML using the RSS format. More details can be found here.

    Contact me if you decide to use either of these feeds and have any problems.

    Did you tell someone else about Aardvark today? If not then do it now!

    There are new Vacancies Last added 2 Oct In The Job Centre

    There are 14 Domain Names for sale

    Security Alerts
    New vulnerability exposes Excel and PowerPoint macros ZDNet - 29/10/2001)

    Microsoft tightens software security (CNet - 16/08/2001t)

    Code Red Worm A 'Runaway Success' (7amNews - 20/07/2001)

    Solaris bug gives hackers free rein (ZDNet - 22/06/2001)

    Virus Alerts
    Tripple-threat Worm Strikes (Aardvark - 19/09/2001)

    New worm spreading slowly (CNet - 4/09/2001)

    Trojan horse breaks Windows PCs (ZDNet - 24/08/2001)

    Bookmark This Page Now!


    NZL Sites
    NZ Netguide
    NZ Herald Tech
    PC World NZ
    NZOOM Technology

    AUS Sites
    Fairfax IT
    Australian IT
    AFR Tech
    AUS Netguide
    NineMSN Tech
    APC Magazine

    USA Sites
    CNNfn Tech
    Yahoo Tech
    ZDNet Tech
    USA Today Tech
    7am.com SciTech

    UK Sites
    The Register
    BBC SciTech


    The Day's Top News
    Open in New Window = open in new window
    New Zealand

    Open in New Window Noon deadline for FlyingPig
    One of New Zealand's biggest internet retailers, FlyingPig, is fighting for its life, with its main creditor threatening to pull the plug on the service by noon today...
    NZ Herald

    Open in New Window Cake swallows Genie
    Auckland software company Genie Systems has been sold to a mystery Australian buyer. The deal was signed last week, following the company going into receivership on October 1...


    Open in New Window Massachusetts Official Opposes Microsoft Settlement
    The Massachusetts attorney general said he would not support the federal government's antitrust settlement with Microsoft Corp. because the deal will allow the software giant to crush its competitors...

    Open in New Window Amazon suffers setback in books
    The e-tailer loses ground in the business it was built for. The squeeze couldn't come at a worse time...

    Open in New Window Adult Web Sites Pay $30 Mln to Settle Fraud Charges
    The operators of www.playgirl.com and several other Web sites offering adult-oriented agreed to pay $30 million to settle charges that they illegally billed thousands of customers for what were advertised as free services...

    Open in New Window Ferreting Out Virus 'DNA'
    Computer viruses have DNA, just like humans do. At least, that's the theory behind a new program that prevents the spread of computer trashers...

    Open in New Window The Tiniest Dots on the Web
    Web users will never need to go to, say, amazon.bv or wired.sj. Yet, those top-level domains exist. What for, and why?...


    Open in New Window Salaries plummet
    THE golden days of big salaries in the IT industry are over, with new hires starting at up to 25 per cent less than a year ago and incentives such as sign-on bonuses abandoned, a survey finds...
    Australian IT

    Open in New Window Australian firms rush domain names
    More than 40,000 Australian businesses have lodged applications for the new dot.biz domain names, which are due to go live tomorrow after a month of delays...


    Open in New Window Beware the Internet tax man
    After years of largely unregulated commerce, Internet retailers and consumers are hearing a dreaded message: Beware the tax man...

    Open in New Window UK Govt wobbles on support for broadband
    The Government's commitment to broadband has been called into question following remarks made by the e-envoy at the CBI conference today...
    The Register

    Open in New Window Sun: Free Java for Windows XP
    Sun Microsystems announced plans Monday to make its new Java Virtual Machine for Microsoft's Windows XP available as a free download...

    Open in New Window Are Europe's Dot-Coms About To Crumble?
    In general, dot-coms developed slower and later in Europe than in the U.S., and have therefore been able to learn from the U.S. experience...

    Open in New Window Whither the Broadband Revolution?
    Broadband use is slowing down just as entertainment subscription services are set to launch. Without high-speed networks, the future of online entertainment is in trouble...

    Looking For More News or Information?

    Search WWW Search Aardvark
    Try the Aardvark News Search page or look here.co.nz

    Privacy Policy | Copyright © 2001, Bruce Simpson, free republication rights available on request

    jet engine page