Aardvark
7am launches "slowly"
Copyright © 1996 to Bruce Simpson

In distinct contrast to the recent fanfare surrounding the full-on launch of the Clear and NBR sites, 7am, New Zealand's first Web-only daily newspaper, slips quietly onto the scene this morning.

Without the luxury of six or seven-figure development and marketing budgets, 7am starts what will be an "incremental" launch, with the first phase being the announcement of its News Ticker service.

The News Ticker is a Java applet which will carry regularly updated news headlines from the 7am news database. Other sites on the web are invited to incorporate the 7am ticker to their own pages at no charge as a way of adding some diverse content.

Bruce Simpson, publisher and developer of the 7am concept and technology says "This news ticker service is, as far as I am aware, unique to 7am. It creates a link directly between the internet user and our news database". Eventually we'll be running multiple ticker 'channels' and other organisations will be able to buy access to create their own ticker services" says Simpson. "Information providers and marketing people are starting to realise that you've got to take your message out to the masses rather than waiting for them to come to you - and a ticker service is just one way to get a foot in the door so to speak".

The ticker is deliberately small and unobtrusive so as to easily fit into the design of almost any web page - I think you can expect to see a lot of similar 'broadcast' mechanisms appearing on the web soon".

Unlike the many other news-tickers which litter the Net, the 7am version can be added to anyone's web page by including just three extra lines of HTML code - yet it provides visitors to that site with information which is always fresh. If you go to CNN you'll see a similar ticker - but you can't put it on your own page."

As well as the News Ticker service, 7am starts off today with a single-page of regularly updated news-headlines but will be adding a large amount of other content over the coming days and weeks.

"Today is really more of a 'preview' day than a launch day" says Simpson, "there are no full-time staff behind 7am, it's a cooperative venture between a lot of contributors and it's going to take a while before everyone's totally up to speed. I suggest that people check in regularly. To use a Chris Tylerism, this site is going to start 'hauling ass' in the next week or so :-)".

Eagle-eyed readers will have noticed that the front-page of Aardvark Daily is now fitted with the 7am News Ticker


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