Discussion in 'other software & services' started by Smokey, Sep 21, 2002.

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  1. Smokey

    Smokey Registered Member

    Apr 1, 2002
    Annie's Pub

    Sources familiar with the situation say that unless a last minute snag occurs, CNet's popular software portal is slated for an overhaul on Monday. The "new" would employ a pay-for-placement model, similar to one the advertising firm Overture currently utilizes through its partners. essentially acts as a clearinghouse for software downloads covering virtually every type of program. Presently, the property has a pay-for-placement product that it markets as its Elite Listing Program, but a source says the new model will be the "[the Elite Listing program] on steroids."

    A CNet spokesperson offered Dotcom Scoop a simple no comment.

    CNet, according to a source, approached Yahoo about a possible partnership for the new, but was apparently rebuffed. The theory behind the Yahoo partnership was to put in more direct competition with Digital River, an e-commerce services provider which, among other solutions, enables software vendors to hock their wares via direct download.An overhaul of should bring cheers from Wall St. and jeers from the software community.

    Investors and analysts have pressured CNet to find and exploit additional revenue streams. But the company is saddled with bulky lease obligations and rumors of a potential pre-packaged, debt-dumping bankruptcy popped up last month. CNet watchers believe the company, even after a recent round of layoffs, needs to cut jobs.

    The software community would greet the move coldly. Independent vendors rely heavily on for both exposure and cost-containment (think bandwidth), and the pay-for-placement model certainly would give major software vendors a leg up on smaller companies.

    If my sources prove correct, the move is a good one. The costs associated with operating surely outweigh the benefits (i.e., revenue). While some may see as a public service, CNet has a responsibility to its shareholders to find the best way to monetize its properties and this is a good way to start. It should also be noted that some of the most popular software downloads on are products that have routinely been criticized for enabling the illegal distribution of copyrighted material and the movement of child porn. If indeed goes pay-for-placement, questions may arise as to how CNet handles these particular softwares.


    From the August 20, 2002 edition of Dotcom Scoop's Rumor Mongering: "Rumors cropped up last week that CNET was on the verge of filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. While the rumor got wider distribution thanks to carnally named website, it appears to have actually originated on stock message boards. One of CNET's problems, as pointed out by CBS MarketWatch's Bambi Francisco, is the company's $200 million in lease obligations. This is a problem that has doomed many companies in the post-punk new economy era. There are calls for the company to actually go into bankruptcy to restructure debt, ala Covad Communications. But I'm not sure that's likely. The company is on a cost-cutting binge and fellow journalists have expressed surprise at the enormous cuts made at the company's division. Somewhere between rumor and basic strategic advice is the concept of turning, CNET's software portal, into an Overture-esque rat race where vendors pay for top placement to hock their software to the public."

    Original article:
  2. Checkout

    Checkout Security Rhinoceros

    Feb 11, 2002
    An executive from CNET takes his wife to a swanky restaurant. The waiter comes over.

    "An, Monsieur Vulture, Madame Vulture! What would you like tonight? Perhaps Innocent Customer, as usual?"

    "Tonight's a special occasion - I slaughtered several of my peer VPs earlier today! What would you recommend, Henri Vulture?"

    "Without doubt, the finest dinner tonight is raw vulture. The chef, Claude Vulture, personally caught it himself - hovering over Wall Street, while looking for a victim."

    "Yum! We'll both have the same!"

    "Oh, pardonnez-moi...I will have to cancel your reservation and butcher you both. There's an executive from Microsoft at table five who has ordered you two for a dinner party."
  3. Primrose

    Primrose Registered Member

    Sep 21, 2002
    You are very cruel. :-* I took my husband to that same restaurant on his birthday last night for leg of BillyGoat and Yorkshire Pudding. All the Fort Knox mint sauce was gone. Next time I will use the dialer to phone ahead to make sure there is no lap dancing going on with all those VP's.
  4. Tinribs

    Tinribs Registered Member

    Mar 14, 2002
    The trouble with CNet is their terrible reviews of various software, not based on any thing that seems related to the real world, every review of theirs seems to contradict all the users opinions.

    Its probablt best I dont get started on this so I'll bow out now, but I will say that although they provide a decent enough service I wouldn't miss them if they dissapeared tomorrow (or tonight preferably) :)
  5. Randy_Bell

    Randy_Bell Registered Member

    May 24, 2002
    Santa Clara, CA
    If you're thinking about all the controversy surrounding their awarding NAV 2002 the Editor's Choice, along with their poor review of NOD32, then I agree, that has caused quite a stir in the security community.

    I do think some of their product reviews are helpful, though. Their evaluation of GetRight as the best downloader program was right on, IMHO.

    I guess I disagree: I think CNET Downloads still provides a very useful service; for one thing they consolidate all the most current product downloads in one place. I really like the CNET Catch-UP service too. :D
  6. luv2bsecure

    luv2bsecure Infrequent Poster

    Feb 9, 2002
    I thought I posted this once, but I guess I wrote it and walked away! :eek:

    I think ever since ZiffDavis and C/Net merged has gone downhill, as have the software reviews. Now, it's "pay for placement"o_O

    I have always thought IDG has a better product with PC World than any of the ZD magazines. More meat. The online download section is also excellent:,00.asp

    The main site for PC WORLD is also very good and IDG's site at:
    is also full of great news right on the front page - in fact - coincidentally, today re-publishing one of PC World's better articles on privacy.

    I used some - but check out PC WORLD'S download site - I like it better. For one thing, it has more independent analysis on any given file you are downloading than just comments from the developers.

    Take care!

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