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CNET Networks Innovates With New Advertising Opportunities In Newly Designed Sites

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SAN FRANCISCO, February 5, 2001 – CNET Networks, Inc. (Nasdaq: CNET), the global source of technology and commerce-related information, data, exchanges and services, today announced that it is launching newly designed Web sites and advertising formats across its online network to take advantage of the tremendous marketing power inherent in the medium. Debuting simultaneously on the award-winning CNET and ZDNet News Web sites, as well as five of CNET Networks’ international sites, the descriptive, user-initiated messaging units represent a creative leap-forward in offering greatly enhanced opportunities for marketers to connect and communicate with their audiences.

“Individuals and businesses around the world continue to have an enormous and ever-growing appetite for the Internet and the way it makes decision-making easier. We are now entering the next phase of digital marketing, in which marketers will be able to leverage this medium’s unique ability to reach targeted audiences with deep, substantive information,” said Shelby Bonnie, Chairman and CEO of CNET Networks, Inc. “The advertising initiatives we have produced also offer the immediacy, interactivity and contextual transaction capabilities that fulfill the Internet’s promise. Being able to efficiently target customers, build brand and provide commerce in a contextual way – all at once – is quite an opportunity, and we are pleased to announce that top advertisers and publishers share our enthusiasm about it.”

Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL), Broadbase, IBM, Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, Nextel, PeopleSoft, Sun Microsystems and Visual Insights are among the initial wave of marketers taking advantage of the opportunity. In addition, online publishers such as New York Times Digital have indicated they plan to adopt the new formats.

“Oracle is always looking for better ways to reach web-savvy decision-makers,” said Mark Jarvis, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at Oracle Corp. “With CNET’s new Messaging Plus offering, we now have the space and creative freedom to reach our target audience with a strong and clear message outlining the benefits of e-business.”

“CNET’s new advertising opportunities are opening new creative doors for agencies,” said Nasreen Madhany, WorldWide Media Director, OgilvyOne. “Taking advantage of the new space and the rich media, we are able to truly convey our clients’ key messages to an influential audience and expect to get great results.”

To make the ad-viewing experience as clean and inviting as possible, only one advertisement will appear on each news page. Recent research conducted for CNET Networks by demonstrated that users spent more time with the new ads, liked them better, and were more likely to remember the brand than with conventional ads. In fact, for the Messaging Plus unit, brand recall was as much as 3X higher than for conventional banners.

CNET Networks’ power as a top technology buying resource for businesses is underscored by third party research. According to Nielsen//NetRatings, CNET Networks’ sites provide advertisers access to the most influential buyers on the Web. In December, CNET Networks reached 44 percent of professionals in the MIS/technical universe*, and 25 percent of all executives and managers or professionals with business purchase decision-making power*, according to a Nielsen//NetRatings custom report.

Tower Board, Leader Board and Messaging Plus will be introduced on the newly redesigned CNET ( and ZDNet News ( sites. The two award-winning sites have been retooled to speed navigation and page loading, thus emphasizing the high volume of breaking news stories and special reports. The Messaging Plus units will also appear on five of ZDNet’s International sites: UK, France, Germany, Asia, and Australia. CNET will introduce the units as relevant across its global Web network in the coming year.

In a separate announcement today, CNET Networks said it was forming an European Sales Network organization, through which it will introduce the advantages of cross-border advertising to its European customers. Working with their local CNET Networks advertising account managers, customers will be able to advertise on ZDNet or brands in North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia. CNET Networks plans to expand the global advertising sales network in phases during the next year.

For more information on these new online advertising units, please call: Bettina Fischmann, 415 551-4883. For an interactive demonstration of the new online advertising units, please visit:

CNET Networks, Inc. (Nasdaq: CNET), is the global source of technology and commerce-related information, data, exchanges and services. As a top 10 Internet company with established Web sites in 25 countries and 16 languages, CNET Networks connects buyers, sellers and suppliers throughout the IT supply chain with award-winning content via the Web, wireless devices, television, radio and print. Its respected brand portfolio includes CNET, ZDNet, mySimon,, Computer Shopper magazine, and CNET Radio, as well as CNET Channel Services, including CNET Data Services, CNET Media Services and ChannelOnline. The company’s vision is to educate and empower people and businesses by unlocking the potential of the technology world to make things easier and faster, and by helping them make smarter buying decisions.

*Who are active online at work.

CNET Networks, Inc. Contacts:
Blaise Simpson
VP Corporate Communications

Genevieve Cowger
PR Manager

Robert Borchert
VP Investor Relations

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