Labour taps Experian for e-mail campaigns

The Labour Party has appointed credit reference agency Experian to create a direct marketing campaign that will rely in part on e-mail.

The effort will reportedly see Experian create, build and manage a database of UK voters for use in permission-based e-mail and marketing campaigns.

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AdMob seeks distribution with WordPress plugin

Mobile advertising network AdMob is trying to prise a route into the mobile blog ad space, having released a plugin that converts WordPress blogs for mobile devices.

dotMobi developer Andy Moore wrote a WordPress extension that converts posts written in the popular blog platform to display styles suitable for phones and PDAs.


Businesses warned to wait for Second Life opportunities

Eighty percent of businesses will have a presence in a virtual world, says a new Gartner report that otherwise heaps suspicion on the value of Second Life e-commerce.

The tech research firm advises businesses to "limit substantial financial investments until the environments stabilise and mature".


SpinVox co-founder explains voice-to-blog service

SpinVox is a UK company which provides a range of voice-to-text services, primarily its Spin my Vmail service, which converts voicemails into text messages.

Spin my Blog, which SpinVox launched earlier this year, uses the company's patented Voice Message Conversion System (VMCS) to allow bloggers to post articles from their phones.


Fashion - The Final Frontier

I speak to lots of fashion retailers and find that many remain unconvinced that there is a robust case to invest in a transactional website for their business.

I realise this is an anathema to E-consultancy regulars, but the fact is that, if a well-established offline retailer looks at a potential e-commerce channel as a standalone business, the case can look less than compelling.


Intel strikes AdWords branding deal

Google has entered a partnership with the world's biggest microchip supplier that will give computer makers and resellers of Intel machines access to a special search advertising platform.

CNET reports the companies are embarking on a "co-marketing initiative" that will give PC industry clients a one-stop-shop ad buying dashboard.


Amazon to offer music downloads?

Amazon looks to be taking on Apple's iTunes by opening its own music download store, with rumours suggesting the service will be DRM-free.

According to The Independent, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has been in discussions with the four major labels to persuade them to allow their music to be sold without DRM protection.


Five reasons why you should embrace Usability

An investment in usability - optimising the user experience on your website - is a smart move to make, as outlined in our new Usability Business Case report.

Whether you hire a usability agency to look at your website's usability, or choose to undertake usability studies in-house, enhancing your site can deliver a massive return on investment.


Malware threat doubles over last year

Figures from web security firm Sophos show that the number of new pieces of malicious software have more than doubled in Q1 2007 compared to the same period in 2006.

In Q1 2007, Sophos identified 23,864 new malware threats, compared to 9,450 in Q1 2006. On a more positive note, the percentage of infected email has dropped from 1.3% in Q1 2006, to just 0.4 this year.

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36% of Americans regularly consult Wikipedia

A study from the Pew Center for the American Life Project has revealed that, despite questions over the accuracy of some of its entries, the online encyclopedia remains a popular source of information.

36% of US internet users consult Wikipedia regularly, which equates to 8% of the total US population. The survey also found that the site is most popular among the well educated, and college students.


WPP eyes 24/7 Real Media but faces stiff competition

WPP is reportedly discussing a takeover of 24/7 Real Media – although it is only one of a number of suitors we understand to be encircling the online ad company.

The New York Post reports that 24/7 is 'on the auction block' and could end up fetching more than $600m, with WPP already in talks.


VC tech startup firm YEurope launches

YEurope, a venture capital firm which specialises in working with early stage European tech startups, officially launched this week.

Despite the similarity of the name and homepage slide show, YEurope is not to be confused with YCombinator, a company which provides the same service in the US. According to the home page, the site is 'inspired by, but not affiliated with YCombinator.'