Australians flock online for Olympics update

Australian visits to local and global Olympics Web sites have risen by more than 450 percent between August 13 and 15, according to online competitive intelligence service provider Hitwise.Of the 50 Olympics Web sites visited by Australian Internet users for the week ending 14 August, the Seven Network's Athens 2004 Web site topped the chart with 39.

Australian visits to local and global Olympics Web sites have risen by more than 450 percent between August 13 and 15, according to online competitive intelligence service provider Hitwise.

Of the 50 Olympics Web sites visited by Australian Internet users for the week ending 14 August, the Seven Network's Athens 2004 Web site topped the chart with 39.6 percent followed by the IOC official Web site with 14.6 percent.

The official Web site of the Australian Olympic Committee came in third with 9.53 percent of the market.

According to Hitwise, on average, Australian Internet users are spending 9 minutes and 35 seconds on Olympics-related Web sites. This is one minute and 23 seconds longer than the average session duration of all Australian Internet users last week.

Only 20 percent of Australian Internet users who visited Olympic Web sites last week visited Australian sites. The most popular of these was the official Web site of the Australian Olympic Committee, representing 47 percent of all Australian visits to Australian Olympic related Web sites. Seven Network--Athens 2004 followed with 29 percent market share in the category.

An Olympics-related Web site which has increased in popularity is Gary The Lifeguard.com. The Web site is a comical site that promotes NBC's online coverage of the Olympics. It features the adventures of Gary, a comedic personality who interferes with Olympics events.

Hitwise spokesperson Tessa Court said that although they cannot reveal which ISPs were used as data sources, she can assure that they have a "geographically and demographically representative sample of ISP partners, who represent tier 1, 2 and 3 ISP's."

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