The portals' battle for the start

The portals' battle for the start

Summary: Will ninemsn and Yahoo7 maintain their dominance in the fight for the share of our internet time? Will they continue to adapt and survive?


Will ninemsn and Yahoo7 maintain their dominance in the fight for the share of our internet time?

Their early life was helped by free web mail and messenger applications. Today there's a wider choice of quality internet content and, of course, Google now dominates the search market. People have been predicting the demise of these portals for many years now, yet they continue to hold their own. Will they continue to adapt and survive?

In this week's Twisted Wire Phil Dobbie discovers that being the start-point of the internet journey is still considered important, at least for Yahoo7 whose strategy is to grow search traffic in competition to Google. Then there's the influence of video. As we consume more video online is this a help or a hindrance for the portals, with their network TV associations?

In this half-hour podcast you'll hear the view of:

  • John Butterworth, CEO of the Australian Interactive Media Industry Association
  • Tony Faure, ex-CEO of ninemsn and Yahoo
  • Rohan Lund, the current CEO of Yahoo7
  • Alan Long, Asia Pacific research director for Hitwise
  • Richard Lord, chief marketing officer at Hyro

What do you think? Is the future of ninemsn one of opportunity or threat? Leave your comments in the Talkback section below.

Topics: Google, Broadband, Browser, Enterprise 2.0


Phil Dobbie has a wealth of radio and business experience. He started his career in commercial radio in the UK and, since coming to Australia in 1991, has held senior marketing and management roles with Telstra, OzEmail, the British Tourist Authority and other telecommunications, media, travel and advertising businesses.

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • The TV channels don't seem to have much content

    A lot is made of the ability of the TV channels to deliver content to the web. However last time I looked at the FTA networks most of the content was coming from the USA or England.

    The FTA channels are largely distribution focussed and not creatively focussed. i.e. most of them outsource the bulk of the production. So I just can't see where this content is coming from. Once you move the distribution to the web the advantage the stations have i.e. the government only gave away a number of licenses, goes away and it's anyones game.
  • NineMSN totally useless

    Wouldn't give you tuppence for ninemsn. Couple of times I have tried to read a news item and the whole screen just gets covered with an ad. If I am interested I will look at an ad, I will not tolerate being forced to. The site is just far too slow to load, even in hotmail. You have to continually wait for ads to load before your mail box refreshes. Total lack of usability so I don't and won't waste my time with it.
  • google

    You mentioned google a lot, but brushed over the fact that they have their very own portal product which is my personal preference :-) that being igoogle.

    Their approach is to not provide any content at all and let you choose everything, including your own rss feeds. I have a tab for podcasts and twisted wire is one of the feeds on there
  • Good on you

    Yes, I was going to touch on personalised portals. Yahoo have had one for a while too, of course - not with the same flexibility of iGoogle in terms of RSS feeds - and Tony Faure said his belief was that people want content ordered for them. Take-up of MyYahoo was very slight, he said. But yes, iGoogle presents another challenge for ninemsn and Yahoo if they want to be the start of the Internet journey for more people.