Napster spat raises profile and traffic of online music sites

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Online music sites enjoyed a surge in traffic and ad revenues in the week after a federal judge imposed an injunction on Napster, according to a study by AdRelevance, a division of Jupiter Media Metrix. Before the ruling, advertising at online music and streaming media sites such as Sonic.Net and AudioFind averaged $2 million; in the week after the injunction, that figure climbed to about $5 million, AdRelevance said.

The high traffic numbers lured new advertisers such as State Farm Insurance, Bonzi.com Software, Allstate Insurance Co., Network Solutions and Citicorp. However, the surge in revenues fell back after a federal appeals court suspended the injunction while Napster appeals. AdRelevance looked at 23 Web sites including Napster, Sonicnet.com and AudioFind. Sonicnet posted revenue gains of 25%, while ad interest in AudioFind jumped 95%.

Copyright September 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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