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ZD NET CELEBRATES FIVE YEARS OF SUCCESS IN SUBSCRIPTION ONLINE SERVICES

 Reviews Its History of Building Online Communities


CAMBRIDGE, Mass., April 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Underscoring its unmatched experience in electronic publishing and online community building, ZD Net today is celebrating the fifth anniversary of its namesake brand, ZD Net. On April 1, 1991, Ziff-Davis took a bold step by launching ZD Net (then called ZiffNet) as one of the first subscription-based special- interest online services. ZD Net now is the most successful service of its kind in the world, with almost 300,000 subscribers through CompuServe, and an audience of more than one million more people each month for its services on the World Wide Web, America Online, the Microsoft Network and Prodigy.

The ZD Net success formula is based on fulfilling its mission to provide the most comprehensive computing information wherever end-users prefer to obtain it. While each ZD Net service has its own voice, all have access to the wealth of Ziff-Davis news, features, product reviews and columns generated by Ziff-Davis' army of more than 500 full-time editors and reporters. To this content, ZD Net adds a robust selection of services, such as its top-ranking shareware library with 10,000 tested and reviewed titles, the ZD Net Personal View personalized news service, a technology trade show calendar, online chats and events, and searchable access to Ziff-Davis archives. ZD Net organizes tens of thousands of pages of information into easy-to-navigate, visually appealing communities that enable users to find what they're looking for within a few mouse clicks.

"This date marks an important milestone in ZD Net's history," said Jim Savage, vice president and general manager, ZD Net. "In 1991, our division was founded to be a profitable provider of quality computing information for the online community. Our early experience in building a successful online business model has enabled us to quickly adapt to the revolutionary change created by the growth of the World Wide Web. Now, we are sustained by both our subscription service on CompuServe and our enormously successful Web and online advertising program. We have become the industry expert in creating vibrant, community-focused, and continually updated services that provide users with breaking news, downloadable software, live discussions, searchable archives, and much more."

Ziff-Davis began its venture into electronic publishing in 1985 with a bulletin board system for readers of PC Magazine, the market's largest computer publication in circulation. That bulletin board evolved in 1988 to become PC MagNet on CompuServe, which quickly grew in popularity. In 1991, Ziff-Davis created the ZD Net subscription service on CompuServe to provide an umbrella service supporting online versions of all its publications. Today, members of the ZD Net/CompuServe edition enjoy access to several exclusive features, including ZD Net University series of comprehensive online "continuing education" courses, sophisticated online forums with top industry personalities, a comprehensive database of past Ziff-Davis articles, and exclusive shareware giveaways. To celebrate its fifth-year anniversary, the ZD Net/CompuServe Edition is offering users a free "Celebration" screen saver.

ZD Net is leading the market as a profitable business venture. In addition to its successful CompuServe subscription service, the ZD Net/World Wide Web Edition (http://www.zdnet.com), which logs access by more than 700,000 unique Internet hosts each month, is the second- highest grossing advertising site on the Web, according to SIMBA, an interactive market research firm. New advertising opportunities were recently added to ZD Net's program, including offerings for the new ZD Net/AOL consumer-focused edition, the ZD Net Software Library on the Web site, the new Yahoo! Internet Life online publication, online versions of eight Ziff-Davis European publications, and a package tailored for non-computer advertisers.

ZD Net has received several prestigious industry awards, most recently the USA Today Online "Hot Site" award for the ZD Net Software Library on the Web. Other recent awards include nine four-star ratings from the popular Magellan Web directory, five top ratings from MCI/News Corp.'s iGuide Web site, the 1995 GNN "Best of the Net" award in Computing, and a nomination for the Software Publishers Association's "Codie" awards.

ZD Net

Cambridge, Mass.-based ZD Net, which is now part of Ziff-Davis Publishing's new Interactive Media and Development group, is the creator and developer of the award-winning ZD Net brand, the most trusted source of computing news, buying information and services on the World Wide Web (http://www.zdnet.com) and all leading commercial online services. ZD Net products provide a central online hub for the wealth of computer information generated by the renowned editorial staffs at all Ziff-Davis publications.

ZD Net works with online editors at Ziff-Davis publications to tailor and adapt Ziff-Davis editorial content for the various ZD Net audiences on the Web, America Online, CompuServe, Prodigy and The Microsoft Network. The company also develops the innovative interactive features and services that characterize all ZD Net editions, and oversees the design of each edition, organizing thousands of pages of information into communities that are visually appealing and easy-to- navigate. More than 700,000 unique users visit the advertiser-supported ZD Net Web site each month, and nearly 300,000 members subscribe to online editions, making ZD Net the fifth-largest commercial online service.

Ziff-Davis is the leading publisher of computer magazines and online computing content. The company was recently acquired by SOFTBANK Corporation of Japan.

NOTE: ZD Net is a trademark of Ziff-Davis Publishing. All other product and service names may be trademarks and/or service marks of their respective owners.
 -0- 4/1/96


/CONTACT: Martha Papalia of ZD Net, 617-225-3340 or martha_papalia@zd.com, or Nola Armijo of The Jona Group, 415-552-1515 or nola@jonagroup.com/

CO: Ziff-Davis Publishing; ZD Net ST: Massachusetts IN: CPR PUB SU:

SB -- NEM025 -- 5273 04/01/96 11:47 EST
COPYRIGHT 1996 PR Newswire Association LLC
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Copyright 1996 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Apr 1, 1996
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