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THE eGLOBAL REPORT – March 2000 [Review]

THE eGLOBAL REPORT – March 2000 [Review] – Product Information

Once in a great while a truly useful reference work happens to come across our desk, and this is one of those “happenstances”. — ‘The eGlobal Report’ is produced by eMarketer [e-land, inc.), a New York-based company specializing in business online via the Internet – the net marketplace – with reports on statistics, news, and information focusing on ecommerce [e-commerce]. ‘The eGlobal Report’ is an in-depth analysis of the World Wide Web, providing statistics, details, and analysis of “every corner and region on earth”. (We rather like the company’s motto “Transforming information into intelligence”. Sound familiar?) eMarketer’s methodology “… relies significantly on data compiled from other research.” The vast majority of comparative research data for this report was compiled from research sources released in the latter half of 1999 and the beginning of 2000. The eMarketer estimates and projections were formulated in January 2000 – making this report a very current and up-to-date reference tool. The company also provides an unusual caveat at the end of its report “… of course, no information source, not even one that aggregates data from other sources, can be perfect. There will be errors of omission here – relevant research studies, surveys and data points that should be reflected, but aren’t. In a few cases, too, because of inadequate or less-than-clear original source material, we may have inadvertently taken liberties with a researcher’s analysis or definitions, thus skewing some aspect of the findings or resulting in an apples to oranges comparison.” — That straightforward statement reflects that the data presented, in this reviewer’s opinion, is much more credible than many statistical and/or forecast reports that we have reviewed in the past. Additionally, the data presented in tables, charts, and graphs, and the eMarketer conclusions drawn (text) are considerably more credible due to the use of multiple [hundreds of] reputable international sources of information and data. The report provides a very comprehensive look at the Web. — Chapters include: Methodology; Overview – Globalization of the Web; North America: Losing Netcentricity; Western Europe: Upwardly Mobile; Eastern Europe and Russia: Internet? Nyet; Asia and the Pacific Rim: Great Leap Forward; Latin America: La eVida Loca; Africa: No IT in the Sahara; Middle East: Desert Blooms; and Appendices. — Unlike many other statistical reports, eMarketer defines a user as being (1) an adult 18+ and (2) “active” users defined as those who get online at least once per week for an hour or more. All currency data is in U.S. dollars. — In the report’s “Globalization” chapter, a section on Secure Servers notes the caveat we have often repeated dealing with the lack of encryption for security [transactions]. (There are usually two versions of encryption software for using SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) – one for export (40-bit) and one for domestic U.S. use (128-bit). The report notes that “Netcraft defines strong encryption as having a key length greater than 40 bits. A clever computer science student can easily break weak systems.” The Netcraft chart of servers with strong and weak encryption by country follows this statement. (Just because you see a Web site with the prefix “https” means absolutely nothing unless you check out the site security certificate – and many U.S. Web “secure” sites are only 40-bit.) — Both B2B (business-to-business) and B2C (business-to-consumer) topics are covered in the report. — Major hurdles that prevent more international use of the Internet is that it is English-language dominated. In India, for instance, there are 24 native languages, each spoken by a million or more persons. Although English is an important second language throughout Asia, much of the region’s population does not speak the language proficiently. In India, only 4% of the country’s population speaks proficient English. English [in India] is primarily used for national, political, and commercial communication among upper class citizens. In spite of the fact that India has made an increasingly known presence via the Internet, it is still available to only a select few in that country. Add to the language problem that telecommunications in many countries (especially when state owned) is either highly expensive – or nearly non-existent. While Latin America appears to be a big growth marketplace, China is equally Asia’s “wildcard”, according to the report. — March 2000. 278 pages. More than 350 charts and graphs. Price: $795. [Emarketer also provides a free weekly newsletter in addition to its reports covering all aspects of the Internet.] For further information contact: eMarketer, 821 Broadway, New York, NY 10003. Telephone: (877) 378-2871 [toll-free U.S. & Canada] or (212) 677-6300. Fax: (212) 777-1172. Email: sales@emarketer.com URL: http://www.emarketer.com — This is a highly useful reference work – not just for ecommerce, but for a myriad of Internet and online information industry applications both commercial and non-commercial. From this reviewer’s own first-hand knowledge and perspective of the Internet – it’s very much on target! — Very highly recommended! [RSH]

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