... worth noting 20.6.03



:: Matchmaking Web site DatingDirect.com and women's portal handbag.com have signed a three-year extension to their partnership.

:: Google has re-launched the AdSense text ad server system it bought earlier this year and added a self-service option that enables publishers to pick the ads they want to run on their Site. Publishers are able to apply online to access the service, which provides them with the option of running either two horizontal advertisements at the top of a page, in place of a banner, or up to five advertisements per side bar, in the 'skyscraper' position.

:: DSL network operator Bulldog Communications has unveiled an ultra-fast 6Mbps broadband offering called PrimeTime 6000. Apparently, PrimeTime 6000 is now the UK's fastest DSL product for the home - it's roughly 12 times faster than standard 512Kbps services. The service is available immediately on Bulldog's central London network of 35 exchanges, and will cost £99.99 (excl VAT) per month.

:: Red Fig has extended its relationship with the BBC by creating an interactive platform for the Sunday morning 'Heaven & Earth' show. The move means that from late-June, viewers will be able to involve themselves directly with the live show's content via fixed or mobile phone as well as email.

:: Microsoft has attracted 50,000 European customers to its Xbox Live online gaming service, just three months after its launch. This is quite some feat considering the company has just 20 Xbox Live games available in Europe.

:: Digital music firm Roxio has raised $22m (£13m) through a private placement of 4m shares, ahead of its planned re-launch of Napster later this year. Roxio plans to use Pressplay to serve as the foundation for the launch of a new legal online music service under the Napster brand.

:: PS2 gamers have been told that they need to purchase a £100 router in order to play online over a BT line. Gamers had previously believed that they simply needed to buy the PS2 network adapter, priced at £24.99, as well as an online compatible game for about £50 to begin playing against other gamers over the Internet. But BT has announced that gamers will have to make a separate purchase of a router appropriate to their broadband service. Ironically the £100 BT router will take the total cost of hooking up to the high-speed Internet for online play to about £175 - more than the retail value of a new PS2!