Black Dotcom Shake-up

Many Internet start-ups that gambled on a big payoff are now rolling snake-eyes

Cooper. “Large, branded companies, although they have the name recognition, tend to have blind spots and aren’t able to move as quickly to address changes.”

The shakeout of black dotcoms isn’t just an issue of content versus commerce. It’s a question of market savvy-and common sense. In the age of Internet economics, the “if you build it, they will come” mentality no longer applies. “There’s likely to be further carnage in the space,” says Cooper. “Sites that have the ability to preserve their cash and grow their audience are the ones that will survive.”

STATUS OF BLACK-FOCUSED WEBSITES

SITE

LAUNCH DATE

STATUS

VISITS PER MONTH

africana.com January 1999 Acquired by Time Warner in September 2000; will be part of AOL site 575,000
afronet.com 1995 Black-owned 436,000
blackfamilies.com January 1999 Owned by Cox Media; closed August 2000 NA
blackplanet.com September 1999 Produced by Community Connect, which also backs asianavenue.com 439,954*
blackvoices.com 1997 Produced by Tribune Co. 250,000
blackwebportal.com November 1999 Black-owned 138,810
blackworldtoday.com July 1996 Black-owned 300,000
netnoir.com June 1995 LIGN=”TOP”>Black-owned; AOL holds 15% stake 250,000**
ubo.net July 2000 Black-owned; Privately held 500,000
blackenterprise.com January 1996 Black-owned 500,000
bet.com August 1999 Black-owned; partnered with Microsoft, USA Networks, News Corp., and Liberty Digital 800,000
ebony.com February 1997 Black-owned 72,487***
essence.com Late 1995 Black-owned; 77,656***
In partnership with Time Inc. publications
Except where noted, numbers were provided by the companies.
* Media Metrix rating **Unique Visitors per month ***DoubleClick DART
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