Wednesday, December 2, 1998
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Internet Stocks: Poising For Critical Mass

The US stock market rose over 2000 points today on news that someone other than a robot or employee of Lycos had actually accessed the Lycos website and used the Lycos search engine to actually search for something on the so-called "world-wide web."

Lycos stock immediately shot up from $150 per share to over $500 per share, on the news, and all other internet-related stocks immediately followed suit, carrying the rest of the market with them.

Lycos also immediately doubled its advertising rate to its top 4 advertisers: Infoseek, Excite, Yahoo! and AOL who all, in turn, doubled their ad rates to Lycos and to each other.

"This is very exciting to see that an actual person is visiting the Lycos website and using our search engine to find his or her way around the vast complex of information masquerading as pornography, known as the internet," said Dick Lycos, president and CEO of Lycos, the #1 search engine on the net.

Previously, as with all other search engines and so-called "portal" sites, Lycos's 10 million visits per day were actually computer-generated by software running on a few dozen high-powered servers physically located somewhere in the Cayman Islands.

"This software," said industry analyst Dick Analyst, "generates searches forged as coming from different sites all over the world ostensibly looking up random words and word combinations chosen from random lists compiled by computer snooping devices from illicitly recorded telephone conversations involving sex, politics, technology, and just outright rank stupidity. Drunks and students and drunk students and student drunks are also hired to sit at boiler room terminals all over the world, continually hitting the Lycos site and occasionally even actually hitting one of the ad banners."

Lycos has yet to turn a profit -- as all its advertising revenue from Infoseek, Excite, Yahoo! and AOL must go to buy prime advertising for Lycos on other high traffic internet sites such as Infoseek, Excite, Yahoo!, and AOL -- but its total revenues have increased from $500 million last year to $2 billion this year, as have the total revenues of Infoseek, Excite, Yahoo! and AOL, all of whom have increased both their advertising fees and their advertising budgets by 300% in that time period.

"The appearance of an actual non-robot, non-paid user on Lycos," said Infoseek President Dick Infoseek, "indicates that we are now approaching critical mass and are poised to turn the corner into profitability."

"Other actual people will now follow this first actual person," interjected Dick Excite, President of Excite, "onto the internet, and into our vast web portal spaces, and then, eventually, one day, one of them will actually buy something from one of our e-commerce sites. And then maybe a few months later, maybe his brother or sister or college-age or collagen-age daughter will buy something, and then e-commerce will reach critical mass and we will be poised to turn the corner into profitability."

Dick Gartner, president of the Gartner group, predicted that e-commerce will increase by over 300% in the coming year at which point it will reach critical mass and turn the corner into profitability.

The Gartner Group is a high technology consulting firm specializing in taking a number, any number at all, and predicting a 300% increase in that number in the coming year, leading to the attainment of critical mass and a turn of the corner into profitability.

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Copyright (c) 1998 by HC