Internet: History of a Business

Internet is that medio, absolutely democratic, that has been with us for a very short time, but it has revolutionized the way of we communicating, informing and, ultimately, relating.

In the beginning, the Network was a means of military communication, but soon the possibilities it posed turned it into something else…

A little history

Until 1990, the Internet was controlled by the United States government, the agency that controlled the Network was the N.S.F., acronym for the National Science Foundation, a non-profit organization. The Internet was developed by the US-funded research agency ARPA (Advance Research Projets Agency) in the sixties of the twentieth century. Until that moment, advertising obviously does not exist on the Internet due to that governmental and foundational character on which it is based.


But it is at the beginning of the nineties of the twentieth century when, both the European Union and the United States, begin to perceive the potential and possibilities that the environment offers. Although the first advertising incursion would come from the «innocent» hand of two Internet users.

The First Internet Advertising

Martha Siegel and Laurence Carter have the «honor» of being the first people to launch the first advertisement with advertising content on the Web. Both were members of a company that provided legal services.

Based in Phoenix, one day they sent a message offering their immigration services to some 5,000,000 newsgroups on the Internet. Around 20,000 people responded by requesting information when they were interested. More than 30,000 people showed their rejection frontally.

Advertising, they understood, had no place in that medium. When the first death threats began to arrive, the lawyers left the Network. They never sent messages of that type again.

The Banner, an Imperishable Presence

A banner, or «active link» as it is also known, is the closest thing to a traditional ad as we all understand and see in any publication published on paper, on posters in the streets or on large banners that decorate the margins of the roads. Since the birth of the sandwich man or long before, at the beginning of advertising, as we read in our pages.

For the History of the Internet, the first banner was introduced by the Hot Wired advertising magazine, Web of the Wired paper publication. It happened in October 1994.

In the year 2000, according to a survey on advertising on the Web, an eloquent data was offered: 60% of the published Web pages contained banners.

The «Clic», a Billionaire Invention

In the recent History of Internet advertising, visitors’ visits to different advertising spaces are measured in different ways. One of the most common formulas is the famous «click» on a link.

When the user clicks on the link and visits the sponsor behind him, the announcement has fulfilled its mission.

Procter & Gamble was the first company to put this formula into practice, when in April 1996 it signed an agreement with Yahoo! which stipulated that it would be paid based on the clicks made by Internet users and not on the CPM (Cost per thousand impressions, that is, for every thousand times seen an ad) as it had been doing so far. During that year Procter & Gamble invested more than eight million dollars in Web advertising in this way.

Some curiosities

The World Wide Web is not the same as the Internet, as we all know. The second includes email, forums, newsgroups and the Internet. While the World Wide Web comprises the millions of websites that exist.

The Internet is, in reality, the set of standards (or TCP / IP protocols) through which a network of two computers can exchange information with each other. TCP / IP protocols are extended by computers all over our planet allowing them to speak the same language and, therefore, communicate.

Every day many pages suffer the attack of «hackers», which at the beginning of existing Internet were called «black hats». The first attacks were suffered by the Labor Party of the United Kingdom, whose leaders saw their photographs changed to cartoons.

The first criticisms of Internet advertising

Yahoo! It was one of the first companies attacked because of the advertising included in its pages, and perhaps also because it was one of the first «giants» on the World Wide Web, when there was no Google. The first attack they suffered resulted in the mass sending of messages to their email accounts, using very sophisticated response programs. This attack produced serious economic losses for the US company.

As a curiosity, it should be noted that in 1995, Microsoft spokesmen described the World Wide Web as a «playground,» in textual words.

They had not yet created the Internet Explorer browser. In the company they thought that this Internet was going to be a minority thing. According to some studies, 40% of the sites created on the Web are abandoned a year later, generally due to lack of financial income.

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