Shooting, Elway hit net pg.14

By: Joe Strupp Denver Web users go online in record numbers

Traffic at Denver-area newspaper Web sites hit record levels in the days following the high school shooting in nearby Littleton, Colo., and the retirement announcement expected from Denver Bronco's star John Elway.
"We are way off the charts," says Todd Engdahl, editor of "It was totally out of the norm."
Engdahl says The Denver Post's Web site, which normally records 200,000 page views daily and set its previous high of 350,000 following the Broncos Super Bowl win in January, recorded more than a million page views on April 21, the day after the shooting, its highest since launching in 1995.
On that day, had eight times as many page views as the prior Wednesday, Engdahl says. On Saturday, April 24, the day after the first Elway retirement announcements, the site had five times as much activity as the previous Saturday, he says.
"On most days, we update two or three times a day," Engdahl says. "Last week, we were updating five or six times a day."
At, the Internet home of the Denver Rocky Mountain News, Internet manager Wes Jackson was still tallying statistics last week, but he says the activity reached the point that ads had to be pulled for four hours the day after the shooting to allow for Internet users. "This is by far the busiest it has ever been," Jackson says. "At one point, we were updating every two to three minutes."
National news Web sites and saw the second most active days ever on their sites after the shooting. The most active day for both came on Sept. 11, 1998 with the online release of the Starr Report on President Clinton.
"Stories like Kosovo and the Colorado shooting take on a life of their own on the Web," says spokesman Ben Billingsley. "Everyday, the story has developed and people want more and more information and a chance to sound off, which means the chat rooms and bulletin boards are busier."
Billingsley says, which launched in 1996, had 1.4 million users on the day of the shooting, second only to the 1.9 million who logged on when the Starr Report came out.
At, spokesman Kerrin Roberts reports that the Web site had 32.3 million page views on the day after the shooting, second only to 34 million when the Starr Report went public. "As word spread during the work day, they came to the Web site to find out what was happening," Roberts says. "It was a big traffic day and a lot of information."
The week of April 19 to April 25 was the Web site's busiest ever with 159 million page views over seven days.
?(Editor & Publisher Web [Caption]
?(copyright: Editor & Publisher May 1, 1999) [Caption]


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