Doubleclick's two year stock history is a classic Internet rags-to-riches-to-rags story. Starting at $4, the stock hit a peak of 135 1/4 before falling to today's close at 21 3/16. The impetus was Yahoo's quarterly earnings report -- though revenues beat forcasts, advertisers are actually down on the site, 3,450, from 3,675 in 2000Q2. "Pure play" Internet advertisers remain 40% of Yahoo's revenues, a number that troubles analysts.
"Even at Yahoo's level, the visibility on the advertising outlook is not that great so I think while their numbers for the third quarter seemed quite good, it's the outlook that matters," said David Doft, an analyst at ING Barings.
For years, Jakob Nielsen has been saying that Internet advertising doesn't work -- though he acknowledges that the Web is a powerful commercial medium when used in other ways, particularly for classified ads. His column turned three years old last month.
Empowering technologies such as Junkbuster allow users to selectively allow or block ads from given sites. Is the day of the banner numbered?