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Nielsen Online Names MSNBC Digital Network No. 1 News Site for Consumers; Over Past Year, Msnbc.Com Wins Top Ranking and Gains Market Share; CNN.Com Drops to Third Place

August 14, 2008

REDMOND, Wash., Aug. 14, 2008 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) — According to Nielsen Online, the MSNBC Digital Network (msnbc.com) is once again the number one Current Events and Global News site, attracting more than 37.5 million unique visitors in July. Following a record-breaking month in June, the MSNBC Digital Network’s unique visitors outpaced the CNN Digital Network (CNN.com) by 14% in July. The impressive surge in unique visitors represents a 44% increase for the MSNBC Digital Network year-over-year. During that same time period, the CNN Digital Network grew at industry pace (the total audience for Current Events and Global News grew 7%; CNN.com grew 11%) and dropped in rank from number one in November to number three in July.

The MSNBC Digital Network continues to experience skyrocketing growth in online video consumption. Nielsen Online’s VideoCensus ranked msnbc.com the news leader in online video. In the first quarter of 2008, msnbc.com was number one in monthly average video viewers and time spent per video viewer in the Current Events and Global News category. Despite CNN.com’s recent ad campaign in which they credit on-demand and live streaming videos as making CNN.com number one in Time Per Person, the fact is that msnbc.com topped CNN.com in average monthly time spent per video viewer by 18% — more than 5 minutes per viewer.**

The MSNBC Digital Network leads in category reach, capturing nearly 40% of the entire Current Events and Global News audience. While CNN.com gained 4% in year-over-year category reach, msnbc.com gained an astonishing 35%.* The MSNBC Digital Network’s consistent delivery of award-winning original content and its industry-leading video player, along with world-class content from NBC News and MSNBC Cable, play key roles in attracting and engaging more consumers than any other news site.

About msnbc.com

Msnbc.com delivers a fuller spectrum of news. Drawing on its award-winning original journalism, NBC News heritage, trusted sources and Microsoft’s advanced technologies, the site presents compelling, diverse and visually engaging stories on the consumer’s platform of choice. Based in Redmond, WA, msnbc.com is a joint venture of Microsoft (Nasdaq:MSFT) and NBC Universal (NYSE:GE).

    *Source: Nielsen Online, MSNBC Digital Network, July 2008    **Source: Nielsen Online, VideoCensus, MSNBC Digital Network, Average  January - March 2008 

This news release was distributed by PrimeNewswire, www.primenewswire.com

 CONTACT:  Msnbc.com           Media contact           Gina Stikes           212.664.7403           Gina.stikes@msnbc.com 



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