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April 17, 2014
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In celebration of our 10th Year, we take a look back at 10 Web moments that changed the world.

1

The Dotcom Boom and Bust (1995-2001)

Launched by Netscape's IPO, the Boom & Bust fast-tracked the Web

Webby Moment 1 Launched by Netscape's IPO in 1995, the dotcom boom spurred trillions of dollars in private investments into the Internet, new technologies, marketing, and fiber optic cable and led to the development of such landmark sites as Google. Though now often synonymous with failures like Pets.com and Boo.com, the dotcom boom and bust was critical to fast-tracking the spread and popularity of the Internet. In 1995, there were 16 million people online. Today, there are over 957 million.

2

The Drudge Report Breaks Lewinsky Scandal (1998)

Matt Drudge Scoops one of the decade's biggest stories

Webby Moment 1 The Drudge Report, a little-known, one-man news site, beat the mainstream media on one of the decade's biggest stories when it broke the Monica Lewinsky scandal online. The Drudge scoop paved the way for the blogging revolution and foreshadowed future online coups.

3

Amazon's Jeff Bezos Named Time's Man of the Year (December 1999)

1999 Was A Watershed Year for Online Commerce

Webby Moment 1 The 1999 holiday shopping season marked the turning point when consumers put aside their misgivings and embraced online shopping in a big way. Online retailers ended the year with a 50% increase in holiday sales and one of their own, Amazon's Jeff Bezos, was named Time's Man of the Year.

4

Elections Worldwide (2004)

Howard Dean Revolutionizes Politics

Webby Moment 1 From Ukraine's Orange Revolution, where the Internet and cell phones were used to circumvent state-run media and mobilize massive protests, to Howard Dean's groundbreaking use of the Internet to engage voters and raise millions, the web decentralized the political process in 2004, giving democracy around the world a much-needed shot in the arm.

5

September 11th (2001)

Millions of Americans Turn to the Internet for Information About the Tragedies

Webby Moment 1

Photo by Jackie Fritsche

Modern global conflicts are defined by the medium that documents them: WW2 through radio; Vietnam through TV; and the first Gulf War through 24-hour cable news. For the Internet, it was September 11, 2001. In historic numbers, citizens worldwide turned to email and the web to reach loved ones, follow the unfolding crisis, grieve, mobilize, and monitor the world's reaction.

6

Asian Tsunami (2005)

Citizens Journalists Are the First on the Scene to Document the Tsunami

Webby Moment 1 With news agencies racing to reach the hardest hit areas, the first accounts of the disaster were largely provided by ordinary people armed only with digital cameras and internet access. The 7/7 London terror attacks and Hurricane Katrina, further spurred the ascension of "citizen journalism" which can sometimes be more immediate, passionate, and illuminating than professional reporting.

7

Napster Shut Down (July 2001)

Court Ruling Spurs Innovation and New Business Models

Webby Moment 1 Although the original services was shut down by the courts in 2001, Napster opened the file-sharing floodgates, turning the entertainment industry on its head, sparking innovations from BitTorrent to iTunes, and forever changing how we experience music and film.

8

Live 8 on AOL (July 2005)

Internet Coverage Of Global Concert Bests Television's

Webby Moment 1 AOL bested TV at its game with its groundbreaking coverage of the worldwide Live 8 concerts. With more than 5 million people tuning into the online coverage, Live 8 represented the Web's evolution from amusing novelty (Mahir's I Kiss You and The Dancing Baby) to a powerful entertainment medium.

9

Match.com Booms (2002)

The Web Becomes the Primary Means for Making Connections

Webby Moment 1 From 2001 to 2002, Match.com experienced an over 175% increase in both members and revenue, proving that online dating had become an accepted fact of life for singles worldwide. With the 2002 launch of social networking communities like Friendster - and later MySpace - and the global expansion of Craigslist, the Web became the primary means for making connections for everything from love and friendship to jobs and apartments.

10

SARS Virus Discovered Online (2003)

Web Plays Central Role in Research to Discover SARS Virus

Webby Moment 1 When the fatal new disease first broke and traveling was restricted, the World Health Organization (WHO) used the Web to connect scientists from 14 countries, who worked in real-time to share data and test results, ultimately discovering the virus in one month. On a different scale, sites like Wikipedia and Flickr demonstrate how strangers around the world now use the Web to collaborate on projects both big and small.

© 2007 The Webby Awards, All Rights Reserved