DC Net campaigners seek measurement standards

WASHINGTON, DC: Accurately measuring the use and effectiveness of a given Web site has, so far, proven an incredibly frustrating task, especially in the political arena. To combat this, a DC-based association representing professional Internet campaigners is seeking to develop stronger standards for the industry, which has too often taken on the feel of the Wild West.

WASHINGTON, DC: Accurately measuring the use and effectiveness of a given Web site has, so far, proven an incredibly frustrating task, especially in the political arena. To combat this, a DC-based association representing professional Internet campaigners is seeking to develop stronger standards for the industry, which has too often taken on the feel of the Wild West.

WASHINGTON, DC: Accurately measuring the use and effectiveness of a

given Web site has, so far, proven an incredibly frustrating task,

especially in the political arena. To combat this, a DC-based

association representing professional Internet campaigners is seeking to

develop stronger standards for the industry, which has too often taken

on the feel of the Wild West.



Phil Attey, director of the Communications and Policy Technology Network

(CAPTN), said that his goal is to present a more accurate picture of

site usage and measurement.



’We’d like to come up with a document that says ’this is how comparisons

(of Web use) should be made,’’ he explained.



Leading the effort to determine better standards are two notable

veterans of Web political wars: Robert Arena of Presage Communications,

who played a key role in the Web efforts of Bob Dole’s 1996 presidential

campaign; and Jonah Seiger, now with Internet Campaigns, who was a

leader in the battle to overturn the Communications Decency Act.



Attey is hoping to promote ’conversion rate’ - the rate at which unique

visitors to a site take a suggested form of action - as the means of

judging a site’s true effectiveness, rather than by ’hits’ (the number

of times a site is visited) or ’page views’ (the number of pages opened

by site visitors).



Another problem that Attey is hoping to attack is the reporting of

online fund-raising. Some campaigners have questioned the veracity of

the online fund-raising successes of their opponents - for instance,

they wonder if online dollars were raised with an assist from

telemarketing or direct mail efforts.



CAPTN will host a summit in May to discuss better means of accounting

for e-mails from constituents.



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