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DIY super boom… Facebook time-waster… Content deal from Google… Bebo big in Britain… Adver-tainment

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DIY super boom

By 2021, do-it-yourself super funds will account for a third of the super industry, which is predicted to quadruple to $4.1 trillion, according to actuaries Trowbridge Deloitte.

The firm’s projections to 2021, reported in The Australian Financial Review, suggest that industry funds will be the fastest growing sector of the pre-retirement industry, rising to $787 billion of assets, accounting for more than a quarter of total assets.

The total retail sector will narrowly lead the industry funds with $883 billion in assets. DIY funds will see explosive growth in their post-retirement funds, with more than $100 billion alone going into pension-paying mode in the next five years.

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Facebook a big time waster

If you thought staff were wasting time on personal emails, consider how much time is being frittered away on Facebook.

Richard Cullen of SurfControl, an internet filtering company, estimates the site may be costing Australian businesses $5 billion a year. “Our analysis shows that Facebook is the new, and costly, time-waster,” he told the Sydney Morning Herald.

Cullen’s report calculates that if an employee spends an hour each day on Facebook, it costs the company more than $6200 a year.

Some companies have got smart to the potential of Facebook and locked their employees out. It might be a good idea for security too. There’s a fear that Facebook could make you vulnerable to hackers.

Have you blocked access to social networking sites for your staff? Is it a good idea, or will they resent you for it? Send your thoughts to [email protected]

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Google backs new online content

Online search giant Google has announced a deal that will begin to play a role in context production, Variety magazine reports.

Google has announced a deal with film-financier Media Rights Capital to fund original video content, which Google will syndicate across the web. The videos will be embedded on web sites as free, ad-supported streams.

One of the projects to be funded will be new work by the creator of the popular cartoon Family Guy.

Media Rights Capital is expected to announce other original-content deals with web syndicators in the months ahead.

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Bebo wins in Britain

Online social network Bebo.com became the most visited social-networking site in Britain in July, beating MySpace, according to a comScore study reported in Marketing Charts.

Bebo attracted 10.6 million unique visitors, 63% more than at the start of the year, of British traffic in July to a selection of leading social-networking sites. News Corporation’s MySpace.com had a 25% increase in traffic over the same period to reach 10.1 million unique visitors.

Coming fast from the back of the pack is Facebook, which grew a whopping 366% in July; although with 7.6 million unique visitors it still has a way to go until it hits the front.

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Online adver-tainment

Websites where online video adverts are the content are becoming increasingly popular, according to the New York Times.

For example, veryfunnyads.com, a website dedicated to humorous and creative ads, has delivered more than 63 million video clip views since its introduction last August.

“It’s a very straightforward premise: You’re going to have a funny experience, and you’re going to have it every 30 seconds,” says Ken Schwab, senior vice president for programming at the TBS network, which owns veryfunnyads.com.

A new advert based concept on the horizon is honeyshed.com, which aspires to be the MTV of online video ads by targeting young people with product information in the form of entertaining video clips rather than traditional commercials. The clips will run two to three minutes and be presented by hosts in categories like cars, clothing or computers.

Another ad-driven site on the way is didja.com, which will be a website that will include commercials and movie trailers as well as features like social networking and tools that would let visitors make ads of their own.

However, responses to an adweek.com survey suggest that advertising as entertainment is still a work in progress, with 13% agreeing that they are a “great fit for the current pop culture”, compared to 43% who think they are “too limited and doomed to fail”.

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