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(April 19, 2001) Earthweb is officially changing its name to DICE reflecting the fact that DICE constitutes 90% of the company's revenue.
The name change is consistent with the Company's exclusive focus on its core online Information Technology (IT) career services, which include dice.com, the leading nationwide job site for IT professionals, and MeasureUp, a leading provider of preparation products for IT professional certifications. In December 2000, the Company completed its strategic transition to an IT career solutions company through the sale of certain content business assets (including earthweb.com) to internet.com Corporation.

Almost by accident, that makes one more publicly traded job board. We think that the announcement is important because it focuses attention on the fact that Job Boards and career development operations, far from being drowned in the downturn, are prospering. Earthweb simply made business decisions based on revenue.

We fondly remember the DICE of old. Started in the founders bedroom with a computer and a half dozen modems, DICE is under credited with the breakthroughs it made in the early years. But, that's not the DICE of today, it's a distant relative.

Today's DICE is a vibrant company that demonstrates the value of an employment based advertising revenue stream to a content provider. Given its emphasis on credentialing and the legendary loyalty of DICE members, it looks like a healthy competitor for many of the credentials oriented competitors.

We've said, all along, that employment related revenues are going to be the cash cow of the internet. Given skills shortages, permanent labor shortages and the pervasive nature of the web, it's only natural that the market will migrate into home based career management. The simpletons who believe that the field can be dominated by one or two national brands simply haven't thought hard enough. The DICE announcement will be seen as a turning point in our industry.

High flying dot-coms, fresh from a squeezing, are beginning to understand business fundamentals. The newspapers, who have long downgraded the status of their classified advertising sections, won't be far behind.

All of this bodes well for our long time favorite, CareerCast. Recently, other people have begun reporting their quiet but important successes. The way we read the tea leaves, online Recruiting is entering a powerful second phase of development.

- John Sumser © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.

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