The Buzz: February 25, 2002

By eweek  |  Posted 2002-02-25

Traffic Spikes After Scandal

The skating scandal at the Winter Olympic Games may have given the event another black eye, but it was a boon to Web sites covering the Games.

According to a preliminary study by WebHancer, traffic at Sports Illustrateds site jumped 106 percent the day after the skating scandal erupted. Traffic rose 70 percent at and 37 percent at www., the Games official site.

The only oddball in the pack was ESPNs site, which didnt see a peak in traffic until six days later, on Feb. 18.

WebHancer is scheduled to issue a full report on the four Web sites this week.

Feds Probing CA Books

U.S. investigators reportedly are looking at accounting practices at Computer Associates, but the computer company said late last week it had no knowledge of an investigation.

New York newspapers reported that the FBI, Securities and Exchange Commission, and U.S. attorneys office were launching a probe of the company, news of which sent CAs share prices plummeting.

In response to the reports, CA said in a statement, "The reporting of our financial results has always been in accordance with all applicable accounting principles. If there are questions, we look forward to being contacted and to having the opportunity to defend against hearsay and what we believe will prove to be unwarranted concerns."

The SEC would not confirm or deny such an investigation, a spokesman said.

Investors Boost Travel Sites

Online travel sites may be struggling, but some investors still believe in them.

Last week, USA Networks, which already has controlling interest in Expedia, bought $47 million more in shares. After the purchase, USA Networks will hold almost 65 percent of Expedias shares. Expedia said it will use the money to clear some debt from its $52 million acquisition of Classic Custom Vacations.

In addition, Sabre Holdings said it was seeking to buy all outstanding shares of for about $345 million. Sabre already owns 70 percent of Travelocity.

Rocket Fuel