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About Us: A History

Digital Spy has come a long way since its inception over seven years ago...

January 17, 1999: DS first begins life as a single site, digiNEWS, focusing on news and rumours about Sky's recently-launched digital service.

November 1999: digiNEWS joins up with two similar sites, ONfaq and cablenews:uk, to form the digiNEWS Network. The family of sites tracks the development of the emerging digital TV platforms.

March 1, 2000: The first use of the Digital Spy brand is employed with the launch of the Digital Spy forums, which initially make use of UBB software.

April 3, 2000: A fourth network site, tv:uk, launches, with a remit covering broadcasting and programming news and features. The site expands over the following months to incorporate the related areas of soaps and reality TV shows. Work begins on a single site to unify the network content under one umbrella.

July 10, 2000: The network launches coverage of Channel 4's Big Brother through a dedicated spinoff site. Over the following years, the site - later rebranded DS:BB - grows to become the single biggest, non-C4 online destination for BB updates.

May 19, 2001: After a year in development, Digital Spy finally goes live at 7pm. The early content lineup has a heavy media focus, but also includes sections for UK and US television.

June 30, 2001: Digital Spy moves to its own dedicated server after two years on shared hosting.

August 15, 2001: Digital Spy is incorporated as a private limited company, comprising three directors and three shareholders.

November 26, 2001: Digital Spy buys its first server, "Dougal", with ISP services from Qix and location at Telehouse's Docklands facility.

January 13, 2002: The second version of the Digital Spy design goes live. New features include the controversial introduction of an image to the homepage for the first time and the launch of tailored sites for WAP phones and PDA devices.

March 27, 2002: Digital Spy enjoys its busiest ever day as a result of in-depth, breaking news coverage of the collapse of ITV Digital.

July 7, 2002: The soaps area switches from being a subsection of the television section to become a section in its own right. Over the following years the section expands to include a huge range of domestic and international soaps and drama series and currently (2006) ranks as Digital Spy's highest-rated section.

September 10, 2003: Auraplay is appointed as Digital Spy's dedicated ad agency.

November 20, 2003: The site switches to a design with fixed width of 800 pixels to ensure greater compatability for readers. The film section launches.

June 17, 2004: Big Brother 5's infamous "fight night" helps deliver Digital Spy's best ever numbers at the time - 1.8 million hits over the course of the day. The Big Brother forum attracts more than four times the number of users than Channel 4's own forums.

October 17, 2004: Digital Spy undergoes its most extensive redesign to date, separating out content into two distinct navigational zones (entertainment and media). New sections include showbiz and broadcasting.

May 14, 2005: Load balancers are introduced to Digital Spy's technical setup to provide greater stability and flexibility over the intensive summer months.

May 27, 2005: DS kickstarts coverage of Channel 4's Big Brother 6, including a regular column from behavioural expert Jenni Trent Hughes. Coverage peaks on June 27, 2005 with 2.02 million hits.

October 13, 2005: Three new reporters are appointed as part of a drive to significantly increase news output. Digital Spy now has ten paid employees.

January 27, 2006: Digital Spy concludes coverage of Channel 4's Celebrity Big Brother 4. More than 47 million page impressions are logged over the month, with a peak of 1.87 million on January 19.

February 20, 2006: 24/7 Real Media is appointed as Digital Spy's new advertising sales agency in order to boosting ad revenues and handle an anticipated 240 million monthly ad impressions in summer 2006.

March 1, 2006: A newly made over Digital Spy launches, with new sections for music, cult TV programmes and technology devices.

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