Info. Technology - Brazil

UOL, BOL, Terra, Globo De-list From iBest

UOL, BOL, Terra, Globo De-list From iBest

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Brazilian ISPs and portals Universo Online (UOL), Brasil Online (BOL) and Globo, together with Spain's Terra, have de-listed from Brazilian e-pollster iBest after Brasil Telecom revealed last week that it would incorporate iBest into its ISP subsidiary BrTurbo (www.brturbo.com.br).

Although the new venture will not feature ISPs as a category to be judged by users in 2002, competing ISPs say it is unfair iBest will profit from its valuable user data and profiles gathered under the guise of a different business model.

"Ibest functioned like the Trojan horse. They came about as an award company, obtained information about users of particular sites, to later compete with them," Terra marketing director Marcos Caetano said, quoted in Brazilian financial daily Valor Economico.

Eventually the companies may legally charge the fledgling ISP and portal, the paper quoted Globo.com CEO Juarez Queiroz as saying.

The new venture will be similar to free ISP IG, controlled by GP and the Opportunity group. Opportunity shares control of BrT with Telecom Italia (NYSE: TI). BrT is expected to announce the venture formally, including the launch date, in mid-December.