In previous LEP Newsletters I have mentioned the forthcoming email notification system and with the announcement in this Newsletter, I thought that I would take the opportunity to provide you with some more detail about how it is going to operate.
The email notification service enables the user to subscribe to an email list that notifies the user when a particular release has been issued by the ABS. To subscribe, the user follows the link from the home page, where they are asked to fill in their email address and choose the two digit catalogue entries they wish to be notified of when released. Upon submitting, an email will be issued back to the user to confirm their subscription - once the ABS receives this return receipt the subscription will be finalised. The user can 'unsubscribe' and also query what they have subscribed to.
On the day of release, the user will receive an email with URL links backs to the relevant products on the ABS web site. The email will contain links to the products released that day related to the catalogue entries subscribed to. The email will be issued shortly after the 11.30am release of the product to the web site.
In order to be able to provide this as a free service, the development of the system has taken the very simplest approach. The email notification is a text based service - we did consider offering an HTML version, but realised that HTML is often blocked by many firewalls. If there is suitable demand, we may offer an HTML version in the future.
We have considered "anti-spam" principles in this development, thus the subscription confirmation email and an "opt in" approach.
This should see the ABS web site continue its recent popularity. The annual web logs for the web site have been processed and for the year ended July 2003 there were 38,712,367 hits (page views) on the site. This was up on the previous years of 27,659,711 (2001/2002) and 20,946,456 (2000/2001). In the next newsletter, I hope to give to a finer breakdown of these figures.
As usual if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email me @ firstname.lastname@example.org