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Press Room

Home Page

Bill Fernie 

Main Areas
General Enquiries
Web Page Building 
Content Collection
Research, Promotion,

Email bill@caithness.org 
Day 01955 606498
Even 01955 604648
Fax 01955 606498
Mobile -
07710 720787
About Bill


Niall Fernie 
Technical Services

Main Areas
What's On, Music, Business Pages Design and Build.  
Technical Assistance
Computer/ Maintenance
Voice Control Pages, 3D. 
Testing New Areas

Email niall@caithness.org 

Tel 07941 764 384
Fax 01955 606498
About Niall

19 March Road
Map to Find Us

Welcome to the Caithness.org Press Room Archive
Click Here For Current Press Page

11 December 2001
As we approach the end of 2001 Caithness.org and the Caithness Business Pages are heading for truly huge numbers for page views, visitors and hits.

27 October 2001
Records are being broken
Once again on Caithness.org records are tumbling with the surge of visitors early in the month following the Yell.com award.  The hits recorded are well over 2 million and visitor numbers are ahead.  Page views may be slightly down but there are still four days to go until the end of the month.
September figures are not available as they were lost by the server but it would appear that they would have been slightly down on the record breaking August figures.  October figures will sweep that all aside suggesting that September might have been in between.

Yell.com Brings Publicity to Caithness.org
Following the Yell.com award the web site had huge amounts of publicity being featured in the Mirror, Guardian, Metro and other national newspapers and magazines.  The trade magazine "Marketing Week" with a 40,000 circulation ran the full details in two sections Community and Overall Winners.  Radio Broadcasts and TV appearances gave another round of publicity.  Features in the voluntary press and other magazines are still underway.  Internet TV appearances are to follow.  The local John O'Groat Journal had the award as front page news.   Our estimates are that printed medium gave us coverage in 20 million copies and Radio and TV saturation coverage of the UK.  Radio stations we know have covered it are Radio Five Live, BBC Radio Scotland, Moray Firth Radio, Caithness FM and possibly several others.  Grampian television ran the story on two separate days in news broadcasts.

8 October 2001
Only days after the Yell.com awards but already the consequences of getting this top award are being seen in our email as we have been deluged with congratulations.  The knock on affect of our own increased traffic has been felt in our other web sites as people go looking at what else Caithness has to offer.

5 October 2001
Yell.com Winners

Well we are still completely floating on cloud nine after our trip to London  picking up the community award and the overall winners award is just incredible.  Driving up from Edinburgh to Wick and hearing Caithness mentioned on the Radio has been an experience in itself.  We were even on a Moray Firth request show as we drove past Inverness.  Thanks to every one who has emailed us - It might a be a day or so before we get to your message.  Our email has never been so big.

10 September 2001
The web site has had its profile raised by the short listing in Yell.com /awards.  Already mentioned in John O'Groat Journal, Press & Journal and the Mirror.  Average page views and hit rates continue to rise and only the next couple of weeks will tell if this is maintained over the whole of September.

31 August 2001
Hi if you are looking at his page on Friday.  Just to say that tomorrow we will be unveiling the highest figures yet - completely smashing the last highest totals.  The records of last month were passed a couple of days ago and we are now agog watching them climb even higher.  August stats will be on by Noon on Saturday.  Everything is up - visitors, page views, hits.  

Next biggest addition on the site will be in the castles section - more of everything and a new section on the history of Caithness using many of the castle pictures as illustrations.

30 August 2001
We are featured in this months issue of Economic Development Today the magazine for LEDIS - local Economic Planning Development Initiatives Their web site is The Planning Exchange www.planex.co.uk  The magazine is a subscription only magazine and does not feature the articles. But its great to be recognised by an important body in planning and development.

23 August 2001

Well this has to be the big news for us today.  Being short-listed in the communities category is a real boost.  With thousands more entries this year its great to get this far.  The winners of the Yell.com Awards are to be announced on 3 October at the Atlantis Gallery, Brick Lane London.  After the team of judges have made their decisions. More details can be found on the Yell.com Awards Web site

16 August 2001
Records still being broken as Caithness.org passes one million hits in 15 days in August with ever higher visitor numbers and page views.  with the numbers now so high each month the previous 12 months have passed 10 million hits and at possibly 2 million a month now will continue to break records over the next few months even if traffic stays the same. The highest ever visitors in one day was yesterday 15 August at 2425.  Banners displayed on the pages are receiving well beyond our target of 1000 shows per month and are currently getting over 10,000 shows per month and in some cases even higher.

16 August 2001
Caithness.org is to be part of another study.  this time by a combined team from Strathclyde, Stirling and Edinburgh universities.  The study will attempt to find out if the Internet and related e-commerce really is helping rural areas such as the Highlands. Several Web Groups ansd sites will take part in the consultation.

July  - Yet More Record Numbers
Hits 1,802937   Pages 304454
Visitors 53047

22 July 2001
New Look Front Page
We have launched our new look front page.  The site has grown in many directions and needed a revamp to reflect the variety if topics and to make things easier to find.  This new look will gradually be reflected throughout the web site.  We have also launched our own subscription services for the Free newsletter to take over as the Free Listbot service ends shortly.  All current subscribers will be moved automatically.  

A new Sports Section is under development and more announcements will be made shortly.

16 July 2001
Scorrie Internet Services
Well we finally got our own web site launched today to tell people what we are already doing - building web sites, creating banners for local businesses and creating new solutions to increase awareness of Caithness and what it has to offer.  Under development are some new products to help make life easier for a number of businesses not just in Caithness but all over the Highlands and beyond. 

10 July 2001
With 1,651,620
hits in June and still rising there seems to be no end yet in site to the increasing traffic.  The New Sports Pages are almost completed and will be launched shortly.  Scorrie Internet Services has several new sites under construction and is increasingly looking at ways for marketing them.  More links are being added throughout the site to assist advertisers get their businesses found on the web.  By acting as a central hub Scorrie Internet web sites make it easier to find other businesses that have web sites linked to them.  The web site can be built by Scorrie and get free banner advertising or any web site can purchase banner advertising on the site which is itself linked in various ways.

6 June 2001
First Employee for Scorrie Internet Services
Scorrie Internet Services has taken on its first employee and it will be little surprise to hear that it is Niall Fernie who has worked as a volunteer on the project for the last two years.  Niall has helped to develop the many aspects  on the two main web sites and allow us to handle information as quickly as possible.  The Business Pages are very fast and use Niall's own programmes that he has developed to be fast.  the Business Pages are developing in several directions.

3 June 2001
Another Record Breaker In May

Hits 1,324,188    Pages 232,155  Visits 52,132
Visitors to the web sites once again broke the previous records.   Thanks to all of you for coming back.

2May 2001
Political Chat Sessions

Candidates in the Westminster election are chatting live on Caithness.org See timetable

2 May 2001
Planet Elf
Ray Elf a well established cartoonist, designer and artist now living in Morayshire has kindly offered his work to Caithness.org and will be appearing over coming months under the sections Planet Elf with a subsection for Caithness Viewed From Elf.

1 May 2001
Scorrie Internet Services - New Business
Bill Fernie has formed the new business to run the web sites Caithness.org and the Caithness Business Pages.  The business started today.  With several orders for banner advertising and new local web sites the work in hand is like to require that expansion takes pace sooner rather than later.  But all the expansion will be within the resources available.  Bill has several new ideas to promote Caithness businesses and expand the web sites in a variety of novel ways.

22 April 2001
Social Studies with Caithness.org
Caithness.org has and is the subject of a number of academic studies.  Laura Thomson studying at Stirling University has just completed her work and sent us a copy for publication on the web site.  Although the work entitled Can the creation of Community Networks enhance social capital in rural Scotland? is not solely about Caithness.org she has drawn extensively from her findings about the Caithness Community online during her research.

11 April 2001
Expanding rapidly in several directions Caithness.org and the Caithness Business Pages are still racking up records.  The Business Pages added its Property Section on Tuesday 10 April and the hit rate jumped dramatically.  Indications are that the easiest way to look at property in the county will be on the Internet.  Further properties will be added shortly. Today we have commenced our Properties to Rent section.

2 April 2001
Caithness.org has had a very busy month in March.  The feature in "Action" the magazine of Scottish Homes has helped spread the word about the two web sites.  An article in the John O'Groat Journal followed again helping to spread the word about the sites.  Contacts in the USA are spreading the word particularly through the Clan Gunn and Clan Sinclair networks.  Reciprocal links have been set up with Clan Gunn USA. 
On the web site front March was once again the biggest month ever on the site with all records being spectacularly broken.  All numbers are up from over one million hits to 45,000 individual visitors to both sites.  Caithness.org alone had over one million hits whilst the newly formed Caithness business Pages has doubled its visitor rate in one month.
New services continue to be added to the web sites in rapidly expanding format giving the sites more usability and interactivity for people all over the world.
The Message Boards are increasingly being used for all sorts of things with the Items for sale becoming popular and many questions relating to Family History.   New sections include School Days which will become a repository from School pictures from the past and present.
Plans are under way to provide zip files for last year gala pictures for Wick and Thurso to make full downloads possible in the shortest possible time and to free up web space for the Gals in the summer time this year.
The Business Pages have had the Job Section launched and already it has 34 jobs with the likelihood that this free service will be seen as a valuable addition by local employers.
The most significant fact is that a business will be launched under the name Scorrie Internet Services with a new web site to be constructed under the address www.scorrie.com From this business will flow a number of new creations in addition to running the Caithness Business Pages.  The Caithness.org site will continue to be run and subsidised by Scorrie.com.  This move to run the service by a business rather than as a charity takes away the need to try to raise charitable funding which was one possible route to ensure the web site could survive long term.  The site is so large now as to require more than charitable funding would provide.  Essentially the services under way will help to provide employment not just for the current people who are working on it but possibly for others within a short period of time.
The move into other services is already underway and more announcements will follow on these when the plans have been finalised

12 March 2001
The Web Sites ground base is now in March Road, Wick.  Tel 01955 606498 or 01955 604648 as previously.

1 March 2001
February Passed January easily with visitor numbers still showing a marked increase.  Totals were Hits 755,708    Pages 169,675  Visits 30,119  in February  which is 3 days less than January.  More Details  Our Business Pages now have their own separate statistics.

20 February 2001
Advertising on the Caithness.org and Caithness Business Pages combined.  We now offer advertising on two separate web sites for the price of one.  www.caithness-business.co.uk/home/advertising/index.htm

15 February 2001
Looks like February will surpass January for another record month of visitors to Caithness.org.  Even in a short month visitor numbers are already exceeding last months daily average.

3 February 2001
Caithness.org smashed all previous records in January 2001 with a 41% increase in visitor numbers.  Check the Site Statistics for full details.  New Message Board on the Way.  Better and more pictures in the Postcards to get Caithness noticed. 

27 January 2001
Caithness.org broke all records again yesterday when the Half Million hits for the month was passed comfortably.  Visitors numbers are already 2000 over last months total with 5 days still to go.

18 January
Why a Press Room?

Well over the last few months we have been receiving increasing enquiries from newspapers, magazines about the web site and individuals preparing papers on a wide range of topics including information about the county of Caithness, Communities and the Internet, how we operate, who to contact and so on.  To assist with this growing demand for information we will list some of the basic contact information and items about what is happening on the web site and to group, make some announcements and list items that give information about our expanding web site work.  

The recent rapid growth in Caithness.org has resulted in our receiving enquiries from all over the world for a variety of reasons.  These include casual requests for more information on individual topics to requests from an academic perspective looking at how community web sites are developing using the Internet.

How Did We Get Here?
Started February 1999.
From a glimmer of an idea to put on information about all of the voluntary groups in Caithness and train a few people in building basic web pages the site has evolved into it present position supplying much local information for both local people and increasingly round the world.  More people now visit Caithness.org from out with the county every day than locally.   Our traffic has risen relentlessly but significantly in the last six months to currently over 800 a day.  The interests reflect the growing awareness we had through our email of the types of material that people might be interested to see more of.

12 March 2001
We have moved to March Road, Wick

Site Statistics
Updated every month
Recent Articles About Us In...
Net Business

High Points
3 July 2001
June Records
Hits 1,651,620 

3 June 2001
Record Breaker In May

Hits 1,324,188
Pages 232,155
Visits 52,132

Visitors to the web sites once again broke the previous records. 

1 May 2001
Records Broken Again
in April

1 April 2001

March Stats
Wow All Records Smashed for 18th time. 1 April
Hits 1,127,273
Pages 245,540
Visits 45,116

1 March 2001
Hits 755,708  Pages 169,675  Visits 30,119  in February which is 3 days less than January.  At current surfing rates Caithness.org will have over two million pages seen in the next 12 months.

1 Feb 2001
Business Pages now moved to new domain
41% increase in visits to Caithness.org.  Over 130,000 page views and the 600,000 hit barrier in one month broken.  1000 - 1200 unique visits a day now being passed.

Earlier High Points
Caithness.org starts Feb 1999
Training Commenced
Voluntary Sector pages for nearly 600 groups completed in the first three months.
Passing 50 visitors a week.
Getting the volunteers training finished.
Passing 100 visitors a week.

April 1999
Bought Domain Name Caithness.org
July 2000
3700 visitors per week
August 2000
1400 visitors per week
Nancy builds a whole heritage site within Caithness.org
September 2000
12505 visitors for month
October 2000
Niall begins upgrades of Business Pages in Java
November 2000
Niall starts voice control trial
17578 visitors
- Business Pages moved to temporary new site.
December  2000
17328 visitors
The addition of the Business Pages takes us over the previous total.
Page views reach 107876 for month
Hit rate reaches 443168 for month
Business Pages Own Stats
Advertising Rates Prepared
January 2001 -
Likely to smash previous totals as at 18 January
New Developments In Planning Stage.
27 January 2001
December's hit rate passed.

Survey Results