IQ News: bits

San Mateo, Calif.-based Electronic Arts saw a mammoth surge in traffic at its EA Sports site, coinciding with the Aug. 26 launch of Madden NFL 98 . During the last week in August, the site had 96,797 visitors, up 32% from the previous week, the company reported.

Amazon.com and Prodigy Services Corp. have signed a deal that makes the online merchant the exclusive bookseller on Prodigy’s Shopping Network (www.shopnet.prodigy.com). The deal follows similar agreements with Yahoo! and Excite.

AT&T, Basking Ridge, N.J., last week launched an animated campaign using technology from Narrative Communications, Waltham, Mass., that allowed AT&T agency Modem Media, Westport, Conn., to adapt the telco’s TV campaign for the Web.

As expected, Martha Stewart’s first Web site, www.marthastewart.com, launches today as her TV show, Martha Stewart Living, goes daily and her radio show, Ask Martha, begins its syndication run. The site was created by US Interactive, New York.

The Walt Disney Co. reorganized its Internet businesses last week under a new unit called Buena Vista Internet Services. Jake Winebaum, president of Disney Online, was named president of the new group, which now includes Starwave properties ESPN SportsZone and ABCNews.com.

Netscape Communications, Mountain View, Calif., last week unveiled a free online service called Netscape Netcenter, aimed at business users. Netcenter will require registration before downloading the software, which will offer business-related content and interactive areas.

Foster’s Beer launched a redesign of its five-month old Web site last week. The new site was developed by Strategic Marketing Resources, Norwalk, Conn., and Magnum Resources, Cheshire, Conn. The site has been supported by banner links on America Online. More online buys are planned, likely on Australian culture sites.

As part of its sponsorship of the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s college football, GTE, with FANSonly, has introduced a Web site (www.fansonly.com/roadtrip) that has audio feeds and pre- and post-game chats hosted by ESPN on-air personality Chris Fowler. The site is an interactive component of the company’s 12-city promotional tour, GTE Road Trip.