OH, CANADA: Network Solutions says Canada is the No. 1 country outside the U.S. registering .com, .net and .org domain names. The United Kingdom, Germany, France, Sweden, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, China and Australia round out the top 10.

RETURN TO SENDER: Nearly 80 per cent of Internet users have indicated that they sometimes or always read unsolicited e-mail messages, according to a study by Esearch, an Internet polling company. “People say they have a low tolerance for unsolicited e-mail, but their actions might suggest otherwise,” says Janet Westergaard, president of Esearch.

THIN AGAIN: A new report is predicting — yet again — that an explosion in non-PC Net-access devices — “thin clients” — is imminent. Zona Research forecasts that by 2001, the market will exceed US$1 billion in factory revenues, based on current worldwide shipments of more than 2.2 million units.

I SAW THAT: An American Management Association study found that 45 per cent of big companies monitor employee voice-mail, e-mail and computer files, up from 35 per cent in 1997. Only 84 per cent of firms tell staffers about their communication-monitoring policies.

SO WHAT’S THE BIG DEAL?: A large majority – 76 per cent – of CEOs in traditional consumer businesses participate in the strategic decisions for their on-line initiatives. But only 24 per cent view those initiatives as an integrated part of their core business, according to a new study by Jupiter Communications Inc. in New York.

BIG MONEY: Corporate spending on Internet-related technology has now reached ‘frantic’ levels, with sales expected to hit US$85 billion in the U.S. alone this year, says International Data Corp. Worldwide spending will climb to US$203 billion by 2002. Looking at the growth of particular industries, IDC forecasts Internet technology spending as follows: Financial services companies, US$16.6 billion; manufacturing companies, US$24 billion; retail businesses, US$6.2 billion and, on-line media and communications companies, US$10.7 billion.

ARE WE BUYING YET?: According to a Jupiter Communications study, 92 per cent of e-commerce executives with portal deals said these deals help drive sales. But more than 60 per cent said those deals account for less than one-third of total on-line sales. Only 5 per cent of the executives said they are highly likely to renew their existing agreements.

WINTER BLUES: For the third straight year, the first quarter proved to be the worst time of year for surfers to access their ISP, according to Inverse Network Technology. During January 1999, one out of seven attempted connections with ISPs failed.