What will we remember about the internet in 2008? The BBC and Rick Astley, amongst other things, according to the just-announced annual .net Awards.
Thousands of users and a panel of leading online professionals at .net magazine named the very best of the internet in 2008 this week, with the .net Awards now in their 11th year.
Aunty Beeb scooped awards in three different categories; 'web application' for BBC iPlayer, 'best redesign' for BBC.co.uk and 'best mobile site' for BBC Mobile.
Elsewhere the Chinese government beat Microsoft to pick up the digital wooden spoon, the "infamy" award – thanks to its repression of free speech online and the use of its so-called Great Firewall to monitor and spy on its citizens using the internet.
And in some slightly more light-hearted news, Eighties pop star Rick Astley was crowned "web personality" for his unwitting part in the Rick Rolling phenomenon.
Facebook won "socially powered site" for the second year in a row, The Dark Knight beat Firefox's download day to pick up the "viral campaign" award and the off-beat and regularly off-colour, You Suck at Photoshop won the "vodcast" category, with the twenty software tutorials taught by an emotional wreck, receiving more than 14 million views in 2008.
.net Awards 2008
Interactive site of the year: Eco Zoo
Web application of the year: BBC iPlayer
Socially powered site of the year: Facebook
Blog of the year: Smashing Magazine
Podcast of the year: Boagworld
Vodcast of the year: You suck at Photoshop
Mobile site of the year: BBC Mobile
Design agency of the year: Fi
Innovation of the year: Papervision 3D
Web personality of the year: Rick Astley
Viral campaign of the year: The Dark Knight
Mashup of the year: Twhirl
Standards champion: Jeffrey Zelbman – A List Apart.
Open source application of the year: WordPress 2.5
Best redesign of the year – BBC.co.uk
Infamy award: The Chinese government
Dan Oliver, Editor of .net magazine said of the awards: ".net magazine is the industry choice for web designers and developers, and these awards represent the culmination of a fantastic year of innovation on the web. Winning a .net Award represents the height of online achievement, as they combine thousands of public votes with a final stage of judging from leading figures in the web industry.
"The BBC has done the UK proud, and illustrated its strength online by bagging awards for its mobile site, homepage redesign, and iPlayer application.
"Rick rolling may have started off as an online prank, but it became a global phenomenon which put Rick Astley back in the spotlight. Draconian web censorship from the Chinese government saw them winning the infamy award but western society plays a part in their success in censoring the web, with many countries even buying Chinese surveillance technology."
For more check out http://www.netmag.co.uk/
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