There are sources of press releases, such as Business Wire and PR Newswire, but the volume
is so large it's almost impossible to find anything useful. The one that's worth visiting for
web watchers is Eric Ward's URLwire - The Guardian.

URLwire - News of Useful, Unique and Educational Web Content Since
News of Useful and Educational Web Content Since 1994
How to announce a web site - content criteria and process
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Thinker Academy Gets Teens Ready to Adapt and Thrive in The 21st Century
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 Thinker Academy gets teens ready to adapt and thrive in the 21st century
Thinker Academy ( is dedicated to helping teens get more out of high-school. The website, created by a cognitive psychologist, provides resources that parents and educators can use to nurture critical thinking and study skills in their students. 

From the National Education Association to the World Economic Forum, there is wide recognition that these kinds of skills are needed to adapt and thrive in the 21st century workforce and global society. The challenge has been how to best promote these critical skills. The high school years are the perfect time for teens to become savvy learners and thinkers who are ready to succeed in college, career, and life in this new era. Thinker Academy was created to help make that happen.

The site contributes original, relevant articles with tips and advice to help teens boost their grades and prepare for college. The content is completely research-based, though presented in a light-hearted style that’s readily accessible and appealing to teens.

For example, one popular article, 21 study tips: Learn the strategies that set top students apart, describes learning strategies that research has shown to explain 90% of the variance in high-school GPA. Another reports on 5 study skills to accelerate your learning based on an extensive academic review.

Thinker Academy also offers online courses for use at home or in the classroom. These interactive, multimedia resources give teens a way to further practice and apply essential learning and thinking skills. In addition to content crafted for teens, the site provides guidance for parents on how to nurture their teens to become independent learners. (read more)

Posted by Eric Ward

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The URLwire effect...

Within 30 minutes of you announcing our site on URLwire, it was in Google news. Then the tweets and Retweets started. By the end of the day over 200,000 people had visited the new section on our site you announced. URLwire is one of the most unique and effective URL publicity tools I have ever seen. With the massive amount of press release spam on the web, I'm glad you chose to keep URLwire selective and under the radar all these years!  Brilliant strategy and cheers! 
- Travel web video producer, name and specific URL withheld by request

Eric, URLwire got our site covered and linked online in places we'd tried for months to get in without success. And, URLwire did it in one day. Thanks! Jim Osgood -

URLwire FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

As of the Summer of 2016 URLwire is on Hiatus. URLwire will return as soon as possible.

What is URLwire? 
URLwire is a highly regarded service for announcing genuinely helpful web content or mobile content/apps to the right people in the online world. 

What makes URL different?
I've been publishing URLwire for 20 years. That's not a typo. I'm selective about what I announce and to whom I announce it. I do not advertise URLwire. I recognize the reality that URLwire would become less effective if I announced 20 sites a week so instead I only announce a few sites each month. I send URLs with outstanding content to the exact content seekers who would care about it and potentially link to and/or share it. URLwire has thousands of private email subscribers and the web site, group, blog and RSS feed collectively receive several million pageviews a year. 

What Is URLwire's Anchor Text Policy?
URLwire was live on the web before Google existed, and for many years I included anchor text that most aptly described the content of the site I was announcing and linking to. Since Google could now perceive this to be a manipulative practice, as of January 2014 I nofollow links to sites and use your company name, site name, or site URL as the anchor text. The value of URLwire is not about the anchor text. The value of URLwire is to help create awareness of your content, and while doing so attract high quality links from other trustworthy sources. If you do not want me to nofollow links to your site, you will need to specifically ask me to follow them via email.

I started URLwire (originally called NetWire) in 1994. I used it mostly to announce new web sites in my local town of Knoxville, TN. Then, in 1995, Jeff Bezos hired me as the first content publicist for Here's Amazon's debut announcement from October 4, 1995. This was just as I was changing the name of the service from NetWire to URLwire. It seems Novell had an internal newsletter named Netwire, and they sent me a cease and desist. 

So I changed the name to something nobody could possibly be using, And I've been quietly going strong ever since. This may sound glamorous, but it wasn't. I started at a kitchen table in my three-room apartment on a dial-up modem, trying to get sites selected for USA Today Hot sites or Yahoo Picks of The Week (both now gone). Many of those sites listed were my clients. I knew who the "linkerati" was long before other kids coined the term.

Is URLwire a press release service?
Not even close. URLwire is not a press release distribution service, and is not automated. URLwire is sent by Eric Ward to people who have requested it, and actually look forward to it. I personally do the vetting/research and identify the exact people who are URLwire subscribers and also looking for subject specific and purposeful web content in your subject area. URLwire has thousands of private subscribers, including over 300 reference librarians, and is published in several formats

For those who want to receive URLwire but not via email, I provide a feed, or you can follow URLwire New Site Tweets via Twitter. Sites are announced via email, Web, feed, blog, mobile, private group and other methods. URLwire site announcements are crawled quickly by search engines and included in both the regular and news search indexes.

The URLwire subscriber/member list continually evolves and improves over the years, and each month I continue to add and remove subscribers that I feel are of the caliber that make sense for the content I am announcing. 

Why did I create URLwire?
I created URLwire because existing press release services are not selective about what they announce and who they send it to, and cannot reach the key online contacts who specifically review and link to new web content. Mass wire services send out thousands of press releases a day.  URLwire purposely only announces a few sites each month. 

Will URLwire help my search rank?
URLwire is not a paid linking gimmick for helping you chase higher search rank. URLwire was publishing new site announcements for many years before Google existed, like this, and while it is possible that your site's search rankings may improve after using URLwire, it isn't URLwire alone that makes that happen. You must be producing useful and linkworthy content in the first place, or no amount of publicity will help you attract powerful. links.

That last sentence was very important, so let me repeat it...

You must be producing useful and linkworthy content in the first place, or no amount of publicity will help you attract powerful links.
My URLwire contacts are looking to be impressed or intrigued by an overall experience a user will have when visiting your web site. URLwire has readers all over the world, and reaches hundreds of librarians, researchers, content link curators, site seekers and editors looking to be informed of quality web content.

Here are a couple examples showing URLwire's potential

URLwire subscriber comments
“Eric knows quality web content, and he knows how to reach  out and publicize it politely, personally, privately. When we see an email from Eric, we read it and link to many of the sites he sends us”  - Library of Congress

“There are sources of press releases, such as Business Wire and PR Newswire, but the volume of releases is so large it's almost impossible to find anything useful. The one that's worth visiting for web watchers is Eric Ward's URLwire” - The Guardian

What types of content will URLwire accept/announce?
Your site must offer useful, unique, or educational content, or show off the capabilities of the web in some way that is obvious and real.  The site does not have to be brand new, however I will not announce sites that offer no content other than a list of products, and I will not announce sites that in my opinion will offend my readers.

Who pays for URLwire and what does it cost?
The people who want to announce their content pay a fee of $495. 

How do I start the process of announcing a site?
If you know you want to proceed, here are payment details. If you want additional information, continue reading below or send me an email and tell me about the site you're wanting to announce. I'll reply as soon as I can.

Who does URLwire reach?
Your content's subject matter determines who I select from my private contact list. 

I personally do the vetting/research and identify the exact people who are URLwire subscribers and also looking for the subject specific and purposeful web content in your subject area. As an example, lets say your site is about Jazz music. The contacts I'd select for your announcement will come from a combination of both widely read online publications like like USA Today's Bloggers, but even more importantly, from niche links pages devoted to the exact subject matter of your site, jazz music. Like this.

The key point is I match your content to the exact people that will care about it.

No matter the subject, if your content is of high quality, then there will be people on the web who will care about it.  As an example, over 300 librarians across the U.S. are URLwire subscribers, and they represent some of the most trusted sources of site collections and link curators in the world.  Some of you understand what that means to your organic rankings and traffic. 

URLwire subscribers have requested it and those who subscribe have also given me a profile of the types of sites they want to know about. 

Below is just a sampling of thousands of past and current online venues where editors, librarians, and content seekers are looking for high quality web content to write about and link to.

Sample URLwire member/subscribers past and present: Yahoo New and Notable Sites (RIP) - Know Your Apps - NYPL Best of the Web - Forbes Best of The Web - Boing Boing - Communication Arts Web Picks - Exploratorium's Web Picks - Librarians Internet Index (RIP)   - Cool Tricks and Trinkets - Education WorldThe Scout Report - SciLinks - BestHistorySites - PC Magazine - Lockergnome - - FreePint - WebUser

Again, this above just scratches the surface. Here are a few additional examples in specific niches
Busy Educator's Guide to the Web - - The Best on the Web for Teachers - Berit's Best Sites for Kids - Surfing the Net With Kids - Family WebGuide from Tufts University - FamilyTree Best of the Web - Kids Web
Let's get even more nichified.  How about these?
Best of PhysicsWeb - Useful Web Links for the Materials - Industry - Sleep Disorder Sites - - Dulcimer and Folk Music Links - Jazz Music Links - Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology Links - Cool Running
The key is there are literally thousands of people on the web who enjoy identifying, reviewing, vetting, curating and linking to content in thousands of subjects.  My attention to this niche for years gives me unrivaled contacts and credibility, from today all the way back to the nineties when URLwire was a Netscape Editor's Choice source for new sites. Remeber Netscape?

I want to receive URLwire, how do I sign up?
There are many ways to receive URLwire, described in detail here. Quickly, if you want to hear about all of the sites I announce (5-7 per week max), you can simply subscribe to the URLwire feed here or subscribe to the private URLwire group at Google. If you just want sites about a specific subject, send email to and tell me exactly what you want, then only if I have a perfect match will you ever hear from me. I match it myself. No bots and no scripts. 

How does URLwire differ from large wire services?
1). I limit the number of sites I'll announce to a few per week
2). I am extremely selective about what I announce on URLwire
3). I am extremely selective about who I send the site announcement to
4). I'll make another announcement for you at no charge if you aren't pleased with the response

Please note, URLwire is not for sending news about your IPO or CEO.  If you have news about something other than the content of your web site, you should use a fine service like Market Wire or Internet News Bureau or PRWeb to distribute it. I recommend them as they are excellent services for this type of news. Only use URLwire when your news is about the content on your site. The quality of the site ultimately determines whether or not I will announce it.

How are sites announced on URLwire?
The URLwire network announces new web sites via multiple channels as follows. 

Step One - Private email
The first step is sending individual announcements about your site via email to my private contacts. This will take anywhere from one to two hours depending on how many contacts I identify that are appropriate for your specific site announcement. For each site launch I announce, I personally sort, cull and sift through my entire membership of URLwire subscribers, matching your site announcement with the stated interests of my contacts. Any given launch alert is typically a fit for 300 or more contacts. My contacts only hear from me when I have a site that matches their stated interests. URLwire is purposely not automated. It's sent one-to-one from me personally to my contacts.

Step Two - Web
Next I'll post your announcement on its own permanent page on the URLwire web site, and create a headline link and summary to that page on the URLwire home page above and on the URLwire headline page.  Your announcement will be crawled by the various news bots and search engines almost immediately. Google News crawls URLwire site announcements within minutes. URLwire has millions of annual page views. This is achieved as a result of thousands of sites around the world linking to my headline page or announcement pages over the many years URLwire has been chugging along.

Step Three - Blogs, Feeds, Twitter and other Social Media
I place your site announcement on the URLwire Blogs and RSS feed. I'll also Tweet your URL via URLwire's Twitter account, and 'll enable sharing on your site announcement so social linkers and bookmarkers have the opportunity to share your site's URL. 

Step Four - News Bots, Private Groups and Syndication
I place a brief summary of your content announcement on the private Google Group for URLwire (which has hundreds of members).  My announcement of your site will also be indexed by Google, Yahoo, and bing very quickly, and I've had instances where Google News picks up my announcements in less than five minutes

Why does URLwire produce so many versions of the site announcement?
URLwire is not a press release distribution service. Most site reviewers do not want a press release anyway. That's why I don't automate URLwire. I provide each of my members with my site announcements in the exact format they want. If they want a short email with a special subject line, no problem. If they want a weekly digest, I send it that way. If they want an RSS version, I have it. Blog?  Yes. Via private Google group? Got it.  Twitter? Bingo.

Who writes the site announcement?
You write the initial copy, and I'll make suggestions if I feel it will improve the reception. If you prefer that I write the entire announcement, I will but I charge an additional fee of $250.

What sites have used URLwire to announce their launch?
Literally thousands over the years. A sampling of sites that hired URLwire to announce their launch includes,, Vineyards, Dell,, Infobeat, The BBC, Kellogg's, MoMA,,, and sites for Ziff-Davis, The New York Times, The Discovery Channel, Microsoft, AOL, and The AMA, and PBS.  Many other now famous Web sites were originally launched through my URLwire service. 

Do the people who receive URLwire like it?
They love it. They are interested in my announcements because they know it's something they haven't seen, will be a match for their interests, and a top-notch site.  But don't take my word for it.  Read their quotes here

Does URLwire work?
Rather than me tell you, I'll let my clients tell you.  Here are three quotes and a longer testimonial.  A few more URLwire testimonials are also available.

Jim Osgood -
"Eric, URLwire got our site covered and linked online in places we'd tried for months to get in without success. And, URLwire did it in one day. Thanks!"
Rob Ford, FWA
"URLwire is a great service which has proven results. Two projects I have been involved with that you have featured have both gone straight into the Yahoo directory and been listed on their Pick of the Day page. Thanks a bunch, Eric!"
Amy Strycula, - Cool Shopping Sites
"We've been using Eric's URLwire service since 1995, and on more than one occasion had to work closely with our hosting service to keep our servers up under the high traffic loads that resulted".
"The Silence is Deafening" - a Reverse Testimonial for Eric Ward
What if URLwire doesn't work?
Give URLwire eight weeks, and if by then you don't feel URLwire did what you expected it would, let me know and I'll run an additional URLwire announcement free of charge. I'm not in this just to make a few hundred bucks. I'm obviously in this for the long haul. 

Can't a Public Relations firm do what URLwire does?
Many Public Relations firms hire me to announce their client's sites.  They know I have many years of contacts and relationships in the online world, while they have contacts in the off-line world.

How do I start the process to announce a site?

Here are payment details

You can read about my other services at

Selected Content Announcements 
From URLwire are Below
Subscribe to URLwire via More Subscriber Options
Eighteen Years Ago On URLwire - 01/07/98: 
Deepak Chopra Does First Live Chat At
Recent Content Announcements
Jan, 2016: Identifies 10 Countries Where Water Issues Could Undermine Civic Stability
Circle of Blue identified 10 places where water could compound existing social stressors and contribute to a humanitarian crisis. Outright conflict over water is rare, and history has shown that communities and nations are much more likely to cooperate over water than to fight, according to leading researchers. But as climate change, population growth, and industrial development put strain on water resources around the world, water issues can join with social and political upheaval to destabilize vulnerable regions.
New Site From National Geographic Explains Winter Solstice
If today seems to go by quickly, there's a reason. Today is Winter solstice, an astronomical phenomenon that makes today, Tuesday, December 22, 2015, the shortest day and the longest night of the year. In the Northern Hemisphere this is the December solstice and in the Southern Hemisphere this is the June solstice. Learn more about the Winter Solstice on National Geographic's Online Winter Solstice site
Phonak Offers Hearing Loss Website Dedicated to Teens
The site features a sports section with inspiring testimonials and practical tips showing teens with hearing loss the possibilities on the field, on the court, and on the trails (read more).
SearchRPM Launches Internet Safety for Kids Resource Guide In Time For New School Year
Premier search optimization company SearchRPM is taking their knowledge of the web and putting it to use to support Internet Safety. The company has just launched an Internet Safety Resource section on their website with information for both parents and kids from cyber security experts, teachers and more.(read more)
Profile Defenders Launches New Site Offering Complex Reputation Management Services
One of the leading reputation management companies has launched a new service to help remove defamatory content from appearing in searches. The company, Profile Defenders, aims to help those whose images are affected by slanderous or defamatory messages that are often false and costly to a business or individuals reputation (read more) Honors 2015 Best of Senior Living Award Recipients
Now in their second year, the Best of 2015 Awards celebrate the best of the best in American senior care and are only given to communities and agencies that have consistently received outstanding feedback from families on the website (read more) Saves Children's Lives by Giving Away Over 82,000 Free Cord Cleats is serious about child safety. While all their products are CPSC safety compliant and safety devices are sent with each corded product, after the news early last year of four more children losing their lives to corded window covering accidents, they knew they had to do even more. Select Blinds has created a free cord cleat program open to all consumers, both customers and non-customers(read more)
National Geographic Society Launches Private Expeditions in Partnership with Virtuoso®
Trips for Independent Travelers Include Stays at New National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World - The National Geographic Society announced this month the launch of National Geographic Private Expeditions, a new line of trips geared toward independent travelers, offered in partnership with Virtuoso®, the leading international network of luxury-focused travel agencies and advisors. 
More New Site Announcements
Eric is one of the most plugged in professionals we know, having been online approximately forever. So if you want to get your news around, call the guy. In addition to being non-annoying, he's extremely effective in telling Heavy Duty Influentials what it is you're doing. -- Chris Locke,The Cluetrain Manifesto (full quote)

"URLwire is the antidote to the disease of mass press release spam.  What you do is genius!"
- Web Marketing Tools

"Eric, Thanks very much for offering this service"
- Yahoo Internet Life Useful Sites Editors

"Eric, your picks are exactly what we look for. Thanks for being on target and not sending junk"
- Yahoo Picks

"Cool stuff, Eric. Keep it coming"
- S. Meddis, USA Today Hot Sites

"Your service is great...We are always interested in new Internet resources, important new Web sites and interesting things that are going on on the Internet"
- M. Williams

"Eric, you provide a great service and we use a lot of what you send us." 
- ZDNet

"Just wanted to let you know that your URLwire service is very helpful to our team of editors. Our editors look forward to receiving your emails about recent web launches and are grateful for your service. Thanks!" 
- J. Kelly

"Thanks Eric! Your selectivity and intro are appreciated..." - K. Laws

"Eric Ward's URLwire service allows you to tailor your Web news messages for each media contact. More expensive? Yes. But the impact is optimal..."
- Larry Chase, WDFM

"The oldest and most renowned is Eric Ward's URLwire" 
- P. Bruemmer

"When I see Eric Ward's name in my in-box, I open it immediately, and I know it's good stuff. His selectivity and appreciation for what is and isn't Web news is unmatched anywhere. He's been at it longer than anyone, and he does it right"

"Thanks again for the continuing service. It is not an overstatement to say that it is one of the very best services available on the Internet, and one of the *very* few that innately understands the medium it is working in"

"Eric, you're doing a hell of a job. I've come to rely on you for a lot of front running, as well as supplementary content. Thanks for that" 

"Eric...I just wanted you to know how much I like reading your pre-press release material. It's nice to have someone know your name in this cold modem-based world"

"Hi Eric, take it from someone who has been receiving a steady stream of these automated press/news releases... your personalized, selective, one at a time, no spam Web news releases are a slice of heaven!!! I can't even read all the others, but yours, I read immediately"

"Hey Eric, I really appreciate your service. I've used information from your postings for a number of stories. I must say that your service is great. Thanks and keep up the good work."

"I LOVE each and every piece you have sent me. Thanks for the noticeable effort and the outstanding job you do Eric"

"Well written, directed to me personally, and always include a succinct note explaining why Eric directed the news to my attention. And I do read them, consider them, and cover them"

"Eric, just want to drop you a line to say "thank you" once again for your consistently high quality Web site pointers. Definitely sites we can use. - Knoxville TN - contact