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DOT-COM CATCH UP: Breaking financial news, exclusive baby photos and a fiery presidential race are paying off in spades for Web sites owned by Time Inc. Executive vice president John Squires revealed on Friday during Time Inc.’s latest digital summit that people.com passed tmz.com last month for the first time with 11.5 million unique visitors, thanks to those exclusive, multimillion-dollar photos of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s twin newborns, Vivienne Marcheline and Knox Leon. According to the company, people.com is now the number-two celebrity Web site, behind Yahoo’s OMG in uniques. Squires also said cnnmoney.com saw a significant bump in traffic — a 66 percent increase in uniques — last week as reporters from Fortune, Money and CNN posted both breaking headlines from Wall Street and service stories on investing. Squires noted that time.com is getting a boost in part from political analyst Mark Halperin’s video blog. Time.com has recorded 4 million daily weekday page views so far in September, up from 2.7 million in the prior month, during a time when Halperin filed breaking news on the increasingly heated presidential election.
Also at the meeting, health.com reported a surge in traffic since its redesign in May, and essence.com gave a preview of its redesigned site, part of which was unveiled last week. Next year, the site will add original television programming through its partnership with Telepictures, a radio channel, and a music video archive. U.K. music Web site nme.com, the online component of rock music magazine NME, will make a big push in the U.S. next year through more partnerships with U.S. music festivals for exclusive coverage, improved search capabilities and content sharing with other Time Inc. brands. — Stephanie D. Smith