Media: Lifeline - Online adspend

The internet's share of spend has overtaken the outdoor medium's and looks set to top £1bn this year

1998: Having emerged from four years of haphazard development (the first UK consumer websites launched in 1994 and workable ad formats took a while to emerge), the medium passes its first real milestone when it breaks the £10 million barrier, going on to finish the year on £19.4 million.

2000: Real lift-off begins in the third quarter of 1999, as the dotcom boom fuels expectations. Revenues grow by a staggering 203 per cent in 2000 and the medium easily surpasses the £100 million mark to close the year on £150 million - making it a bigger medium than cinema.

2001: The dotcom bubble bursts, but Danny Meadows-Klue (pictured), the Internet Advertising Bureau chairman, urges the online advertising market to stay upbeat. His confidence is repaid as the medium turns in a creditable year-on-year increase.

2004: The market kicks on in 2003 and 2004, thanks to new sources of revenue from paid-for search formats. Online media owners now also seek to encourage advertisers from a wider range of sectors to try the medium. It closes the year on £653.3 million - now ahead of radio.

2005: Internet advertising passes another major milestone as it catches and overhauls the poster medium's share of adspend. UK revenues for the first half of 2005 reach £490 million, representing a media market share of 5.8 per cent - and the figure for the whole year is expected to top £1 billion.

Fast forward ...

2008: With internet marketing under Guy Phillipson, the IAB chief executive (pictured), paying off, Times Newspapers announces it has taken more revenue online than on its paper-and-ink business. Online advertising is now a £2 billion industry.