King of Pop, indeed. Traffic on the Internet hit a new record as people tuned in online to watch live webcasts of Michael Jackson's memorial service on CBS ( CBS), CNN, a division of Time Warner ( TWX), and other Net outlets. The number of Internet visitors per minute exceeded 109 million Tuesday morning, according to Akamai's ( AKAM) Web traffic monitoring site. That Internet use far surpassed that for recent events, including President Obama's inauguration, which peaked at 79 million on Jan. 19, according to Akamai.
Heavy Internet use, particularly big freight like video, is big business for Akamai, which claims to handle some 20% of world's Internet traffic. The surge in business didn't have the same effect on Akamai's stock, which was down 14 cents to $18.50 in Tuesday afternoon trading.