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Christmas Gift Guide
Tech Industry

We all scream?

Ben & Jerry's uses its Web site to promote its annual ice cream giveaway.

Nowadays you not only can get free PCs through the Web, you can get free ice cream--or at least find out about it.

Ice cream retailer Ben and Jerry's Homemade is promoting an ice cream giveaway--a yearly ritual--on its Web site. "Get ready, get set . . . get in line!" the site reads, adding, "April 27th is 'free cone day' at Ben & Jerry's scoop shops coast to coast. It's all on the house, Tuesday from 12 noon until 8 p.m."

You have to go to the "brick-and-mortar" outlet to eat it, however. But the Web site helps, directing users to "scoop shop locations."

Like a surging number of retailers--from booksellers to computer makers--Ben and Jerry's Web site is e-commerce-friendly. It offers ice cream by mail (six pints, overnight shipping for $64.95), a store (a Cherry Garcia T-shirt for $20)--and free e-cards. Customers can order online or by phone or fax.

Ben & Jerry's isn't the only ice cream Web site. Baskin Robbins, for example, has a Web site that offers information about its products, history, and "birthday club," where children can qualify for a free ice-cream cone on their birthday. But alas, you cannot order any ice cream online.

Brook Furey contributed to this report.