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Index was founded in 1995 under the original name, Internetto.hu. It was later renamed to Index.hu[when?]. The predecessor, Internetto, had a daily viewership of about 8,000 in the 1990s, which caused several investors to start showing interest. The leaders of Internetto at the time started the buyout talks with the IDG (International Data Group). To prevent this, András Nyírő, Gábor Gerényi and Péter Uj founded a new company called Consulting URL, which in April 1999, made a HUF 15 million buyout offer towards IDG. At the next editorial meeting, István Bíró (CEO), fired the three for making the bid. As a response to this move the entire editorial board resigned. They soon founded index.hu.
The editor-in-chief and founder of the site was András Nyírő. From 2000 until the 30 September 2011 the editor-in-chief was Péter Uj.
Index has free language, some consider it vulgar, and it regularly carries tabloid news on the front page. Between 2002 and 2010 the portal was openly critical of the socialist-liberal government on several occasions. The conservative right alleged Index.hu was merely a method of "letting off steam" in a state-safe manner. After the general elections in 2010, Index remained critical of the national conservative and right-wing populist Fidesz government.
Index.hu's political orientation is mainly centrist, with a liberal bent on many social issues.
In April 2017, Index was sold by its previous owner, Central European Media & Publishing (CEMP) Inc. to Magyar Fejlődésért Alapítvány (Hungarian Development Foundation) with links to Lajos Simicska, a former friend and ally of PM Viktor Orbán turned into a political adversary. Fidesz politicians as well as the government controlled media portray the move as the fall of Index under the influence of Simicska. Editor-in-chief of Index, Gergely Dudás denied the allegations in a statement, emphasizing the portal's independence.
In recent years index.hu greatly expanded the range of services offered.
- Blog.hu: the largest Hungarian blog provider
- Indavideó: a video sharing website
- Indafotó: picture sharing site for Hungarian users
- Indamail: a major Hungarian email provider
- Velvet: women's magazine
- Totalcar: car magazine
- Index Fórum: heavily moderated general themed message board