The website I have been given to monitor for the semester is The Guardian – London. Publishing only about five stories a day, the website focuses on big events happening in the city of London. The website’s layout is very reader-friendly and incorporates easy-to-read highlights along with photos of the article.
In terms of multimedia, The Guardian incorporates several podcasts into its coverage of London news. The podcasts vary in subject and have a running time of about 45 minutes. The podcasts are designed to appear easier to readers in headline view. Normal news stories are in white while podcasts are in black. One podcast is about books and is hosted by Amy Liptrot and Emily Chappell. Featuring an introductory article, the podcast about books is quaint and features an image of Stonehenge.
There is usually one multimedia item (i.e. podcasts, videos) per day on the website. Videos are a critical part of the way The Guardian reports news. Videos are of all different lengths. One recent video featured protesters hosting a “die-in” for refugees at Pancras station in London. The video is short and effective at telling the story to readers, showing exactly what protesters were doing, from marching to the actual event and even some chants.
The website recently employed a color coding method to make it easier for readers to explore content. This helps to drive traffic for certain stories as well. Since there are just a few stories published every day, color-coding makes it more practical for readers to identify what each story is.
Features show up in dark-pink and are prevalent throughout the website. Four to five features are published each week and their popularity varies depending on topics. Two features were published on January 23. One focused on how politicians pawned the world’s rich, and that received 413 comments and was shared over 2,000 times on social media. The other feature took a look at photos of Jimi Hendrix. This one received only 16 comments and just 802 shares on social media. Had they perhaps spaced out the features by just one day, they each would have enjoyed more success.
Compared to other media, The Guardian published fewer articles, but is more concerned with features and the big stories rather than focusing on every little piece of news. The website is very user friendly and provides a great layout for readers to enjoy taking a look at some of London’s biggest news.