UPDATED: We're going to do this on a Wednesday, but 3 weeks from now. Too many people in the newsroom are out for the holidays...
On Wednesday afternoon, 12/16, you'll be getting an early holiday present from us.
Over the past three months, we've been looking at reader feedback on the new newsobserver.com site. From both you and our editorial staff, the answer came loud and clear: you want your newspaper site to have MORE NEWS, higher up on the page, and less whitespace.
Well, we listened. And on Wednesday, you can look forward to the following changes:
- The big auto-rotating featured story area on the home page? GONE. Will be replaced by the major news stories of the day, with all of the related content right there, listed in an easy-to-read (and click) format.
- The big brown multimedia nav bar cutting across the entire page? GONE. Well, actually just reduced, and moved into a more manageable area in the right column.
- If you liked the featured story area, and/or the multimedia bar: we're introducing an "Editor's Picks" area where the bar used to be. It will promote special content and features, in a less eye-jarring format than the multi-bar.
We've already modified the site navigation so that you're presented with the easier to use mouseover effect, giving access to the subsections in all our major content areas.
Since a picture is still worth a thousand words, here's a link to a large-scale mockup of what our new homepage will look like. Major section fronts will get a similar treatment as well.
We hope this will go a long way towards making the site what you want. Let us know how far we have come, and/or how much further we have to go.