Thursday, June 30, 2011

Newsround launches its new-look website - continued

The Newsround website search engine is now working after a fashion.

These days CBBC rarely has much to say to the public about its editorial thinking. But yesterday, Newsround's deputy editor, Daniel Clarke, broke a long-standing silence and proffered an explanation for the changes made to their website.

Daniel says that Newsround as a programme was set up nearly 40 years ago with the admirable purpose of informing children about the world in a way that's relevant to them. If it's going to continue to do this, it needs to have the agility and boldness to follow the audience where they're going now.

How the site has changed? Last Friday the website reported that Max from 'The Wanted' had become engaged to Michelle Keegan (Tina on Coronation Street) This is how it looked before, but after the revamp the same story now looks like this. One of the disappointing things about the change is that timestamps are now absent.

When the CBBC site completed a makeover in April 2011 Phil Buckley, Product Manager for the BBC Children's portfolio, blogged about the relaunch, prefacing his reasoning with examples of kids who were very upset following changes made to CBeebies website in 2007.

All very well to get used to a website style, and be unhappy when things change superficially. But what about the case where things have clearly been spoilt and valuable content excised, yet it's described as an improvement? As I said in my previous blog entry, such happened with CBBC's Internet presence in December 2008. Check Newsround Blog entries around the end of 2008 for the lowdown.

Ricky's iPad 2
Ricky shows off his iPad 2 this morning

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