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BBC News website redesign

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Erik Huggers Erik Huggers | 05:15 UK time, Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Today sees the launch of the redesigned BBC News website. This is the first major part of the BBC website to have implemented our new online design guidelines, known as global visual language. My colleague Steve Herrmann in News has blogged in detail today about the improvements - and I hope you'll like them - but I wanted to reflect on why this moment isn't just important to the News website but to BBC Online as a whole.

This is part of an ongoing process to make BBC Online feel like one coherent service, rather than a disjointed collection of websites,  which is greater than the sum of its parts.

Our aim is more than making a website easy on the eye; a good user-experience is essential to making the site easy to use, and most importantly to make it easy to find what you want to look at quickly.

This has been a major engineering project for the Future Media and Technology Division and I believe it's a great example of engineering and design working hand in glove with editorial - a way of working that I talked about at the Media Guardian Changing Media Summit earlier this year. To give an example we have improved the content management system, which will make it easier for journalists to upload their story and add video and pictures to it more quickly and gives them better control of the layout. My colleagues who have worked on this will be revealing some of their thinking in a blog later in the week.

As we infuse the new global design through BBC Online we will also be reflecting the plans laid down in Putting Quality First, the strategic review that is underway across the whole BBC. We will look at each component part of the whole Online service through three lenses; first, the degree to which it delivers our public purposes; second, the degree to which it fits our editorial priorities; and third, like any other BBC service, how it scores in terms of reach, quality, impact and value. As you may have read last week the BBC Trust agreed in principle to our plans in this area.

The News website is one of the fewer web properties we'll focus on in future. We have also set ourselves a target to double external linking and news is a big part of this story. A recent report on paidcontent shows we have a good foundation to build on this as in the UK outside of search engines the BBC is the top site delivering readers to UK commercial newspaper websites through our existing external links. But we can do more still.

Image showing BBC News linking to external sites

In addition we are also introducing to news the results of partnerships with social networks, improving the way users can share and recommend content on other platforms with their friends.

The new BBC News site allows sharing and recommending content on other platforms with friendsAll that remains to say today is enjoy using the News site and do let us know on the various blogs posted, what you think of it. I know you've already been asking a few questions about some of the technical aspects of the design such as the search function and our plans for HTML5 and colleagues are on the case with answering those points already.

 

Erik Huggers is Director of BBC Future Media & Technology

 

 

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Redesigned? I brought up the page and thought there had been a fault on the system. There wasn't anything really wrong with the old one - I found it a lot easier on the eye than the new one!

  • Comment number 2.

    Why so much wasted space down the side? Scroll scroll scroll. Preffered the old design.

  • Comment number 3.

    The new site is appalling. Did the design team really think it was an improvement? Did you ask any members of the licence fee paying public? I use the site several times a day and delve fairly deep into it so I'm not just reacting to a 'change', it really is terrible. The reasoning that it will make the family of BBC websites more coherent is rubbish as the News Site could be stand alone as its much more valuable to people than the rest of the BBC content pages...

  • Comment number 4.

    Very disappointed by the new design. The old design was perfectly fit for the function it has. It's good to see full XHTML validation this time around but the design looks less worked on that the old one.

    Don't fix what is not broken they say, nobody was complaining about the old design, why spend money in changing it. Sure it might match more other BBC sites design however it is going to annoy a lot of user and the news website will probably even lose some recurring visitors because of this. Users like to know where things are, now we have to look for what we want, it is frustrating and the result is not guaranteed.

    Big website should think more before they go and change a design and more importantly should communicate with their community of users to work out how to improve the user experience.

    BBC didn't and as you can see so far we have still to see a positive comment about the new design.

    There is also a lack of javascript consistency on the website. Some input elements type text have all a default value, however some of them the default value disappear on focus, on others it only change colour and goes away after you type few letters. The later effect looks poor as you can type up to 3 letters on top of the default text before it disappear which is just plain annoying.

    BBC should consider reversing to the old news site.

  • Comment number 5.

    I loved the old design but I don't like this one. There is no visual hierarchy to the new design (A guide to visual hierarchy if any one is interested: http://blog.themeforest.net/tutorials/visual-hierarchy-in-web-design/%29.

    Looking at the current news page the Major manhunt for Afghan soldier headline is obviously the most important story but what's next? Watch/Listen and Features & Analysis seem to be next. But they aren't in a location that suggests they are important. And surely on News.bbc.co.uk news should be more important!

  • Comment number 6.

    Does this relaunch mark the beginning of the end for sub-domains as part of making the site "feel like one coherent service". The only major aspect I'm not so keen on is the news article text being narrower in width, with the new gap reserved for graphics and other clips.

  • Comment number 7.

    Very difficult to read the dark blue bold font in Chrome, which appears fuzzy and tight. It is not so bad in Firefox or IE. With the greater emphasis on images and the more cluttered look, it is almost impossible to scan for points of interest with Chrome. Irrespective of the browser there is no focal point other than the main article, which is why it looks cluttered and confusing.

    Moving the main menu links to the top is an improvement but losing the page scaling is a big step back. I know the budget for the web site has decreased but does the page size really need to hit in these days of wide screen monitors?

  • Comment number 8.

    On this page, an example of BBC's new blogpage style, links, whether in bold or non-bold type, are in a colour discernibly different to the black of running text - the link colour being what I would call a 'medium' blue. The distinction between link and non-link text is adequate.

    On older-style blog pages, and on the new BBC News website, the link colour is in a much darker Prussian blue. Browser rendering differences aside, this is perhaps not quite so much a problem when in large bold font, but for smaller non-bold text, such a colour is not readily distinguishable from running text. I find I have to scrub the screen with a mouse to find such links - not very ergonomic! (And I have good colour sight.)

    Admittedly, this blue link issue might be less of a problem on an LCD screen, whose colours tend, typically, to be less saturated than those on a CRT. Nevertheless, there remains an inconsistency across the BBC on the link colour strategy.

    Look at the blues used by the old masters Google and Microsoft. They have thought about this problem and refined their practice over many years.

    Russ

  • Comment number 9.

    The Beeb has taken a retrograde step with the new format. The page has now stretched out and quick reviews of the highlights can no longer be easily achieved. I for one am likely to move to some other home page for news scanning rather than suffer this new format

  • Comment number 10.

    The ceasing of the news.bbc.co.uk URL is a real pain. It was one of the few URLs that our company's firewall didn't block, and was great to look at over lunchtime and during breaks. All www.bbc.co.uk URLs are blocked and will stay blocked, so 120,000 staff at one of the country's biggest banks now cannot access the BBC news website. Thanks a lot BBC for consulting your users before implementing this decision.

  • Comment number 11.

    If I am not mistaken, your Global Visual Language v2.0 has been out for a while, and was the benchmark behind the recent (last year or so) homepage, iPlayer and main BBC website redesign.

    This redesign included the BBC news section?

    This new design moves away from this standard, without the standard masthead?!

    Stick to your rules, and if it ain't broke...

  • Comment number 12.

    It's infuriating how awful the new website is. Stunningly awful. I'm saying this as someone who, when I saw the last new BBC design, declared "the BBC are God" - the customisable home page, modular look and iGoogle inspired, but unique feel of the site were magnificent, innovative, and close to perfect. Usability, flexibility and style were married in a beautiful design that could easily have lasted another 5 years - it was that far ahead of everyone else.

    The new design, unfortunately, has nothing at all to recommend it. It's a pathetic clone of vulgar, tabloid style news sites.

    Even the most basic usability considerations have been completely messed up. No navigation on the side - instead, limited, two layer navigation horizontally across the top. What a mistake. When I first saw it, I was convinced that the website had accidentally assumed my PC was a mobile phone, not just because of the awful, netbook screen width / iPhone optimised appearance, but because it said "mobile" next to BBC News. It took me four visits, trying to find the proper website, before I realised the word "mobile" was meant to be a link. (A link that is not underlined and looks as if it is a tagline? Have you ever heard of usability at all? Jacob Nielsen? Jack Krug? Do your homework! Read their books!)

    The pages themselves are vertically longer, but without a sense of order or hierarchy. It feels like someone threw bits and bobs randomly on a vertical page, rather than offering ordered and clear routes of navigation.

    Fewer articles are listed. The entire website appears to be suggesting "we're reducing the amount of journalism and content, and trying to hide this by putting more whitespace and larger fonts on the site under the banner of improvement"

    So, the sense of order is gone. The usability has gone to pots. The entire thing feels like the sort of layout a magazine feature article in a second rate celebrity rag might get away with, but not a web page. (How far down do you expect people to scroll? Has some manager / moron come up with the idea of moving main navigational tools "below the fold" in order to force people to scroll down? Has anyone told them that no, people will simply get frustrated and stop using the site rather than allow themselves to be "nudged" into accepting longer, less structured pages?)

    As web user, I have sort of come to expect big websites to change, and occasionally, change disastrously. Facebook is busy shafting its users on privacy settings every other month. Even Google almost messed up the otherwise excellent Gmail product by trying to twitterify it with "Buzz" - and Google Wave turned out to be a bit of a red herring. It's been a source of some comfort and pleasure to know that the BBC has not mis-stepped majorly in its redesigns and improvements. It had become an anchor of quality on the web (not of stability - the BBC was always at the leading edge of web quality). Now that anchor has been discarded and the BBC is freefalling into sub-mediocrity with its web design.

    Honestly, if the BBC ever did a survey and asked "where should we make cutbacks? Whom should we fire?", the web design team has just moved from the very last place I would vote for, to the very first.

  • Comment number 13.

    I don't like the new look either. It's just soft and sprawling - the old design was much tighter and focussed, and the wide panel on the right wastes a lot of space and has greater prominence than the news (let me just check I'm not looking at the main BBC website).

    In contrast, there is an ultra-compact navbar which, with its narrow font (why is the date and time so compact as to be barely legible?) and compressed elements contrast sharply with the rest of the page. And it worked perfectly well down the left hand side before - as did the previous design.

    As ever, committees decide we need more of this and more of that and how can we squeeze more in and must fill our quota of external links and because the font's bigger we'll have to make the pictures smaller and we'll have a meaningful name like "global visual language" that sounds important but actually means nothing.

    So thumbs down from here.

  • Comment number 14.

    "This is part of an ongoing process to make BBC Online feel like one coherent service..."

    L...O...L...

    You can't be serious? From a design / page structure perspective the home page caries no similarity at all to the News website, which (now with the redesign) carries no similarity to the Sport site.

    Users less accustomed to bbc.co.uk would be forgiven for thinking the three parts mentioned above were not connected at all apart from the logo in the top left corner!

    Global Visual Language my arse!

  • Comment number 15.

    Some constructive improvements if you are keeping this design.

    On "Watch/Listen" what is the design decision behind having the transparent previous next buttons. The play button confuses the next button, muddying the interface. The horizontal line at the base ruins the aesthetic. Just keep it solid, and vertically center the arrows!

    In the content area:
    - The 'Also in the News' headings. Remove the bottom line, it segments and confuses. Surely the horizontal rules should be used to dictate blocks of content, not needlessly segment them.
    - Increase the line width, there is no need for the white space for an increased vertical height.
    - Move "From other news sites" and similar blocks to the sidebar, reducing the vertical height.
    - Under blockquotes, what are those links, whats the relationship between them and the article.
    - Move "Democracy Live" to the right sidebar, decreasing the vertical height of the page.

    Video Player Pages
    - The grid of videos by category - Could this not be presented more efficiently. Tab based interface perhaps?

    Header
    - The 'more' drop down needs a white border on the bottom edge. On an article detail page it clashes into the grey sidebar.
    - The mobile text should read 'mobile version'

    What happened to paragraphs. This is almost single lines throughout. Is this a standard? (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-10633297%29

    I'm gonna stop, I'm boring myself..

  • Comment number 16.

    The color red is confusing--too similar to CNN--and too much of it. Navigationally, I could navigate easier with the old design that showed the geographical areas and topics on the left hand side bar. In the former design, the lead photo and article were more eye-catching and compelling--really drew the reader into the site. Now it looks more like a hodge-podge list of topics, like a gargantuan Chinese menu. Most people I know in America just loved the (former) site. On the other hand, Web sites can't stand still, and I'm sure readers with more experience in design will point out the many excellent new features, which I look forward to exploring.

  • Comment number 17.

    Thank you for your comments and questions. I know some of you have also commented on Steve Herrmann’s post on the Editor's Blog. Steve will be addressing many of your questions in his next blog.

    There is a frequently asked questions page which you may also find useful.

  • Comment number 18.

    Paul Sissons, the creative director of the BBC News redesign project has posted on the Internet Blog explaining how and why some of the design decisions were made.

    Laura.

  • Comment number 19.

    Steve Hermann has responded to some of your feedback on The Editors Blog

  • Comment number 20.

    I don't bother to comment often, or at all, but as a daily visitor to the BBC NEWS I found the old design easier to scan, see the news, and pick what news I want to read. The new design doesn't work for me, and I'm a graphic designer. There's too much scrolling around, to much eye movement all over the page. The old news site had everything sitting right in front of you and more orderly. It worked in my opinion.

  • Comment number 21.

    Good Evening
    The link to Mr Hermanns nominated `blog`for comment upon his changes to the BBC website was removed from the homepage with an unseemly haste and the said `blog` has now has been closed to further comment, presumably to allow him time to write his resignation letter.
    The unprecedented and overwhelmingly hostile reaction to his imposition of such a vulgar facade upon the international beacon of the BBC can leave him with no credible alternative. I hope he will have the good grace to admit his folly and reinstate the former format before handing over to a competent successor.
    This is not a Luddite and reactionary response to a no doubt well-intentioned attempt to update the website; it is a plea to him to admit that he has failed in every material aspect of the proposed venture and to do the right thing. The gory details are `blogged` until he chooses to supress them. We shall see.
    uktc

  • Comment number 22.

    This rubbish looks like some adolescent's blog.

    Stop wasting license payer's money and put it back!

  • Comment number 23.

    Thanks for your comments, they've been collated and sent over to Steve Herrmann who has been reviewing and answering as many as possible on the Editor's Blog.

    Read his blog from day three of the BBC News website redesign.

    Laura.

  • Comment number 24.

    My initial impression? It looks basic and cheap with a lot of wasted space. I can only assume that new budget constraints have lead to the site being redesigned with cost rather than functionality in mind. I much preferred the old website as it was easier to navigate and all pertinent information was on screen rather than having to scroll.

  • Comment number 25.

    Further to my comment #8 above, I have subsequently found the BBC's excellent guidelines accompanying its Global Visualisation Language on colour contrast and link practices.

    I note Steve Hermann has not yet mentioned the non-compliance with these specific guidelines in any of his blogs.

    Russ

  • Comment number 26.

    Its awful. Admit it.

  • Comment number 27.

    Further to my comment #25, compliance with some aspects of the GVL2 specs does appear to be improving considerably over the last couple of days.

    Russ

  • Comment number 28.

    My dislike of the new bbc news website caused me to google my frustration and I discovered this site. The new bbc news site is like something from the 1990's! It's as if an American has been employed to design it - notice how un-user friendly American sites are. The BRITISH Broadcasting Corporation is a world service but what about the people paying the fees?! I actually hate the new site and i've not been back on it since it's launch. The top news story is tiny, it's ridiculous!!!

    Bring back the site that actually looks like it's from the 21st centuary!

  • Comment number 29.

    Thanks for pointing to the guidelines Russ,

    you can find the full Global Visual Language Guidelines v2.0 on the Future Media Standards & Guidelines site.

    Laura.

  • Comment number 30.

    The BBC is evolving a global experience language for its digital services.

    The GEL (Global Experience Language) guidelines are a reference point for all designers creating BBC websites (future iterations will also incorporate mobile and IPTV recommendations).

    Full information is on the GEL site.
    Laura.

  • Comment number 31.

    Thanks Laura. My imperfect understanding is that part of the current furore over the News website concerns the speculation that its compliance with GVL2 is at best partial, and that it could be legitimised only by the existence of a 'GVL3'. I have no problem with the BBC trying to make an honest buck if the associated stateside advertising requirements dictated by bbc.com have enforced the changes to the BBC News website. What does seem illogical is a rewrite of GVL2 merely to accomodate that special commercial circumstance, particularly if such a rewrite would presage a pointless and expensive widespread revision to the rest of BBC Online. A clear case of the tail wagging the dog. By all means allow the current News website to continue as a permissible derogation of GVL2, but I feel it would be a shame to now throw overboard the architectural principles and spririt of GVL2 for the rest of BBC Online.

    Russ

  • Comment number 32.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 33.

    Sir,

    it would appear from the BBC website
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/aboutthebbc/running/executive/eb_erik_huggers.shtml
    that your anual salary was £223,000 in 2008/9 with a total renumeration package of £274,000. I presume that it has not dropped since then.
    In light of the volume of negative comments surrounding the new website do you feel that you deserve this level of personal income from the licence payers?

  • Comment number 34.

    The author of this blog writes:
    "Our aim is more than making a website easy on the eye; a good user-experience is essential to making the site easy to use, and most importantly to make it easy to find what you want to look at quickly"
    _____________________________________________

    Since the new news site is neither 'easy on the eye' nor do the majority of respondents to the blogs mentioned above find it to be 'a good user-experience', indeed many report it to be difficult 'to find what you want to look at quickly', I would suggest you have failed to achieve your aims as stated above.

    I note, however you fail to mention your need to integrate advertisements into the site for international markets, and the way the design drives users towards those ads, nor any mention of the Facebook tracking script, or the unintended consequences of Facebook.

    Nor do you explain the absence of the 'global masthead', which is part of the above mentioned GEL (Global Experience Language) guidelines.

    I welcome the continued development of the BBC website, including the news site, but find the latest incarnation to be a retrograde step in the evolution of a distinctive user focused, and identifiably 'BBC' site.

    It seems to me your aim was not just "more than making a website easy on the eye" but a lot more than you are prepared to share with license fee payers and users in this blog.

  • Comment number 35.

    Hi Russ,

    Paul Sissons the Creative Director on the re-design has the following reply:

    “With regards to questions about adherence to guidelines, it would be helpful if you could point out the specific areas.

    As you mention you’ve noticed improvements already which is great. The New Global GEL was created alongside the re-design of the news site. Because of this we adopted an early version. What we see now is much further on in its life cycle. We will be constantly revisiting and refining the site as the GEL evolves. Latest here. The global masthead used on News however, is the latest version and will be rolled out across the rest of the BBC.

    It’s also worth mentioning the up coming launch of the accessibility preferences tool kit that will allow users to choose a range of different contrast settings as well as many more access settings.”

    Thanks for your feedback.

    Laura.

  • Comment number 36.

    Thankyou Laura for Paul Sissons' enquiry on what I think are non-compliances with current guidelines. I refer to the specific matters raised in my initial post (#8), viz:

    Your colour contrast guideline states (in 2.2): ".... e.g. you MUST distinguish link text from non-link text by text style (underline, bold, italic) as well as colour". In my view, your use of prussian blue #1F4F92 for non-bold links is not sufficiently distinguished from non-link text, which as far as I can detect from your myriad of stylesheets may be asphalt #505050. (The requirement is repeated in more general form in 3.1 of your link practices: "Links MUST be clearly identifiable and distinguishable from surrounding text, by use of a presentation or context cue.")

    Running text in Guardian articles fails miserably on the same criterion, btw. Admittedly, you now seem to be using bold for links in running text, hence my previous comment on an improved compliance, but as yet links in your running text are very rare. How much longer will that last though, particularly in view of the BBC's commitment to increase the number of external links?

    Concerning link colour differentation, 3.3 of your link practices states: "Your visited link colour SHOULD be different from the non-visited links' colour.". I do not feel your unvisited link #1F4F92 is sufficiently different from the visited #4A7194, although I recognise the latter colour might have been constrained somewhat by the Accessibility Guidelines AA requirement.

    I'm not diminishing the conundrum of finding a good solution to any of the above, but I'd like to feel the BBC could devise something that didn't merely emulate your rival news sites, and certainly didn't copy their mistakes. Something distinctive. Something that says "Ah! This is the BBC!" Something that is genuinely new, and possibly quirky even, like the iPlayer volume control's homage to Nigel Tufnell's amplifier.

    Be different.

    Russ

    P.S. Despite my somewhat glib previous reference to 'GVL3', I have now discovered on my travels (my, what a labyrinth of BBC specs there are) that the dreaded GVL3 really does exist. Eeeek! I hesitate to notify that page, because it will get the architecture fashionistas right out of their prams, but I have to say, compared with the wonderful early form of GVL2, on which so much effort and money was expended, it's a no-brainer to my eye.

    P.P.S. I wasn't aware of the forthcoming 'pimp my page' tool. That should be fun!

    P.P.P.S. Reference 2.2 of your css guidelines ("The page MUST be usable and readable without the CSS."), I did try a css-stripped news page, and it wasn't all that pretty... (It would be churlish to press that minor point, but on the general matter of cs sheets, haven't I seen comments in the other place that your that some of your css don't validate?)

  • Comment number 37.

    I should not have to opt out of sharing my personal details (IP address, browsing habits etc) with Facebook. this may well be illegal.

    Why hasn't anybody answered my formal complaint about what the relationship between the BBC and Facebook is and what information Facebook can see by the BBC including a third party widget on every page.

    The BBC must not be complicit in any behavioral profiling, especially with a US company with questionable privacy policies.

  • Comment number 38.

    Now, Laura, I know you have put a post on Steve Herrman's blog (no. 5) regarding this blog but is anybody here actually going to address any of the thousands of concerns logged on his series of blogs regarding the redesign? And I don't mean in the 'talk down to like children' attitude that has been so prevalent in his responses.

    You have a major backlash on your hands and no-one seems to want to deal with it. I've personally emailed the DDG & DDG and lodged an official complaint mainly because I don't think anyone is listening to us.

    And why are there two blogs on the same subject that, until you posted, had no cross-referencing links?

  • Comment number 39.

    "Our aim is more than making a website easy on the eye; a good user-experience is essential to making the site easy to use, and most importantly to make it easy to find what you want to look at quickly."

    Exactly what the old news site provided! The new design has taken away:

    1) "Easy on the eyes." My eyes do not know where to look since the redesign.
    2) "A good user experience." The user experience is so bad now I only read the blogs to see when it will be fixed.
    3) "Easy to find what you are looking for." Now I have to scroll a lot and still cannot find what I want to look at.

    So being that the new site has not achieved this, why not revert back to the award winning old site?

  • Comment number 40.

    Roger Bolton, of BBC Radio 4, puts on the spot Steve Herrmann about the redesigned news homepage here.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/radio4/2010/07/roger_bolton_talks_to_steve_herrmann_about_the_redesigned_bbc_news_homepage.html

  • Comment number 41.

    What have you done to the news website, do not like it, nothing wrong with the old one, so will you please put the old one back.

  • Comment number 42.

    Erik,

    Greetings. I hope you dont think this matter has gone away. Its just that with 4 blogs running on it concurrently it would be too much to post on all of them, for me anyway.

    The Editors Blog is still getting the majority of the flack with a little creeping onto the Internet Blog Site and ditto Roger Boltons blog arising from the R4 stonewall session with Steve Herrmann.

    This will not go away or die quietly, a bit like upsetting Middle England, best not done but if done soothed as quickly as possible .

  • Comment number 43.

    When will you be publishing the page traffic on this design disaster?

  • Comment number 44.

    I don't use the bbc news site any more since the redesign. Poor design, diffcult to find what you want and gives you a headache...

  • Comment number 45.

    I am gravitating away from the BBC news site now as I am finding it lacking content and actual news. I liked the old layout and cannot understand why the BBC would change an award winning layout to a dumbed down version similar to the many non-award winning sites out there.

  • Comment number 46.

    Erik, Laura, Bridget:

    Steve Herrmann's last Editors' Blog post was on 21 July. From then until the BBC closed the blog to comments on 2 August, there were a further 1,000 posts, almost all entirely negative about the news site redesign. Apart from some hysterical posts, practically all made serious, cogent, well-argued points about layout, navigation and content or technical bugs such as video problems and page loading. Most posters - especially those who've written new scripts to improve the site - took the trouble to comment because they care about the BBC and its news service.

    The total number of blog posts on the redesign is over 5,000 and the reaction has been universally negative. And Steve Herrmann's response to the latest comments? Thunderous silence. His previous posts have all taken the patronising line that "you may hate it but we like it, so go away"; neither he nor anyone else has shown that they are prepared to accept any constructive criticism or engage with the very real problems and concerns of a huge number of website users.

    What does this say about the BBC's dialogue with its audience? It simply reinforces the suspicion that blogs are set up simply to give posters somewhere to express their frustrations, which can then be ignored in hopes that any problems will just go away.

    The news website redesign appears to have been a completely botched job and a PR disaster. Visually it's a complete mess; technically it fails; and the BBC reaction comes over as arrogant disregard for those who actually use it.

  • Comment number 47.

    Thanks to everyone for taking the time to post your feedback and questions.
    With over 5000 comments it is difficult to answer everyone. Steve Herrmann has written 5 blog posts about the News site redesign and his 5th post specifically addresses much of the criticism, queries and suggestions that have been made and the thinking around why the changes have been made.
    There is also a Frequently Asked Questions page which answers some of the points that have been made.
    Best wishes, 
Laura.

  • Comment number 48.

    Dear Laura Editor,

    Have you read post 47 which (truthfully) says:-
    "...His previous posts have all taken the patronising line that "you may hate it but we like it, so go away"; neither he nor anyone else has shown that they are prepared to accept any constructive criticism or engage with the very real problems and concerns of a huge number of website users.
    ..." ?

    Your post 47 is just ridiculous.


  • Comment number 49.

    Correction to post 48:-

    "Have you read post 47" should be "Have you read post 46"

    Sorry for my mistake.

  • Comment number 50.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 51.

    Dear Laura Editor,
    Can you please give us an estimate of how much longer the "further consideration" of post number 50 will take?

  • Comment number 52.

    Dear Hatenewnewssite,

    this was an oversight, thank you for flagging. I have now published Ampersand2's post.

    I apologise for the delay.

    Laura.


  • Comment number 53.

    Because Steve Herrmann has refused to revert any of the changes (none requested by any users) We have come up with a simple tool that converts the site to look like the old. This is FREE and was created because we cannot bear the current 'monstrous' look. Steve Herrmann won't do anything about it so 'we' have to.

    o Gives you back the left hand menu with the previous 'look and feel'
    o Changes the masthead to black and reduces the font size
    o Removes the new top menu
    o Reduces the headline font size
    o Changes the default font to verdana
    o Reduces the section font sizes
    o Reduces the garishness of the Most Popular tabbed group
    o Removes a few news sections that intrude on the browsing experience
    o Removed new promotional sections used for non-UK advertising
    o Removed unnecessary extra images

    This change does require Greasemonkey and Firefox web browser. Sorry about that IE users... Once those are installed then install the "BBC news fix to awful new website" script that can be found here:

    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

    Gives you back the previous look and feel to the BBC news website, peace at last!

  • Comment number 54.

    Re: "Unsuitable/Broken URL" in comment 53 above.
    I believe the intended URL was
    http://userscripts.org/scripts/show/87428

    dizt3mp3r, please correct me if I am wrong.

 

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