Some interesting advice from a young fogie, Ben Goldacre, apparently ensconced in one of London’s smarter Gentlemen’s clubs (hat tip to Martin Stabe).
10 bits of advice about what to do and not to do about newspapers and their web sites. Mostly very sound. These two caught my attention:
(8) Make all of your content work on mobile phones, blackberry browsers, old computers, and PDAs. You have no idea how many people own these. You have no idea how bored they get at the bus stop, on the loo, and in meetings under the table. ……….
(9) Do not use flash, or other complicated animated web nonsense. It looks good on the developer’s laptop, when they come to show you the site, but it’s slow to load, and irritating to browse. ……………
So keep it simple is a big part of his message. But we would say that there is an even more basic rule. Make the newspaper, the magazine, the periodical, the printed supplements and the special issues, make them all Digital Editions. Make them available on the web. The print publication can speak for itself and stand for itself on the web. Once you have done that well (and hardly any newspapers have done that at all well), you can spend time on inventing the most impressive array of additional web services. You can even spend your afternoons in the Garrick or the Carlton drinking chablis with a good conscience and your young advisers.
I was always told KISSS – Keep It Simple Stupid..A simple site is better than a complicated one