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Friday, June 15, 2007

Right Hand, meet Left Hand. Left hand, meet Right Hand.

I wonder sometimes if the Winston-Salem Journal will ever open itself up to electronic media, in the form of JournalNow, being a large part of their future. It's like, "Here, we have a few staff blogs. Oh and here, have some local popup ads, but that's all you're getting as far as dynamic content." The rest of the site, while well laid out, is almost strictly just a copy of what makes the print edition. And certain, basic things of the Right-Hand-Left-Hand variety just don't happen.

For example, columnist Kim Underwood compiles information about blogs with local ties, and every other week "Web Sightings" is in the Living section of the print edition. But if you later want to find that profiled blog, and you think to yourself, "Aha! There's a list of local blogs on the JournalNow website!" well, friend, you are most likely out of luck. The Web Sightings aren't automatically added to the bloglist.

The bloglist itself hasn't been culled in goodness knows how long. The first three blogs on it are

1. a blog that hasn't been posted to since February, and the post before that was October
2. a legal advice blog that hasn't seen a post since mid-March
3. a blog from Israel about Israel

Hell, I haven't posted to my Speaking Death blog since February of 2006; there is NO reason it should still be there. I can understand that it may well have been put there initially to bulk up the list, but it should have vamoosed eons ago, as the Web Sightings were automatically added as a matter of course.

This is common sense. Does the Journal have someone on staff whose job it is to understand how online readers use the website? Whose job it is to understand how someone who takes the paper uses the website?

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