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What are the major differences between newspapers and Web sites?  What make for a good news Web site?

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11 Responses to CLASS BLOG DISCUSSION #2

  1. The most obvious difference: Web sites incorporate audio, video, photos and text in their reporting while newspapers are solely text. Beyond this straightforward difference, websites allow experimental or supplementary coverage of news stories. While newspaper journalists are restricted to a certain number of words and column space, websites can simply create links to interesting additional information that did not fit into the original story.
    Readers get to have a much more visible presence on websites than they do in newspapers because even bad comments are published below most online articles.

    Good news websites incorporate professional text pieces with short video and audio clips that allow the online reader to consume a lot of information fairly quickly. Personally, I still prefer to get the majority of my news from actual newspapers, its less of a strain on my eyes to read and I often have to spend a lot of time in front of a computer for schoolwork. It is nice to get a break from staring at a screen for a while. However, online news media is ideal for brief synopses of stories. Usually I will learn about a news story initially from an online newsfeed, then read about the actual event in the New York Times later that day or that week.

  2. daniellemk says:

    One of the differences between newspapers and Web sites is how information is presented. With newspapers, tight writing is very important with every story. With Web sites, the reporter has almost an unlimited amount of space for their writing.
    Another difference is the information that is being presented. With Web sites, it is much easier to keep up with the 24 hour news cycle. Articles can be updated and stories can be posted to the very second something happens. Right now, newspapers are publishing ‘yesterday’s news’ by the time each edition comes out.

    A good news Web Site is one that keeps accurate and up to date information on it at all times. It also links out to where the reporters did their research and uses social media to gain information. It also needs to present the information in an easy way to its readers so they can follow it and not get bored.

  3. alex2858 says:

    The major differences between a website and the newspaper are easy to see. As the other posts said, websites can use a variety of different media such as video and audio. Since it is so easy to update, websites are current to the minute while newspapers must be printed—when you sit down with the newspaper, you probably are already reading old news. Because of this speed of distribution, websites also are sometimes less accurate than newspapers. A less discussed difference is the actual look of a newspaper and a website. I have talked to many people, and I agree with them, about how we just like to hold a newspaper and read the information from that much more than looking at a computer screen and reading the same article. Apple is trying to combat this by coming out with their iPad. We will see in the near future if this truly larger will be enough like a newspaper to please consumers.

    “A good news website” really doesn’t have a lot to do with the actual news to me. When it comes to actual articles and the quality of writing of those articles, I really cant differentiate between the ‘big guys’ like the NY Times, USA Today, CNN, etc. They all have the same stories with pretty much the same information. Therefore, to me, the important part of a good news website would be first to differentiate themselves from the rest by reporting on different stories, and for the big stories that are national news—get information that other websites just don’t have. I know, this is a lot easier said than done, but that’s what will save the newspapers. As for now, a good news website, because the content really is irrelevant, is the site that is easiest to navigate, most organized, and easiest to read. In this aesthetic sense, I personally like and therefore read and more than any other site. Those sites are similar in that they clearly show the day’s top stories with little blurbs of what the story is about. It is not cluttered by a ton of advertisements or what seem like random, unorganized articles. They both have tabs for broad topics such as “MLB,” “NFL,” “Business,” or even “National.” I can easily navigate through these sites and find articles that interest me.

  4. The above comments sum up pretty well the differences between newspapers and news web sites. I will add, however, that web sites allow stories to become more dynamic – not just in the various multimedia aspects like video, audio, audio, etc., although those do tend to make a story come alive more than just with words – but also in the abundance and accessibility of information. If I am following a story such as what is going on in Haiti, I will start with a front page story that comes up on the homepage of the New York Times. As I’m reading the article, however, there are usually several links to other articles in the actual article itself. So if the article is talking about aid workers in Haiti, “aid workers” could be a link that opens up to previous stories about rescue efforts. These “links within articles” round out stories in ways that newspapers cannot. They allow the reader to find similar stories at the click of a button and with minimal effort.

  5. Like said before, the major difference between newspapers and websites is the way the information is presented. While newspapers have the advantage of being an actual physical entity that we can carry around, they rely only on the words created by their writers. These stories can’t be complemented by other mediums, like audio and video. Websites have that ability. Online journalists can choose to add video to stories that benefit from moving objects. They can add audio to stories where voices are particularly important in conveying an idea. Newspapers are limited to text. They don’t have nearly as much range as websites do in this respect.

    Websites also benefit from the ability to update on a 24 hour cycle. Well constructed stories can be created and posted in a matter of hours. Shorter pieces (in the form of tweets) can be updated minutes after an event. Newspapers have wait until the following day to include this information.

    A good news site is one that takes advantage of its advantages. It must create packages of text, video, and sound. It must be updated frequently and make use of new social media as a way to stay connected in our fast-paced world.

  6. Alex Tillotson says:

    Newspapers are unfortunately, becoming a thing of the past. This is simply because of the fact that they can’t incorporate all of the multimedia elements that websites can. A good news website has a variety of packages that enhance the original news story that has been presented. It will incorporate elements of multimedia such as audio, video, or a combination of the two in a slideshow. Websites, unlike newspapers can also link to other related stories that have to do with the topic at hand. This brings readers to even more information about the topics that they’re specifically interested in. Newspapers are also something that people have to subscribe to, whereas the majority of websites still are providing their news for free. The other differences have also been talked about above, so I’ll avoid being repetitive. Overall, news websites are simply an updated, better version of their elderly counterpart, the newspaper.

  7. Rebecca Babin says:

    The major differences between newspapers and Web sites are:

    1. Newspapers are restricted by space, which in turn limits the length and amount of articles. Websites are free to publish as much information as they see fit.
    2. Newspapers are restricted to a deadline for print. Websites can publish information all day, every day.
    3. Newspapers can’t have multimedia packages like audio slideshows and video. In fact, they barely have enough space for legitimate photojournalism.

    A good news website is as trustworthy and accurate as its printed counterpart. It publishes stories and updates throughout the day. It includes multimedia packages to enhance the readers’ understanding of stories. It is easy to navigate, follow via RSS Feed, and have headlines sent to your phone.

  8. Elyse Horowitz says:

    There are a few major differences between printed newspapers and websites. These differences include the ability to have interaction between readers and reporters through comment sections available on websites, the ability to link out to other sources and news sites through the web, and being able to update news statuses regularly. To me, the most important of these aspects is the ease in which news websites can be updated to allow for the most recent news to be spread immediately.

    Additionally, stories and articles written and posted on websites will stay in cyberspace for as long as the publication is in business, so they can be revisited at any time. However, newspapers are often thrown out after they begin to pile up.

    A good news website should not abandon thorough reporting in order to gain quicker access to audience. Good news websites should also include multimedia aspects, such as photos and video of events so that readers can better understand what happened at a particular event. Additionally, news websites should always stay impartial and unbiased when reporting the news.

  9. The most obvious difference between a newspaper and a news website is the fact that one format is strictly print, while the websites incorporate numerous forms of media. Reading the Boston Globe means absorbing a story the only way you’re allowed to (reading through print), but reading the story on the website can be accompanied by video interviews with those involved, or sounds incorporated with the story. In addition, the news websites are allowed more space (or so it seems) to work with based on the volume of stories they have.

    A good news website is one that is easily accessible, navigates smoothly so the reader/subscriber does not have to jump through hoops to find the one story they want, and uses forms of new multimedia such as audio slideshows to get their news across. In addition, a good news website shouldn’t appear clustered, which reverts back to the “smooth” navigation aspect, as well as sticking to one theme. Use of different colors, fonts, etc. could leave the reader a bit confused or simply irritated, and though many times diversity is good, sticking to one theme (so long as it is not bland) is the best course.

  10. bittym87 says:

    Obviously, newspapers are restricted to text and images, and nothing more. Web sites have far less limitations; they can incorporate all kinds of multimedia aspects, including audio and video. Web sites can also be edited on the fly, whereas a newspaper is a fixed physical entity and all breaking news and corrections must be addressed in a subsequent volume.

    Web sites also allow for user interaction; whereas newspapers allow readers to send in questions and commentaries in a “letters to the editor” format where only a select few will be addressed, web sites (especially nowadays) typically feature a more interactive environment in which readers can respond to the stories as well as to one another.

    All of this seemingly makes web sites sound infinitely superior to newspapers; however, there are some downsides to the web-based system. Namely, the newspaper gives its editors complete control over what kind of user response is accepted, while web sites require constant moderation.


  11. David Brinch says:

    The major differences between newspapers and websites are the ways in which each medium presents information. Newspapers use print and graphics to tell stories, while websites can use audio, video and print in order to convey messages. With newspapers, there is a stress on tight, inverted pyramid structure-like writing in order to pack the most information into a more narrow space. With news websites, there are a lot of things that can be displayed on news websites: polls, videos, text, and audi/visual slideshow. The New York Times has a great news website because of the layout. It has strong text pieces, and it is extremely easy to navigate. It has a variety of different things which makes the reader interested.

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