Inquisitr D: a step on our long march to news site

September 13, 2009 — 4 Comments

The Inquisitr

Inquisitr D, the fourth major refresh of The Inquisitr has gone live this afternoon.

The refresh is more evolutionary than a serious change; I found much to my dismay that Photoshop and Snow Leopard don’t like each other, so I was stopped in my tracks, however the front page itself has its biggest refresh since we dropped the traditional magazine blog look in about September/ October last year.

The new front page look will be familiar to those who frequent newspaper sites, but at the same time it offers its unique spin. Part of the theory behind it was to be different, part was simple practicality; we’re pushing WordPress as a CMS beyond what it was designed for now, and some of the features on the front page reflect what was technically feasable, vs what I would have liked.

We’ve kept the emphasis on imagery, and actually expanded on it. With the exception of the “around the web” feature (which is actually (but not originally) my Google Reader share list) every post comes with an image. There’s more up top in terms of recent posts… indeed triple, and less per category to balance this.

We’ve not really touched much more yet, but there’s some planned changes in terms of sidebar, graphics rendering and even themes planned. At this stage Tech gets the front page look, but not the other categories; the plan is to build out all the categories along what tech has (which is a variation on the front page) but with multiple WP loops we haven’t worked a way to do paging yet.

We still have the famous Inquisitr IE bug, so the header looks different in IE vs the rest, but hopefully some of the planned changes will fix that in the coming month.

We had a great month last month, indeed it was our best on record (30k short of 3m). This month…well, we always start slow, but we’re hopeful we’ll pick up, as we’ve started slow before.

I’ve only touched on this side briefly, but we started syndicating content a couple of months back. We started with Bang Celebrity content, and started playing with AHN. As of two weeks ago we expanded our AHN deal so we take on much more of their content now. We don’t post all of it, and we’re trying to work around content that might be interesting. At the same time though, the mere fact that we’re syndicating content makes us more traditional news site every day; both deals are like signing on with AP or Reuters to a degree, and I’d hope it’s the start of something better again for us.

Once we get the rest of the changes sorted I’d hope that its a base we can use to expand further again. There’s some very interesting things happening in the news space, and I’d love to be more involved, particularly on my side of the pacific.