By Feb. 19, The Star’s online readers fill find a new website with better features and a cleaner interface with bigger photos and easier ways to get around the site.
A month later, full access to the site will require a subscription.
Stories will all be available online, as opposed to just most newspaper stories now. And online readers will discover new features we haven’t been able to smoothly integrate into the old site. I’ll spare you the technical details, but the new site will allow us to better integrate experience-completing features, such as publishing documents referred to in a story, or embedding video we, or you, take and place online.
The Star has provide online news since 1997. Since then, we’ve followed closely and been fully embroiled in the international debate in journalism and Internet circles about whether requiring payment for access is good or bad for an online publication. The tide has ebbed and flowed on the issue, but it’s now turning toward “paywalls” for some publications, especially those that offer unique content.
The Star does. Most of the stories we print, readers won’t find anywhere else, because no one covers a hometown like the hometown paper, and web site.
Our goal is to make the two media complement one another, so both are highly valued by our readers. In coming weeks, we’ll add a third option: an “e-paper” edition. That’s a digital copy of the complete printed newspaper accessible online, which looks just like the newspaper but gets delivered much faster.
In an age when doing more with less, and faster, seems to be the order of the day, we’re doing our best to keep up. The result will be a better news product for our community.
editor and publisher