A lot has changed in the newspaper industry since we published our study of newspaper websites last summer.  In order to get a better picture of the changing landscape in the world of online news, we are going to publish a sequel to last year's study.  In our preparation for the research, we're outlining the categories and criteria we want to track.  Here are the categories we analyzed last year:


  • Does the site offer RSS?
  • If so, does the feed include ads?
  • Does the site offer RSS for different sections?

Most Popular

  • Does the site offer alternative content views such as most popular, most read, or most emailed?

Reporter Blogs

  • Does the site have reporter blogs?
  • If so, can users comment on these blogs?
  • Do reporter blogs have blogrolls?

Comments on articles
Message boards/forums

This was a pretty extensive list, and we plan to carry over many of these criteria to this year's study.  Some key changes we are thinking of making are dropping "chats" and "message boards/forms" from the list because we feel that these tools are a bit dated.  In addition, we'll add a category for availability of mobile content and integration user-generated content, such as photos and videos.  I think these are two areas that our study really missed out on last year and adding them will be a big improvement.  Finally, it would be interesting to see how many newspapers are offering social networking features like the Washington Post and USA Today.

What would you like to see our study address?  We'd love to hear your suggestions.  You can either leave them in the comments below or add them to the TBR wiki on the 2007 Newspaper Study Criteria page.  Thanks for your support!