CNN portalizes?
January 30, 2001 11:00 PM   Subscribe

CNN portalizes? Not exactly, but the portal is clearly the model for their new design, which resembles nothing so much as a tall Yahoo. Headlines, except for the top story, are smaller and scattered about the page in more than one category -- something they've done for some time, but now with magnified effect (I counted six links to Lockerbie stories). Have they forgotten that their mission is delivering news?
posted by dhartung (8 comments total)
This isn't as bad as's heavy-on-the-graphics, light-on-the-news redo, which has caused me to practically never read that site anymore. But maybe that's just 'cause I'm stuck on dial-up. There's nothing more ridiculous than pulling up a news site and getting the message "loading headlines ... please wait".
posted by dhartung at 11:06 PM on January 30, 2001

The redesign is one of the worst I've ever seen. Not merely ugly, but confusing and almost hostile towards its users, especially dialup users. It appears they still believe 100% of their potential eyeballs are in offices with T1 lines, which is why they have never gotten more than half the traffic of CNN or MSNBC.

As for CNN, their Internet unit bore the brunt of the layoffs, and I think there was some sort of flowchart reorg as well. Give the power over a site to a new set of managers, and they can't wait to "put their stamp" on it in order to "show who's in control." Or that they're Doing Things. Feh.
posted by aaron at 11:34 PM on January 30, 2001

Why do people want portals? I don't use 'em. None of my friends use 'em. It's just what comes up when they start their browser. Even my parents/grandparents don't use 'em. Wtf?
posted by sonofsamiam at 7:16 AM on January 31, 2001

sonofsamiam - don't you just load a blank page when you launch your browser? I assumed that it was more or less normal behaviour to change that pref. That's the first thing I've always done to a newly installed browser's prefs - gone in and had it load nothing when a new window comes up. It drives me nuts to launch IE and have some site load automatically.
posted by mikel at 7:39 AM on January 31, 2001

Honestly, I don't see anything different, content-wise, over at They've always divided the news stories into the same categories that are up now. They've always had the same news story in different categories. They've always had horizontal sections between the categories containing links of the day, special reports, and the like.

They did change their font to something much harder to read, and tweaked the layout slightly. It's mostly the font, I think. It has a huge effect on how the site looks.
posted by ewagoner at 8:35 AM on January 31, 2001

That has got to be the most painful to read site I've ever seen. I'm at 1024x768 and the page is impossible to read! Everything's jammed together like they reorganized it so they could fit in more content. Personally, I liked the multi-color approach much better.
posted by bkdelong at 9:06 AM on January 31, 2001

mikel- yes, I load a blank page, but some of my family and friends don't know how to... my point was, if it wasn't the default, they wouldn't ever even see it, much less explore and use it.
posted by sonofsamiam at 12:15 PM on January 31, 2001

they also removed the BOOKS link from the front list of subject areas..... I sent them a crotchety email.
posted by jessamyn at 4:09 PM on January 31, 2001

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