The new Scotsman.com

Am I the only one who thinks the new design of Scotsman.com (currently in beta) is absolutely dire? It’s all the more upsetting because in my view it was just about the only newspaper website out there that wasn’t in dire need of a redesign.

Compare the new design to the current one. The current one has more stories within easy reach and it has them all neatly grouped into topics. Gone from the front page are the smart groupings of ‘UK’, ‘Scotland’, ‘International’, ‘Politics’ and so on. Now it’s all just one big ‘news’ heading. And instead of three main stories there are now only two.

The new design is a also step backward in aesthetic terms. It is like stepping back into the Netscape era. And why are those social bookmarking icons at the bottom of each story so big?

I just don’t get why they even felt the need to redesign. In my view it was one of the best-designed newspaper websites around, and leagues ahead of the Scottish competition.

I wonder if it is just a really elaborate way of getting rid of the dire comments section.

8 comments

  1. I got sent the beta one and a survey yesterday too and those were my thoughts exactly. Apart from maybe increasing the width to fit the bigger default screen ratio there’s nothing needing tampering with.

  2. Duncan, well spotted. If anything, they ought to be giving the local papers the Scotsman template. It looks like an excuse to put adverts for lots of Johnston Press services all over the place now.

  3. One thing I forgot to mention… the web team at the Scotsman responsible for the original site, I believe have now all left. At least some of them have gone to the List

  4. It’s dire. I put a comment on their web site to that effect. Plus I cannot access the premium content, despite being a subscriber AND it doesn’t work properly with Safari. Other than that it’s great 🙂

  5. Urgh. Not a fan of the new version either (although I’m always irritated by the current version hiding the letters page!). Could such people not be put to better use redesigning the Sunday Herald?