07 August 2008

News Live Blogs Whale Rescue Attempt

The Portsmouth News is the latest regional newspaper to take advantage of live blogging software with its “Whale Watch” feature.

Journalists at the title used CoverItLive software to create a platform for delivering real-time news about an attempt to rescue a beached whale on Hayling Island.

HoldTheFrontPage.co.uk reports that the blog enabled reporters to provide minute-by-minute coverage of the rescue.

A replay of the blog shows it attracted a significant number of passionate comments from readers and also drew links to audio-visual reports of the event.

The News’s digital editor Matt Brown said he was surprised by the substantial interest in the story from online users.

“We knew it was going to be a big story when the nationals and Sky starting covering it but the amount of reaction and interest from people on the website has been amazing.

“We’ve had well over 1,000 unique users already on that page which is well up from what we’d expect.”

The News also produced photo galleries and video clips of the rescue effort.

[Disclosure: The Portsmouth News is a Johnston Press publication]

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