21 October 2008

Mainstream Sites ‘Embrace The Link’

Linking to external sites is becoming a more common practice among mainstream news websites, according to the New York Times.

Writer Brian Stelter points to recent innovations by the Washington Post, NBC and the Times itself as evidence that we are in the middle of an “attitude shift” towards linking out.

Unveiled last month, the Post’s Political Browser points to the best on the web, and this includes scoops on rival websites.

And the New York Times is soon to launch an “alternative home page” which will contain hyperlinks to its competitors.

While this month saw TV network NBC open beta versions of local websites which have links to other sites.

For example, its current Chicago site has links to local news articles on the online versions of the Chicago Sun-Times and the Southtown Star.

NBC’s local media division president told the Times: “We’re looking at the fragmented local market and saying, ‘We’re going to provide a destination where you can come and search across different segments.’ ”

John P Wallace also said that this latest project represents “a change in mindset” with regards to linking to the competition.

Stelter’s article, entitled Mainstream News Outlets Start Linking to Other Sites (may need to register to view the article), also features comments from blogger Scott Karp and has a brief round-up of examples of mainstream sites learning to link.

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