Saturday, January 21, 2012

Good News for News Junkies

I'm a news junkie.

Checking my favorite blogs and periodicals is manually intensive and, frequently, a lost cause... because I end up in the web equivalent of Boston's Combat Zone after getting distracted ("Look, a squirrel!). RSS readers don't work for me: they produce too much clutter, none of it organized in a way that will tell me what's most important.

Which is where was designed to help.

BadBlue is accessible via two domain names -- or There are many recent enhancements that should make it much easier to find the hottest news stories of the hour.

A new algorithm levels the playing field for news sources of all sizes - a story at a tiny blog, for instance, that gets re-tweeted 10 times, could be equivalent to 60 re-tweets of a story at a major newspaper. You'll notice that the current front page has links from blogs of all sizes.

New Drudge-style layout - rather than a single column of stories, there is a cleaner-looking, Drudge-style layout that should make it easier to read.

Pictures! - the new layout thumbnails images from stories to make it easier to figure out what a story is about.

Fresher news - links are refreshed more frequently, with the name of the site and its popularity index ("buzz") listed next to each headline.

Twitter and RSS support - unlike the prior version, you can follow BadBlue on Twitter (@BadBlueNews) or RSS.

Comment support - each story now has a permalink page (that's the small symbol) that includes a comments section (with easy social network sign-on supported), so it's simple to make fun of vicious left-wing hacks without actually having to visit one of their sites.

Filter stories by site - click on the name of the news source and you'll get a list of that website's most popular stories.

In short, Biff Spackle is standing by in the comments section, waiting to hear your feedback: positive, negative or just, eh, it's okay. If you like it, remember to bookmark the website -- it should provide some of the freshest news stories you'll find anywhere.

So please check it out and let Biff know what you think. Don't hold back -- he's used to harsh criticism from management here at this august journal, where he remains Cub Reporter Level III after more than four years of erratic work history.


Anonymous said...

You need to organize the content. Right now everything has the same level of importance: it's just a blob. Put the most important content 'above the fold', as it were. Can you divide it into sections like "Election 2012", "Jihad", "Odd News"--that sort of thing? Right now, you've got a story about a crocodile right next to Romney Care. Don't make your readers work so hard to find items.

Jim - PRS said...

I like it. I'll be a regular.

Truman North said...

I use it now, too. Thanks, Larwyn and Doug.

directorblue said...

Thanks for the comments!

@Anon 1:25p - yep, that's a good suggestion and one that we're looking at. Not as easy as it might look!