Despite limiting the number of articles unsubscribed readers can view monthly, The New York Times does not limit views of its homepage. Fortunately for readers, the homepage is packed with information.
Readers are directed to the “global edition” page “with the International Herald Tribune” when they access http://www.nytimes.com. The page reads similarly to a printed paper. The New York Times displays its banner across the top and offers a picture, a large headline and columns of text. However, unlike a printed paper, instead of listing full stories, The New York Times lists several headlines (which are links) and the first few lines of a lead to a story in those columns.
In addition to clicking on appealing headlines, readers can direct their experience by using tabs. Along the top of the page, readers can choose to view the homepage, the day’s paper, videos or the most popular stories. They can further specify their interests by using taps along the left side of the page, where they can view stories by categories including region and topic (what would be sections in traditional papers). At the bottom of the page, readers can scroll through The New York Times’ blogs.
The New York Times succeeds with their homepage. It allows readers to directly control their experience, while still driving them to the most important stories. Fonts, colors and other artistic elements remain consistent throughout the page, further easing the reading experience. One of the few disadvantages to the page, is the wealth of information offered. Readers are unable to absorb all the information on the homepage, as The New York Times includes headlines to more than 10 stories. Few opportunities to share directly from the homepage exist (though they are easily accessible once an article is selected).
Nevertheless, allowing the viewer flexibility while providing diverse and newsworthy information are among the most important aspects of online journalism, and The New York Times succeeds there.