Countries | Cities | Localities | Groups | Tags | Best of Bighow  
Publish | Join              Login

  Our Blogs  |  BigPedia  | 


 
  bighow guides: the online journalism handbook how to write for the web

browse news submitted in the last 24 hrs
guides


The Online Journalism Handbook: How to Write for the Web

newswala on 18/02/09 tags: Media onlinejournalismhandbook blogging usability  Comment: 0 Save: 0

A guide written by the pioneering usability experts Jacob Nielsen and John Morkes famously said this in 1997, 12 years ago:

Make your writing concise, SCANNABLE, and Objective.

A summary of the article:

- Users want to search for things online.
- They hate waiting.
- They read from left to write in a 'Z' fashion.
- Most readers scan over headlines without bothering to read the article.

So, you got less than a second to get the reader's attention.

"... any story can be told in 800 words"
- Roy Peter Clark, senior journalist, Poynter.org
This is as good a guideline for online writing that you can get anywhere.

More important observation on online user behavior Jacob Nielsen's highly useful Useit.com site is as follows, but I suggest you jump to each link and read for yourself in detail:

- Users spend 4.4 seconds for every extra 100 words on a page.
- Eye tracking visualizations show that users often read Web pages in an F-shaped pattern: two horizontal stripes followed by a vertical stripe.
- You can use passive voice in headings.
- Contrary to popular opinion, long articles may work , if they have something of value, are divided into short paragraphs with descriptive paragraph headings and augmented by lists, charts, and photos.i
- Write in an inverted pyramid style: start with the conclusion and put the least important data lowerd down.
Start subheads, paragraphs, and bullet points with information-carrying words that users will notice when scanning through your article in a "F" shaped pattern.
- The first two paragraphs must state the most important information.



Share This Contact Publisher Link to Source

Latest Comments

Would you like to comment on this item?
Join BigHow for a free account, or login if you are already a member



about bighow guides
The Bighow Guides Blog covers the latest useful tips and guides on important topics.


tags
Actually Useful Technology (1) Google Android (1) Google Phone (1) cellphones (1) Internet and Websites (16) Google (1) Google Chrome (1) Business and Finance (3) customer service (1) Civil Liberties (1) fascism (1) howto (5) simpleguide (13) startup (1) online video (3) tv (2) simplelist (19) Software (3) torrent (1) online database (1) google (2) DIY (1) online calendar (1) How To (1) photography (4) digital photography (4) free (1) Cool Things (1) photos (1) Advice (1)
more...




search