Wednesday, March 03, 2004



After critiquing different websites, I chose to analyze msnbc.com. When you first look at the page, it is nicely put together with brightly colored links and features with links on the left hand side which are quite helpful. There is a link for just about anything you would like. It varies from additional news, weather, sports entertainment and opinions. I found these useful because they offer several options when you scroll your mouse on the link, you not only have the option of clicking on health for example, but also top stories and top sections which dealt with all different sections of health, hopefully providing useful information for everyone interested. The two top headlines with large pictures deal with presidential candidates and have links within them to learn more information about each. As you scroll down the page, it gets to be a bit overwhelming due to the amount of information and advertisements they try to squeeze on the page. However, they have done a nice job of making sure the news links and important information are in the center of the page the entire time you are scrolling down. The advertisements are actually quite minimal which surprised me, but once you click on a link they not only provide you with a story but also with additional advertisements on that page.
There are not only headline stories, there are also links to The Today Show and Newsweek Magazine towards the top of the page. However, these are the only two websites I see links for besides the links provided by msnbc to read their different headlines and top stories. As you scroll down, the links on the left hand side become more for entertainment than news related material. Labeled also on msnbc, are horoscope links, fantasy sports links, yellow pages, newsletters and corrections. Back to the top of the page, there is a search box for you to use msn as a search engine. There are also links to hotmail, shopping, and money. Below these links there is a catchy link labeled right now, which scrolls different headlines that are important at the moment, several which include video news links for the users to watch.
Overall, the website is colorful and easily accessible when trying to find different links. I enjoyed the fact that it took you straight to the story when clicking on a link. This does not happen in all news websites, sometimes you have a few obstacles to go through before actually getting the chance to read the story you had originally wanted. After reviewing the site, I am not sure if they have an intended audience involving a certain age group, but my assumption is that the age varies through a wide range of people. Most likely, several people click on different links within msnbc while checking their hotmail accounts and this is where several users come from. Although most likely not everyone enjoys receiving their news from msnbc, it does not take much effort to find a news link you are looking for on this site.

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