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StaterOnline add-ons

I just noticed some additions to the right sidebar on StaterOnline. Ryan and crew have been busy trying to add content and features.

Not sure when they added this (a simple call could answer it, but I’m feeling lazy)… But down the side they now have a Featured Photos, Featured Video and Search Kent function. I’d probably throw up the latest post in each of the blogs there, to promote them, and call it a day for now. They really need to advertise those blogs online. One link in the sidebar isn’t going to cut it, especially as you try to grow the audience.

I like the ideas, if not the presentation.

My only gripe is… The featured photos have no cutlines or credits. I clicked on one of them to see if I could get some context and instead it just brought up the static .jpg as its own page. Sad, because I was really curious why a posed group picture would be one of the featured photos. Who are those people? Granted, we had issues with the college publisher slide show feature all along — how weird is it that it will put your cutlines and credit so they block half your photo?! — so maybe this is a kink being worked out. Instead of linking me to the photo url, put me through to the story so I can read about what’s going on in the photo.

I do like that they seemed to have dropped the college publisher video function (which was not working well for us) in favor of YouTube. In addition to expanding the audience beyond Stater readers (and potentially bringing in other non-readers to the site), it is also a platform students are very familiar with. It also opens up the possibility they could respond directly to the videos, and who knows maybe even add their own video responses?

And finally, what’s up with the “Intramural Sports” section being above everything else on the front page including News? I’m thinking it’s a glitch. But maybe they’re trying something new?

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