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BBC News
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Last Updated:  Wednesday, 19 February, 2003, 02:01 GMT
News Online gets a new look
As you can see, we have made some big changes to BBC News Online. Editor-in-Chief Mike Smartt explains all.

Yes, News Online certainly looks different from the last time you logged on.

Of course, any new look to something with which you have been so familiar can be a bit of a surprise. But I trust it is a pleasant one.

These are the first big alterations to our design since 1999 and are the result of what we've learnt about the way you use your site and what many of you have told us you want from it.

We have grown by a third. And you can find the content you want more quickly and easily.

The redesign and technical improvements mean material downloads much more quickly.

Pages are 30% wider and we are making very good use of the extra space.

Our index and home pages - including the opening screens of the UK and International editions - now present much more of the news higher up, meaning you can see what's going on in the world instantly. As a result, there's less scrolling.

Our story pages have a new look too and we're providing more effective links to our wealth of in-depth, analysis and feature material, along with our archive of more than two million items.

The redesign and technical improvements also mean material downloads much more quickly.

What isn't affected is the quality and range of our award-winning reporting of world events.

But we've made sure the overall character of the site has not been lost and the navigational structure so many of you tell us you value so highly remains pretty much the same.

And what isn't affected is the quality and range of our award-winning reporting of world events.

We have changed our "Talking Point" section to "Have Your Say", with all the popular interactive elements of BBC News Online. Talking Point remains the brand name of our weekly World Service interactive radio programme.

Sport comes next

Our sister website, at BBC Sport, is also soon changing along the same lines.

It is a huge job to transform sites of this size and it may be a couple of days before all the live content takes on the new appearance.

Material in the archive, published before this week, will remain in the old-style look.

If you'd like to tell me - briefly please - what you think of the new look, you can email me at 800site@bbc.co.uk. (The 800 refers to the new width of the page - 800 pixels rather than 600.)

We've provided answers to some of the concerns you may be having. There's a link on the top right hand side of the page - to The New Look, Your Questions Answered. Please read them before emailing.





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