Editor's Note: About Our New Home Page

To our readers,

Welcome to our new home page. I wanted to take a few minutes to tell you about some of the key changes, and the thinking behind it.

  • One of the most frequent complaints about our previous home page was clutter, specifically the number of links and lack of open space on the page. In this new page, we've added more white space and cut down the number of long lists of text links. The hope is that these changes give the page more of an open, inviting feel and make it easier to scan. We've also moved to a more modular layout to make it easier to find your favorite home page features.

  • To better highlight our award-winning video and photo content, we've added a multimedia strip to the page. This band will be comprised of videos, photos and interactives, and by using the scroll arrows or the iTunes-like buttons, you can scroll to see more multimedia features. We've also created a similar strip for features content, allowing us to better showcase all the content we have in that area.

  • This new home page also highlights the site's newest section, Smart Living. Designed for those seeking information to manage their lives, Smart Living will aggregate the best stories, blogs and columns from The Washington Post and washingtonpost.com in the areas of parenting, health, food and dining, home and garden, pets, relationships, personal finance and more. Prior to this launch, consumer content could be found in many different areas of the site; the goal of Smart Living is to provide a one-stop destination. Because we thought that sounded, you know, smart.

  • Because of the popularity of our Live Discussions, we've anchored a placement near the top of the home page to help readers find our schedule, previous transcripts and featured guests.

  • As you may know, we have two home pages: One for readers with Washington-area ZIP Codes, and one for our national and international readers. On our Washington home page, we've added a "Local" button to our global navigation to provide easier access to local news, weather, traffic, classifieds content and more.

  • On our national home page, we've anchored a Most Popular module on the upper right of the page. On the local page, this Most Popular module is located farther down the page, right below the features strip.

  • To make it easier to find our video, photo and audio assets, we've moved to using icons to signify those content types. One of the valuable pieces of feedback we've received from you over the past year is that you find it difficult to locate our multimedia content. Between the new multimedia band on the home page, our recently launched video player and the switch to these more eye-catching icons, we hope we've addressed that concern.

  • We've also added a strip across the top of the page that makes it easier to locate your user information, change preferences or set washingtonpost.com as your home page (c'mon, go ahead, you know you want to). Additionally, incorporating more of the feedback you've given us, we've added a label on the upper right of the home page to let you know which of our two home pages -- Washington or U.S./World -- you're looking at. There's also a handy link that allows you to set which home page you'd like to see.

  • We've also built this new home page to have a lighter page weight, and thus, faster load times. We have also built this page to make it much easier for those with disabilities to read our home page with screen readers.

We believe that these changes will make it a much better and organized experience for you. But we'd like to hear what you think, so please feel free to post a comment below or to send an e-mail to executive.editor@washingtonpost.com.

Jim Brady
Executive Editor, washingtonpost.com

By Washingtonpost.com Editors |  March 30, 2007; 12:57 PM ET
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Please email us to report offensive comments.

You state that "Because of the popularity of our Live Discussions, we've anchored a placement near the top of the home page to help readers find our schedule, previous transcripts and featured guests." Actually, that USED to be on the site, but now it's gone with the redesign... It's now harder to get to the list of daily discussions as there's no more "Discussions" link in the menu bar. Please fix this!

Posted by: Arlington VA | March 30, 2007 01:43 PM

the new home page is terrible. The one force commercial keeps popping up all over the place, all you have done is create more adveristing space. WAPO sucks now. Did you hire someone from CNN to design this?

Posted by: slick | March 30, 2007 01:44 PM

I really preferred when you had the daily schedule for online discussions on the home page. I realize that this isn't your problem, but my office web filters block the schedule page so I am no longer able to participate in the discussions. When it was on the home page it wasn't an issue, plus I could easily see what was available for the day. Otherwise I like the changes for the most part.


Posted by: CMM | March 30, 2007 01:45 PM

I'm so sorry to say this but I HATE the new home page -- I LIKED all the links and headlines and busy-ness -- you're a newspaper and there's a big world to cover! The busy-ness was GOOD. It reflected reality! I hate having to poke around for what I want. And if it isn't on the front page, how will I know I want it?

Posted by: Rachel | March 30, 2007 02:08 PM

You've managed well to subtract news from your site. What's the point?

And lose the leading. You've opened up far too much space!

Posted by: Ross | March 30, 2007 02:08 PM

I use the web page to get content. If I want to see white space, I go to an art gallery. It's hard to find the discussions. Ditch the new homepage, and bring back the old one. Also, give us a list of the day's editorials instead of that silly one-by-one flashing. And, for heaven's sakes, bring back Mary Worth to the printed paper.

Posted by: Alexandria, VA | March 30, 2007 02:20 PM

I too, can't find the discussions. And I liked the previous format better for headlines. Now you look more like the NY Times web site which I also read but not as often as the Washington Post.

Posted by: Pam Leitterman | March 30, 2007 02:23 PM

Please put the photos & video (or multimedia if you prefer)link back in the top menu. At least on my menu bar there is a blank space where it used to be. Why should I have to scroll half-way down the page to find one of the items you want to highlight. Leave the multimedia strip for those who like it - there's nothing wrong with it where it is just put the link back in the top menu. I do like the modularity and the idea of grouping like with like as you did with Smart Living and Opinions and Discussions. I don't like the fact that you can't find the News - wait, I just now found the News - buried at the bottom of the page. I agree with Rachel - this is a News paper, make the News easy to find. Maybe to take up less space and be able to show more news you could make all those nice boxes a little icon that when you click on it all the stuff in the box appears. Then you'll have room for the news.

Posted by: AF | March 30, 2007 02:33 PM

I don't like the new home page. It's too hard to find the real news stories about national and international news, among all the fluff. There is now "World" or "Nation" button to click to get those stories. I now just hit "Print Edition" and then "A Section" to get to a format that I like.

Posted by: Janina matuszeski | March 30, 2007 02:37 PM

This dumbed-down homepage is very insulting to your readers. We want the news, not white space. We want to see the homepage filled with news. We want the previously-easy access to other sections of the paper. Perhaps your time and money would be better spent on getting and reporting news than on redesigning a perfectly good homepage.

I do hope you will reconsider and return the news to us, readily accessible.

Posted by: Jean | March 30, 2007 02:40 PM

Despite their general lack of journalistic standards, more and more I depend on TV news for hard news (especially local). Much to my distaste, this is because over time it has become harder and harder to find hard news in my former standby, the Washington Post. YOU ARE FIRST OF ALL A NEWSPAPER, FOR GOD'S SAKE. I read newspapers in order to spot a BROAD selection of news headlines first and then select the order in which I read them. In becoming some sort of mule hybrid, you have killed some of the main advantages of a newspaper without yet having found things worthy of taking their place. And by the way, the chatroom function has grown very tiresome to me. Too many of the respondents are wackos who can neither reason nor spell. It would be one thing if you offered a roundtable for thoughtful points of view, but you ain't reached that standard, sadly, not even by a suburban mile.

Posted by: Dave Akers | March 30, 2007 02:52 PM

I wanted to register my agreement that the redesign obscures much of the content (variety of news headlines, full list of discussions, and weblog updates) that should be available directly on the homepage. I peruse the main page to decide where I will spend my time on the site. This may be an unfortunate symptom of the short attention spans plaguing many of my generation, but it's quite unlikely I'll spend the time needed to hunt through subpage after subpage to find the content I've previously been able to locate at a glance. Please at the very least move a longer list of headlines higher in the page and return the full list of daily discussions.

Posted by: Pittsburgh, PA | March 30, 2007 02:55 PM

A real homepage. At least the reporters here aren't stooges of WB43s.

Posted by: slick | March 30, 2007 02:56 PM

This is just about the worst transformation of a newspaper web site many of us have seen. The new page is terrible. It is terrible to use, it looks terrible, it's not user-friendly, you can't find anything, it's just horrible. Suddently, the Post web site went from one of the best to an actual terrible one--horrible, even. What on earth were you thinking? Even the pictures, captions, headlines and news listings are terrible. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, and the old page was not broken. This one is.

Posted by: Matt | March 30, 2007 03:01 PM

The new design is cumbersome and much less user friendly. After a quick review of headlines, I always skim the upcoming discussions and blog postings. The latter are nearly impossible to find now. Back to www.nytimes.com

Posted by: Melissa | March 30, 2007 03:04 PM

The smaller font is definitely not a good idea. I can hardly make out the text in your bullet points highlighting the website changes. Why do editors think this is a good idea? Time magazine just went through a redesign in which they also increased white space by reducing font size. Seems to miss the whole point of why your readers are here: TO READ. Not to look for nice framing around the ads.

Posted by: Matt | March 30, 2007 03:08 PM

The new design is EXCELLENT. You've succeeded in removing the clutter and keeping the layout user-friendly. Finding information and stories is much easier than the previous design. Congratulations on a job well done.

Posted by: Steve | March 30, 2007 03:11 PM

Looks like 94.1% (16/17 at this point) of "post"-ers dislike the new website. Make that 94.4% (17/18) - I don't like it either. You're doing way worse than Bush. Now that's an achievement!

Posted by: David | March 30, 2007 03:28 PM

So I've read several times on various wp pages that there is an anchor to discussions at the top of the page - where? And, don't tell us there is no room for it, there is a BIG area on the header that used to hold the discussion button and is now blank. Let's try again, guys...

Posted by: jj | March 30, 2007 03:29 PM

What happen to the Most e-mail articles link? Does the post no longer offer this listing? I hope you all have not gotten rid of this feature? It was one of the main reason why I preferred the Post over other papers.

Posted by: dara1445 | March 30, 2007 03:36 PM

As an Internet consultant who specializes in usability and accessibility, I see pluses and minuses in your redesign. And the minuses seem to outweigh the pluses. (Note - I'm commenting on the Washington, DC registered user version.)

The pluses are the white space makes your other content more readable, and the sections distinct. I don't think you've used too much white space - I always thought the home page could use a little bit more and the balance is good. The page looks less dense now, which is difficult for a news-based web site.

I also like that what used to be the rotating box in the upper right corner now allows you to pick the content you want to view. I always seemed to just catch something just before it turned and then I had to wait out the rotation. Though I'm not sure of the purpose of the heavy blue box that surrounds it. As featured content goes, it's not that crucial, and your eye keeps getting dragged back to it because of the density of the color. A thinner line, perhaps?

On the negative side:

The font under "more headlines" and similar sub topics is too small and a touch too pale. I'm 37 with good eyesight and I'm having a hard time reading it. Boost it up a little and darken the blue, please, for better contrast.

I, too, liked to be able to simply look for the discussion schedule on the home page. You've moved it too far "below the fold" for it to be of much use now. If there's not a contractual agreement of some sort, could you push the ad on the right column down and put the discussion area on top of it? It would be more visible and I think appease many critics of this design. Either that, or add it as a tab to Opinions/PostGlobal & OnFaith.

Ditto for the Blog list. I liked to just scan it, which is now harder to do. That pop-up box just isn't comfy to use - maybe it's the lower contrast, maybe there's too much white space, but it was not an improvement over your old list.

You should be proud of your award winning photography. But you are giving it too much prominence, even below the fold. Could you perhaps do the two sliders at half the width and put them on the same row? The color difference between them would help differentiate them to users. I will say that I do like the coding behind the sliders - the arrows and the small dots make them fairly intuitive.

The biggest negative for me, though - What happened to "Metro" as a "More Top Stories" Category?

Overall - a 50%. I'm curious if you did any user testing - if you did who did you use as subjects? Because I see a lot more unhappy people than happy people on this board and in the discussion earlier today.

Change always invites grumbling, but I think some of the complaints are valid here. You got people used to certain levels of convenience and you eliminated those conveniences. You have angered the usability gods ;)

Posted by: Chasmosaur | March 30, 2007 03:51 PM

Please put links to all the live online discussions on the home page. It used to be very easy to find. Now I bookmark this link in order to get that list: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/liveonline/
Why not just put this list back on the home page? Thanks.

Posted by: Live Online Fan | March 30, 2007 03:58 PM

Probably the most popular single feature on the Post website is your collection of excellent chats (and we miss Gene)-- no? Word of mouth about these chats no doubt has added thousands of new readers. You are hearing from everyone that you really blew it by eliminating the handy list of these "discussions," earmarked as "live" and "earlier" -- the first place a lot of people go on your site. (And we always knew that we could clink the link to find the schedule for the week.) So I'll just add one more voice -- YOU BLEW IT.

Posted by: Jeff | March 30, 2007 03:58 PM

Live discussions? I read the paper for the columns and news and I go here for the things that the paper can't do like (live discussions DUH).

Posted by: James | March 30, 2007 03:58 PM

I hate this web page. The whole point of the page is to scan the articles you have in the newspaper and now I get to look at two per category instead of 4 or 5. It is now easier to find news in the actual paper than on the site. You went from having a great page to an awful one.

Posted by: JG | March 30, 2007 04:04 PM

Let me echo the calls for putting the live discussions back on the home page. I came here just to try to figure out where they disappeared to. I'm still not sure, but I'm going back to the home page to search again...

Posted by: Alexandria | March 30, 2007 04:04 PM

In the old format, one could see what items one had already visited (the text was colored differently). It's a fairly common useful feature.

I don't see that now.

Posted by: James | March 30, 2007 04:16 PM

I'm both a subscriber to the dead-tree version and a daily reader of the website. (In fact, I've had the Post as my home page ever since the NY Times screwed theirs up in a bad redesign.) And I hate the new setup. To echo some of the previous comments, the discussions -- one of your best on-line features -- are much more difficult to find. And when I clicked on schedule this (Friday) morning, it showed me next Monday's schedule. The blogs are likewise harder to find. If I hadn't been a regular visitor before, I wouldn't even know that you have so many extras -- and even knowing about them, I may decide the hassle of finding them is not worth it. As for the main page, it looks dumbed-down. (And while it may be useful to see the bylines and times on the 4-5 top stories, they're really sucking up a lot of space.)

Also, the ads that appear (constantly!) mid-screen are terrible. One popped up just as I clicked on a link to a discussion, so I was rerouted to the advertiser's site instead of the Post chat I _intended_ to select. This is all so user-unfriendly that I think you're more likely to lose your regular readers than to attract new ones. Please rethink it!

Posted by: jane | March 30, 2007 04:18 PM

I don't mind the redesign. In fact, I quite like the tabs at the top to direct me to sections. I agree, however, that the discussions and blogs--the features taht make the website unique--are very difficult to find. Perhaps adding "Discussions" and "Blogs" tabs could minimize the problem?

Posted by: Cherie | March 30, 2007 04:23 PM

I don't think this change is for the better. The "clutter" gave readers access to news and useful links. We can look at snow for white space-we look to TWP for news. Please, everyone is 'dumbding down" news content for life styles for the vacuous and uninformed. resist the temptation.

Posted by: JP Eder | March 30, 2007 04:24 PM

Since many people (as you can see) are now going to bookmark the daily chat contents, clearly you are going to have a lot fewer front page impressions (where people are exposed to the ads). I think your change in this regard is going to backfire. Please reverse that decision.

Posted by: Sarah | March 30, 2007 04:27 PM

I think hate is a little too strong a word but I have to admit that the new design leaves much to be desired. Some of this is repetitive but, IMHO, the live discussion schedule should be readded, the font is a little small and light, the multimedia section is entirely too big, and I preferred three headlines per section as opposed to two.

Posted by: jhl276 | March 30, 2007 04:30 PM

I thought I was the only one who hated the redesign. One of the few times I'll say "let's go back"

Posted by: Jdub | March 30, 2007 04:32 PM

Please return to the old way of listing discussions and return the most popular link. Having to scroll down so much just to get to the technology, health, and education sections, for example, is a big minus.

Posted by: A | March 30, 2007 04:33 PM

The live discussions are far and away this site's strongest suit -- they are what draw many people (including myself) to your site on a regular basis. But if I can't find them, I'm not going to waste a lot of time looking for them, nor will I spend a lot of time on the site.

Posted by: Doc | March 30, 2007 04:35 PM

I think the redesign looks pretty, but I resent the loss of information, and I'd like to add my voice to the 50 bazillion others who want the compact lists of discussions and blogs back. Don't make me go digging for them.

Posted by: h3 | March 30, 2007 04:35 PM

Another annoying thing about the new format -- you have to use a pull down menu for Columns and Blogs now, but when you get finished reading one blog you have to go back and pull the menu down yet again to scan the others. You are making people do too much work. You guys have fixed something that wasn't broken.

Posted by: Alicia | March 30, 2007 04:42 PM

You probably won't go back to your old web page but I sure liked it better. I agree with lots of your commenters. Too hard to find those live discussions topics.

Posted by: Bluffton, SC | March 30, 2007 05:01 PM

I agree with many of the criticisms aired; I don't care for the dumbed down appearance. Is this further evidence that are society is catering to the lowest common demoninator? I also want to express my dismay there no longer appears to be a MOST EMAILED section with a separate page listing up to 25 articles. I often found interesting articles I would otherwise have missed because I often don't have time to open and scan every page of the online newspaper. NY Times and NPR still retain this feature on their websites; I don't see why the premier newspaper for our nation's capital would give us less.

Posted by: LD Albritton | March 30, 2007 05:11 PM

Again, I don't know why you hid the discussion links. I want to be able to see all the day's discussions from the home page.
Also, the NYSE chart is way to low in the page. I'd switch the position of 'Smart Living' and the quotes. I know I'll be reading SL semi-regularly, but I check the quotes DAILY and I don't want all the scrolling. (And what's doubly troubling is all the scrolling through your new, clean emptyness.)
A cleaner look shouldn't mean eliminating/hiding information. It's a good idea, just poorly implemented.

Posted by: mike | March 30, 2007 05:18 PM

You have made two changes in the last 18 months each of which has made finding things progressivly more difficult. While I subscribe to the daily paper, i hit the website because it usded to be easier to find stories. I really don't like this change

Posted by: Chet Brewer | March 30, 2007 05:22 PM

A small bet. The number of negative comments you receive about the new site over the next week, will be ten times greater than the negative comments you received about the old site since its inception. Folks, it just doesn't work. I'd say "nice try," but I'd be disingenuous.

Posted by: Gordon | March 30, 2007 05:24 PM

A newspaper website that no longer features much news - I think I will have to remove the Post from my list of Favorites

Posted by: GmcDuluth | March 30, 2007 05:31 PM

Simply awful. Go back to the old style/format.

Posted by: RiChard LoveLess | March 30, 2007 05:38 PM

I have to read your page in a bright room and the size of your type makes it really difficult.

Posted by: John Terree | March 30, 2007 05:43 PM

I have to say that I agree with the comments posted above wishing for the old homepage back. I have lived in Philadelphia for over 8 years and have kept my homepage washingtonpost.com because I want to both stay in touch with the DC region but also be up to date on breaking national stories, political and otherwise. I used the old 'busy' page to regularly scan for articles of interest, and the white space actually makes me feel like there isn't much interesting news happening. You changing the homepage reminds me of your old campaign for subscriptions - "If you don't get it, you don't get it." Take your own advice! The reason why this site is winning awards is that its great the way it WAS! You get everything you need without having to click around everywhere!

Posted by: Philadelphia | March 30, 2007 05:46 PM

The new page although less busy it is very hard to find stuff. To much drilling in with not enough direct links. And PLEASE BRING BACK THE MOST EMAILED SECTION! It is nowhere to be found? It was one of my favorite feature of WAPost.com

Posted by: Eric | March 30, 2007 06:02 PM

Your homepage redesign is a huge improvement. The double-spacing and additional white space make it so much easier to read. Good job!

Posted by: Dewey | March 30, 2007 06:04 PM

I will join in the chorus of, "go back to the old format!" As others have mentioned, I enjoyed the "business" of the main page, which gave an easy jumping-off point to check out articles I'm interested in exploring more in-depth. I do most of my reading on a laptop, which of course has limited screen space - the less scrolling/page changing I have to do, the better.

Please bring back the old format!

Posted by: Conrad Y | March 30, 2007 06:10 PM

Thumbs down. I don't consider the new (U.S./World) home page an improvement. I'm yet another reader who wants as much news (short descriptive article titles) as possible near the top of the first page like news.bbc.co.uk.

Increased whitespace at the cost of font size is not my idea of improved readability.

Please test all clever coding tricks in as many browsers as possible before turning them lose on your readers. Not everyone uses Ms IE. (I use Netscape 7.2.) I wish you (and every other website) would stick closer to standard, plain vanilla HTML. That's my suggestion for achieving "a lighter page weight," not by displaying less information. Check out refdesk.com for an example.

I think it would be nice if there were a way (perhaps in our user profile settings) to indicate what screen resolution we'd like the pages laid out for.

I realize ads are a necessary evil, but pop-ups are the most annoying way of presenting them. What advertiser in their right mind wants their product associated with most people's intense negative reaction to pop-ups? The same applies to ads with so much over the top animation, they make it hard to read the rest of the page.

And please, no "dumbing down" of either layout or content. Leave that potential readership to USAToday, CNN, FOX, and the like. If your advertisers want dumber customers, then get smarter advertisers. And on a similar note, see if you can turn up the intelligence on the comments submitted regarding articles about controversial topics! {grin}

Posted by: SissonL | March 30, 2007 06:41 PM

too much scrolling; too little news; too much white space; definitely a loser!

Posted by: carole | March 30, 2007 06:52 PM

Why is the news on the bottom? When I click on WP, I want to see news first----------not junk and white space.

Posted by: martin | March 30, 2007 06:55 PM

The new web-site seems to lack the news. The tiny font makes it impossible to read. The headlines are gone. The white space dominates the screen for no purpose except possibly to facilitate advertising. The many links are difficult to find. Newspapers require what you are calling "clutter" because there is so much to tell about a changing world. Please go back to the old website. This one is a nightmare for what you need to at least pretend the Washington Post still cares about--the news.

Posted by: jann | March 30, 2007 07:33 PM

You guys couldn't leave well enough alone. You had a good home page and you had to go and ruin it. What were you thinking? Probably some consultant sold you a bill of goods. We don't want white space. We want links to stories. USA Today just ruined their home page and now you're doing the same thing. Please, Please, go back to the way it was.

Posted by: V.J. | March 30, 2007 07:34 PM

Honestly, I don't like it - - I want to read the news. Where is Metro the Politics sections. Who said that they wanted the change. Definitely not those of us that have commented. Change it back. I particularly appreciate the comments of the web designer. Maybe you guys should hire him to get it right.

Posted by: dd | March 30, 2007 07:48 PM

You took the fun out of checking washingtonpost.com - now I have to click TWICE to view the discussion schedule...

Posted by: KD Richmond | March 30, 2007 08:03 PM

sick of bs advertising. go back to the prior design if you can't be creative.

Posted by: | March 30, 2007 08:29 PM

People wonder why newspapers are failing. My guess is that they spend a lot of precious money on consultants who sell them foolish advice and "retire" the writers we have come to trust. As these comments show, they obviously can get much better feedback from their own users that whomever they are listening to now.

Not being able to tell what links you've clicked on is an egregious violation of web design.

The LA Times doesn't force me to use Javascript (the hacker's best friend) just to see a photo layout. But you do. Why?


Posted by: PeggyM | March 30, 2007 08:32 PM

Where is the link for "Most e-mailed articles" ????????

It seems the most interesting (and useful) part of the website is gone.
"Most viewed" is not the same, and is much less interesting or useful than "Most e-mailed"..
Please bring it back!

Posted by: KK | March 30, 2007 08:44 PM

yuk. i'll take previous layout, hands down. Current version: content layout: not intuitive or natural; bad. video bar: splits news, feels unnatural, looks like a javascript ad; bad. font: marginal. javascript ads: clogs up memory, expands into text, annoying, distracting, screws everything up; bad, terrible, worst. i understand ads are revenue.

Posted by: egalitaire | March 30, 2007 08:53 PM

o, i hope you didnt pay for the *enhancement*. j/k

Posted by: egalitaire | March 30, 2007 08:58 PM

Been a regular reader but I guess I'll be stopping. I don't know where you put the news, but it's not on this page any more.

Posted by: AA | March 30, 2007 09:48 PM

I do not like the new webpage, so I say.
Try it, try it and I may?
No way.

Lots of info I regularly clicked on is no longer on the front page and I have no idea where it went. I don't have time to click around and find it.

Please, bring back the old info. If you want more white space, fine. If you want to add extra stuff, fine. but don't rearrange the stuff so I cant find it.

You wouldn't do anything like this to your print edition. It would be a disorganized disaster.

I bet I'm not the only Post reader too busy to learn your new website. If you don't bring back what was there, I'll just go to another news website to get info.

Posted by: Web WP Reader | March 30, 2007 10:09 PM

No Politics or Local/Regional news on the WP homepage?

Isn't that why people bother to read the WP???

I guess it is true that one should never underestimate the power of stupidity

Posted by: What the ???? | March 30, 2007 10:12 PM

I can't tell yet if the new layout will in fact be better than its predecessor, tho it could hardly be worse. And I am still struggling to find things. All this will be irrelevant, however, if the WP continues to force me to wait thru a 10-15 second ad in order to view the piece I am interested in reading. This is truly infuriating and, if continued, will lead me to abandon the WP altogether. My time is too valuable to wait 10-15 seconds to see if I even WANT to read an article! What you have done is to infuriate your readers.

Yes, I understand that you want to create another revenue stream. If you are so struggling that you need to do so, why not follow the Times' example of the Times Select? I subscribe to that and would probably do the same with the Post. I will not, however, put up with the policy that you are currently inflicting on your readers by forcing them to wait to examine every piece you publish!

This 'innovation', Sir, is altogether unsatisfactory. I, for one, will not put up with it. Instead I assume the really important pieces will be reprinted on one of the many sites that do so.

I do hope you will reconsider this latest policy. I suspect that I will be not the only reader to cease visiting the Post page if you do not.

Posted by: Gerald C Schwertfeger | March 30, 2007 10:17 PM

Well, I don't know who you were listening to when you did this redesign, but it couldn't have been anyone who loves news and newspapers (the white space is awful). I loved the site before and it was my favorite news site on the web. It is now awkward and difficult to navigate. Perhaps before you make such a major switch you should ask readers what they like and not just listen to those who write in to gripe.

Posted by: elyrest | March 30, 2007 10:24 PM

The Print Edition and link to Previous Editions is gone

Posted by: Gary | March 30, 2007 10:55 PM

Add me to the naysayers chorus. This is simply awful. I don't have time to go searching for what I want, namely the discussions and the blogs and the list of the most emailed articles. And I agree with the poster who said you need to test on browsers other than IE. I use Firefox, and what I'm getting is not good, with some things jumbled and overprinting. Bring back the previous design ASAP, PLEASE!

Posted by: Susan | March 30, 2007 11:35 PM

The line height should be tighter/smaller on your front page blurbs (black text). Also, your main nav bar looks pretty strange on a Mac running either Firefox or Safari.

Posted by: Evan | March 31, 2007 12:25 AM

Words have not been invented yet to accurately state my level of disgust with this EXTREME DOWNGRADE to the website.

Posted by: rich | March 31, 2007 01:09 AM

What a mess. Some may have called the old page "cluttered" (I didn't find it to be), but at least it was logically organized. Where is the link to the Metro section? I see Sports, Business, Technology, Education, but NO Metro! And the multimedia section in the middle of the page is a major distraction, and takes up a huge chunk of space. What a downgrade. I'm a long-time Post print subscriber, one who hitherto viewed the online site as a convenient and complementary supplement to the print addition. Not anymore, this melange is going to force me back to the print version exclusively, which is essentially the same as saying the Post will no longer be my main source of news and information (I have limited time to spend with the print version, though I love it when I do). But then maybe forcing people back to the print version is your intention? Awful, just awful.

Posted by: Don | March 31, 2007 01:28 AM

I hate to jump on the bandwagon here but add me to the negatives. I like the old page much better for the discussion links, all the information and a good number of the other compliants already mentioned. Sorry, but it simply does not work as well.

Posted by: Mark | March 31, 2007 02:03 AM

Some feedback for Washington Post:

Please link all of the daily discussions on the homepage. They are the Post's best features, don't bury them.

More content directly on the homepage, please; less white space. I come to the Post to read or, when time is short, get my news at a glance, not via more clicks.

I too couldn't find the most emailed articles feature, and would like to see it back.

I like the photos and videos block, but not it's placement. It really separates the news at the top of the page from the news at the bottom.

Is "Local" the same as "Metro"? I suggest renaming that link, so people can find what they are looking for, under the name they are familiar with.

Posted by: SneezyG | March 31, 2007 02:09 AM

The largest daily newspaper in Finland, Helsingin Sanomat, made exactly the same mistake 6 mnths ago as WP - more white space to make it more "friendly". The response of the readers was almost unanimously negative, people wanted to have lots of news. This trend towards lighter pages seems take place all over among the serious newspapers. Why? Please, put back the most e-mailed section!

Posted by: More news! | March 31, 2007 04:26 AM

So I've been scrolling down the comments and I've yet to find a single person who likes the new homepage. And understandably so. To echo the legions of disgruntled Post readers out there, for heavens sake, dont join the race to the bottom!

As an overseas reader I have to say this is yet another contribution to the 'dumbing down' of America which is doing so much harm to America and the world. We live in a complex world and merely shunting the complexity to the hinterlands of our consciousness and sticking a Ms. America Pageant on the front is not going to make it all go away.

I'm sorry, I don't drink coffee first thing in the morning, I read the Post. Well, I used to anyway.

Posted by: David P | March 31, 2007 05:43 AM

The N.Y.Times did the same thing a few months ago.I used to read it every day.The change was so bad that I haven't been back since.This change isn't quite as bad but I suspect that there is more to come.I don't know about other readers but I expect an online home page to be like the front page of a print newspaper not an index or a menu.I suspect that I will be leaving the Washington Post pretty soon.

Posted by: A Reader | March 31, 2007 06:36 AM

Plenty of froth, but where is the news content? A sad day for the Post.

Posted by: Orren Whiddon | March 31, 2007 07:26 AM

I hesitate to sound like I just don't want change, but in this case, I really think you've made a big mistake. The old style was way easier to scan and find what I want to read. Please change back!

Posted by: JohnM | March 31, 2007 07:30 AM

I think it makes it look like the CNN page.

I don't like that you have to click on the blogs, discussions part to expand it. Those are often what I like to see and I'd like them to all display. Maybe that could be an option?

I also wish that once you turn that pop-up add in the middle of the page off that it stay off!

Posted by: RoseG | March 31, 2007 07:44 AM

Is there a link to 20 most e-mailed articles on the opening page? I'm not seeing it...

And to comment on the comments, it does seem odd that, though the Post says they got good feedback before proceeding with the new design, nearly everybody that has commented here and at the live discussion hates it. I'm willing to give it some time and see if it grows on me, but not being able to find the e-mailed articles link puts me in a negative frame of mind right off the bat. I suppose it is there and I just don't see it?

Posted by: KGS | March 31, 2007 07:58 AM

Hate it! The content that I want to see isn't directly accessible from the main page. World/Metro/Style/Sports "print editions" You'll probably get less ad revenue from my clicks, as I'll be visiting less frequently.

Posted by: Alexandria Kid | March 31, 2007 08:12 AM

No good.

Posted by: cmac | March 31, 2007 08:15 AM

I've always turned to the Post first because the news was always easiest to find there and many of its writers are first rate. Now you make it hard to find anything.

I have yet to read anything in that White Space you brag about. Why not put some stories in there and help keep your readers better informed. You know, like you used to.

Posted by: John Ward | March 31, 2007 08:16 AM

I like the new format. All of those complaining - it's a resource you don't have to pay for, so get over it. Here we get all of the editorials and all other content at no charge. NYT makes you pay for 'full access'. Chill out already!

Posted by: Hello - it's free?! | March 31, 2007 08:23 AM

I'm really surprised the website staff thought this particular redesign was a good idea.

The Post has always stood for depth in reporting and the website front page reflected this. Now it reflects...I'm not sure what.

Posted by: Sharon | March 31, 2007 08:39 AM

Please keep things in the same place each day. I don't want to have to search for my favorite sections.

Also.. please put the Discussion link back at the top of the page. I have to search for it each time.

Your live discussions are one major thing that sets your website apart from other newspapers'. Don't hide it!

Thanks for letting us share our input. I hope someone's actually reading these.

Posted by: TBG | March 31, 2007 08:57 AM

Like many others, I don't like that the new homepage has less news. I have a few specific complaints:

1. I cannot right-click on the articles in the new features strip. I use Firefox, and I like to scan through the front page and open new tabs for all the articles that I plan to read. If I can't right-click on the articles, I can't open them in a new tab. A lot of these features looks interesting, but I don't want to read them now and don't want to have to track them down in their respective sections in order to open them in a new tab. Please don't drop basic functionality in the interest of a slick appearance.

2. Please bring back the short list of today's discussions on the home page! If you won't replace the blurb/picture for the featured chat, at least add a tab for today's discussions on the front page (the way that the box above has two tabs for Opinions and Post Global & On Faith.

3. The drop-down box for columnists and blogs is not user-friendly!

Posted by: CM | March 31, 2007 09:23 AM

The news content is less in the new format. I dislike it. I've always read it before to get your excellent news reports, not the fluffy stuff that you now feature. Please reconsider. You are offending many of your most devoted readers by underrating our interest in perceptive & intelligent hard news reports

Posted by: | March 31, 2007 09:34 AM

The new layout is no improvement for me. I liked the "clutter" of the old site where I could scan headlines (like having a newspaper in my hands) and decide what interests me. When it comes to on-line content, if it's not on the home page, I am far less likely to see it.

Posted by: Rez Dog | March 31, 2007 09:35 AM

To respond to an earlier poster: Just because it is "free" doesn't mean it should be lousy. Free & No Good = No Users. Believe me, I am "paying" for this new layout being so lousy.

Posted by: Free? So What | March 31, 2007 09:53 AM

The redesign is AWFUL. Whoever worked on this should be fired. The extra white space doesn't reduce clutter, it simply reduces the amount of content which means we have less to read. Aren't news stories about reading? And you have eliminated or hidden all of the most useful links to discussions, most e-mailed articles, etc. Apparently no testing was done and you didn't consult one actual reader of your online format. You need to hire new designers.

Posted by: JG | March 31, 2007 10:47 AM

When I logged into your paper, I thought something was wrong with my computer. Your online format looks weak and anemic. I thought my internet browser wasn't displaying properly then I find out that someone deliberately did this to your online format! Bring back the old format. There was nothing wrong with it and you actually had a lot of loyal readers who found the old format useful. Don't know who gave you the awful advice to change it, but they are not your friends.

Posted by: Arlington Reader | March 31, 2007 10:51 AM


Posted by: Annoyed Reader | March 31, 2007 10:54 AM

I hate the new layout. I miss the sections to the right of the page outlining TECHNOLOGY, METRO, ****POLITICS****(this is DC by the way), BUSINESS, ARTS, HEALTH, RELIGION. I think having to search for the Metro section and the Politics section is ridiculous. What a shame. This was my first stop of the day. Not any more.

Posted by: buffmarie | March 31, 2007 11:06 AM

I want to register that I don't like the new design. Bad move. Please reconsider.

Posted by: Monad | March 31, 2007 11:12 AM

Where is the "Most E-Mailed" link???? Maybe the new format makes it to hard to find the real news stories that people like to share.

Posted by: Nebraska Reader | March 31, 2007 11:16 AM

I get the feeling that a bunch of young stuffy board members did this and do not care about what the average joe think. WATCH HOW YOUR CLICKS FALL OFF LIKE THE NYT. GOD AWFUL URGGGGGGG

Posted by: Chicago IL | March 31, 2007 11:37 AM

I agree with almost every other commenter here, your new homepage is TERRIBLE AND PATHETIC. I come to the Washington Post for news, not flimsy video clips of idiotic drivel and gossip. The Post sure has fallen from the heights of journalism and integrity it once enjoyed in the 70's and 80's. You have already fallen below the rancid USA Today, and appear on the verge of catching the National Enquirer. If you cannot provide good hard news, and lots of it, just quit the business; this is useless. Furthermore, your constant shilling for the right wing religious noise machine and attempts to "dumb down" both your content and the IQ of the American public are reprehensible.

Posted by: bmaz | March 31, 2007 11:42 AM

Of course,
it is good
cluter, but it is
not a

good idea to
reduce news. And,

I hope you

Posted by: marianne | March 31, 2007 11:56 AM

I would assume that those of us who log onto WAPO want to read the news and are looking for text and links. Those who are looking for "open space" should bring up a new document in Microsoft Word, and just stare at the white blank page to their hearts' content. And why not just have a link to the sports page instead of cluttering what little news space we now have left with sports "news". Please leave sports and entertainment items to other frivolous publications. Almost half your main page ow is devoted to inconsequential "news". If governments are a mirror image of the voting, or non-voting public, no wonder we get saddled with such pathetic, incompetent and ignorant administrations as the one we now have.

Posted by: Anahid | March 31, 2007 12:01 PM

Sadly, I agree with the negative comments about the new design, so I'll only add one I haven't seen here. There's link to an alternate home page (local v. national) in the upper right. It doesn't show us the other home page, though; instead it asks us to change our profile permanently. Sometimes I'd just like to switch from one to another. This is done by the BBC (http://news.bbc.co.uk/) where you switch easily between the UK and international versions. Could you make this possible for WaPo, too? And if you are contemplating a return to the old format: please, please return. It takes a big newspaper to learn from a mistake.

Posted by: S Swift | March 31, 2007 12:15 PM

Who did your redesign, the Washington Times? This format is a huge step backward. Copying the Day in Photos format from the Chicago Tribune was your only good idea.

Posted by: Your Friend | March 31, 2007 12:37 PM

If anyone is actually reading these comments..ughghgh...my new homepage will be McClatchy Washington Bureau. take a look: http://www.realcities.com/mld/krwashington/ It's about the news.

Posted by: ALK | March 31, 2007 01:16 PM

wow, how disapppointing to come to the website of a leading u.s. newspaper and not be able to find the news. what's the point?
and where are recent live discussions?
how much time do you think people are willing to spend finding stuff that used to be onthe homepage?
ok,ignore me, cause i don't pay to read this, but i hope some of your paying folks like advertisers let you know how annoying this is. It's 2007, we are no longer impressed with how cool a design can be--we want intuitive logic, function and breadth and scope and speed. It's a newspaper!

Posted by: barbara duncan | March 31, 2007 01:20 PM

The web page is no longer a destination. No Metro. No hard news. If we have to click thru to find news, we might as well go to the NY Times where everything that is fit to print is on the main web page. I'll use one of the local news station web pages to keep up on local.

The Post was the best compromise for finding both local and national news. Now it is a cleaner version of The LA Times or Houston Chronicle, with less depth.

How sad.

Posted by: Dean Bonney | March 31, 2007 01:21 PM

I liked the previous design. This one is counter intuitive. Try again.

Posted by: DC Native | March 31, 2007 01:32 PM

great job on re-arranging the deck chairs again.


Posted by: phil shapiro | March 31, 2007 01:33 PM

Please bring back the old format. I want news, not gigantic mouse-over ads and white space. Thanks

Posted by: susan | March 31, 2007 02:04 PM

My, oh my the natives are restless! Apparently much of the carping reserved for the Message Boards is now directed at an update of an old and truly cluttered format.

The WaPo redesign is not only attractive but actually complementary to the overall direction essential to new tech. Besides being both fresh and crisp, the new look does facilitate navigation. The old breadth of information is still there so I really can not understand the reason for all the carping over "removal of content". If one is familiar with the on-line world one would realize that these changes were made to take advantage of the Net's display potential. Good work and as you know there's no pleasing everyone...

Posted by: Diego Rivero | March 31, 2007 02:33 PM

New home page. Bad. How sad!

Posted by: sol oscar | March 31, 2007 02:36 PM

Did you folks change because USA Today dot com changed their homepage recently?

Addtional white space just adds to the scrolling while removing content. Is that the goal - to remove content?

It would nice if you indicated change your 'visited' link color in your global.css file
a:link { color:#0C4790; } <<<<
a:visited { color:#0C4790; } <<<<
a:active { color:#CC0000; }
a:hover { color:#CC0000; }
to something other than the 'link' color. How do we know we already visited a given article. Is this the equivalent of grocery stores putting milk at the back so we must walk through all the clutter just to buy a gallon of milk?

On balance I'd have to say I'm not impressed.

Posted by: Roofelstoon | March 31, 2007 02:48 PM

Please put the list of the day's chats back on the front page.

Not sure why newspapers are in such a rush to change the things that readers actually like. You're just driving away the readership that you still have.

Posted by: mandm | March 31, 2007 03:10 PM

Why don't all of you whiny crybabies shut up? Are much are you paying to access this site--oh yeah, NOTHING.

Posted by: Fred | March 31, 2007 03:16 PM

I miss the old page, I liked the section links for National, Metro, World & the other text blocks a great deal.

I don't like all the space given to religion at all.

Posted by: Gentry | March 31, 2007 04:07 PM

Please bring back the old format -- I have tried to give this new format a chance, but I have to echo all the previous comments: it's incredibly frustrating not to be able to scan so much of the paper's content right there on the front page. It invariably led me to read articles I never would have known about. And, hello, who's going to read various discussions/blogs/etc. if you don't provide us links so we know they even exist?? Plus, whoever said white space was good is just plain wrong. It just makes it look like the paper couldn't find any news to print. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE go back to the way it was.

Posted by: Zhivago | March 31, 2007 04:13 PM

Hey FRED, are you the Editor or a relative? Doesn't it seem odd to you that a FREE online paper apparently spent unnecessary $$$$ changing something that no one wanted changed? All the comments here are saying VERY LOUDLY is that they want the old format back. They aren't asking for something for nothing. They're simply saying to put back the old something and stop wasting money trying to improve something that didn't need improving. Apparently the Post did not consult anyone who actually reads their paper online or they would understand that one of the most useful features when you are reading the paper on the web is MOST E-MAILED ARTICLES. Unlike MOst Viewed Articles, the most e-mailed highlight topics other readers truly care about. Articles they have read and found interesting enough to pass on to others. Most viewed simply indicates which headlines might have caught someone's attention. BRING BACK THE OLD FORMAT. It was fine and you don't need to waste your money trying to fix something that is not broken.

Posted by: FREDIOT | March 31, 2007 04:19 PM


Posted by: Jeff | March 31, 2007 05:47 PM

The new homepage sucks a whole lot. Put it back the way it used to be. This new format is cluttered and confusing. The new format was nicely organized and I like having lots of links. That means I can easily get to what I want to read from the front page without having to go hunt for it, like the discussions.

Posted by: | March 31, 2007 06:00 PM

Gallery is one of the reason why I always come here to visit. If I don't scroll down the webpage, and if without the comment from the other readers, I could barely found the gallery. Basiclly, I still hope the gallery can be put in the top menu...

Posted by: Janice | March 31, 2007 06:32 PM

I'm seeing "roomate" on the front page right now. When you fix that error can you take us back to the old page? It has so much more to offer.

Posted by: A | March 31, 2007 06:41 PM

If you like white space so much, why don't you eliminate all words from your new home page???

Your new design is awful.

News contains surprises, I thought. Assuming this is indeed true, how do you know what you want to find if you are saddled with a stupid, white space filled home page?

Next, will the front page of the print version be all white spaces, too?

Your old design for your homepage was lovely. Redesign for redesign's sake is silly.

Posted by: mweiss | March 31, 2007 07:10 PM

I couldn't find the discussion link and would also like to see it featured more prominently. I didn't mind the "cluttered" look before but I do like how you've highlighted the multi-media aspect. I'm not as negative as some of the other posters. I'm willing to give it a chance.

Posted by: Lynn | March 31, 2007 07:16 PM

Diego: "The WaPo redesign is not only attractive but actually complementary to the overall direction essential to new tech.... If one is familiar with the on-line world one would realize that these changes were made to take advantage of the Net's display potential."

That's truly condescending. We're not a bunch of stodgy Luddites who are not "familiar with the on-line world." To the contrary, it's clear from the comments that we are regular readers of numerous on-line news sources. We expect any such site to provide quality content AND to be attractive and easily navigable -- and we abandon sources that fall short on either count. (Presumably the Post management, and its advertisers, understand the commercial consequences of that outcome better than the "stop complaining, it's free" commenters do.)

Taking "advantage of the Net's display potential" and providing well-organized, user-friendly, substantive news content and easy audience participation (i.e., chats and comments) need not be mutually exclusive. It's a shame that people like Diego seem to think they are. And I would say that, even where those goals might conflict, it is in the Post's interests -- its entire history and reputation, and presumably its future business plans, being premised on the quality of its content -- to prioritize the latter.

Posted by: jane | March 31, 2007 07:42 PM

Very early this thread Jean, nailed it. "Dumbed down" is a fitting descritpion. Change does not necessarily equal good.

If the suggestion was that there needs to be more white space in the print edition, would you actually consider it? What if it was that there is too much clutter with the entries on the left side of the page opposite the Op-Ed page?

Posted by: Nor'Easter | March 31, 2007 08:54 PM

while well intended, the design changes are yet more tweaking of the surface -- when structural changes to the newspaper and web site are so desperately needed.


Posted by: phil shapiro | March 31, 2007 09:46 PM

you gotta put the full list of discussions back on the homepage where they are easy to find and see at a glance what is happening that day.

this all seems like change for the sake of change. who was dissatisfied with it the way it was? I thought it was fine, and any problems I may have had with it are certainly not fixed by this change.

Posted by: Glenn | March 31, 2007 10:41 PM

I wish you would address one of the most annoying features of the Post web version, which is the constant updates. On a dialup connection, it is really aggravating to return to the home page and find that you have to wait while it is (yet again) updating with nothing new. Updates definitely have their place on a news site, but keeping them down to once every fifteen minutes or so would be a major favor to your readers.

Posted by: | March 31, 2007 11:35 PM

I can give you my opinion in four words: I don't like it.

The new Post home page is a serious disappointment.

Yes, you have reduced the clutter.

Your readers now have LOTS of white space and a third less news.

You have sacrificed information for prettification.

You have dumbed down WashingtonPost.com.

Compared with the wealth of news on the home page of the New York Times, the Washington Post's new page is an embarrassment.

Where, for example, are the subheadings for Metro and Politics? (Get rid of them. They just clutter things up.)

Come to think of it, you could reduce visual clutter further by posting just one story per subheading.

There is a BIG SPORTS HEADLINE accompanied by a picture that periodically changes, however. (The biggest and most prominent feature of the page. Saturday, March 31, 11:05 pm)

Nice big ad for Radio Shack, too. (It's a full column wide and about one-third of the page in height.)

I thought you were supposed to be a world-class NEWS organization.

I am not merely a cranky freeloader. In addition to being an online reader, I am a long-time subscriber to the print edition of the Washington Post.

You will notice that there is plenty of white space in this email message so that it can be read easily.

I have written mostly simple sentences. They are easy to read, too.

Posted by: Gary | April 1, 2007 12:08 AM

Please bring back the link to most emailed stories. It is the most important feature I look for.

Posted by: Matt | April 1, 2007 12:32 AM

My God!Where's
listen live?

Posted by: | April 1, 2007 01:01 AM

I hate the new home page too.

It wasn't cluttered -- it helped me get to the news and especially the departments I wanted FAST.

The new page isn't as efficient, at all. It makes WaPo look like some cheesy regional paper instead of a national publication.

So, what isn't efficient doesn't respect my time. And what doesn't respect my time disrespects me.

Please, bring back the old look.

Posted by: lambert strether | April 1, 2007 02:15 AM

I wonder, if in view of the OVERWHELMINGLY negative comments, if the Post will actually listen to its users and not consultants and beta test flunkies. Newspapers worry so much about declining circulation. Perhaps being totally out of touch with their own customers has a lot to do with it.

I *dare* the Washington Post to return the to old format and admit it made a mistake. After all, their own editorials call for Bush to admit to his mistake so this the WP's "Iraq War Blunder." I'm betting the the Post execs act just like Bush and would rather go down in flames rather than admit a mistake on this scale. Yahoo did the same thing and Wall St. punished them severely as users fled.

This comment section is almost completely filled with negatives. Doesn't the MEAN anything to the Post? What I've heard so far is just lame justifications of a bad decision and "you'll get to like it - eventually." Weak.

It's time for a ROLLBACK!!!


Posted by: PeggyM | April 1, 2007 03:00 AM

I agree new page is disastrously badly designed. Contrary to stated intent, I find it more cluttered not less - it now has more, rather than fewer, different unconnected "buckets" on the page, and is harder to navigate. The page could have been improved but not the way you did it - it should have been made easier, not harder, to scan; more unified, not less.

Posted by: DBS | April 1, 2007 05:26 AM

As a reader of the Post for 40 years, I still prefer the print version that's dropped in my driveway every morning. Because we are in rural southern Pennsylvania, we get a very early edition, but I often go to the website to email or copy articles that I want to save.
When have page designers taken over the news? I don't want design. I agree with the comment that if I wanted white space, I'd go to an art gallery. I WANT CONTENT, AND EASY NAVIGATING. Where is the most e-mailed stories? Discussion??
First WETA, now you! Didn't you consult anybody first?

Posted by: Pat | April 1, 2007 05:33 AM

I agree with everyone.
It was better before the redesign.

Posted by: Los Angeles | April 1, 2007 05:34 AM

What happened to the top 20 most emailed????

Posted by: | April 1, 2007 07:18 AM

I hate your new web page. Please bring back the old one!

Posted by: YA | April 1, 2007 07:35 AM

More space for the Discussions area should be returned.

What I notice is more room for skyscraper ads on the side of the page. Headsup: Research indicates static skyscraper ads don't really work; making them bigger isn't going to change anything.

Thanks for listening. If you ARE listening, that is.

Posted by: Tom Siebert | April 1, 2007 08:05 AM

Your new layout is crap. Prettier with less real content - dumbed down just like our government but prettier. Combine that with psuedo-news like the retarded PR campaign being run by Cassidy & Assoc. under the guise of news and you get a TOTAL load of crap. That is a forum that has not only been actively editing out protests against lobbying and exhibited organized resistance to my employers posts, but has been allowing the "subject" of the "news story" and his friends add editorial comments and corrections. Excuse me? How is that journalism? You are not much better than FAUX News. You can sell and spin that kind of garbage all you want but you cannot defend or promote lobbying and be taken seriously as anything but a sellout. In case you did not get the message, IT IS CRAP - Layout is there and Content is spiraling around the drain rapidly. Your real reporters, not the Neocon moron schills like Will and traitors dirt bags like Novak, deserve better and so do your readers. What happened to the Post that employed Bernstein and Woodward and ENCOURAGED real investigative journalism vs. the corporate pablum you are serving now, WaPo? What happened to the Post that would have brought this corrupt unconstitutional administration to its knees by exposing their crimes? SOLD to the highest bidder. Your current evolutionary path leads to being irrelevant as a source for news but a great study in fascist propaganda. Just like FAUX.

Posted by: fool_superior | April 1, 2007 08:23 AM

Sounds like most people pan the new design, but I think it is cleaner and more accessible. The only real problem is that you have again failed to promote the comics to being a first class portion of the front page -- nevermind politics and the weather, what about the funnies?

Posted by: R. Watson | April 1, 2007 08:41 AM

The home page layout is awesome! I read my paper online every morning and the clutter use to drive me crazy!...I didn't know where to start reading. Now my eye has the ease of reading what I need to read even if I have to scroll down just a bit without my eyes going stir crazy. I have completed three website re-designs with three different organizations and getting rid of clutter has always been a goal in order to assist your clientele and your employees in finding the most pertinent information quickly. From a person who has experience in e-marketing and an end-user - Thank you for a job well done :o).

Posted by: Monica | April 1, 2007 09:35 AM

This new design is an April Fools joke, right? You're going to tell us today so we can all laugh and go back to the old news format, right? Please say yes. Don't listen to Monica the supposed e-marketer, the new design is AWFUL. The Washington Post is not about e-marketing, you used to be about NEWS!

Posted by: April Fools | April 1, 2007 10:21 AM

For every editorial action, there's an equal or opposite readership reaction.
In this case: Less Clutter = Less Content, thereby making the news universe that much smaller.

Posted by: Out West | April 1, 2007 10:38 AM

The redesign is not an improvement. I look for the Politics articles and find they are not together. Major catagories are good. It helps me search. I recommend going back to the old format. At least I had figured it out. This is a hodge podge.--Guy

Posted by: Guy Watson | April 1, 2007 10:44 AM

I hate this new format. What happened to the direct link to the Metro section? To me, that is one of the most important parts of the paper and it is completely missing on the homepage. I can get national news anywhere. I come to the post for local stuuf too. Fix it!!

Posted by: corlissv | April 1, 2007 10:45 AM

I don't like the new design. I suppose I'll tolerate it, but there is less news to entice readers to click on to something. Less clutter means less interest.

Posted by: jh | April 1, 2007 10:56 AM

Oh dear. Let's see.

First, you have open space on your header bar, while the menus are sufficiently close that people who have their browsers set to larger type sizes are going to see them running together. Not necessary. Please fix.

Most viewed is at the top right of the page? That's kind of embarassing, isn't it? You've just basically announced that the most valuable real estate on your home page can be freeped within fifteen minutes by pretty much anybody with a handful of sockpuppet blogs. If you're promoting Live, put it there.

Aesthetics vary, but the overall look of the page doesn't work for me. User-friendliness, on the other hand, is a little less subjective. You've created a page with less information on it, which makes it more difficult to get to the information, and which, because of the decision to emphasize negative space over content, actually takes longer to scroll down.

If you want to offer this layout as an option for people who warm to it, that's great. Bluntly, a clunky design would be a disincentive for choosing your site to catch up on the news.

Posted by: julia | April 1, 2007 11:16 AM

WP has had THE best home page for a long time now. Unfortunately, this page isn't very good. The old page might have been cluttered, but it was cluttered with advertising, not news. Leave the news and amount of new alone, and figure out how to make your advertising less obnoxcious and you'll have a winner again. Not enough news on this page. Really, you need to either go back, or get more new on this page. Sorry, I want to support you guys, but this page stinks.

Posted by: Anthony | April 1, 2007 11:28 AM

This is what happens when you put marketing people in charge at a newspaper. All you get is less news, and more marketing. I'm not in the DC area anymore but I liked the metro section headlines on the front page. If I wanted to read a paper that was visually attractive but full of fluff I would read the AJC (actually it's not visually attractive, just full of fluff). I come here for news, not white space. No wonder the whole industry is in trouble. It's just like a bar tender that waters down his drinks, then wonders why nobody buys them, so to stretch his shrinking budget he waters them down more.

Posted by: The Captain | April 1, 2007 11:44 AM

What on earth were you thinking? Even the pictures, captions, headlines and news listings are terrible. If it is not broke, don't fix it, and the old page was not broken. This one is horrible.

Posted by: John | April 1, 2007 11:46 AM

I get it! VERY good April Fool's Day joke. Look how many people you got--me included. I can't wait to see the real page back on Monday. This practical joke is almost as good as Sid Finch--maybe it's even better (so hard to keep a secret nowadays as compared to the 80's).

Posted by: Eureaka!!! | April 1, 2007 11:55 AM

I suppose the objective was to make the paper itself as difficult as possible for the filthy liberals to read, and comment on all the lies and propaganda you publish.

Posted by: newspaperman506 | April 1, 2007 12:36 PM

I, too, bemoan the loss of "Most Emailed" from the home page.

Posted by: Chris Altwegg | April 1, 2007 01:05 PM

don't like the "new" look, lol
a shame.
since it's free, what can i say?
Would you care if i stopped reading your paper cause of this? I doubt it.

Posted by: Bernard | April 1, 2007 01:35 PM


The most interesting part has been cut off.. I hope this is due to incompetent design, and not on purpose..

Interestingly, the editor's justification regarding "page weight" is obviously straight out of a consultant's Power Point slide.
If page weight (bandwidth needed to load the page) was a concern, Wash Post is 7 years too late.. That was an issue when dial up ruled the roost. With the vast majority of readers on broadband, page weight is completely irrelevant. Someone should have told the consultant to at least update the standard Power Point used by the consulting firm.

Posted by: Regular reader | April 1, 2007 01:35 PM


Posted by: Chicago IL | April 1, 2007 02:03 PM

I LIKED being able to see all the headlines without having to scroll down. The large photo on the left is a waste of space. I have the Washington Post as my home page to get all the news at a glance. If I wanted something that wasn't busy, I'd choose that. Get rid of the huge advertisement on the right-hand side, put all the news headlines "above the fold" (meaning I don't have to scroll), and go back to what you do best--reporting the news--even if it is from a liberal bias.

Posted by: Springfield VA | April 1, 2007 02:52 PM

I also do not like the changes. It doesnt seem as though much was accomplished except to make the site less user-friendly. One of the main reasons I visit this site is to view the post's politics reporting. That section is not even listed on the main body of the homepage anymore. Any why is it suddenly so difficult to get the Fix blog. That is perhaps the best part of this entire website and now its hard to find!

Posted by: D | April 1, 2007 03:21 PM

To those noting the Post website is free, I would offer the following. A Post executive on CNN several months ago said that the Post website is a profit center that is helping to support the traditional paper edition. The website ads generate revenue, and my assumption is that by now forcing us viewers to hunt and peck for the old content, we are seeing more ads, thus producing more revenue. I only wish Jim Brady in his explanation had been more forthcoming, instead of pointing to more white space as the rationale.

Posted by: Out West | April 1, 2007 03:42 PM

I think the new website is much less user-friendly. I also liked that the old website listed the Live Discussions in a more appropriate and accessible area. The layout might look nice, but the older page had the hard news set up in a better fashion. Now, it is harder for me to find what I am looking for, and the Metro section should be at the top of the news links. Mr. Brady, please read what the overwhelming number of people on this blog have expressed and consider changing back to the previous format.

Posted by: John | April 1, 2007 04:10 PM

Who is in charge of forcing change down the readership throats? I preferred the old front page because it had the links i needed to anywhere in your site. It adds to my time, and will inevitably lead me to other pages for the links i need, even to the post content. Another change brought by the same management that keeps tinkering (negatively) with the print Post as well.... the only reason you can succeed so well is that you are essentially the only big show in town.

Posted by: patsy | April 1, 2007 04:27 PM

Please put the list of live discussions back on the main page!

Posted by: Silvia | April 1, 2007 04:31 PM

OK, since you're holding hostage the HEADLINES, DISCUSSION, and MOST EMAILED sections, and since most people think it's because you wanted to expose us to more advertising since the site's content is 'free', I'd be willing to buy a subscription if only you'll put it back the way it was.

Posted by: Overseas in Japan | April 1, 2007 05:25 PM

First reaction: "What happened to all the stuff?" While appearing busy, the old homepage was not necessarily "cluttered". Living in a multi-tasking world, I don't see how I'll benefit from this greater separation of information.

I spend considerable time with your op-ed columnists. Access to their offerings continues tolerable. The "Opinions" scroll list is still an eye chart.

Posted by: Don in AZ | April 1, 2007 05:44 PM

It would be interesting to see how website viewers would respond: Subscribe for website access to the old content, or accept the revised format with more ads for free?
Personally, I'm torn!

Posted by: Out West | April 1, 2007 05:47 PM

We blather on here and no one responds. Did you people ask our opinions because you cared? Do you intend to respond either by post or by action? Are we just tilting at windmills here?

Posted by: Well... | April 1, 2007 06:26 PM

Less information: another step towards irrelevancy! Good idea, schmoes.

Posted by: George Smiley | April 1, 2007 07:45 PM

It appears an overwhelming majority of readers (customers, to use a different word) don't like the new layout. Is there any chance of polling the readership and asking what they think of the new layout, and possibly going back to the previous layout. It may be, in fact, that the previous layout, although a little cluttered (to some), was in fact a better layout. And, you can include advertising anywhere on the layout you want.

Posted by: Dungarees@gmail.com | April 1, 2007 08:00 PM

Great heavens, Mr. Spock, they're actually doing it...shrinking the news universe!
Yes, Captain, it certainly defies the laws of physics, but you must remember, we're visiting the planet of Corporate Greed. The Greed Gnomes have clearly taken control.
But, but...why, Spock, why? Why would an intelligent life form do such a thing?
Again, Captain, it's the planet's innate culture...to live in the past as they devour the future.
Well, this certainly must stop! Scotty, prepare to beam down Mr. Spock, Bones, and myself to the Planet of Corporate Greed.
Ay, Captain!

Posted by: Out West | April 1, 2007 08:56 PM

Everybody's a critic! Whenever inexpert opinion is given equal voice with expert opinion, inexpert opinion prevails. This points to a major problem with this type of forum. People who have nothing better to do with their time than spend hours hanging out in forum are probably not contributing much to the life of the polis.

They'll forget they ever had a problem with this facelift. Amazing how this kind of mossgrown conservatism evolves. It was a mistake to ask for reaction when all you have is hip reactionaries.

Can't find your way past the main page? Poor babies.

Posted by: Banjo Andy | April 1, 2007 09:06 PM

After 20 years of living in Washington and subscribing to the Washington Post, I moved to Southwestern Virginia 3 1/2 years ago. Unfortunately, I found that I couldn't get the Post delivered here. But I was thrilled to be able to read the online version.

Like many above, I found that the 20 Most Emailed section was the most interesting thing on the site. To me, it was a barometer for what's most important and interesting to an intelligent group of people. WAY different, as others have noted, than the list of most VIEWED articles. This was the pulse of the region and sometimes the nation. Such great reading.

I know that as a business struggling to compete in a new world, you are doing this to get people to browse more online, and hence get more advertising "eyeballs," not to make it easier for the readers.

My guess is also that the link to the Top 20 Most E-mailed articles is probably the most clicked on feature, which is scary to you since there's no advertising (or little effective advertising that I can remember) there.

Would you be willing to divulge that data?

So you're spending millions of dollars a year developing this world-clase content, yet no one is reading it.

And at the same time, I suspect you've just hidden the most popular part of the site. If so, to say you're doing this to the readers is a joke.

Anyway, a couple of days ago, there was a Q&A on here about the new design which said that the Most E-mailed link was about 2/3 of the way down on the left. I looked & looked, and couldn't find it. I now can't find that original Q&A. So what gives?

I've wasted quite a bit of time searching the site high and low for that, but can't find it!

I would gladly pay a modest fee to have access to that list - maybe e-mailed to me. After all, I'm not able to buy a subscription in this part of the world. It was worth that much to me. And I want to see your business model thrive going forward, so all in the world can access the good reporting of the Post.

But yeh, I agree with the many posters on here - this was not done for readers, but for advertisers. And some design consultants sure sold you a bill of goods.

In addition, why does there have to be a total, all-at-once redesign? Why not tweak a section here or there as you go along to accomplish your goals?

Finally, given the overwhelming response on here, are you really interested in this feedback, or are you just kind of hoping that we vent and "get used to it."

When do we find out if you've actually "heard us." After being a loyal reader of the print and online editions for 23 years, this is sorely disappointing.

Posted by: Rob Lawson | April 1, 2007 09:28 PM

The new page is fine. Everyone will get used to it in a few days. Honestly, it's not really that different, and it's working better for me. For those who are so worried about getting all the news, just click on the section pages. Honestly. Unless you think reading the 'news' means reading headlines.

I must say, though, that I've also lost the Live Discussions and I'm not happy about that. You need to check to make sure that link exists and is working properly!

Posted by: Rachel | April 1, 2007 09:30 PM

I thought that your page was having a computer glitch or problem. I liked the "busyness" because it was full of information which is why I liked reading the Washington Post. Now that I know that this isn't a mistake, I'm not going to be using my time on the Washington Post anymore; it simply doesn't have what I'm looking for: quick, accurate and very accessible information.

Posted by: Mary | April 1, 2007 10:14 PM

The change to the WashPost website prompted me for the first time in memory to pen a note to the Executive Editor; I received a pablum response of "we appreciate the feedback and can't respond to all comments."

I am a dead tree subscriber but the Post on-line has been a wonderful lunchtime alternative. But, no more if you keep this format.

I thought I could adapt to it, but, as many other posters have described, it is not possible to find what you are looking for.

In addition, please review your Creative Director's responses to criticism in the Friday live discussion - was he responsive - I should say not.

Where is the list of columnists?
Why can't you see today's live discussions without an additonal click?
Where are the Metro headlines?
Where are the most read articles?

What were you thinking???

The very few pro-change respondents seem to be art-effites who don't have a user-world mentality.

This weekend, I only accessed the Post website to view comments on the change and to play sudoku. Starting tomorrow, sudoku will be my only excuse.

Farewell WashPost online. I'm done.

Shame on you for such bad judgement.

Posted by: Deborah - Wheaton MD | April 1, 2007 10:30 PM

Those of you claiming that the negative posters need to relax because the site is free are very much missing the point. We do pay to use this site by exchanging our willingness to utilize this website for exposure to the advertising messages of the advertisers who fund it. If we as web readers do not enjoy utilizing the site and find it cumbersome and lacking the personality we were attracted to in the first place, we will very possibly seek our news elsewhere, thus reducing the eyeballs (and potential ad revenue) for the Washington Post. By virtue of posting commentary, these critics are web savvy and do know what they enjoy. This instant feedback from loyal readers is what makes the internet so valuable in the first place and should be welcomed by a company in the business of instilling brand loyalty.

Posted by: Rodin Fan | April 1, 2007 10:34 PM

Where are the Politics, National and Metro groups in the More Top Stories. I'm sure you couldn't have just buried them in lower pages somewhere. After your above the fold headlines these were the 3 most important sub groups to check. Sports, Arts and Living, and Health still get groups of headlines, but no Politics, National or Metro? What am I missing here?

F- and 20 minutes with the dunce cap.

Posted by: Peter | April 1, 2007 10:54 PM

You might want to try looking at the site in a browser with a minimum font size selected, say 18pt. (That's what I use, and I'm sure lots of folks use an increased font size.) The layout falls apart. That's a rookie mistake.

Posted by: Dave Latchaw | April 1, 2007 11:12 PM

I have nothing new to add but my voice in concurrence with the ~98% of those above who think the change is bad. In particular, I am much less likely to visit this site if I can't find local DC news on the main page or get more than two headlines per section. I don't have time at work or while watching my kid to do much more than scan quickly through the headlines, tabbing those that look interesting for later reading (like now, at 11:33pm). Please, please don't ignore reader response on this one; I don't want to have to go through the trouble of finding two new news sources, one for local, one for global. If you don't fix it, though, I (and, I suspect, a large percentage of your other viewers) will leave.

Posted by: walter | April 1, 2007 11:36 PM

I hate to pile on, but it looks like we have to to get you all to recognize that you've made a massive mistake here. The "clutter" you talk about on the front page isn't clutter, it's VITALITY. Little hometown paper's websites that only have 5 stories to talk about in a given day have 5 links on their homepage. You are supposed to be a PAPER OF RECORD in this country. So, showing more news on the front page is important to help us find stuff that's worth recording. It's a shame you've ruined that by taking news off the front page.

Posted by: IMGoph | April 1, 2007 11:54 PM

I've been a washingtonpost.com regular reader for at least 7 years now (I can still remember checking for constant updates during the 2000 presidential election recounts) and I have never had a problem with this site until now. But let's be honest: This dumbed-down "redesign" is a disaster. Hasn't anyone over there ever heard the saying, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it"?

I wonder, Mr. Brady, how much you truly know about the field of publication design theory? I myself have made it my career for going on 23 years now, and I can say that the changes instituted this past week at WaPo's site aren't going to enhance the readability at all. Just to give you one example: Nobody wants to spend time scrolling through three or more screens' worth of pixels to get to the bottom of a homepage just to find their favorite links. The old (pre-Thursday) layout was a model of tight efficiency: Major stories headlined "above the fold," with relevant links to Froomkin, Kurtz, videos, etc., and departments (where the hell have Metro and Politics gone to, BTW?) "below the fold" with the three most newsworthy stories bulleted right there. Now the news density is reduced by at least a third, the thing is an unreadable, impenetrable mess, and the reader has to do a hell of a lot more active scrolling and searching. You (or maybe it was the shill for the new designer--I forget) referred to the old homepage as "cluttered"; I, OTOH, always found its layout to be refreshingly intelligent and accessible.

And here's a second example: Even a 10th-grader who's putting together his high school paper knows the difference between "creative use of white space" and "creating a dull gray mess." White space is used to help the reader differentiate between items on a page and highlight individual items. Adding leading and lessening the white space between individual items, as your designer has done, achieves the opposite effect and confuses the eye so that it can't decide where to go. It's fatiguing and, as is obvious by all the negative posts you see here, immensely user-UNfriendly. If you're going to throw around specific terms like "white space," you should at least know what they mean in a design sense.

I'm forced to assume that someone at your office was sold a bill of goods by some cookie-cutter "webmaster" who has a mastery of coding but no experience with actual design work. I remember several years ago when Reed Elsevier's trade news print magazines underwent a similar makeover regimen, which made them much easier to lay out on the computer, Quark-wise. But the process also stripped several venerable titles of their gravitas and left them looking like nothing so much as those throwaway airline magazines you find in the seat pockets of your local commuter jet. Your site now gives off much the same feel.

On another front, who decided what passes for newsworthiness on your new site? Near as I can determine, it must've been some focus group assembled from the folks who couldn't get into Wednesday's "Oprah" taping. Your shift away from serious news to lightweight "lifestyle" pabulum is similar to the one that finally forced me to recently drop my two-decades-long Newsweek subscription and start spending three times as much to receive The Economist every week. The Economist ain't as prettified graphically, and its editorial bias doesn't jibe with my own brand of politics, but damn, it sure is nice to see all that hard news instead of the latest on which graveyard Anna Nicole wound up planted in. Some of us still care about that stuff. Silly huh?

Knowing corporate mentality and the inability to acknowledge mistakes, even glaring ones, I don't expect anyone at washingtonpost.com to have the balls to own up and say, "Sorry, my bad, we'll put it back the way it was." Y'all have obviously thrown waaaay too many bucks at some flashy "award-winning" clown of a designer--the cousin of a WPC board member, perhaps?--to be able to admit what a waste it turned out to be. Instead, you'll no doubt keep nervously congratulating yourselves on what a nice new outfit the emperor is wearing, and awhile later down the road you'll feign total shock as the numbers come in and show that traffic has dropped off, and you'll shrug and say, "Well, that's the way the news business is trending. It's not like we could've done anything about it, after all." And so it goes...

Or, unlikely as it may be, you can change you minds, revert back to the old and far-superior WaPo layout, prove me wrong and keep me--and all those who've posted comments before me--as happy readers. Which will it be?

Posted by: KR20852 | April 2, 2007 12:14 AM

Oh man, I HATE the redesign. Despite the very "dumbed down" look, it just took me more than 3 minutes to find your supposedly page A1 article on how the Bush administration puts insiders in top prosecutor jobs. Previously, this would have been prominently featured, I am certain. I also can't find the Discussions links you're talking about. Sorry, but I HATE IT. HATE IT.

Posted by: Vulture Breath | April 2, 2007 01:37 AM

On the old home page we could see all the most popular or emailed stories. Under this new one we can only see five. If this an improvement. I think not.

Posted by: razorwing6 | April 2, 2007 01:44 AM

I spent several days looking for the most emailed articles, it was such a good way to catch the interesting stuff. After reading the comments here, I guess it's missed by others as well.

Sorry, I also think there's too much space and not enough articles to click on. I usually check your site several times a day, scanning through all the lists to see what's interesting, and it seems harder now.

Posted by: Marie | April 2, 2007 01:50 AM

Ok, this redesign is just a horrible April Fool's joke, right?

Posted by: Sparkles the Iguana | April 2, 2007 01:58 AM

I would agree with those who hate the new page design. It is less efficient and informative. Are you trying to imitate the NY Times's page? When the Times redid their webpage a while ago, I thought, "at least the Washington Post's page is still more web-friendly." Now, I would say you are both frustrating. I vote to go back to the old design. I am tempted to change the Post as my homepage due to the frustrations with the reformating. Follow Coke's lead--can the "New" Post page and bring back the "Classic."

Posted by: Paul in WI | April 2, 2007 02:12 AM

I love this. Allmost 100% of end users loathe this truly awful "redesign", and a couple of my fellow internet professionals get snobby and condescending, declaring it wonderful.

If you ever needed an example of what's wrong in the world of internet design professionals, you couldn't have gotten a better one. Sorry designers, but the _end user is all that matters_. Moreover, to the idiot who chattered about the "internet's display potential", take a freaking Tufte seminar. The computer screen has the lowest information density of all presentation options. Lousy pixel density.

IN other words, the single worst thing you can do for an online business specializing in information delivery is to lower an already lousy information density.

Posties, follow your users. This design is god awful for the business you are in. First of all...don't let the designers do this. Get in a good IA person who knows how to do user testing, and make the designers do what he tells them. Designers should never, ever dictate the architecture of a site, nor should programmers. Too specialized and not user focused.

Posted by: John | April 2, 2007 02:20 AM

Go look at the New York Times website for some design tips. It may be a little cluttered, but at least I can see many more news categories, each of which has 3 articles to click on. The NYT puts the hard news categories closer to the top, unlike you. I can also see the top 10 most emailed articles, and clicking at the bottom quickly takes me to the top 25. I can't even find this list on your redesign.

Posted by: Sparkles the Iguana | April 2, 2007 02:29 AM

YOU MIGHT AS WELL JUST SHUT DOWN THE POST, BUY AN IDIOT OUTFIT LIKE USA TODAY, AND RENAME IT `THE WASHINGTON POST`? ``` faye kane, homeless smartmouth ``` blog.myspace.com/fayekane ``

Posted by: faye kane | April 2, 2007 02:55 AM

reminds me of cbs news all white space and no real news. lets have fred explaine our three choices for a story next week. then he can explaine it every week thereafter thus wasting whitespace, bandwidth and time. Do they realize that a large percentage of this country still does not have broadband where they live, and yet these media jokers what to auto reload pages and make you jump from one page to another, just put all the story titles with authors on the home page and let the people choose quickly what pages they want to load, that would speed things up a lot, it this doesnt improve fast i will have to go back to cbs news

Posted by: | April 2, 2007 03:56 AM

Gosh, I don't know that I can think of anything clever or original to add to the discussion. I do, however, wish to add my voice to the multitude of other voices of discontent on this "new and improved" design.

I, too, am a long-time,loyal reader of the daily WP print edition--dispite the fact that I have to pay more for it because I do not live in the metro area and I receive an earlier edition.It is the serendipity that comes with turning the pages that I look forward to each day.

It is that same serendipity that used to be present on your "cluttered" award winning Web site. If I can't see it, how do I know I want to read it? Challenge me, provoke me, enlighten me and entertain me, but don't misrepresent me or underestimate me by giving me such a poor example of what I have to expect from such an institution as the Washington Post.

Posted by: | April 2, 2007 04:00 AM

please stop the auto reloading. it uses up time and bandwidth, and you cant scroll when its reloading, stop it please, stop it please stop it please. I have a reload button if i want it reloaded, please dont reload pages for me, i want to do it myself when its convenient for me.

Posted by: | April 2, 2007 04:06 AM

This sucks utterly. If I wanted to page through fluff (best beers?!) and huge oddly placed ads I'd log on to MSN. When I log on I have to scroll down half the page to get what I want, the top stories in different subject areas, right up front where I can see them. Your washington region homepage is a great idea but fails because it suffers the same format and layout problems as the US page- scroll forever, pass the big dumb ad and numerous articles that I don't care about, and hunt for what I want almost at the end of the page. Thanks for nothing, fire your web staff.

Posted by: Sara | April 2, 2007 07:00 AM

Do you ever read the washingtonpost or are you just an editor?! what you have done is terrible. You should be fired. I do not think you read the washingtonpost. I think you just show up for work and want to show that you have done some work. There are so many wrong things with your design I do not where to start from. The post needs a new editor not a new redisgn. Please hire someone who reads, needs and uses the post.

Posted by: Sam | April 2, 2007 07:53 AM

Well, you (plural) would have to be truly and deliberately fooling yourselves to believe these changes as a whole constitute "improvment." Between the too-small type font and the general dumbing-down referenced numerous times above -- not to catalog the laundry list of other retrograde moves -- this esteeemed newspaper has really laid a pyrite egg as a gift to its readers.

Have the business acumen that Coca-Cola had a few decades back when "new, improved" Coke was rejected overwhelmingly, and quickly brought back the successful, prior formulation. Said differently, cut your losses, and move on. -- Good luck

Posted by: Clement G. Browne | April 2, 2007 09:09 AM

Since you have done away with subsections "Nation" and "World" I somehow get the feeling that I am missing vital parts of your paper. Even old liberals like myself can find status quo comforting. Go back to the good old days.

Posted by: jesse russell | April 2, 2007 09:11 AM

Usually I welcome more white space, but now I have to do a lot of scrolling to try to find what I'm looking for. Since the layout is new, I don't know where to look. The overall impression is that there is much less content. Very frustrating.
Please put the lists of discussions, blogs, and most e-mailed articles back on the front page and near the top so they can be easily found and referenced.

Posted by: robyn | April 2, 2007 09:12 AM


You have been fortunate enough to receive commentaries from design authorities such as Edward Tufte.
It will be good to simply follow his advice. This redesigned homepage is seriously wrong.

Yours Sincerely,

Goffredo Puccetti

Posted by: Goffredo Puccetti | April 2, 2007 09:13 AM

I miss the top 20--for a non-Beltway reader, it was the best way to see what was on the minds of those in DC. Further, as I read on line, Monday morning I'd be able to see what big Sunday stories caught on. Top five stories just doesn't cut it.

Posted by: laura jereski | April 2, 2007 09:18 AM

I am trying to rationalize that some of these changes are to help usability and that one I grow accustomed to them, I will adjust fine. However, my initial reaction is that I hate it. I can't find anything I want. I miss the list of all discussions for the day. I don't want to click into something else just to find out if they one I want is today. I'm having a hard time finding the blogs also. Bring back the daily discussion schedule!

Posted by: Ruby | April 2, 2007 09:46 AM

Chiming in to add my disapproval. What a waste of money. Who approved this mess? The white space is distracting, makes the Post look dumbed down, and means I have to scroll and scroll and scroll to find what I'm looking for, and then I'll probably have to click on another box and scroll through that for a while. The "Smart Living" feature is better suited to Good Housekeeping magazine. The solid black box half-way down the page for videos, etc. is a visual stop sign. I think I've gotten to the bottom of the page, so I stop, wondering where the actual news is. But NO! There's more scrolling to do. Also, the huge blank space where the discussions list used to be in the top blue bar looks awful; really unprofessional. Please, please, please, please put the discussion list back there where it belongs!

Posted by: Washington, DC | April 2, 2007 09:46 AM

Where is the METRO Section? This is ridiculous........

Posted by: ExtremeSkins | April 2, 2007 09:53 AM

After reading this, I went back to find the discusions and I still could find them. This is crazy!

Also, you have designed this so it *must* be used in full screen mode. Not every uses this, so I now have to scroll horizontally and vertically to find content.

Finally, from reading the comments, it appears some of the blogs or discussion links show up as pop-ups. I supposed you are trying to get us to turn off pop-up blockers so we can see more pop-up ads, but I think the result will be that people will not use the blogs and discussion rather than turning off their pop-up blockers and be subjected to in your face ads.

And just a side note, please avoid ads with sound. I'd gander a guess that 90% of folks are looking at this site at work, and nothing is worse that trying to discreetly read the news when suddenly a large accelerating car sound comes pouring out your speakers. I keep mine on mute because of this, so I don't know if your ads ever have sound. But something to keep in mine.

Posted by: Ruby | April 2, 2007 09:56 AM

ugh! more white space, less white space. i don't know which i prefer. i see the benefits to both. i can live with all the other changes although maybe in a week, i'll hate it all. or maybe i'll think it's the greatest thing since oreos.

but i can't read the dang headlines! while i think the font is different and larger by a tiny bit, it is actually harder to read now. maybe because of the font type? definitely because of the color. that shade of blue is hard on the eyes. i have pretty good eyesight and look at websites ALL DAY long but wapo is "unfun" now because it's too hard to read. help please!!!

Posted by: crcurrent | April 2, 2007 10:43 AM

I already sent you an email on the first day. I agree with the general sentiment expressed in the comments-the new page is terrible. I also agree with the post that if I want white space this is not where I want to find it. Where is the link for "The Fix"? Why do you not have your politics section link-afterall, it is the Washington Post? It's not too late to admit you've made a mistake, take this feedback and do another redesign. That would be the smart move.

Posted by: profmorse | April 2, 2007 10:46 AM

Okay, I really loathe this so called "redesign". Why, on a a newspaper site...a site which is supposed to be information centric, am I required to scroll below the fold just to see your chosen headlines? Let alone the actual majority of the news content, which is buried at the bottom.

This is insipid. A designer centric concept which obviously was never user tested in any meaningful way.

Allow me...

WE are here to read news.

We are not here to fufill some designer's dreams and give him/her job satisfaction.

We are not here to be wowed by esthetics.

We are not here to allow you to get advertising revenue to support your efforts at winning design awards.

We are here to read news.

Posted by: John | April 2, 2007 10:48 AM

Oh, just FYI...I'm a web developer myself, and have a extremely high pizel resolution on a 21 inch monitor, so no, your whining designer trying to blame the complaints on crappy monitor settings is wrong. You still have to scroll beloew the fold when the resolution is 1200 x 1600.

Posted by: John | April 2, 2007 10:52 AM

I agree with many of the comments below - the WP is my home page and now I hate it! I might have to switch to the NY Times.
Please help us and add back the daily discussion list - it was perfect the way it was! And many of use LIKED all the links and story leads - now many of this information is lost to us since we have to look for it. The new design definitely looks like more space was made for ads and less for news - if not true by square inches, then true by design. HELP!

Posted by: Kathy K | April 2, 2007 10:57 AM

The new site design stinks. Less news content = less interesting. Look to the BBC for a model of a good news site. Your redesign has too much white space, too small type, and reduced news content. I liked being able to scan the major headlines in the interior sections (which are now harder to find). Where is the Style section? You've hidden the live discussion schedule. Where's the list of most e-mailed stories? WaPo should devote the resources it spent on this ill-conceived redesign to improving the quality of your editing and proofreading. I'm shocked at the increasing frequency of misspellings and grammatical errors in your copy. Go back to the old format. It was much easier to navigate and had far more news content.

Posted by: Disappointed Reader | April 2, 2007 10:58 AM

I hate the new home page. The layout is too cluttered, and it is harder to find the information I'm looking for. The two scroll bars in the center of the page are a pain to use. Please go back to the old design. The former page was the best designed frontpage for a major newspaper, now its as bad as the rest.

Posted by: Josh | April 2, 2007 11:06 AM


Posted by: Me | April 2, 2007 11:10 AM

I've given the new design a few days, and I'm afraid I still find it frustrating and difficult to actually find content. On a news page, I'd like to be able to see more than two headlines per section, and I liked having the updated blog entries in one place as well. With the current design, I frequently have to remind myself that there's stuff "below the fold." Where did the news go?

On the other hand, if your objective was to drive me back to the dead-tree paper, mission most likely accomplished.

Posted by: Koumori | April 2, 2007 11:18 AM

I dislike your new homepage design. I greatly prefer that information be packed in as compact a way as remains easily readable, and your old homepage accomplished that goal admirably. I now must scroll down a considerable distance to obtain the stock market reports and the sports headlines, and this is an added inconvenience and waste of time. One of the biggest flaws is that it seems that the leading of your font is weirdly large, with a great amount of wasted white space between lines. What could that possibly be about?

When you design a web page you must take care when dealing with public comment. The most effective design that is theoretically possible still will not please everyone, and it is not necessary to redesign a page over and over and over just because some people with unusual tastes complain about it. Your old web page was one of the best; your new one is frustrating and has certain objective shortcomings that are not merely a matter of personal taste.

You should go back to the old one.

Posted by: Woody Smith | April 2, 2007 11:22 AM

I don't think the ads are more prominent than they used to be, but the material is not nearly as convenient.

Generally, I go to wp.com to see what's interesting to read. If the headline is not clearly prominent (as are many of the news articles at the bottom of the page), I don't read it b/c I can't see it.

I whole heartedly agree with the dozens of posts on the unavailability of discussion information and the overabundance of white space. This is a newspaper for heaven's sake! There should be plenty of news and information up front.

Posted by: Sonya | April 2, 2007 11:23 AM

So hey, either go back to the the old one or give us the option to choose which page format we want. You keep the new one, you lose readers, from what I read here.

Posted by: TDuff | April 2, 2007 11:27 AM

I really don't like it.

Posted by: purplechatty | April 2, 2007 11:38 AM

A visited link should be a different color from an unvisited one. That's about the most standard of web standards.

Posted by: dg | April 2, 2007 11:41 AM

If there's one thing in the world that people hate more than anything else, it's newspapers changing their appearance. Every time any newspaper changes even the slightest thing, howls of protest erupt that would make a pack of coyotes proud. You should have heard the uproar when the L.A. Times made Business, Section C, and Sports, Section D, when they had been the opposite. You'd have thought the world was coming to an end.

Quite frankly, I like the new look. It's more open, more fresh. I especially like the evenly divided 3-column presentation. It's clean, things are easy to find, and there's not so much scrolling as before.

We'll get used to it. A year from now, if someone changes something, you'll be howling your heads off again.

Posted by: Mike | April 2, 2007 11:57 AM

Again - Why take off the METRO Section?!?!?

This Sucks - You think we don't care about our 'METRO' area or something??

Posted by: ExtremeSkins | April 2, 2007 12:00 PM

I liked the old homepage much better than the new.

Posted by: Bogeman | April 2, 2007 12:04 PM

Since the change, I have to continually "sign in".

I am already "registered".

The "answers" in the "registration" help section aren't helpful.

Posted by: mdpilot | April 2, 2007 12:06 PM

You really, really need to put the Live Online discussions list back on the home page. REALLY. And immediately, before you lose your customer base for good.

Posted by: JK | April 2, 2007 12:19 PM

Jim Brady, where is your response or your comments? Are you listening to us? Your loyal readership is speaking to you and we have serious concerns. Don't disappoint us.

Posted by: sharon in baltimore | April 2, 2007 12:38 PM

The daily discussions SHOULD be anchored on the home page you dimwits! Why would you make it harder to find one of your very best most requested areas? Numbnuts. Whoever gave you that advice is truly an idiot. But you are even more stupid for following it.

Posted by: ONLINE CHATS RULE! | April 2, 2007 12:50 PM

The redesign was definitely a downgrade. I'll echo the points that have already been made well--I want to see as much news as possible, not white space. I miss stumbling across headlines I'd never otherwise see.

And what happened to the Nation and Politics links? Those were the only stories I reliably read, and now they're gone!

I don't need any home-living advice, and I skip past all the photo galleries and videos--I come here to READ the NEWS!

Posted by: Jacob in DC | April 2, 2007 12:57 PM

Bring back the list of columnists!

Or, better yet, bring back everything the way it was before!

Posted by: AUstudent | April 2, 2007 01:00 PM

Geez some of us use firefox, safari, other BETTER non-windoze (winDUHS) browsers and prefer to open links in other tabs -- not completely new browser windows. Whoever designed this gets an F-minus!

it is truly gawdawful and inefficient as well as stupid

Posted by: NOT EVERYONE USES WINDOZE! | April 2, 2007 01:09 PM

I will admit that on principle, I tend not to like wholesale changes to formats. So maybe I'll adjust to what you've done here, particularly if you would make the following changes:

What you call "clutter" many of us see as content! Please bring back the listings; if I want more white space, I can get that by looking out the window.

Please don't make us click through multiple screens to find (and join) a particular online discussion or item. The layout you had before for navigating the site worked just fine. Why fix what wasn't broken?!

All that said, you still have a wonderful site.

Posted by: DCSteve | April 2, 2007 01:13 PM

1. I prefer to have more items listed under "More Headlines" so I can glance through them and click on the news I like. It used to show 3 or 4 links, now only 2 -- just to provide more white space??

2. I never click on the video/photo on the upper left of the homepage, did not find it useful. It seems that it takes a big chunk of prime "real estate" on your homepage.

3. About the two "scrolling" flash banners, why not put some "headlines" sections in one of the banners, this will solve the problems in #1.

I guess people who like the redesign will not write anything, but please read through some of the comments, some of them are valid.


Posted by: YC | April 2, 2007 01:24 PM

Two words from my kids' vocabulary: This sucks!!!

Posted by: Chinta Hari | April 2, 2007 02:00 PM

Bring back the news. Most of us read the Post because we want to know what's happening in our country and the world. The bells and whistles are fine, but there's no more link to national news, no more link to foreign news; instead we get the soft sections like technology and health. No one reads the Post for technology and health; we read it for national and foreign news. And this new politics page you put up a while back to compete with the Politico has great new features in Paul Kane and Mary Ann Akers, but its design is hideous and essentially unreadable.

Posted by: longtime reader | April 2, 2007 02:07 PM

Hate it.

Posted by: Missy | April 2, 2007 02:13 PM

Where did the blog links go? I even followed the opinions link to "Columns and Blogs" and I still can't figure out how to find DC Sports Bog. And it seems to have moved so that just typing in the address (which is what I did before when I couldn't find it) doesn't work anymore. Can someone update the pull down menu, which still shows Road to the World Cup (that's the 2006 World Cup) but not the Bog or the Soccer Insider?

Posted by: MM | April 2, 2007 02:21 PM

Captain's Log, Star Date 2234
We have been sent here by the Federation to investigate reports of a shrinking news universe on the Planet Greed.
Spock, McCoy, and myself have been beamed down to the planet and have found many distressed inhabitants. They report that a band of Greed Gnomes suddenly appeared last Thursday and began shrinking their news universe.
Strangely, we have found no trace of the Gnomes, or their leader, Commander Brady. We have literally looked under every rock, but they are nowhere to be found.
The inhabitants are worried that if not stopped, the shrinking universe will turn into a black hole, capable of sucking the planet's civilization into it.
So we will wait for some sort of sign from the gnomes as to their intent, and do our best to rectify this terrible act.

Posted by: Out West | April 2, 2007 02:45 PM

I find it interesting that in the Q&A transcript from Friday's discussion with Paul Compton, readers keep telling him all the things that they miss from the old format and his broken record reply is that WE DIDN'T REALLY CHANGE MUCH. Don't know how Comptom measures things, but the readers have given him a long list of things that were changed that the HATE. And I have yet to see anyone list anything they LOVE. Comptom has an ego problem and ironically seems to think all the Post online users are less intelligent than he is. You need a new Editor and a new Creative Designer.

Posted by: An Old Friend | April 2, 2007 03:13 PM

I would like a complete list of the days live discussions back on the homepage. Also, splash page links should link directly to the feature, not yet another screen, where I have to search out yet another link.

Posted by: DC | April 2, 2007 03:29 PM

Echoing much of what goes before! The new page is difficult to navigate for me and I cannot find the "discussions".

Posted by: beth | April 2, 2007 03:52 PM


Posted by: danders5000 | April 2, 2007 03:55 PM

This new page is really taking a lot of getting used to: I keep wanting to click the bold red "More Top Stories" above the Business, Technology, Health, etc. topics listing, because I can't believe two headlines in each is all there is, right? But alas, it goes nowhere. And neither do I. With less headlines listed, there is less of a chance I'll click any further. If I scroll down, and nothing interests me, I'll move on to another website. More headlines means I'll stay longer on your website and click more. Non? I'm certainly not hunting for anything not listed on the home page.

Posted by: Rebecca, Pittsburgh, PA | April 2, 2007 04:19 PM

I don't care about the layout per se, really. I noticed, quite by accident, that although there have been considerable comments and articles negative toward Saudi Arabia recently, that since the redesign, none of those stories have made the new layout and especially critical comments on earlier stories have been removed even if you pull up the story with the search index. How much does the House of Faisal and or the government of Saudi Arabia pay you, WaPo, to spin them up when EVERYONE KNOWS THEY PAID AND MANNED 911? And you say reduced coverage does not convey the wrong impression, tsk tsk tsk. The Washington Post - The Newest Corporate Oil Money Sellouts. This is a news outlet, right? I swear it looks like advertising for oil and defense interests with some loving for lobbyist thrown in. Time to find a new source for news. Bye now, WaPo!

Posted by: G Thomspon | April 2, 2007 04:52 PM

The Washington Post has been my default web page for probably 5 years. If anyone has a good suggestion for a new one, let me know. For now, I think I'll try wtopnews.com

Posted by: Brendon | April 2, 2007 04:52 PM

Where is the 'LIVE DISCUSSION' part now again? I can't find it anymore. I don't like this new design AT ALL. Please consider switching back to the old one. TOO MUCH blank space in the new one.

Posted by: Jotham Stavely | April 2, 2007 05:09 PM

The page has had the feel of a work in progress for some time. The arrangement of the Opinion pages has changed, and in general the design has seemed unsettled. There have been numerous grammatical and other errors on the main page, which has given the impression that it is run by people with limited skills. The content has gradually become more superficial. The new design empahisizes that and looks dumbed-down.

Posted by: Gerald Day | April 2, 2007 05:10 PM

Seriously, where's the 'LIVE DISCUSSION' section? I've been looking for over 5 minutes and can't find it. It's just about the only thing that brings me to this website more than once a day and I can't find it anymore. If I give up, which I'm going to do soon I'll stop coming here as much which means less clicks for you and your advertisers.

Posted by: Jotham Stavely | April 2, 2007 05:15 PM

most e-mailed articles? where did you hide it?

Posted by: THIS sucks! | April 2, 2007 05:25 PM

The following quote is from today's Capitol Briefing ironically titled "Mistakes do happen."

"Milbank's Sketches are regularly among the most e-mailed features on washingtonpost.com"

Maybe Caiptol Briefing can daily provide the list of most emailed articles as the new web "design" does not allow us -- the lowly readers -- to access this interesting feature.

Posted by: minniwanca | April 2, 2007 06:30 PM

Can't find top Metro or Politics stories - yet Education and Religion remain with prominence? Only two top stories per subject heading - why even bother with the subject sections? (There's white space to be had!) Can't quickly survey today's scheduled online discussions - guess those will slip from my potential interest.

This re-design represents an archetypical example of failing to truly understand your customer requirements. How many of the test group were WP site regulars? How many had it for their home page for many months or years? If honest re-analysis doesn't lead you to rectify at least the most obvious shortcomings with this re-design, you will lose much attention from many loyal readers, as there is great choice to be had on the web. Your site has been my home page (since the last century) and my first news of the day, but I may be changing soon as well.

Posted by: Dane | April 2, 2007 06:31 PM

This redesign befits a small town, lean paper that doesn't want to put a large emphasis on national politics or world news. It does not befit one of the two most important papers in the U.S. All that empty, white space screams "news is not important!"

Posted by: M.L. | April 2, 2007 06:33 PM

You should retitle this project "Front Page For Dummies" I could get used to a new format but making the Online Chat schedule difficult to navigate (or even locate) diminishes the value of that facet of your site

Posted by: Deejay | April 2, 2007 07:04 PM

Metro no longer mentioned even on the local logins without clicking? Hello? Your metro coverage has been getting skimpier and skimpier as it is, especially given the rich diversity and dynamic change happening in this city. You need to rethink local coverage, many local bloggers are doing it better than the paid professionals!

But not to have a clear section for Metro on the front page, is outrageoues.

Almost as outrageous as how long it takes each page to load now, even on a suped-up G4 Powerbook with a high-speed cable modem, it's taking 45 seconds to load.

The design is lovely, but not at the expense of news and efficiency.

I hope this gets fixed.

Posted by: DCSven | April 2, 2007 07:19 PM


A new homepage for me.

Posted by: Slick | April 2, 2007 07:40 PM

Yep, cant find discussions either, and I dont think it's filtered, I think someone at WaPp forgot it? No need to get testy people, or "fire" anyone, just locate the Live Discussion links prominently, at the top of the page (no scrolling please) as befits their popularity. The rest of it I suppose I'll get used to in time...

Posted by: Bellingham WA | April 2, 2007 07:50 PM

Oh, there it is. Looks like an article about Cal Ripken. THAT needs to be rethought...

Posted by: Bellingham WA | April 2, 2007 07:52 PM

This is -without a doubt- now the worst site of any of the major metro dailies. The NY Times, the LA Times, the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Chicago Tribune, the Boston Globe, etc. all have better formatted homepages than the Post. Pathetic.

Posted by: Kevin Belanger | April 2, 2007 08:13 PM

I was gravitating from Nytimes.com to this site over the last 18 months because of content, not style. The Post is about content. Now it looks like the webpage for some Apple computer re-seller. Utterly moronic and useless.

Posted by: Ben Bryant | April 2, 2007 08:46 PM

I agree that the font is hard to read, but I like the cleaner design and layout. It seems like the "most viewed articles" module could be tabbed and include "most emailed and most blogged about. Seems that your other users would really like the chat schedule back on the front page :)

Posted by: Laura | April 2, 2007 10:32 PM

I know that it takes time to get used to anything new -- but in this case, there are objective disadvantages to this new site: The redesign has made it a much more onerous process to (a) get to what we're looking for (such as live discussions and, perhaps more worrisomely, (b) to find things we don't even know we're looking for. What I mean by the latter is that with the old design, there were tons of news headlines on the home page -- I could scan the headlines and feel confident I was seeing the highlights of what you were offering and pick what I wanted to read accordingly. But now, with fewer headlines on the home page, I feel like I'd have to dig around inside to find the same amount of interesting content -- and realistically, I'm not going to do it. Instead, I'll go to the New York TImes (which continues to offer lots of headlines on the home page) -- but as a longtime devotee of the Washington Post, this is disappointing.

Posted by: Alison | April 2, 2007 11:42 PM

My problem is that there are now only 5 most-viewed stories. Having the top 20 let us find more buried-but-important stories.

Larry Meacham

Posted by: meacham | April 2, 2007 11:45 PM

I hate having to search for today's op-ed page writers, all the up front and central sports stuff shouldn't be obligatory. Ditto the Faith Stuff. Please let us select what we want and need quickly, and not bedevil us with things that we either don't like or deplore.

Posted by: wminot | April 3, 2007 12:14 AM

Great Job - you managed to take one of the best home pages and turn it into the new USA Today type of paper. NY Times must love your new direction

Posted by: charlie H | April 3, 2007 12:15 AM

The old page was pretty good. I looked at it regularly, even though I subscribe to (and have done for 25 years) and regularly read the print edition, which is one of America's finest newspapers.

No doubt many made their best efforts for a new design, but I find it disorganized. Maybe it's just my own familiarity with the style of an age that is passing - though I doubt it - but frankly, I think the organization of the print version is a proven success - among the best newspapers in America, and I've read quite a few of the others - and it is not a bad idea to have the online version map reasonably onto this success story.

Posted by: Chuck | April 3, 2007 12:29 AM

I have to agree with as many of the above comments as I've had time to read: the redesign does NOT work for me. Especially galling is the fact that I miss my favorite part of your web site, the one that puts the Post head and shoulders above the others: the Live Discussions. Your letter to subscribers says,
"Because of the popularity of our Live Discussions, we've anchored a placement near the top of the home page to help readers find our schedule, previous transcripts and featured guests."
I went back to the the top of front page and looked for the alleged "placement near the top of the page." I am supposed to have an above average IQ and have good eyesight but still have not been able to find this "placement." I just happened upon your weekly Q&A announcements by accident! Please return to your old format. Thanks for asking.

Posted by: Elaine LaF | April 3, 2007 01:03 AM

The new website is ridiculous. It is one of the forst "tabloid" websites which I have seen from a respectible media organization. More white space--really? It seems to me that it is cheaper, easier, and sloppier. What really hurts is the inescapable conclusion: LESS NEWS CONTENT. You do not represent some high school chat room, for heaven's sake. Live up to your reputation! P.S. I know that you will not go back to the tried and true, even though about 95% of the responses appear to be negative. For shame! Thomas Butch

Posted by: Thomas Butch | April 3, 2007 02:42 AM

With respect, if you took away the names of the journalists who wrote the articles from the front page that would make some more room for actual news. Also, I think you should do a survey of how readers responded to the new pages and publish the results.

Posted by: Marco | April 3, 2007 04:48 AM

New homepage is TERRIBLE. Please go back to the old one which was just fine.
Please also fire the "genius" who advised you to change

Posted by: MUAZZAM ILAHI | April 3, 2007 05:37 AM

Your new homepage is about as good as the Iraq war. What on earth is happening to America?

Posted by: milahi | April 3, 2007 05:41 AM

The Post has been my medium of choice for many years. It was great to find the on-line site when hard copies of the Post were dropped from book stores in Tucson. The Post is the only site that I view on a daily basis. Please listen to feedback from your subscribers and make changes to the new homepage. More news and less white space please.

Posted by: | April 3, 2007 05:58 AM

Is anyone out there keeping a running tally of who likes the new redesigned web site and who hates it? Put me down for totally disliking it -- if I wanted a lightweight news medium, I'd check in to the local Holiday Inn and grab a USA Today from the FREE continental breakfast in the morning...

There's a link for "Washington Home Page" and "Change to World Home Page" so why not add another option for "New Web Page" and "Change Back to Legacy Look" to satisfy the folks who yearn for the old one?

Posted by: Hamilton | April 3, 2007 06:48 AM

Pls go back to the old format!! I miss my Metro section and this new format is just too cumbersome!!!

Posted by: Josette | April 3, 2007 06:57 AM

Well, its nice to see Brady continue his fine tradition of supporting user input and interactivity! That is, as defined by Brady...slapping up a discussion board he can ignore, and sending a pompous designer to have one chat where he insults the majority of users who don't like his work.

Bravo Mr. Brady! Now all you have to do is start deleting posts for being "uncivil", and you'll be batting 1000 for typical hypocricy!

Posted by: John | April 3, 2007 07:38 AM

The Washington Post is one of the few "Newspapers Of Record" in the US, and as such should have its most important product - news - the easiest to access. Previously prominent headings "Politics", "Nation", and "World" are now hidden in a sub-menu. I have to open a Flash window to get to the Style section, and I have to select "Opinion" to see the listing of op-ed pieces.
It is now harder for me to get the content I want.

Posted by: Dennis | April 3, 2007 07:48 AM

I am not a fan of this redesign. First and foremost, this is the "Washington" Post. Where the heck is the METRO section and LOCAL news??? I also agree that burying the live discussion and most emailed links is a mistake. This redesign is not user-friendly. I believe it is possible to free up white space without obscuring content. Back to the drawing board, guys!!!

Posted by: Floweresq | April 3, 2007 08:33 AM

I'm afraid I must add my voice to all the above. I agree with Rachel and David way up at the top of the list--you are newspaper so lots of information in a small place is a good thing. We are big people, we can scan information and decide what we want to read. But we are also busy people--if you make us hunt for information we will just move on. Bring back the old format, please.

Posted by: Sean | April 3, 2007 08:52 AM

I like the softer colors on the page and the modular format. I dont like that there are fewer links on the page. I prefer seeing the top three links in each section.

Posted by: Ledell Eackles | April 3, 2007 08:53 AM

I really dislike the new format. The site is harder to use in many respects and is a definate downgrade to the excellant site you previously had available. Nice job Washington Post, way to screw it up.

Posted by: Kevin | April 3, 2007 08:55 AM

Great new site. Much easier to navigate and find the articles. I really appreciate you getting rid of the clutter. So many sites are packed with advertisements that attack you with pop-up ads. I visit this website daily and the new design is refreshing, clean and user friendly.

Posted by: Lisa | April 3, 2007 09:01 AM

I keep checking back and I still dislike it. Sorry.

Posted by: Mark | April 3, 2007 09:21 AM

Is anyone from the Post planning to respond to these comments, or are we all just complaining to ourselves? It would be nice to see the Post acknowledge the strong dislike among its readers (these comments here must be running 99% against the new design). Why ask for our comments on this page if there's no indication that you're listening to them?

Posted by: A.G. | April 3, 2007 09:24 AM

I dislike the new home page. I, too, go here for news and links to stories. I am not able to view video at my office, so all the video content is useless to me. Also the page reloads far too often, it is aggrivating, and interrupts too often.
I am not into white space, only news links.

Posted by: Bill Teal | April 3, 2007 09:30 AM

On my screen there is about two inches of blank space on the tab bar between 'city guide' and 'jobs'. Why on earth would you remove the discussions tab, especially when you didn't intend on replacing it with something else? Dumb.

Posted by: Pelagius | April 3, 2007 09:31 AM

well, I still don't like the new format. Must less news....which is why I even look here.

the two very large lines of video links are taking up way too much room. and, us dailup people can't use them anyway....

Yes, dailup still exists as broadband is too expensive on limited income. Go back to the original format.... PLEASE.

Posted by: pearlandpeach | April 3, 2007 09:51 AM

So far, by my count 258 posters dislike (or rabidly hate) the new design, 5 have expressed mixed feelings, and 12 like it.

Yeah, you guys blew it.

Posted by: Bean Counter | April 3, 2007 10:00 AM

Just to add my voice to the crowd: why on earth has the box showing the day's Live Discussions been replaced by blank space? There's so much blank space near the bottom of the homepage and yet still I have to go to NEWS in the top bar and then down and over to DISCUSSIONS and to another page even to see what's on the docket for the day?? Doesn't make a bit of sense. Please return the live discussions box to the homepage.

Posted by: Willie G | April 3, 2007 10:02 AM

Why won't Brady respond? Because he doesn't give a damn. He and his pompous designer have spoken, and we peons should just shut up and smile. Arrogant jerks.

I am really sick of this crappy design. No Politics section?! Did the Post suddenly move to Padukah? "The _Washington_ Post"...what news do they think people want to read?


Posted by: Aaaaarrrrggghhh!! | April 3, 2007 10:09 AM

Live discussions on home page please...do you not even know your own readers.

Try to fix it before gene gets back.

Thank you.

Posted by: Chris | April 3, 2007 10:15 AM

I've given this new website several days to get used to it and can't stand it. There is much less content readily available then there used to be. Please go back. I have used the Post on line as my basic portal for news for several years and its about to make me change. This is like reading usa today

Posted by: Chet | April 3, 2007 10:20 AM

Well, after several days of nearly universal negative comments about the redesign, there's still no response at all from Mr. Brady, nor a reversion to the far-preferred previous version of the WaPo site. I don't know about anyone else, but I know I've spent a lot less time on this site since the change, which is really surprising since I used to be a true WaPo addict.

It irks me to admit this because I hate to give Google my business, but news.google.com is where I turn now to see what's happening in the world now--they have a very sensible layout with Top News Stories followed by World News and National News. (Do those headings ring a bell, Mr. Brady?) I'll miss having the familiar Post reporters being the ones telling me the stories in their voices, and I'll still come here for Kurtz and Froomkin. The new site, though, is just too damned annoying to waste my time on.

As more than one reader put it, I don't just come to the Post looking for stories I know will be here, but to stumble across interesting stories that I wasn't expecting to find. That simple ability to discover the unexpected has been obliterated by this new, "airy" design--the news density is gone, and quite frankly unless something is listed on the home page I'm not about to go digging for it. A newspaper, even an online one, should convey a sense of immediacy and relevancy--it should present the news in a manner that compels the reader to want to read it. This reader, after scrolling halfway through your site, is compelled to look elsewhere.

It's a shame that even though hundreds of readers have felt passionately enough to take their time posting their comments here, not one person from WaPo has even bothered to respond. And maybe that's the worst comment of all.

Posted by: KR20852 | April 3, 2007 10:32 AM

The thing is a disaster. Unfortunately newspapers today make their money and respond to advertisers, not readers. I don't really expect a response from those that created this mess. They are probably too busy patting themselves on the back. The only way to hit them between the eyes with a 2x4 and get attention is probably just abandon the site and let the "hit meter" decline so that ad revenue does as well. Increasingly I am going to Google News and others for first line sources--until they dumb down more as well. Then? Jungle drums?

Posted by: Ray | April 3, 2007 10:41 AM

This redesign means less information that is harder to find...the live online section and most articles are now buried between whitespace, oversized graphics and more and more ads. why hide the content that viewers are actually coming to the site to find. i will certainly be visiting this site less often...

Posted by: JF | April 3, 2007 10:51 AM

I cannot find how to get the daily list of live discussions. It was better when you had it on the opening page, along with the real-time indication of whether the discssion was still going on or completed.

Posted by: Tammy | April 3, 2007 10:53 AM

I check the website several times a day. I wasn't crazy about the old format, but I like this much, much less. I don't like the white space because I want to see as much as possible without scrolling and I don't like the font for the text under the main headlines because it's hard to read. And I'd like to return to having more links under the More Top Stories section.

Posted by: Samantha | April 3, 2007 11:09 AM

Bring back the full list of blogs that have postings that day! I try going to the full lost of blogs (blog.washingtonpost.com), but not all blogs are listed there (i.e. onparenting). I guess its not so much a full list of blogs then, but it claims to be. Fix that page, and bring the list back to the main page.

And while you at it, it would be nice to have someone filling in for Annys while she is on materinity leave for the Checkout. 6 months without any consumer blogging is missing a lot. I miss someone keeping up with the antics at the CPSC.

Posted by: RT | April 3, 2007 11:10 AM

I have found only one thing I don't like about the redesign and that's the online discussions section. The old one had the full days list on the front page.

If you insist on keeping the list truncated, I can suggest one minor improvement: when a reader clicks "schedule" can you at least make it so that the day we are on is the schedule we see. For exapmple, if it is Thurdsay & I click schedule on the front page I don't want to see discussion from 3 days ago (i.e. Monday) & then have to scroll down to find Thursday.

Posted by: Maureen | April 3, 2007 11:15 AM

It wasn't broke, so you decided to fix it.

Please, put it back the way it was.


Posted by: Bob | April 3, 2007 11:18 AM

Put the 'politics' subcategory back underneath 'more top stories'. And get rid of that diversions crap. I come here to read. I can't watch videos at work.

Posted by: CapitolMAN | April 3, 2007 11:18 AM

I hate this new design. So after the Washington Post has ignored for days the cry to return to the old format, I started taking the advice of other commenters and checked out news.google.com and it is SO MUCH BETTER than the new Washington Post. I think you lost another previously addicted online WaPo reader. When you change your format back to the old one, please post a notice on news.google.com so we can come back.

Posted by: GoogleRocks! | April 3, 2007 11:21 AM

I have read the Post (deadtree and online) for more than 22 years. It is now official - you have thrown in the towel on providing actual news. If I wanted USA Today, that's where I would go. This is a bad design - very bad - seriously bad - VERY VERY BAD! 1) How could anyone have thought that Post readers would find this an improvement? 2) Do you read your own paper? 3) Do you read these comments? 4) Do you have any intention of responding to your readers? [Answers: 1) We don't care. 2) No. 3) No. 4) No.] Sad.

Posted by: M.S.Price | April 3, 2007 11:45 AM

I have tried to work with your new homapage, however it is not easy to get used to it. It seems to highlight fluff pieces and make real news hard to find. No more world section headlines at the bottom, nor nation section for that matter. The headlines are much bigger, but the smaller type underneath is hard to read. And...way to much white space; why? how does that help?. The previous homepage better represented the Washington Post as a "serious news" website. Now it seems to have been, dummed down! It could be a sign of the times, or is it just bad web design. Please reconsider this redesign and give me back "my" WaPo.

Posted by: henryhoople | April 3, 2007 11:49 AM

This is SO much more readable. The old page gave me a headache, it was so cluttered. I can find stuff much more easily!! Do NOT go back to the old version.

Posted by: PT | April 3, 2007 12:15 PM

Thanks for the redesign! It's made me realize there are so many other news sites out there that are more user-friendly than the Post. (google news, the examiner, WTOP, gazette.net, just to name a few). I don't know if I would have gone looking for them if your consultants hadn't decided to re-tool a perfectly fine web site to begin with. Kudos!

Posted by: Ike | April 3, 2007 12:21 PM

The cluttered page was good, the dumbed-down white-space page is sorry.

But, you could make it more amd more easy to read if you stick to small words, so my brain does not have to think hard. Oh, big words are not good for us dumb guys.

Posted by: Jon Stephens | April 3, 2007 12:21 PM

I agree with the general concensus that the new format is mostly for the worse, specifically:

* I too want news first and foremost. Move the features to the second page, and I'll dive in if anything interests me.

* "Less cluttered"????? Have you looked at this thing?? You have two different sets of links to "Faces of the Fallen" and Post Global, and there are lots of superfluous nonsense (maybe it was there before, but I had learned to ignore it.)

* Do we really need a never ending series on some K St wonk? I can't think of ANY single topic that I'm going to follow every day for a month or more. If you have that much material, make each day's article longer. Just get it over with.

* Please use hit counts to guide article prominence. If there is a God, then very few people are reading "On Faith" and it should be buried (with appropriate rites, of course) deep in the bowls of the website.

* There is a clear air of desparation to cutsie pictures labelled, "meet Topo Gigo."
It's just not s'aright. I'll be damned if I'll click on it, whatever it may be.

Posted by: hsn | April 3, 2007 12:29 PM

Please please bring back the old design. It was much easier to navigate to and find the content I read from the Post!

Posted by: American mom abroad | April 3, 2007 12:36 PM

Does anyone like this thing? Is there any intention of changing it back. Does the WP give a ****?

Posted by: | April 3, 2007 12:49 PM

Where's the story about McCain's blatant lies regarding his campaign visit to the market? It should be on the FRONT PAGE!

Iraqi Merchant: McCain Visit Propaganda

If you can't have NEWS and important highlights on the FRONT PAGE THEN YOU HAVE SCREWED UP!

Posted by: | April 3, 2007 12:53 PM

Please bring back the old site design! I thought maybe I'd get used to the new one after a few days, but not happening. I'm now looking to other news sources because I simply can't find anything on the Post anymore. Very sad.

Posted by: GreenGirl | April 3, 2007 12:56 PM

I can sum up my thoughts on the new home page in 2 words - IT SUCKS!

I can no longer find the information that used to be readily available, and all that's left is sanitized fluff.

Bring back the old home page ASAP!

Posted by: Juozas | April 3, 2007 12:58 PM

Captain's Log, Star Date 2235
The situation on Planet Greedius has worstened. Spock's computer analysis finds that the planet's already unstable news universe is continuing to shrink. Once prominent universal features have dimmed or disappeared altogether. Obscure features have taken their place and, in some cases, are proving slow to set.
Scotty reports that the Enterprise now has company in the form of a Clingon warship that is monitoring the situation. The Clingon presence suggests a much broader involvement in the recent uprising by the Greed Gnomes.
Still no word from the Gnomes, though they are thought to be monitoring this frequency. If their leaders, or even some of their indentured servants would just contact us, I remain confident that universal harmony could be restored.
Kirk out.

Posted by: Out West | April 3, 2007 01:08 PM

It's obvious that people are going to be resistant to change when catipulted onto them without warning. I just view this site for the first time (out of town), or should I say "attempted" to view this site. The new page doesn't at all reduce clutter, in fact it INCREASES it. The difference is that which the old site was cluttered, it was done so in a smaller amount of space. Now the clutter is spread out over a HUGE expanse that cannot be viewed in even 2 screen shots. If I have to scroll left and right to see all of the content, the page has been built too big. The same goes for the length top to bottom.

This website is a MESS, and important information is no longer easily accessible on the front page. Not only that, because my computer at work does not have the most up-to-date media player, the homepage frequently crashes or attempts to install an update that is forbidden on by my NetAdmin.

There was NOTHING wrong with the old site, why did this change need to be made?

Posted by: Russtinator | April 3, 2007 01:12 PM

New home page is lousy - low impact headlines, hidden discussion schedule, etc. Really bad work

Posted by: I agree w/ other commentators | April 3, 2007 01:13 PM

Bring back Live Discussions, Metro and NEWS! I also can't get your traffic cameras to work. All my clicks result in are ads. Guess I have to find another home page after seven years, because I suspect nobody's listening.

Posted by: Ponygirl | April 3, 2007 01:20 PM

The layout is horrible! A real mess. Where's the news?! Over 1/3 of your page is ads, links to nonsense. What about the news? Where are the editorials, the other great writers/commentators such as Froomkin?

Posted by: Matthew | April 3, 2007 01:51 PM

I have to agree that this new home page is awful. Wash Post used to be the easiest news site to navigate. Now you've ruined it.

Posted by: Al | April 3, 2007 01:51 PM

Okay, I tried this new page. And I still hate it. I can't find anything, it's so dumbed down even Cletus the Slack Jawed Yokel would find it boring, and I miss the instant access to news and the discussions. Please bring my beloved web page back. I'd pay a subscription to have it, since I can't get the Post delivered where I live. Is anyone reading these comments? Hello? Anyone home? Please listen to us.

Posted by: | April 3, 2007 01:59 PM

Add me to the voices of dissent. I can't even find a link to the frikkiin politics section on the WaPo homepage. If I wanted NewsLite, I'd go to USAToday.com.

Posted by: steve in NC | April 3, 2007 02:00 PM

Why take the list of Live Online chats off the homepage? Don't see the point of needing to click twice to get there.

Posted by: Skeller | April 3, 2007 02:14 PM

Was it necessary to make finding the discussions such a chore?

Posted by: Washington | April 3, 2007 02:49 PM

Ditch the new page, it doesn't work. I can't find what I'm looking for, and not just because of the new arrangements but because the organization is poor and too much space wastage.

Posted by: Steve | April 3, 2007 02:57 PM

Don't know if someone has mentioned it, but the so-called smart living section isn't. If you want to click on one of the highlighted links that are part of smart living (not clicking on the header), you get the whole smart living section. Then you have to click on the link you want AGAIN.

If I wanted to look at the smart living section, I'd have clicked on the header in the first place.

I know you're not going to go back to the old design but this is something that can be fixed.

A paper subscriber and on-line reader.

Posted by: not Smart Living | April 3, 2007 03:42 PM

the new page sucks. Bring back the old!

Posted by: | April 3, 2007 04:25 PM

man, I've posted on here before, and I've emailed, but have received nothing but the standard canned "we got your message and we appreciate your input" email. bulls***, post.com. you're not replying to your customers. you're not easy to communicate with. there are lots of people commenting on this blog post who dislike what you've done with the website. you're not going to toss out all the changes you've made, that's obvious. BUT CAN YOU PLEASE address what i've been trying to get information on? would you PLEASE change things so that VIEWED LINKS are a different color than UNVIEWED LINKS? please don't tell me it ruins the look of the website, and PLEASE reply to some of these messages!

if you're working on tweaking things behind the scenes...LET US KNOW so we don't think you're ignoring us.

Posted by: IMGoph | April 3, 2007 04:27 PM

I don't like the new home page. There's just not enough "news." It's true that the font on the old home page was too small, but this redesign hasn't fixed that problem. There's too much white space and no news. It's really awful. I just don't find myself interested in spending more than a few clicks on the opinion section. Please work it again. Where is the news?????

Posted by: Mimi Barron | April 3, 2007 04:30 PM

Why the hell do I have to continually sign in?

All other web-sites retain the user id and password.

Posted by: pissedoff | April 3, 2007 04:34 PM

I have tried to get used to the new look because often you do if you just wait awhile. But no deal. The fact is that I do not like to READ this new page. It is like a cake with too much air. I have already noticed that I come to this page less often and I see this trend continuing. I am sorry about this as WP is journalistically excellent. But I just do not want to read this new layout.

Posted by: Non US reader | April 3, 2007 04:45 PM

Please bring back the old format. I don't want "more white space", I want to be able to see the headlines. The "clutter" was interesting content!

Posted by: suzy | April 3, 2007 04:58 PM

It feels like in addition to the cosmetic changes, you've also implemented some editorial changes in terms of what does and does not merit a headline on the post.com homepage. There's too much fluff on the main page - I feel like I'm reading the Fairfax Journal instead of the Washington Post. (The picture of the boyscout has been up there all afternoon! Is there no news? I switched to the World edition and got the Yoko Ono thing, also fluff.)

It is much more difficult to find actual content - and my click through rate has plumeted! I am usually on this site multiple times a day, just scanning the headlines - and now that there is less to click on, I spend less time on the site.
And yes, to echo nearly everyone else, please put the direct links to discussions back up on the homepage.
I do appreciate a little white space, but this is way too much.

Posted by: payal | April 3, 2007 05:05 PM


Posted by: Chicago IL | April 3, 2007 05:07 PM

I would appreciate it if you added the World, National, Metro and Politics sections back under "More Top Stories." If there is enough room for an entire separate box of Entertainment "News," might there be space to link to more news news on the home page?

Thank you.

Posted by: Rachel | April 3, 2007 05:18 PM

....and please don't dismiss the criticism as coming from primarily one group---for example, those who like live discussions. The criticism appears to be coming from a broad range of your readers. (I have zero interest in live discussions.) The new format is horrible for many reasons!

Posted by: elaine | April 3, 2007 07:22 PM

At least subjectively, if not in fact, it appears that there are fewer links to actual stories on the homepage. (and no, at least for this reader, more links to video content etc does not offset this; I want online access to what I get in the print copy, and I want it without having to click through 17 tabs to find it)

The "top stories" sections used to list at least 3 article links; now that's down to 2. I suppose if I click through the sections, I can find additional content, but I'd rather have that all listed upfront, where I can scan it once, rather than having to go in and out of each section.

It also appears that the "most emailed / most viewed" list link has disappeared from the new homepage also. That was actually the one feature I used the most.

Posted by: newsprint | April 3, 2007 08:27 PM

I have given the new page a shot. It's bad. I want hard news, not hard-to-find news.

Posted by: A | April 3, 2007 08:51 PM

Please let all punctuation go through the comments. On many articles--not this one--apostrophes and parentheses disappear, making the commenter look dumb.

Posted by: Apostrophes need love too | April 3, 2007 09:04 PM

Here's an intriguing thing. I went to wahsingtonpost.com to look for an update on the women's basketball final being played right now. I left after ten minutes of searching, searching but not finding. Then, based on something I read in these comments, I went to http://news.google.com/ and found it inside twenty seconds. The interesting part was that Google had several links to articles in various news sources and WaPo was one of them! I clicked on it and there I was -- on the WaPo page about the women's basketball final. Obviously, the moral is, if you want to find something on the WaPo site -- go to Google!

Posted by: Bob | April 3, 2007 09:35 PM

I don't like the new design--I find it harder to find the information I want to read. Indeed, in the past few days I find I'm spending less time at washingtonpost.com because I don't see what I'm looking for and, frankly, I don't want to waste my time searching for something that should be--and used to be--readily apparent. Please bring back the old design, or at least have mirror site (i.e. old and new).

Posted by: kmanning | April 3, 2007 09:44 PM

How could the people who did this pull a "No Comment" stunt? Why can users post 27,000+ words of mostly negative comments without a peep from someone in charge? Success is everyone's child, failure is an orphan. I'd love to have been at the board meeting where a bunch of mostly-web illiterate suits got sold a bill of goods by high-priced consultants who are out of touch with reality. No wonder politicians don't respect newspapers. They castigate the pols for exactly what they do themselves when they get the chance. Listen to your readers before you don't have any.

Peggy M.

Posted by: PeggyM | April 3, 2007 10:18 PM

The new design is terrible. Ironically, recently I have been spending much more time here than at www.nytimes.com (since they made some change that now requires multiple clicks of the back button to exit their site), but now it is back there for actual news. Very disappointing.

Posted by: | April 3, 2007 10:38 PM

Please examine the home page of der Spiegel (http//www.spiegel.de) to see how to organize a home page.

Posted by: Dave | April 3, 2007 10:47 PM

Please bring back the old, information-dense, homepage.

Posted by: S Stock | April 3, 2007 10:52 PM

I love your new design - NOT! -
Is it your goal to make the things we readers like more difficult to find in order to get more clicks by searching for them (discussions, metro, etc.).
You know, Mr and Mrs Washingtonpost.com, you are ALLOWED to change things back to the way we liked them? Not everything stinks. So, just change back what the readers want.
Why didn't you show the readers what you where going to change and have them shed their ideas about the change BEFORE you just screwed around (remember: if it ain't broken, don't fix it). so much for my ten HKcents

Posted by: TB in HK | April 4, 2007 01:41 AM

stop the auto refresh please, we cant get broadband out here where I live

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 02:07 AM

Awful. New homepage is awful. I find it harder to find the news that I want. Without doubt, I will spend less time on washingtonpost.com. I don't see how it could help the bottom line.

Posted by: Travis | April 4, 2007 02:13 AM


Posted by: BARBARELLA | April 4, 2007 02:15 AM

Here is a post, from above, that really captures my reaction to the new homepage:

"Been a regular reader but I guess I'll be stopping. I don't know where you put the news, but it's not on this page any more."

Please change it.

Posted by: Travis | April 4, 2007 02:16 AM

It is much harder for me to peruse the articles to see which ones interest me.

I cant find the Most Emailed list.

If you still have a most emailed list, please let it show the first part of the article so I can tell if I am interested in it. Just the article's title is generally not enough to determine the subject matter.

Under the "More Top Stories" you no longer list Politics as a subdivision. I also suggest that you list more than two articles per subdivision and include a brief description of each article.

Overall, much harder to scan the contents and see what I should read.

Thank you.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 03:27 AM

The new design is horrible! Are you trying to make the Washington Post into some bastardized hybrid of USAToday and CNN.com? Where did the news go? Buried deep in the bowels of the new website? I come to WP to read NEWS, not live chat drivel or "How to make a killer apple pie" lifestyle stories. Where did the separate lists of World, National, and Politics stories go on the new homepage? That is what I LIKED about the WP - the ability to quickly scan real, hard news stories and read what I am interested in. Now I have to jump around to a bunch of different pages just to see what real news is available today. Whereas, if I want the latest entertainment gossip or live chats or gardening news, it is right there on the home page. WHOOPEE! Glad to know even the WP is dumbing itself down for the masses. The new page is a mess and makes it more difficult to find the real news. I guess I'll be spending more time over at the NY Times....

Posted by: SF | April 4, 2007 04:36 AM

As a transplanted Washingtonian, I get your new "out of state" homepage. What I am really looking for is the local news, which you assume now that I'm far away I'm not interested in. Please go back to your old homepage - much more user-friendly and full of news, which is what we newspaper readers actually want . . .

Posted by: Joy Vance Steele | April 4, 2007 05:43 AM

This new site is God-awful. Why would they ruin it this way? Fire whoeverer is responsible for this, admit the mistake, and return to the old format. Don't try to fix the few things in life that aren't broken.

Posted by: htimothyjones | April 4, 2007 06:35 AM

Your new design is bad but I preferred the old one. I don't like the black strip in the middle and I preferred the 3 stories under each heading.

Posted by: ponderosawoods | April 4, 2007 07:14 AM

If you use Firefox, simply get the add-in AdBlock Plus and then you can get rid of that stupid black block in the middle of the page. Now that I have done that, the page is much easier to read (not as easy as the old design but easier). AdBlock Plus will also get rid of those idiotic ads on the right side of the page. I looked at the wapo.com page using IE7.0 and then Firefox with AdBlock Plus. Completely different experience.

Posted by: Alex, VA | April 4, 2007 08:09 AM

The new page is sleek, but the sections of the newspaper are hard to find. For instance, why is the link to the Metro section hidden? It should be on the front page like the Style section is.

Posted by: Laurel, MD | April 4, 2007 08:29 AM

White space is overrated on a substantive news agency's website! Is it possible to access your Top 20 Most E-mailed Stories link without first e-mailing someone a story? I detest this annoying and cumbersome way to access the list. Please provide a direct link to these stories on your front page again. Thanks.

Posted by: J | April 4, 2007 08:46 AM

Well this is the deal - They are not going to change it thinking along the line of this administration. We just going to have to get used to it. Here is something when the Editor did a Q&A live on line. He basically said - - - In your face like it or not this is what we are going with - - OKAY TIME TO DO AN ABOUT FACE -- THE LANGUAGE THEY ONLY KNOW - - STOP CLICKING, STOP SUBSCRIPTIONS, STOP POSTING - WE DID IN NOVEMBER OF 2006 - WE DID IT TO THE NYT -- TIMES TO DO IT TO THIS PAPER

Posted by: Chicago IL | April 4, 2007 09:19 AM

Please go back to the old homepage!!

Posted by: Leah Tuite | April 4, 2007 09:30 AM

I see, there are two homepages, one for people who are elitist washingtonites and the rest of us. I suggest using the washington "locals" page, it looks like the old page did (a bit.) I am confused why the need for 2 pages, the non-local one which I got stuck on is awlful. just awlful. AWLful. there.

Posted by: Slick | April 4, 2007 09:36 AM

Okay, my complaint applies to both the old and the new layout. We get it... On Being is a series. Does it really need to be the top story EVERY DAMN WEDNESDAY??? I've got a good feeling that most of us have not watched it more than once, if that much.

Posted by: Left of the Pyle | April 4, 2007 09:57 AM

In two words, IT STINKS! If your print edition looked like this, you'd be out of business in a week!

Posted by: NooJoiseyG | April 4, 2007 10:07 AM

Well, add my voice to the naysayers. Your front page has been my home page for many years. I've tried to adjust, but am finding it hard to do.
You removed the sections I like most: politics, the nation, metro (even though I live in Beaumont, TX, I enjoy the posts about historical sites), opinion, most e-mailed, federal (I volunteer at Big Thicket National Preserve & I constantly provide them with info about working in the federal system from your pages), previous editions over the last 2 weeks -- so I can find a subject or article I missed last Sunday, last Wednesday. BTW, I do like the new religion section. Give us a fuller listing of the sections.
Also, give us a section to click on things on-going like Citizen K Street & Jezebel's Tomb more prominently displayed somewhere down the page so we can catch up on the chapters.
Also, how 'bout a section called "Congress" so we can check in to the progress of bills, etc.
More white space? It doesn't give a "cleaner" look -- it just removes things that get my attention.
Please take these negative comments to heart. You are the nation's paper of record. I can't subscribe to the print edition. I pay a reasonable yearly fee to the NY Times to access past articles; I'm willing to pay you to keep the news flowing, as well. But it needs to be easily accessable. This front page does not make accessability easier.
One thing I do like: at the end of articles, you give us an opportunity to post reaction. That service sometimes slows me up because I do get interested in reactions to articles. I enjoy adding my two cents, as well.
Fill up some of that "white space" with the links we need to enjoy your site as thoroughly as we used to.
You do a lot of hard work up there; we know that. That's why we subscribe. We come to you first.
Help us to stay informed.
These suggestions are most sincerely submitted. Please listen to us.

Posted by: Judy Allen, Beaumont, TX | April 4, 2007 10:29 AM

I will be a bit more civil about this. The new page layout is not user friendly or serving the requiremetns of your users. This reminds me of many of the projects that are done at my current contract. The customer will say something innocuous, and the engineers will come up with an elaborate software fix that really does not address the problem. In the case of the WaPo website, there was not problem. A newspaper site should look like a newspaper; chock full of information and some pictures. The new site is not working for me, or most of the other people who have addressed your blog. Please consider returning to your previous layout. Nothing was wrong with it.

Posted by: merzydoats | April 4, 2007 10:56 AM

I would like to see the old home page come back because I like to see and scan a lot of the headlines and choose what to read.Things could be found easier on the previous home page. Please reconsider and go back to the previous home page, too much white space.

Posted by: Susan W. | April 4, 2007 10:59 AM

It is almost Easter. Apparently the WP on-line bunny thinks news is an egg and must be carefully hidden under a pile of fluff and junk. Seriously, it is so sad to see an organization we depend upon lose its way so badly.

Posted by: Ed | April 4, 2007 11:06 AM

Why did you take out the list that used to appear on the homepage with the day's discussions? With the new format it is much harder to get to discussions.

I have never lived in DC but I have read the Post for 10 years now. I'm really disapointed that you would dumb down your design and content. If I want entertainment, I will pick up an entertainment magazine or USA Today. I depend on the Wash Post for news and actual content!

I expected better from the Post!

Posted by: American mom abroad | April 4, 2007 11:13 AM

Wow - guess I'm not the only one who finds this new home page pretty useless. Add one more voice to those who find it, pretty empty. the old one, I use to have trouble deciding which news, opinion, column, I wanted to read first. Now I have trouble finding anything I want to read. I was about to decide - there's no more news, no more opinions....what a blah week. Come to find out, you all were just hiding it. I moved from the DC area a few years ago, and like many others missed the Post terribly, and was delighted to find wp.com. If you keep this new cover, I don't think it will be worth the searching for indepth articles, and views with readers comments....what a disappointment. Please change back - add my support to those who want to see a full selection of things to read - right off the bat. We want to stay informed, please.

Posted by: hattie | April 4, 2007 11:14 AM

You've really ruined the webpage, by trying to compete with fluffier sites you have made the site much less friendly to the newshounds who form your core constituency. The vast majority of the site is wasted space, please bring back the long lists of links to articles, but make the lists of links even longer--yours should look more like the front page of the WSJ, not of MSNBC.com.

Posted by: DCReader | April 4, 2007 11:42 AM

Get rid of "On Being." Really dumb & irrelevant!

Posted by: Zach, Silver Spring | April 4, 2007 11:44 AM

I fail to see how the new design is an improvement, unless you are enamored of eye candy and gee-whiz features. I have to look all over for news headlines, whereas previously it was a very simple matter. Please get rid of the floss and go back to presenting news.

Posted by: mwashington2 | April 4, 2007 11:58 AM

Okay - I*ve tried it for a week - it is hard to believe how uncomfortable and unfriendly this redesign is. Did this happen on the quick? Really - did panic set in, a need to goose it up to look - modern - ?? Ultimately it does not matter, of course. But these disappointments add up. I am not going to bother here for the next week - when I return it better be fixed or I'm gone. I hope a majority will join me. An about-face could perhaps be achieved (imposed!) if we all JUST LEFT. Your (truly) fine writers, editors, time-tweaked features, obnoxious bloviators, et al, will recognize instantly if many less folks are interacting with the site. Or alternatively...just bring back the majority of what was here. Okay? Please?

Posted by: KQ - Adams Morgan | April 4, 2007 12:00 PM

This redesign has the same appeal as New Coke. All you need is Bill Cosby to sell it and everything will be alright.

Posted by: Steve | April 4, 2007 12:12 PM

My second input: The page is good! You want Discussions? Look on the left side of the page. You want Most Viewed? Look on the top right. You want Metro? Go to NEWS on the menu bar and click Metro.

Folks, this ain't rocket science, and it ain't the end of the world. Please get some perspective; it's the web site of one of the best newspapers in the world, and that hasn't changed one bit. Adapt, just like you do with everything else.

Posted by: Mike | April 4, 2007 12:17 PM

I do not like the changes. The Washington Post, of all newspapers, should be about hard-core news. That's why I choose to read it. I perfer the old form with many links to many stories. I didn't mind sifting through them. The reality is that is requires effort on the part of a reader/citizen to be informed about world events, politics, and what our government is doing on our behalf (supposedly). Now, the new format has lots of white space, and the appearance of less choice. You make it easier for people to use less effort to be exposed to less.

Charles Bridgeman

Posted by: Charles Bridgeman | April 4, 2007 12:28 PM

I don't like the new home page! I want to be able to see the stories I want to read at a glance instead of clicking around to find what I want to read! The NYTimes has almost everything on the home page. Please change back to your old format.

Posted by: Mary Ann | April 4, 2007 12:46 PM

You've heard it before: the new homepage is just dreadful. There is virtually no content on the home page--all graphics that do not add to our understanding of a story or issue. Lists and lists of stories was far superior than a heading, white space/graphic, then a story or two. Were the complaints you were hearing on the old format as voluminous and vociferous as the negative reactions posted here?

Posted by: Chinatown, DC | April 4, 2007 01:00 PM

i've been trying to figure out for about 5 days now what i wanted to say about this site. and then it hit me:

it's bad web design--not just for a newspaper site, but web sites in general. you should be embarassed that you paid someone to redesign this site. in fact, you should tell us the name of the design firm so none of us ever hire them.

i work in an office that just got renovated and, let me tell you, you can immediately tell that a bunch of execs who haven't worked in a cubicle in 30 years designed the place. it's poorly designed, unfriendly, and ugly. the space planning is a joke. i'm starting to think you all had a similar group of folks working on this site.

Posted by: arlington | April 4, 2007 01:03 PM

Bring back the old page! This is what happens when you turn designers loose - readibility and content are sacrificed!

I need larger type, less white space. This is hard to read. (Studies have even shown this is hard to read - people are used to having one line directly follow the another!

And I want the list of daily chats and transcripts!

Posted by: Dottieb | April 4, 2007 01:04 PM

I do not

like the new

layout. It's new

spacing makes it

harder to read.

Posted by: kevin | April 4, 2007 01:16 PM

Anyone want to get together and buy a full page ad to let the Post know what we think of this cr*p?!

Posted by: a mad reader | April 4, 2007 01:29 PM

Am I the only one who finds it offensive that the Post asks for comments on the site and then doesn't bother to respond to anyone here, even thought there's been a virtual tidal wave of complaints? Why bother asking our thoughts if they're not going to bother listening or responding? That bothers me almost more than the redesign itself!

Posted by: Alison | April 4, 2007 01:29 PM

Add me to the list of those who miss the direct links to the chats. I really enjoy them and read them frequently, and thought one of the best virtues of the old site was that I could see what chats were planned for the day beyond the regularly scheduled ones that I already knew about. I know it's just a few clicks away and a couple seconds extra, but if I have to go hunting for them, I just won't read any. Surely there must be some space in the new design to bring the list back, especially if you're trying to increase visitor interaction.

Posted by: Michele | April 4, 2007 01:33 PM

I agree with Rachel up top -- it's terrible, you took the news out. Echo all who say we read WP for the news -- now it's too hard to find. Maybe it's better that discussions are harder to find, I won't spend so much time reading them . . .

I hope these comments (cumulatively) will have some effect. You're killing us -- your biggest fans -- with these changes!

Posted by: Kim, DC | April 4, 2007 01:44 PM

I don't see anymore the Most E-Mail articles link. Too bad, since that was one of the links I used often.

Posted by: Jose Rojas | April 4, 2007 02:01 PM

I miss the ability to see the top 20 most e-mailed articles (all I see now is the top 5 most read). Also, what happened to the "World" headlines? Did you decide they weren't important enough to get their own section on the homepage? I hadn't yet noticed that the link for discussion was gone, but add me to the list of people who think it should be easy to find!

Posted by: Boca Raton, FL | April 4, 2007 02:21 PM

I am not going to go into a lot of detail because evreyone who hates it has said what I would have said. In summary, I absolutley abhor the new webpage and find it cumbersome and frustrating. I also want Mary Worth back. She's a goody two-shoes but I have come to like her.

Posted by: Laurel DC | April 4, 2007 02:25 PM

I guess I may be reiterating what most have said, but.... please go back to the old version. This one stinks. I could go to the sections I wanted, like the Metro section in the bottom area of the page, and find out what's going on back home. Now, I don't even see a Metro section.

Posted by: Anthony in NY | April 4, 2007 02:26 PM

I'd like more news in my newspaper. I've been reading online for ten years now. There has progressively been fewer news articles on your home page and more non-news. The fluff might bring in more readers, but you are losing your core. Having grown up on the post, I am funding myself on nytimes.com a lot more than the post to get my news. This is not a good thing.

Posted by: Mark | April 4, 2007 02:30 PM

I thought your old home page was excellent, particularly because I could get a quick over-view of the news by looking at it. Now, it certainly is uncluttered since there's nothing on it. I guess I'll have to change my home page to somebody else, an organization that might just happen to feature the upto date news. Who cooked up this mess?

Posted by: KIT HORTON | April 4, 2007 02:55 PM

Captain's Log, Star Date 2236
Another day has passed, and the Gnomes are maintainig virtual silence over their shrinking of the news universe. We have been successful in making contact with the planet's ruling leader, a peculiar chap who goes by the name of Double U. He has provided valuable insight into the situation.
Much like oxygen is vital for life on Earth, Double U explained, the inhabitants of the Planet Greedius subsist on news. The shrinking of their news universe by the Gnomes is resulting in the slow suffication of the planet's inhabitants.
Double U explained further that the Gnomes are a subterranean species who exist off the profits generated by their indentured servants. They have no use for news, unless there is a profit to be realized.
Until recently the Greediusians and the Gnomes lived in relative harmony, but all that changed as outside investors began to infiltrate the Gnomes' profit centers. It would seem that their appetite for profit has grown so large that the Gnomes have had to shrink the news universe for additional profit just to ensure their own survival.
Spock feels that there is most certainly a link between the outside investors and the recently spotted Clingon Warship. Meanwhile, the planet inhabitants are gasping for news. This is a worrisome situation, and it would appear that somehow, someway, we must make contact with the Gnomes.
Kirk out.

Posted by: Out West | April 4, 2007 02:56 PM

The new website looks just fine. But it doesn't address the preexisting problem, namely, that if one has already read the actual newspaper in the morning, the website, even by late afternoon, includes little on what has happened since the morning. Thus, in the late afternoon, I check (instead) AP, the NYT, and USA Today.

Posted by: husker | April 4, 2007 03:04 PM

Please bring back the "World" under "More headlines", why would you get rid of it? there is no news-worthy news around the world???

Posted by: YC | April 4, 2007 03:23 PM

Back with the "clutter" please. The Washington Post is not USA Today - please do not sacrifice content to ADHD.

Posted by: Bryan | April 4, 2007 03:33 PM

OK, this is my third comment. I still do not like this "new and improved" site and I still do not understand why Jim Brady has not responded to us.

Thank you to those of you above who have suggested finding actual news at www.news.google.com. It is a rather good site and seems to be updated regularly throughout the day.

And, to the poster above who suggested that we get together to take out a whole page ad in the printed edition of the Post, I say no, that isn't feasible.

Instead, I suggest that everyone do what I have done: send a letter to the editor and another to the ombudsman (ombudswoman?) expressing your (our collective) dismay. Let them be overwhelmed by the legitimate concerns of their loyal readers; we refuse to be taken for granted!

Posted by: sharon in baltimore | April 4, 2007 03:34 PM

While you're on the topic of changes, please, please change the Jobs tab on the top right. If I have to see that "Want More Money? ... find out what you might be worth" one more time I think I'm going to throw up. We all know we don't make enough money, and we all know plugging our job title in won't change it. Ugh.

Posted by: b in boston | April 4, 2007 03:48 PM

I liked the comment about the new page not being cluttered, because there's nothing on it. I got a few raised eyebrows in my office over that chuckle.

Posted by: Anthony in NY | April 4, 2007 04:05 PM

You clain that some found the old version cluttered. The new one is unusable.

World, national, political and metro news do not even merit a listing under Top Stories. Are they irrelevant? Is the Post no longer in the news business?

Posted by: mary-jo cooney | April 4, 2007 04:49 PM

The first thing I noticed with the new home page was a lack of news. And, well, that's why I came there to begin with.... Fewer headlines per section, and some sections seem to have been entirely wiped off the home page. I don't see any reason to prefer this to the old layout, which did a really nice job of summarizing the top stories in each section and let me quickly jump to each section.

Posted by: Les | April 4, 2007 05:57 PM

This is the link for most emailed.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 06:18 PM

Add this after washingtonpost.com to see the most emailed stories.


Posted by: | April 4, 2007 06:19 PM

The continuing extremely negative feedback (well, maybe 20 to 1) and high interest by readers, along with the continuing lack of comment from the Post is now indeed fascinating to me.

I can't check what I've loved for many years now (The Top 20-Most E-mailed articles - well, actually, you can still find it with a Google search, but it's not the same), but I have been coming back to this page now several times a day since last Thursday just to see if people are still posting negative comments. And they continue to pore in!

I'm sure the people responsible for this are behind the scenes monitoring page views and click-through rates to see if their goals are being met.

It's possible that page views are the same as ever, or maybe even better - remember, this site is pretty huge and a few hundred responders may only be a drop in the bucket. So we (those that have taken the time to post a comment here) may only be a small minority, with most just going on as usual.

But I seriously doubt it.

I'd love to know the REAL thinking of why the Top 20 Most E-mailed articles were:

1) first taken from a prominent place in the upper right side of the site several months back, and put in a relatively obscure part on the lower left, and then...

2) removed altogether (although an initial Q&A on this actually specified a place where it was, that was taken down quite quickly. This shows some behind the scenes disagreement on this issue.)

So now, this is pretty good theatre - watching and waiting to see what kind of response will eventually come.

Drama, anger, humor, intelligence, passion, mystery - it's all here!

Now in the mean time, I've been meaning to start using the Wall Street Journal's more sophisticated "most e-mailed" section. But you know, I've always liked the Post's far more.

Should we start a pool on whether a response will come, and if so, when, and how forthright it will be?

Posted by: Rob Lawson | April 4, 2007 06:24 PM

Regarding the new changes intended to be 'improvements' --

It's one step forward, two steps (if not more) 'back. It has all the appearance of change merely for the sake of change.

Return to what was already a comfortable, user-friendly format.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 07:14 PM

That "jobs, cars, real estate" box on the upper right of the homepage is really annoying.

Posted by: | April 4, 2007 08:05 PM

As much as I adore The Post, I have to say that I strongly dislike the new site layout. The text is impossibly small throughout, which is especially troubling for the "More Headlines" and "More Top Stories" section. Headlines are supposed to stand out and capture your attention, not blend in with the rest of the page content. In my opinion, this makes it difficult to skim through actual news content. Also, why is everything pushed so far to the left above the fold? To make room for advertisements? A bad decision. I feel the new layout is MORE cluttered than before, and that different sections were laid out helter skelter. Bring back the old page, or take a nod from the NYTimes.com.

Posted by: Becca | April 4, 2007 10:19 PM

I hate the new home page. I love Washington Post for the articles but this website is horrible. It blatantly copies CNN.com, which I don't like either, but it's even worse. One of the most aggravating aspects is that it hides ads as if they were actual articles, like the "Travel" and "Budget Travel" sections. This is a tactic used by only by the most unscrupulous sites. The new design is a major step in the wrong direction.

Washingtonpost.com should be focused on its strengths, its articles and discussions. I never use the gimmicky video.

How much criticism will it take to retract these aggravating changes?

Posted by: Peter | April 4, 2007 11:28 PM

Where was the story about Karl Rove being attacked at American University last night? Not one mention on your page today.

Posted by: RF | April 5, 2007 12:57 AM

i much prefer the old home page to this new one. i suppose i'll get used to the new one, just as we all had to adjust and adapt the last time the home page was revised. but i never had a problem finding what i wanted and needed in the old layout.

Posted by: david savastuk | April 5, 2007 01:22 AM

Where did the news go?!?! I read the post online every morning with my coffee, in the brief time I have before work. I scan the headlines and decide what is worth reading now, and what I might want to come back to later. Now my headlines have decreased to two per section, and I don't have time to dig around through layers of pages for more news. I think I am going to have to look for a new way to inform myself about what is going on in the world before I start my day.

Posted by: Alex | April 5, 2007 06:11 AM

Where's the news? Where are the links to the discussions/blogs? Why is the new design so devoid of content? Did you think you could keep your readership without giving them accessible content to read?

Posted by: SF | April 5, 2007 07:23 AM

Go back to being a provider of news and less of a 'multimedia entertainment experience'. Ever since the NY Times decided to clutter up its front page with popups, videos and secret messages for elite subscribers I turned to the Post for getting news straight and hard. It it is fuzzy and soft. Kill it. Otherwise it's Google News for me.

Posted by: Ron | April 5, 2007 07:38 AM

Still looking for the live discussion links... WHERE ARE THEY?

Posted by: Jay | April 5, 2007 08:17 AM

I came back from vacation to discover something a bit hinky with the washingtonpost.com home page this week. For the past several days, I could find no Metro section. It was maddening.
I finally came across the little link to "Change to Washington Home Page"and thought that would help, but I still see no convenient way to access my local and regional news.
I wish you all had forced new cookies so that we all could consciously a Metro or World edition.
And since when doesn't Alexandria count as Metro?
I don't half mind the new look, but I do resent having to hunt for my local news.

Posted by: Alexandria, VA | April 5, 2007 08:18 AM

You shrunk the news!

Posted by: Jen | April 5, 2007 08:54 AM

This site has gone from bad to worse! It is a cluttered eyesore. If it were a house it would be condemned as a health hazard. Navigating is a nightmare. finding the news is like trying to find Waldo. You need several good librarians to help organize this mess.

Posted by: Carol | April 5, 2007 09:03 AM

I've been through major redesigns, and I know to expect lots of negative comments. Here are a few observations that, I hope, are free of subjective judgment:

You couldn't possibly have tested the new homepage with the full array of browsers & platforms. I'm using a fairly common combo, and your nav is broken for me. With Firefox 1.0.7/WinXP, when I hover over the Politics item in the top nav, only the following choices appear in the light blue: Politics Blog, Congress, Polls. The other choices (House/Senate Votes et al) all appear outisde the light blue box in a transparent layer over the search input box and the "go" button. This was viewed at 9:12am April 5.

Although the most viewed articles are in the top right of my page, I ignored that area for days because it looks exactly like Google AdWords to me.

You have some inconsistent displays of links. The black section headers that are in all caps have a blue underline to indicate a link, which is confusing because no other links on the page are underlined. The other section headers are blue and underlines appear when you hover. Is there a compelling business reason for using inconsistent link behaviors? Furthermore, it appears that all the links on your subpages are both blue and underlined, so you seem to get that it works there.

You've violated a basic web usability tenet that others have already mentioned: make the visited links a different color than the yet-to-be-visited links. Beyond it being so widespread as to be nearly universally understood, it's just a considerate thing to do for your users.

The drop down menus in the top nav sometimes block the searh box when I'm trying to put my cursor there. It's annoying and even hinders my ability to get beyond your homepage. Maybe you should give some thought to putting the search engine above the nav bar, or to not using drop downs for the nav bar at all, since you can't get them working right for everyone.

Did you intend to have a big blank space in the top nav bar between the "city guide" and "jobs" items? What I see is that the "city guide" box ends just over the "W" in "Web | Results by Google" and that the left of the "Jobs" box is vertically aligned with the left of the "Most viewed articles" box. There's at least 110 pixels of blank blue nav bar showing. It looks like a few items are AWOL due to coding errors, perhaps.

The top nav item labels are taller than the blue bar behind it by 1-2 pixels. This looks accidental to me.

The dark strip in the middle of page is apparently a collection of photos & video, right? I only know that by looking at the words "video" and "gallery" and "gallery" again to surmise what these three items have in common. A header for this strip would help guide my eyes.

The "diversions" links above the dark strip look to me like they're being paired with the dark strip.

The white strip below the dark one also has no header, and I see no natural category label for the grouping I'm seeing right now: "Style" and "Home & Garden" and "Live Online." What do these things have in common? Why are they in a strip in the middle of the page? There's no obvious reason to me.

The 3 dots in the upper right corner of these two strips have no obvious meaning to me. Are they more "pages" in the strip area? Are they more photos? More videos? A rating system? A CSS call to resize the font in the strips?

In the lower left you have something called "Across Partner Sites" but the first link is to something on Washingtonpost.com. How can that be a partner site, when it's the very site I'm looking at? I don't get how it belongs in a list with Slate and Newsweek.

This is the first site I've seen that repeats the graphic version of its nav bar at the bottom of the homepage. This nav bar is easier for me to use, since the javascript or whatever is powering your drop downs isn't broken here. It's really simple and easy to read, and there's no evidence that the nav item images are sized differently than the background image it's laid on, as you have going on in the top. I see now that the blank space between city guide and jobs must be on purpose. This looks more artfully done than in the top nav bar, where it looks like there's been an accident.

Posted by: A local information architect | April 5, 2007 09:34 AM

Here's a "blind" test, because I wasn't aware until today that you had intentionally changed your front page design. I check out the Washington Post online every day and had long found it invaluable, but recently I found myself bored by it. I also check out the New York Times site every day. Previously, I had preferred the WP, but now I prefer the NYT. In fact, I had even considered deleting the WP from my Favorites. So whatever design change you made turned me off. No Hawthorne Effect here! Now I see that you wanted to provoke me into a more proactive searching style. I'll try to measure up.

Posted by: Ken | April 5, 2007 09:44 AM

all this negative feedback about the new page and WP doesn't seem to have read any of it. what a disappointment, along with the new format.

Posted by: disappointed | April 5, 2007 10:31 AM

Have there really been no posts in the past 2-1/2 hours or so, or is washingtonpost.com censoring comments?

Posted by: Henry | April 5, 2007 10:50 AM

Sent two comments to the address above and got two emails saying they appreciate my input....... but no direct response.

Posted by: Anthony in NY | April 5, 2007 10:54 AM

First, the WP is my homepage and I am glad to see that others feel the same way I do. Your site was fine and the changes were unnecessary. More "white space" equals less news; what would you rather have on a NEWSPAPER homepage? I prefer they previous layout where all the sections were accessible, headlines were 3 to a section and did not include drop-down menus.

I know these complaints must be getting old, but they are valid. The site was fine in the first place, and as a daily readers of both the print and online editions, nobody asked for our input and NOW you're are going to get it! Restore the earlier and much better version of your site.


Posted by: J-Mart | April 5, 2007 10:55 AM

Thought I'd give it another try after a few days away. Nope. Still can't find any real News... This is terrible - I used to love reading the hard news, and then catching a few opinions/columns, and perusing readers comments. This is where I use to come for true news, politics, and reporting on our government's happenings. How sad - that it's not here anymore.

Posted by: hattie | April 5, 2007 10:57 AM

I think it's silly to call this a re-design. It doesn't seem that much has really changed on this homepage over the last 3-4 years. All I can notice is that some content was moved around (to crappy places), whitespace and a few new images were added.

In the midst of significant changes on the internet (Web 2.0, new technogies for delivering and receiving data, ajax, blogs, shift from commerce to community) i would harldy classify this as a redesign.

Additionally, i find it interesting that noone from the design or usability team at washingtonpost has blogged anything in response, or defense, or in validation. Blogs should breed transparency and community participation. Without the leaders of the post site contributing, we only have a semi-community (if there is such a thing).

The Design lead - who I thought gave a very pretentious and presumptuous online discussion - seems to be hiding behind the safety net of your discussion software and protective moderators. Come out.

Posted by: chiefmonkeylover | April 5, 2007 11:03 AM

This redesign is a mess. I avoided it for a week just because it looks so dumbed down. Why make it harder for people to find things? NYTimes is much better now, although it didn't used to be. I liked the accessibility of your old site so much better. The main reason I read WAPO is for the online discussions,occasional columns, then news stories - in that order. WIth discussions and blogs harder to find, I won't bother as much.

Posted by: cindy | April 5, 2007 11:03 AM

I really don't like that there is no local news on the front page anymore. Locals are a large portion of your readership and it is wrong that our news isn't displayed up front. Furthermore, once into the Local section, the page is full of clutter much worse than the old home page. I can't find the stories I'm interested in, such as one about the random stabbings in SE. It's a disgrace.

Posted by: dc resident | April 5, 2007 11:07 AM

i don't like it either!

Posted by: The vacuous and uninformed | April 5, 2007 11:14 AM

I prefer the old site. I liked scanning many headlines and finding stories of interest. As many people have written, the abundance of headlines, links, sections, etc. is not clutter - it's the news and/or efficient access to the news and features that we seek. I am very disappointed with the new site. I typically visit the WP, NYT, and Google News sites several times daily. I believe I can drop my visits to the Post.

Posted by: portia | April 5, 2007 11:17 AM

Really, it's so nice and pretty and (to steal from Steve Jobs) lickable, but where did all of the content go? I want those lists of articles back, I want the nice complete schedule of the live online sessions for the day, I want the news back! The slideshows are nice, and the video is nice, but I'm here for the news! It should be easy to find and easy to get to. Why are we having to jump through hoops to get the news from a newspaper?

Posted by: yet another displeased reader | April 5, 2007 11:18 AM

I used to navigate through the news using the old homepage, now I just read the print edition version. The changes to your website are disappointing to this daily Washingtonpost online reader.

Posted by: hate it | April 5, 2007 11:21 AM

Your old home page was the best of all the traditional news outlet home pages, so put me down in the "it ain't broke so don't fix it" camp.

One thing that traditional newspaper front pages excel at over most web designs is that they put a paragraph of each of many stories that are not related together, and then when you turn to the full story, you find related stories on the same page. You get news-at-a-glance and then follow up. Much better than "modular" which belongs in computer programs, not reading layouts.

It would be better for internet homepages to learn from traditional newspaper frontpages than the other way around. There is something to be said for experience.

Posted by: ondelette | April 5, 2007 11:36 AM

Sorry for the double post. I do like this comment format though. Does this mean we're done with the crippled one?

Posted by: ondelette | April 5, 2007 11:39 AM

still hate it. if you're leaving this thread up here waiting for the tide to change and the commenters to start praising your crappy redesign, well, don't hold your breath. it will be just as crappy and just as hated next week and six months from now. give us back the old format with our news and stuff right on the main screen. and give all that extra whitespace to your editor and designer in their next paycheck.

Posted by: DesignSux | April 5, 2007 11:54 AM

I agree with most of the comments above. Your old home page was much better!! Bring it back!!

Posted by: rbhis | April 5, 2007 11:56 AM

I guess it is best to say - most of you are not touched by the way of the real world but that of circles of "Home owning, condo owned, SUV, BMW leasing recently college graduates. I believed they are the ones who designed this paper. You- the ones who goes and buy a manufacture building and convert it into a living quarters calling it a loft and then go about making it look clutterless. Well the same cannot be said for a newspaper

Posted by: Chicago IL | April 5, 2007 11:58 AM

(follow-up post)

FYI, I have removed you as my home page after eight years. My new home page for top of the morning news review is http://news.google.com/.

I will continue to check back for in depth political, metro, and other news - however if a decent degree of the prior efficient overview access to the Washington Post's in-depth news reporting doesn't return, I will be relegating the site to my second tier of news favorites (somewhat akin to the out-of-sight out-of-mind "change" that you have delivered to your readers.

Posted by: Dane | April 5, 2007 12:15 PM

I echo all of the negative comments made thus far. I had a friend send me a link to the story on President Bush's recess appointments this morning and I had to ask "how did you find that story?" since it is nowhere to be found on the home page.

I think the point people are missing here is that, whether we like it or not, sites such as WP.com rely on advertising dollars to survive. Forcing readers to search and click for hours on end means more page views, more ad impressions and more ad revenue.

I find it unfortunate that overall usability and the opinions of loyal readers have clearly been ignored but it is something we all need to get used to.

Posted by: Arlington, VA | April 5, 2007 12:31 PM

Where did you put the news? I can't seem to find much of it because of all the fluff.

Posted by: John Kelly | April 5, 2007 12:39 PM

I've been trying the new site for a week and it hasn't gotten any more pleasant to use. If I want white space, I'll stare at the wall. I come to the Post site to get news. Since it does not seem as though the editors are going to revise the changes- I'll make changes of my own and join the other readers who've made the switch to the NY Times.

Posted by: Katie | April 5, 2007 12:42 PM

This new design is DOA.

Too much fluff. Too dumbed down.

Videos are nice on TV, but that's not what I *read* a newspaper for. This is especially true at work where, let's fact it, you can't be sitting around playing videos.

What sort of consultant did you get to do this?

Posted by: Anonyme | April 5, 2007 12:51 PM

I use the website during the day to keep up to the minute on breaking news. I can get that from any one of a number of places.

I hate the new homepage. In addition to everything everyone has said, since you changed, about 50% of the time when I click on a link it kicks me out. I haven't been able to read Howard Kurtz (the main reason I even look at this website) for days. If you want to cater to the lowest common denominator, have a different website--sort of like CNN Headlines vs. real CNN; or the Express vs. a real newspaper. Let IT be full of white space and aimed at those who never read the paper in the first place--they're a legitimate audience and I understand why you want them. But don't punish your loyal readers by making us adjust to what your non-readers want.

I'm about to give up on this website for good. Not what you were aiming for, probably.

Posted by: Lynn | April 5, 2007 12:58 PM

I hate the new homepage,for too many reasons to post here.

Posted by: Marie | April 5, 2007 01:02 PM

Your new home page is awful. I have taken it down as my default. I cannot find discussions, there is a definite lack of content, too much white space and too much advertising. Stop it and go back!

Posted by: Patric | April 5, 2007 01:03 PM

I love change. I love the constant pursuit of improvement. But this ain't it. Know you're audience before you make changes like this. This is DC and a whole host of people who think us who live all over the country, all over the world. We want news news news! World news. National news. Local news. Can't get enough of it. And we are super busy people so please don't make us hunt for it. We won't.

Posted by: Bethany | April 5, 2007 01:43 PM

Like many previous posters, I am very upset that it has become so difficult to locate the discussions. They are the main reason I come to this site, and I wonder why you seem to be trying to prevent any new visitors from discovering them.

Posted by: jhurwi | April 5, 2007 01:46 PM

Thanks to Arlington, above, who mentioned today's big news on Bush's recess appointments (for others, it is here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/04/AR2007040402405.html).
Above the article we see its heading as "Politics," yet it is not referenced from the main Politics section. Also thanks to readers who have offered news work-arounds at Google and the BBC. WaPo, I'm still a huge fan, but -please- take the overwhelmingly negative feedback in the spirit in which it is offered-- as votes for content and functionality and against "design." Personally, I use Firefox and so the new design seems a mess, but I understand that users of Internet Explorer might see a good-looking page. I suppose your designers don't follow Rob Pegoraro's advice, as I do, to ditch I.E.

Posted by: Nashville, TN | April 5, 2007 01:56 PM

No, Nashville, I use IE at work and Safari at home. The new page is awful on those too. (Even if it might be prettier, it is still light on substance and excruciating to navigate.)

Lynn, you can still access Kurtz on the Today's Editorials, Opinions, Columns pulldown menu. Same for Froomkin. But no thanks to Post.com for making it difficult.

I've stopped using the Post as my homepage, but I'm still considering whether to drop it entirely. I'm amazed at the complete silence in the face of all these comments. "We'd like to hear what you think" indeed. It's called customer service, guys. Your contempt is showing.

Posted by: jane | April 5, 2007 02:11 PM

If you really want to encourage the suits to roll back to the old design, print out all these negative comments with yellow highligts and stuff them in an envelope and mail them to one of the Post advertisers saying you are going to boycott their products until the Post returns to the format its READERS prefer. That is the only feedback the Post will pay attention to.

It is quite obvious this remake was done to please advertisers. Those advertisers won't be nearly as happy with the new design if they believe this new home page results in an organized boycott and a negative impact on sales. I will bet that they will take this whole page down when it starts to reach the people that count.

I'm just astounded that there's no response from the Post. That's just cowardly.


Posted by: PeggyM | April 5, 2007 02:18 PM

Thank God I've got a large rectangular screen and large fonts, otherwise no way could I read the front page either from work or at home. What is wrong with the Post? This used to be my favorite paper, in print or online. It's so bad now that it's actually making the Cincinnati Enquirer look good. Sort of good. Please fix the Post. By fix, I mean like it was.

Posted by: THE PRINT IS TOO SMALL | April 5, 2007 02:25 PM

bring back the old front page.you are a newspaper which is supposed to have headlines and not white space.i agree with others who said you had one of the best front pages before the change.living in california i am not able to buy the paper locally.i miss being able to scan the nation,world,health and other listings you had.everything is harder to find not easier.stop deluding yourself and bring back your respectable user friendly former front page.

Posted by: leecourt | April 5, 2007 02:57 PM

I much prefer the old page. It had been one of the most useful of all my pages and one that I consulted every day. I accepted your fairly accurate judgment of what might be the most significant stories in a variety of areas. The "clutter" was actually content by a pejorative label, and was well-organized. I don't appreciate it when any medium or publication (and there are many) caves to the desires of an ADD-plagued age group.

The new page would be useful if I knew in advance that the most interesting articles were in the "World", "Politics", or other category. But I don't generally know this in advance, and am now forced to load each page in turn just to identify a couple of the most interesting.

By the way, I'd appreciate it if you'd lose that irritating ad with the guy waving his arms up and down.

Posted by: Dennis Chamberlin | April 5, 2007 02:59 PM

This reminds me of when I moved from the DC area to Denver in 1994. I was used to getting DC-style news with both newspaper and TV -- in other words, SUBSTANCE. In-depth commentary and analysis. Information on small countries that didn't hit the headlines every single day. I was appalled when I got to Denver and watched the TV news -- all of the international news, every single bit of news that involved any country other than ours -- was smashed into what they called something like "The World In 60 Seconds". Yup, the entire rest of the world in 60 seconds of the main news program. They even had a second hand up in the right hand corner so that if you really weren't interested in finding out that (for instance) some country had tested nuclear devices, you would know how much longer you'd have to ignore the TV.

I feel the same way about this redesign. It's been dumbed down to a level previously inconceivable to me as a news junkie. I want news and intelligent analysis. I don't want to have to search through seven pages of stuff to find what used to be on the front page. And if it's not on the front page anymore, I'm not going to go look for it. The result is that I now know only what I already knew. If it doesn't pop up in front of me, I'm not going to read it.

The Post is no longer my main source of news -- I'm going to find some other site where I don't have to fight to find out what's going on.

Posted by: I hate this new layout | April 5, 2007 03:09 PM

I too hate the new WaPo. It is so dumbed down it's insulting. It took forever to locate the top 20 emailed stories. I have given it a chance and decided it's not worth my time. I am switching to NYT for my news.

After all these negative posts and not a word from the editors I can only assume you have no intention of addressing your reader's legitimate concerns.

Posted by: Kim | April 5, 2007 04:15 PM

I don't like the redesign. I want as many descriptively titled news links on page one as I can get. I don't want to go drilling down into other sections just to see if there's something of interest. It was NOT overly cluttered before. It's simplemindedly vacant now.

Of course, no one's listening to us. Slate did the same thing last year and just rode out the criticism.

Posted by: Randy | April 5, 2007 06:12 PM

Um, where is Metro? I scrolled up and down three times. I can't find it. So either the poor new design has made it impossible to find, or maybe it's actually not here anywhere. Go back. Actually, go back to two designs ago, when there was a Metro section and the links to things in the Metro section were under the Metro heading.

Posted by: Janet | April 5, 2007 10:27 PM

Please bring back the "Most emailed" list!

Posted by: | April 5, 2007 10:53 PM

So it has been almost a week since the redesign and the votes seem to be in. The 'nays' have it. Why haven't Kurtz or some other Post Technology person taken up the reaction to their redesign? PLEASE bring back the old page format!!

Posted by: Prof. Cheese in WI | April 5, 2007 11:21 PM

I liked washingtonpost.com -- easier to read than the print newspaper and damn easy to navigate. Your old homepage was amazing.

Just a question (echoing what another poster said) -- i'm assuming the ads didn't have a high enough click through so you messed things around to add more eyeballs, exposure, etc.

Maybe the problem isn't your readers but your advertisers. I'm sorry, a mortgage company advertising low rates isn't going to be popular around here considering the news you report. You're not Yahoo or USA Today. You don't have the same readers. Throwing more of the same advertisers at us isn't going to work. In fact -

forget it. No one's listening. I'm off to Google News and the NY Times. I hope Katherine Graham is looking down at you all, pissed.

Posted by: Moving On | April 5, 2007 11:38 PM

This is a great news organization, with a so-so Web redesign.

The extra white space makes the news seem sparse. I do feel I need to work harder to find articles. Perhaps scale it back a bit, but not necessarily all the way back.

You smartly show off new media features: The webvideo of reporters chatting about major stories is excellent. I thought Chris, Shailaigh & Co. were excellent today (Thursday) and it's good to put a face with a byline. Why wait until Sunday for the political talk shows? WaPo can feature its own. Well done.

Good luck navigating the avalanche of responses. At least folks noticed!

Posted by: Bristolite | April 6, 2007 12:08 AM

I have been trying to get used to the new page; I really have. It's just not working, though. First the reporters were told that they must now limit the length of their stories. And now the stories (whether short or long) are being hidden from the readers thanks to this ill-advised redesign. What does this say about where the WaPo is headed? I fear that before long reading the WaPo page will be reminiscent of the old Dick and Jane readers ("See Spot run...").

This has always been my favorite news site (I also get the Sunday dead tree version), in large part because of the online discussions and online political columns (e.g. Froomkin) that can only be found here. It is clear that the new format was not tested on readers like me (of whom there appear to be MANY). Why the powers that be are seemingly so resistent to the notion of returning the FULL daily schedule of online discussions to the front page (without extra white space, PLEASE!) is very difficult for me to understand (even though we are in Washington, it really IS okay to admit you are wrong once in awhile!).

On my laptop, I can now see all of two and a half news stories/headlines on my screen when I go to the homepage (and no; I'm not counting the picture feature in the left column that is focusing on the panda today, and focused on the badge earning Boy Scout yesterday). Previously, I could get an excellent snapshot of top stories with very minimal scrolling. No more, though. My visits to the site have already dropped precipitously. Being a news junkie, I have been accustomed to visiting the site frequently throughout the day, and being rewarded with updated stories when I do so. Each time I come here and am disappointed in what I find, though, the less likely it is that I will return. It takes awhile to extinguish a well-established habit, but I seem to be well on my way...

I definitely preferred the Post to the NYT before, but now I'm finding that it is the NYT that is calling me back....

Posted by: Andrea | April 6, 2007 12:22 AM

Is this new home page supposed to make us buy the paper in order to find news?....ick. I too, am going to spend more time at NYT and LATimes (which is not quite as bad as the new Post). I need to see news story leaders as I glance at the page. I don't have time to search for stuff, especially when I don't know where the stories are hidden. What will it take to get you guys to fix this?

Posted by: Don | April 6, 2007 06:30 AM

Like most of the comments here, I too am very disappointed in the changes. I hate all that white space and other format changes. For years I clicked on the Washington Post to read daily. Since the change I find myself clicking on other sites for news and opinion. I sure miss the old Post. I will continue to try to adapt, but I am not at all confident I will view it anywhere near as often as I used to. Really bad decision!!

Posted by: Jim | April 6, 2007 08:06 AM

I've been designing websites for 10 years. One of the design mantras that I continually have to remind clients is "consider the user." While a number of the new placements and features are "improvements" in some sense, it has to be weighed in the context of whether it actually is worse for the user. Users have a very low tolerance for frustrating or confusing interfaces. They will either leave, or, if they spend the time to find the content, they will do so in a shortcut fashion that bypasses the intended path (read: skipping advertised areas).

On a technical note, the top navbar's links (News, Politics, etc) all jut a couple pixels above the blue background bar. This appears on several of the browsers I've tested with. This is likely a result of poor CSS coding. It looks like a mistake, and comes across as amateurish--not the thing you want appearing as the most prominent feature and the first element most users will see on the page.

Posted by: Brian Pianalto | April 6, 2007 08:44 AM

I've always appreciated your content but you are failing on presentation. Look to the LA Times and not the Philadelphia Inquirer for a btter home page. And why have you discontinued "The Checkout", a very useful consumer blog?

Posted by: Jere Sanborn | April 6, 2007 09:25 AM

where did you hide the MOST E-MAILED list? you guys sure don't understand your readers. have any of you ever read the Washington Post online?

Posted by: WaPo Boneheads | April 6, 2007 09:38 AM

I REALLY HOPE SOMEONE AT THE POST READS THE ABOVE BLOG BY "Brian Pianalto". I too, tested in several browsers including IE6 and IE7 on XP (also on most recent rev of firefox) and noticed the "amateurish" display of the top nav bar. Further, the "Most Viewed Artictles" seems to be "amateurish"ly layering over the grey seach bar below the blue nav. Did you ONLY test to make sure that the site looked ok on mac's? Silly designers

Posted by: southerner | April 6, 2007 09:45 AM

Okay Brady, why do you pretend to want input? One week, no action, no response to the massive amount of complaints on this board.

You send your pompous and clueless designer to a discussion where he condescends to and insults anyone who doesn't think he's a genius (he isn't).

Do us all a favor and at least have the common decency to shut down this board and quit pretending you give a damn about reader opinions. Its insulting. Thanks.

Posted by: Insulting and Arrogant | April 6, 2007 09:46 AM

I've been deluding myself. I thought all along I've been looking at the local edition because the zip code in my profile is a Baltimore city zip code.

No. I just found out WaPo thinks that makes me a non-local reader.

Well, I want the local version, so I changed my profile zip to a DC one.

And now the top nav is even more broken than it was for me in the non-local display. The jobs tab is open with columnist Lily Garcia's photo and blurb there, but the blue line around the whole thing is broken. The top nav items on the left are still broken in that when I mouse over them, the light blue background doesn't sit under all the links displaying. So the drop down links appear laid right over the page text underneath it, making both unreadable.

This is using Firefox 1.0.7 and WinXP/SP2. Screen res: 1280x800. With this combo, your top nav is unusable.

If this is a beta site, just say so.

Posted by: Baltimore reader | April 6, 2007 09:57 AM

Add another comment into this seemingly black hole about how bad bad bad the new homepage is. Discussions are HARDER to find, in spite of their "popularity". I can't seem to put them on a My WaPo page, which otherwise would allow me to skip your redesign altogether.

Also, the big picture at the very top, often trying to teach me how to "be" and in particular how to be a religious person is a waste of space and time.

I want news, not People magazine.

Posted by: marybindc | April 6, 2007 10:31 AM

The new site design gets 2 thumbs down from me and a lot of other people based on the comments here.

I would also like to second some of the comments regarding creative director, Paul Compton's Q&A. You might be happy with Mr. Compton's work, but I suggest you avoid allowing him to interact with the public. He is not a good ambassador for your company. The attitude coming through in his questions was a real turn off and I am sure he was on his best behavior. His suggestion that users and advertisers are the same to him is absurd. A notion which I am sure would be debunked by a review of your design requirements.

If the new design is meant to satisfy advertisers, just say so. We have figured it out anyway. If you truly want to stick to the line that the changes are meant to satisfy your users, there is a simple way to prove it.

Why don't you offer a link which will allow the user to opt for the old format for a couple of weeks? This will establish for you which design is the user's choice...

Posted by: Andy C | April 6, 2007 12:08 PM

I'm a long-time WashPost.com reader, and I do not like the changes to the home page. Instead of reducing clutter, there are too many feature boxes, such as the video galleries that run across the page and the special reports boxes down the left side. These are too large and just seem to be in the way all the time. There is no direct link to Metro, and, as the adage says: "All news is local".
The "Discussions" section needs to be back listing the chats without another link, so you could scroll the headlines and see what discussion was going on at the same time.
I use WashPost.com as my home page, and at work I often browse it while on hold on the phone or waiting for some reply from a co-worker. This new format requires too many links for easy browsing.
While I'm at it, I realize WashPost.com needs to sell advertising to support the operation, but the ads that block the content for a period of time are just infuriating. Please confine them to the sides, top, and bottom and save the middle for your valuable content.

Posted by: JimR | April 6, 2007 12:23 PM

Honestly-- WHERE ARE THE LIVE DISCUSSIONS? I've spent the last three minutes trying to find them, and found this editors note instead. This is infuriating.

Posted by: Silver Spring | April 6, 2007 12:24 PM

Unlike most of the commenters here, I never liked the old design. Like most of the commenters, though, I like this design even less.

WaPo has first-rate journalists. Why won't it invest in a first-rate website? Take a look at the NY Times and Slate. Hell, take a look at Google News. These sites offer a wealth of content. And yet, somehow they make it easy to get straight to the point.

I don't know enough about design to give you particulars on how to improve this mess. But I do know which sites I enjoy visiting, and WaPo is at the bottom of the list.

Posted by: jeremy in washington, dc | April 6, 2007 12:25 PM

Another resounding no to the redesign. For some reason, many of the links to chats and comments don't work now. I get the page and the header, but no text. I'm also unable to post comments to chats. I was surprised that this one showed up!

Bring back the chat menu! Rather than one click, it takes several screens to get to discussions now. And sometimes the same annoying animated ad, which blocks part of the text, shows up with every new click.

Bleh. And this from a very long time (20+ years) paper subscriber.

Posted by: Cubeland, MD | April 6, 2007 12:38 PM

In re Southerner's comments above, I'm reading the homepage on a Mac, and it's a mess for me, too. In the cases where I've found the items I want to read, it takes 3 extra steps compared to the previous version. The new format is user-unfriendly, and the news content of the site is now hidden by several layers of clicking. I'll be sticking with NY Times and LA Times from now on.

Posted by: Diane | April 6, 2007 01:57 PM

There's really nothing else to say, except maybe to mimic the low clicking sound of a mouse hitting the "delete" button to remove the Washington Post as my homepage.

Posted by: Bethesda | April 6, 2007 02:13 PM

I'm a news junkie, and I used to check in 10 - 15 times a day just to see if anything was happening. No more. It's too frustrating.

Two things:

1. You can google the name of the chat host and bypass the front page entirely.

2. Try http://news.bbc.co.uk for news, especially world news. Another good site would be the International Herald Tribune.

Posted by: Donna | April 6, 2007 02:18 PM

Bean Counter, where are you? What't the latest tally? Not that anyone at the Post is paying attention...

Posted by: | April 6, 2007 02:58 PM

I just spent 5 full mintute trying to find the link to your live discussions/transcripts before giving up. Please tell me where it's hiding!

Posted by: Sara | April 6, 2007 03:05 PM

To Sara above (and anyone else looking for discussions). After days of searching this is what I found:

Go back to the homepage. About halfway down on the lefthand side, above what would be the fold in the real paper, and above the huge black scar all the way across the screen that promotes the multimedia content, you will find: DISCUSSIONS.

It is outlined and backgrounded by a faint blue box. Click directy on DISCUSSIONS, that will take you to the real-time list of today's chats, as well as transcripts of earlier ones.

In other words, you will eventually see (after multiple clicks) exactly what we used to see prominently displayed on the homepage.

Posted by: sharon in baltimore | April 6, 2007 03:26 PM

I agree with this comment: What happened to "Metro" -- I like to know what is happening locally as I have family in DC area. I also miss the "Politics" section -- the Post is excellent in this area; the Idaho (red state) Statesman is too pitiful for words. The opening up of the home page is OK (I know how to use the scroll bar) but removing links and content is not good. Finally, thanks for a faster load -- some of us in the hinterlands still rely on dial-up modems.

Posted by: David from Idaho | April 6, 2007 03:49 PM

wow. i keep coming back to this page to see if anyone from the post has the calzones to join the conversation.

i think the number of blogger entries on this site may represent a statistically significant slice of washingtonpost.com users. if the agreed level of significance was .1% & assuming that this site gets maybe 250K unique vistors a day & i estimate there are about 400-500 posts on this page THEN you've gotta a decent sample size.

again. wow! with several pleas from folks like " Insulting and Arrogant", "Andy C", "An Old Friend" and "monkeylover" i am becoming more dismayed that someone from the site hasn't said anything. In my opinion, the fact that you are not participating in this dialogue is more damning than the blasted tinkering with the web design.

Posted by: southerner | April 6, 2007 06:13 PM

Watching the death of a formerly great newspaper has been a sad experience. Now we must watch the decline of the Post website into a mindless, multi-media, entertainment site. Please, please remember your roots and bring back the news, and the quality and command of the English language for which you were formerly recognized! "Dumber" does not necessarily equate with "better"!

Posted by: Jim in Winchester | April 6, 2007 09:07 PM

I must agree that this is a change for the worse. White space is ok but tiny fonts are not. Most of all, where is the NEWS? I read the WP for news, especially political news and that has disappeared. I'll figure out how to live my own life, thanks (i.e. I could care less what you think constitutes Smart Living).

Posted by: Marj in CT | April 6, 2007 09:22 PM

The "most emailed" is a much better guide to important articles than the "most viewed"; please bring it back. The names of columnists are nice but need to have the titles of their essays next to their names. I go to the Post online for real news, national and international. I don't want sports, or home decor or recipes on the front page, though a quick link is fine. I did try to read one of your human interest articles and found I had to click through four different pages to get to the article, which was woefully short. This is not the Post that I enjoyed reading and quoting to friends. My husband says you are just preping us to subscribe to the old page. Is that it, free fluff and pay for news that still has lots of ads? I am very sad about such changes. I find myself increasingly enjoying the customized Google homepage that collects the top stories from around the world, concentrated and varied. Perhaps you could follow their example and let us create our own front page.

Posted by: Anna Howe | April 6, 2007 09:41 PM

I thought it was just me.... I agree that this change is NOT for the better. It's a confusing Web site now. People don't want to click and click and click to get to our online reading. We want to get there FAST. This isn't working. Just WAY too many clicks to get to what I want (IF I'm lucky to find it at all - I haven't found the Style section or parts of the news today). And what's up with the new leading? Nice try, but this change just isn't working for your readers.

Posted by: Jean Farmer | April 6, 2007 10:30 PM

Obviously I am not alone in my desire to see the "MOST EMAILED" articles.

While I like to review site, this tells me what others find interesting and gives me finger on the valued pulse of readers.

And I am sorry to say, I really don't like the new lay out.

Posted by: Cort | April 7, 2007 12:05 AM

Seems to me you're copying usatoday.com. We all know you've mocked the McPaper in the past (who hasn't?); but I've also noticed how you continue to copy their journalistic style.

I switched my homepage from usatoday.com to washingtonpost.com a few weeks (after their horrible redesign).

I guess the new mantra in media is less is less.

Posted by: copycat | April 7, 2007 12:13 AM

Seems to me you're copying usatoday.com. We all know you've mocked the McPaper in the past (who hasn't?); but I've also noticed how you continue to copy their journalistic style.

I switched my homepage from usatoday.com to washingtonpost.com a few weeks ago(after their horrible redesign).

I guess the new mantra in media is less is less.

Posted by: copycat | April 7, 2007 12:14 AM

I liked the old layout; it was not the prettiest but I knew my way around very well. The new face is, well, better looking on the surface. This is the only good thing I can say about it. I don't like the navigation at all. This is also god, I was spending too much time reading. Thank you for releasing me, WaPo!

Posted by: pet's cat | April 7, 2007 02:44 AM

Mr WAPO Sirs:
The advertisement on the right side of the screen is too small! Please enlarge it TO COVER THE WHOLE SCREEN, that way I can just watch the silly post turn into USA TODAY. Did AOL recently buy the Wapo?

Posted by: slick | April 7, 2007 06:58 AM

I echo many of the comments reported in the paper: I dislike your new main
page. You have dumbed it down by using folder-shaped grapics; By deemphsizing news links, you have made news harder to find; you have increased the size of the ads.

As one commentator noted, you ARE a newspaper. Leave the glitz and the
ignorance to the TV. News and analysis is primary. You have a number of
good staff writers and produce a number of good stories;I count on your news coverage, especially US political, social and economic news and anaylsis, to offset the poor coverage elsewhere.....high light them and the coverage.

You have insulted the intelligence of your readers with this change.

Play to the literate.

Posted by: Theron P. Snell | April 7, 2007 07:04 AM

It has been over a week the THE MOST E-MAILED Articals are still missing? PLEASE BRING THEM BACK! The home page is so full of fluff you cant find any real news? Bring back the old home page!

Posted by: Ida | April 7, 2007 07:23 AM

Not a good effort. You have done much to change things for the worse. Why hide the discussions? Why eliminate the Checkout column? Why make it more difficult to dig out essential items of interest (politics & metro)and importance?

I hope that you take note of the comments that have preceeded mine and correct your misteps.

There are a number of fundemental rules of thumb re. web pages that your design group and managers have seemed to ignore. Your redesign should not have elicited such a negative reaction. What were you thinking?

Posted by: Charlie | April 7, 2007 11:27 AM

well, i tried, but now the Boston Globe is my homepage. This new look is a no-news mess.

I do still read the listed comics, you can't foul that.

what DID happen to Jazebels Tomb?

Posted by: pearlandpeach/canyon lake | April 7, 2007 12:45 PM

I've held off for a few days to give the new design a chance to grow on me, but it hasn't. I'm sorry, I really hate it! The old one was so good! I liked being able to see almost everything at once.

My biggest problems with the new look:
1) No easy links to domestic and international news sections
2) The multimedia strips are REALLY slow on my computer
3) I can no longer open interesting articles in a new tab; if they are in the multimedia strip, I must open them in an entire new window, which is ridiculous
4) Too much leading, so too much scrolling needed!

Please, please, please resurrect the old design. Think of it as an Easter present to your readers.

Posted by: Amelia | April 7, 2007 01:15 PM

I as many others have allowed the new design time to grow upon me. It has not. I long for the NEWS feel to WAPO. Very little content up front and to much searching to find the actual content. I realize that the more pages folks go through the more advertising money you make. But it seems far to obvious that you have lessened the respect for the Post. Please make it completely newsy and charge your advertisers more... they can afford it.

Posted by: gerry | April 7, 2007 01:54 PM

I add my voice to the mighty chorus above. Simply put, what a mess! I've tried to let the new web page "grow" on me, but have concluded that its growth is not benign. Rather than list the many peeves this "improved" page has elicited from me, I'll confine myself to one main complaint, and offer one further suggestion. My overriding complaint is the diminution of news coverage and the struggles your page puts readers through who desire to consume news. I've just spent the last 8 minutes searching for news articles on Latin America. I cannot find ANY. Perhaps they are there and I've simply been looking in the wrong areas (but if so, this gives you a clear indication of just how little utility this page now provides those who desire NEWS). Why would your designers decide to retain links (at the bottom of the page no less) to "Business," "Technology," or "Sports" articles, etc., but then believe that it actually made sense to eliminate links to "World," "Regional" (i.e., Latin Ameirca, Middle East), and "National" news articles? The logic of this decision utterly escapes me. Please, please, please, bring more news back onto the home page and organize the news articles in logically categorized, easily accessable ways. You have many fine journalists whose news articles I greatly ENJOYED reading. I now fear I'll have to switch to some other more reliable news outlet (maybe the Boston Globe? the BBC?).

Besides returning to WAPO's roots (providing news coverage), I'd also suggest that you not permit Paul Compton to interact any longer with the public and your readers. Some of his exchanges last Friday were Rumsfeldian in their smuggness, loose grasp of reality (advertisers and readers are all "us"), and air of superiority. The overwhelmingly negative response your new page has produced suggests that many of your readers are deeply disappointed, displeased, and perhaps considering a switch. It is probably not a good idea to give Mr. Compton another chance to make a really bad situation even worse.

I do hope that you will take your readers seriously, take their comments to heart, and make the appropriate adjustments. I also hope (sincerely) that you were not charged a great deal by those who sold you this "improved" web page. Like "New Coke," it definitely has to change.

Posted by: Mark | April 7, 2007 06:01 PM

Could someone explain why there are "Peeps" on the front page all day? Isn't there something more important happening in DC, nationally, or gloablly? This seems to be representative of the direction the improved website is taking, non?

Posted by: portia | April 7, 2007 06:30 PM

What I found amusing and disconcerting is the fact that during the "Question and Answer" session, most people expressed a dislike for the new layout -- with the WaPo.com creative director. It seems like they were set on this before they asked for comments, because he skillfully deflects any and all comments noting disdain or even simple displeasure for the new layout.

Growing up in the DC area with the WaPo and having relocated to Upstate NY, I like reading what's going on locally and also, having a reliable source for international news. I liked the fact that the links were there for the Metro section as well as National and World news. Other sections I have grown to love over the years have disappeared into oblivion. Please reconsider and give me my old page back. I don't want to look elsewhere.

Posted by: Anthony in NY | April 7, 2007 08:06 PM

Second post. We wonder why newspapers are losing circulation and consumer loyalty. Well, here it is folks. A paper that should be a definitive hard news and opinion voice of the nation wallowing in a website that is by almost all textbook definitions awash in white space, distractions, and obnoxious advertising. But beyond that the real news is just hard to get at and the page is a navagation horror, particularly for those of us who travel a lot and use laptops with small screens to access information. It was when I started using my laptop with this concoction that I realized how aloof editors at the Post are from their readers.

What's interesting is that there is nary a supportive comment here. What is the purpose of the exercise?

Posted by: Ron | April 7, 2007 09:24 PM

for those of you looking for someplace to get your NEWS, try the International Herald Tribune at iht.com

Posted by: Another EX Reader | April 7, 2007 09:44 PM

It's now been more than a week--nine days, in fact--since Mr. Brady's "Editor's Note" was first posted. Since then, literally hundreds (thousands?) of loyal Post readers have taken time out of their lives to voice their comments on the site's new design in a largely respectful and adult manner, yet we have yet to see a single WaPo staffer post a reply--not even a bland and meaningless "we thank you for your comments" acknowledgment. It's extremely disheartening that no one--NO ONE--at the Post seems to give a damn about the folks who are responsible for their success or failure: their readers.

There is an unlikely interpretation of this total comment blackout, but the only positive one I can think of. Namely, that WaPo staffers have been so overwhelmed by the negative reaction that they've been told not to say anything until The Powers That Be decide what the official company line is going to be. I'm still hopeful that common sense will prevail over stubborn corporate/editorial pride--that is, that WaPo will rectify their horrendous mistake and return to the far superior earlier design. Because otherwise this news-starved "redesign" looks to be the canary in the coal mine. If the company stays this course, it's a clear indicator that the Post is inexorably declining into mediocrity and irrelevancy. As a lifelong Washingtonian and a passionate devotee of quality journalism, I find that prospect to be both terrifying and deeply depressing.

I hope the ghost of Katharine Graham is causing the individuals responsible for this mess many sleepless nights.

Posted by: KR20852 | April 7, 2007 09:48 PM

It crossed my mind that this outlet might not be available much longer, so I decided to print out these comments--to have on hand just in case it might be useful. It's a good thing that I am at work and am using a laser printer because our comments thus far are a resounding 112 pages! Since we do not rate a reply from Jim Brady, maybe I will drop them off for Leonard Downey's reading pleasure.

Posted by: | April 8, 2007 12:49 AM


This is supposedly a premier "news" reporting company.

The right side is dominated by those stupid moving ads.

The left side by over-largely large opinion things.

Scroll down the page and the center is FLUFF!

Down to the bottom and on the left more endless ads (which I don't even look at let alone read) and onte right more FLUFF!!

Finally the "news" in tiny type with very few articles.

This is such a waste of time. I happily pay the New York Times Select service. Good thing WP doesn't cahrge anything - it isn't worth it and I wouldn't pay anythingto access this junk.

Posted by: AnnS | April 8, 2007 06:31 AM

Terrible new format.
Washington Post for Dummies?

Posted by: Misha | April 8, 2007 07:44 AM

I don't know if it's the redesign, but I've tried for 20 minutes to find the "most e-mailed list" without success. Did you read the Onion article about the most-emailed list, and suppress it in the interest of staff harmony??

Posted by: Nate | April 8, 2007 09:13 AM

LA Times website does what new Post format does not, namely, provide dense, diverse menu of stories, the scanning of which can already give you a feel for emerging events. Your web consultants really misled you.

Posted by: ex reader | April 8, 2007 11:23 AM

I agree with fellow readers about the poor redesign. It has the feel of a student paper desperately trying to meet the minimum page limit through white space manipulation. I read at least six online newspapers a day and the WaPo definitely has the least appealing site.

Posted by: LizL | April 8, 2007 11:36 AM

To me is very good. I hope will be better every day. Let see what happen in a few days. Thank you

Posted by: | April 8, 2007 12:04 PM

You have given free speech opponents new irrefutable evidence to help their cause.
Sincerely yours: Cyrano

Posted by: | April 8, 2007 12:23 PM

Here's a link to the most emailed stories: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/mostemailed/index.html

I think that might become my bookmark, and I'll just skip the home page.

Posted by: Chris Altwegg | April 8, 2007 01:41 PM

Simply, it is really bad, difficult to use and not appealing...

While I use to review it seveal times a day, I have looked at it once a day (if that often) since the redesign. There are simply too many other places available to find current news and excellent analysis that are much easier to use.

Posted by: Dn | April 8, 2007 02:31 PM

Add my post to the list of disgruntled readers. Please go back to the original, more informative layout.

Posted by: Jake | April 8, 2007 02:55 PM

The new home page is really awful. Why is there so little news and yet so much crap? How is this less clutter? Instead of news "cluttering" the page, you now have human interest and lots of even less newsworthy stuff cluttering the page.

Truly atrocious. Didn't you guys win awards with the way the site was before? Why would you change something that won awards? Why fix it if it ain't broke?

Posted by: Ryan | April 8, 2007 05:18 PM

Most of the comments seem to be negative. Not surprising, but proof positive that ALL change causes anxiety. I used to work for Lubbockonline.com (a much smaller gig compared to WP.com), but whenever we changed formats we also ran into vehemence.

Please incorporate whatever of the negative you can into developing the website into a positive user experience - there are some good observations here - but rest assured that the angst spewed here will go away as people develop a sense of "where things are". Thanks for your hard work.

Posted by: Michael Pipkin | April 8, 2007 07:35 PM

I just find it odd that a newspaper based in Washington, D.C. would neglect to have explicit links to the 'world' and 'politics' sections in the More Top Stories section. Add those and eventually I'd get used to it.

Posted by: Elise | April 8, 2007 08:34 PM

Is there any way to access the top 20 most popular/viewed stories instead of just the top 5?


Posted by: Larry Meacham | April 8, 2007 11:36 PM

Larry, just look a few posts above yours.

Posted by: seriously | April 9, 2007 05:26 AM

More "white space" is not what I wanted. My impression is that there is less content.

Posted by: Bill | April 9, 2007 06:30 AM

I just read the story on the cap and trade system in Europe. I find it very odd that the author, Steve Mufson, refers to carbon TAXES as carbon costs or carbon prices. Not once in the story are taxes refered as taxes. Funny, how the EU thought they would legislate a cleaner/greener EU by simply raising taxes. What the greener EU did was cut jobs, raise prices to consumers, tax the whole counrty into poverty. The scary thing is, a bunch of our politicans are headed over to Europe to learn from thier mistakes. Yeah, right... here comes our brightest to suggest the same taxes as the EU did. I'm sure they'll also call it costs and prices.

Posted by: Dan | April 9, 2007 07:16 AM

The new home page lacks news and hides things, like discussions, that previously were easy to get to. Worse yet, and though I cannot prove it, I believe the redesign was done in part to hide a less-frequent updating of the news.

Google News, here I come!

Posted by: | April 9, 2007 07:19 AM

>>>Worse yet, and though I cannot prove it, I believe the redesign was done in part to hide a less-frequent updating of the news.<<<

I'm starting to think that myself. I've been coming here less and less lately and I'm still finding the same tired stories up at the top of the site for hours on end. Maybe the staff has been downsized. That would also help explain dropping Nation, World and Politics, since there would be additional workloads (and editors) attached to maintaining and updating those sections as well. WaPo may indeed be trying to pass off an inferior and cheaper product as the same thing we were getting previously.

BTW, thanks to Chris Altwegg for posting the link to mst-emailed stories. I just bookmarked http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/mostemailed/index.html and will probably be using that as my primary access point to WaPo aqas well. The home page is downright unreadable at this time.

Posted by: KR20852 | April 9, 2007 07:41 AM

HOORAY! I love your new home page, how refreshing to see a simpler, lighter design. I think all these negative comments are a natural reaction to changes made in anything people regularly consume, like their morning news. But those of us who work in Web design appreciate the thoughtful, careful clean overhaul you have implemented. Congrats to you all!!

Posted by: Audrey | April 9, 2007 09:22 AM

So it only took over one week and 2000 people to finally find AUDREY, the only person in the entire Washington Metro area who likes your SIMPLER design. Too funny. I guess the problem with the rest of us is that we like to read the news while it is still new so all these changes really slow that daily process down. However, apparently for someone like AUDREY, who only reads the news once a month, this SIMPLER design makes a lot of sense. Tells you a lot, doesn't it?

Posted by: YouGotOne | April 9, 2007 09:50 AM

Like many of the people who have written already, I too dislike the new home page and liked the variety of material readily available on the old home page. And why is it now completely impossible to find Jay Mathews column on Tuesdays?

Posted by: Margaret Atherton | April 9, 2007 10:10 AM

I believe it would be helpful for those of us who prefer the older web format that you provide a link to the older format, just as you do for those that prefer the print version. Just post the link right next to where you have Print Version link.

Looking forward to seeing that link!

Posted by: A MacArthur | April 9, 2007 12:59 PM


Thanks for the McClatchy Link. WAPO webbies take note!

Posted by: A MacArthur | April 9, 2007 01:10 PM

Just out of curiosity, did you test-market your new homepage redesign with ANY ACTUAL readers before spending all this money and energy to pull off the most absurd redesign of a newspaper homepage in human history?

It's hard to believe you did test-market the redesign with actual readers, since all the readers' comments I see now agree that it is HORRIBLE - above all because you have to click down SIX times before arriving at any actual NEWS.

You're a NEWSpaper, for God's sake! I might think Karl Rove, seeking revenge for the Pulitzer-Prize quality Dana Priest Walter Reed stories, redesigned your homepage to drive away readers, but I can't imagine a Bushie having the imagination to come up with anything so ridiculous.


Posted by: Fred Branfman | April 9, 2007 01:22 PM

I have to echo most of the comments above. I much preferred the old home page. I'm not in the DC area, but still like to clue in to what's happening there. You really blew this one!

Posted by: Dave | April 9, 2007 02:05 PM

Agree completely with the naysayers. I want NEWS on the web site. Living in the semi-rural south, the local paper just doesn't give a complete picture so the Post web site used to round it out; sadly, it now just isn't worth the trouble to sift through the trivia.

Posted by: | April 9, 2007 02:16 PM

Now, instead of just attacking the Post, you are attacking other readers. Great stuff, folks.

Posted by: Wow | April 9, 2007 02:27 PM

Put me on the "boo" side as far as the new Home Page is concerend. I can't find today's Business section, and you don't have the Orioles listed under sports (the so-called "Nationals Baseball Team" isn't the only MLB club in the area). In addition, the page doesn't seem to conform very well with Firefox.

Posted by: Amhill2 | April 9, 2007 02:36 PM

I can't see a whole lot of difference between the old page and the new page. Maybe a little more white space, but that doesn't make it new. The page needs to be overhauled, a new design, something it didn't achieve by simply moving things around and calling it new.

Posted by: bhood | April 9, 2007 03:08 PM

I DESPISE the redesign. Simply awful. You have to fight to find latest blog posts and live discussions. And the news section is just bogus.

Posted by: CHANGE IT BACK! | April 9, 2007 03:12 PM

Here's my problem with the new page: it seems to position the WP as a lifestyle website and not a news organization. Please take a look at the homepage again- there are shockingly few articles that appear in the print edition of the WP featured. It makes the paper feel lighter-weight, more like a USA today than perhaps the nation's second best news organization (after the NYT).

Also, I have long thought that the WP was a true leader in their on-line content, and I like some of the on-line only features that make it feel more like a Washington, DC, resource than a Washington, DC, newspaper, like the tips for tourists and the city guide. But the best part of the WP online was the breadth and depth of on-line chats and blogs, and now those are almost invisible on the home page compared to the former layout. These need to be easier to find. Why did you get rid of the old daily listing that highlighted all the live chats and the new blog entries?

Posted by: Quinn | April 9, 2007 03:16 PM

I don't like the neew home page. You've removed a lot of good content and links. This was the best newspaper website but no longer. Please bring back the old format, or at least the same number of links and content.

Posted by: John S., Alamo, California | April 9, 2007 03:28 PM

There's very little news on your homepage. I used to read the Post and the New York Times every day. Now I just read the New York Times.

Posted by: | April 9, 2007 03:31 PM

Just Say No to the new homepage.

The WP.com needs to admit they made a mistake (as we all can do) and bring back the level of organization demonstrated by the old page. Huge chunks of content are hidden by the new page. The folks who have been with the sie forever (like myself) are struggling to find the content they liked, and do it without multiple clicks where as before, you only had to click once.

As for esthetics, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The users (beholders) of the WP.com site have voted with a thumbs down in terms of beauty over organization. What that means for WP.com is may win some awards for the redesign, and then lose their jobs because they lost the loyal readers and caused the WP.com revenue stream to dry up.

I will wait another week for the WP.com to realize a mistake has been made and then I will no longer visit the site - ever. If on the other hand, WP.com announces they are changing to the old page that had organization and news, I will remain.
Maybe the Washington Post newspaper needs to do an article on bad decision making at the WP.com.....

Posted by: Rich Archer | April 9, 2007 04:21 PM

I'm adding my discontent with the new website to the long list above. I miss being able to view several articles under the heading of each news section (two articles per section is inadequate at best). Clutter does not bother me on a newspaper website-- but a distinct lack of news does. Cut back on the pictures, forget the white space, and focus on what readers nationally and locally love about the Washington Post: the informative, well-written news articles.

Posted by: Catherine C. | April 9, 2007 04:44 PM

I wonder how many of you would actually be saying these things to a real person. Much of what's said here is MEAN and totally uncalled for. Please keep in mind that just because you don't like something doesn't give you the right to tear down other people. They have a right to be treated with dignity and respect - even if you don't like their new design.

My guess is that if you had to speak face-to-face with one of the editors/designers, you would probably be more polite and tactful - at least I hope so.

Notice how FEW people have actually used their full names. Instead, names like "KR20852" and "Vulture Breath" and "Razor Wings" and "Chasmosaur" are used to hide behind some of the most vitriolic and hateful stuff that is falsely labeled "criticism".

Bravo to those of you who have been mature and offered helpful critique. Shame on those who have hidden behind pseudonyms and thrown up all over other people's creativity.

Posted by: Chris Thompson | April 9, 2007 04:49 PM

What's unbelievable to me is the manner in which Mr. Paul Compton disregarded the intelligent feedback in the Q&A (and he was quite condescending, too!).

It's no wonder the usability testing was a success! It was probably conducted with the same prideful close-mindedness.

I do have faith it will be corrected. The Post is too large, too important, and has too many smart people to have anything less than a world-class website.

Posted by: Jason C. Howlin | April 9, 2007 06:57 PM

BRING BACK THE OLD FORMAT! I have to say that after only one day, I agree with most of the readers. I liked the Washington Post's previous look, which was positively dense with news and information - it had the feel of a serious paper (which it is). I turn to the Washington Post's web site for important national news before looking at my own local daily, the Houston Chronicle. One comment made is correct, how will you know a story will interest you if you don't get to see the links? Please restore the old Washington Post web layout!

Posted by: wpreader2007 | April 9, 2007 08:12 PM

I must agree with what appears to be the consensus that the new page is far inferior. Please bring back the actual news on the homepage!

Posted by: frequent local reader | April 9, 2007 09:02 PM

To Chris Thompson:

>>>Notice how FEW people have actually used their full names. Instead, names like "KR20852" and "Vulture Breath" and "Razor Wings" and "Chasmosaur" are used to hide behind some of the most vitriolic and hateful stuff that is falsely labeled "criticism".>>if you had to speak face-to-face with one of the editors/designers, you would probably be more polite and tactful - at least I hope so<<<, all I can say is that you've never been in a real newsroom or you'd know that "polite" and "tactful" are not the most common traits you'll find in one. I've had far worse comments hurled my way (and have hurled a few quite choice terms myself) in newsrooms, editors' offices, composing rooms, etc., than anything I've offered up here. Sugarcoating criticism is fine if you're dealing with the saleslady at Lord & Taylor, but these are professional newspapaermen and -women, and unless the breed has recently gone completely thin-skinned and mushy, they won't be bruised by my mere words. BTW, they've yet to get someone up on this thread to say SOMETHING about all the disaffection they've created among their readership. Eleven days of silence is what's truly shameful, not anything I or anyone else has posted.

Posted by: KR20852 | April 9, 2007 11:04 PM

To Chris Thompson:

***Notice how FEW people have actually used their full names. Instead, names like "KR20852" and "Vulture Breath" and "Razor Wings" and "Chasmosaur" are used to hide behind some of the most vitriolic and hateful stuff that is falsely labeled "criticism".***

The reason I use "KR20852 is twofold, Chris. First, because I've used this moniker on the various WaPo comment boards for a couple years now, so I don't feel any need to change it. Second, as I stated in my previous posts, I myself am in the publication design business and would prefer not to use my real name when criticizing an unknown design firm that I may at this very time be doing business with. The fact is that Web designers can often be among the worst prima donnas and hate criticism of their work, and I'm not going to commit professional suicide here by stating how completely lousy this redesign is under my real name. If you think that's cowardly, so be it. I invite you to go to your employer and tell him point-blank that he's made a stupid and horrible mistake the next time he does so and see how long you have to wait for your next promotion--assuming, of course, that you even have a job afterwards.

Additionally, I feel no compunction at all about "throwing up on other people's creativity" when their efforts compel me to vomit. The fault lies with their revolting product, not my weak stomach. I've been reading WaPo for at least seven years now and have invested far more time here than I really want to admit to, so I think I'm entitled to voice my no-holds-barred opinion when some nameless design team comes into the joint and trashes it beyond useability, don't you? After all, no one politely asked my or anyone else's opinion before screwing it up, so why should I be any more courteous than they were? If you checked out that Post designer's Q&A from nearly two weeks ago, you can see that the "mean" posters here hold no monopoly on condescension. The bottom line is taht this was an excellent, eminently readable, fully functional NEWS site two weeks ago. Now it's a news-anemic, fluff-filled, visually insubstantial mess. Call that "vitriolic and hateful stuff" if you want, but it happens to be the truth, and that's what criticism has to be: truthful. Why soft-pedal it? I WANT them to understand how deeply I feel about the damage they did to what WAS my favorite Web site!

Finally, as for your statement that ***if you had to speak face-to-face with one of the editors/designers, you would probably be more polite and tactful - at least I hope so***, all I can say is that you've never been in a real newsroom or you'd know that "polite" and "tactful" are not the most common traits you'll find in one. I've had far worse comments hurled my way (and have hurled a few quite choice terms myself) in newsrooms, editors' offices, composing rooms, etc., than anything I've offered up here. Sugarcoating criticism is fine if you're dealing with the saleslady at Lord & Taylor, but these are professional newspapaermen and -women, and unless the breed has recently gone completely thin-skinned and mushy, they won't be bruised by my mere words. BTW, they've yet to get someone up on this thread to say SOMETHING about all the disaffection they've created among their readership. Eleven days of silence is what's truly shameful, not anything I or anyone else has posted.

Posted by: KR20852 | April 9, 2007 11:06 PM


I wonder how many of you would actually be saying these things to a real person. Much of what's said here is MEAN and totally uncalled for. Please keep in mind that just because you don't like something doesn't give you the right to tear down other people. They have a right to be treated with dignity and respect - even if you don't like their new design.

My guess is that if you had to speak face-to-face with one of the editors/designers, you would probably be more polite and tactful - at least I hope so.

Notice how FEW people have actually used their full names. Instead, names like "KR20852" and "Vulture Breath" and "Razor Wings" and "Chasmosaur" are used to hide behind some of the most vitriolic and hateful stuff that is falsely labeled "criticism".

Bravo to those of you who have been mature and offered helpful critique. Shame on those who have hidden behind pseudonyms and thrown up all over other people's creativity."

If I had the opportunity to have a direct face-to-face dialogue with Post editors and creative people, I would happily say most of what others have said here, and more.

If the Washington Post really cared about what people thought, they wouldn't simply offer this forum, with the possibility of anonymous comments, but they would have public forums and give readers the ability to directly discuss these creative issues with Washingtonpost.com personnel.

Posted by: Henry | April 9, 2007 11:09 PM

Apologies to the readers here for the "duplicate" posts--for some reason the site's software truncated my post and ate two-thirds of it the first time I tried posting it, so I replaced the brackets I used to set off the quoted material with asterisks, and it worked fine the second time 'round. Go figure.

Posted by: KR20852 | April 9, 2007 11:09 PM

I would like to reiterate the opinions of other posters and state that I do not see the revised wp.com site as an improvement whatsoever. I recommend that you return to the previous layout and bring in your real readers for their feedback to make tweaks, as requested.

You have already lost my business as a 10 year paper subscriber due to inability to consistenly deliver the paper on time. You now risk losing my business to other, better configured news and information sites.

Posted by: | April 10, 2007 02:54 AM

Here check out this You Tube video how to read the Washington Post http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hT2MKqrsWeY

Posted by: Randy | April 10, 2007 03:19 AM

The redesign is terrible. I subscribe to the print version of the Post, but I use the web site for updates during the day and for links to the live discussions. Now it is difficult to find the live discussions, and the site itself has too much blank space to make it easy to scan for new news. I hope the editors respond to reader feedback and move back in the direction of the old site.

Posted by: Arlington, VA | April 10, 2007 09:00 AM

This layout is still a disaster.

There's no Politics section on the front page! In the Washington Post! WTF?

Did somebody promise these guys the redesign would be a cakewalk? That they'd be greeted with flowers and candy?

Posted by: lambert strether | April 10, 2007 10:00 AM

I believe most comments here have been constructively criticizing the changes. I do remember when they changed the format last time, I didn't like it, but at least I could find everything I needed. I still haven't found the Metro section, and don't have time to be digging for it. I look at the Post site, becaue I grew up there and like to know what is going on, but with 5 kids and a job, I can't spend hours trying to find out.

Posted by: Anthony in NY | April 10, 2007 10:25 AM

Post No. 3: It seems to me that either some of you are totally blind or I'm getting a page completely different from the one you see. No Politics section on the front page? Look at the top of the page, find the menu bar, and look at the second button labeled POLITICS. Move your cursor over it and click. Voila! If just half of you would learn how to use a computer, you might find the page a bit more usable!!!

Posted by: Mike | April 10, 2007 10:29 AM

Please bring back the discussions list to the front page, or at least do a click-out menu (as with the blogs) so that you don't have to navigate off the main page to see the chats. In the two weeks since the new layout was introduced, I've missed quite a few chats and am becoming less inclined to visit this site as frequently as I used to. Why has there been no response to this (apparently very common) complaint/request? And three stories under each section was much better (more substantive) than two.

Posted by: KAL | April 10, 2007 11:41 AM

Hey Mike. People don't need to learn to use a computer. You just need to learn to read. There are two different versions--- part of this awful redesign included automatically giving people a different interface based on thier account info zip code. So if my user login indicated I am in 60660 I get a different layout than if WaPo thinks I am in 20009. You can select the DC or National pages at the top of the screen, but as with many of the comments here, why make the users do extra work? A good redesign should have resulted in less confusion and greater usability, not more.

Posted by: 2MikeThePresumptousJerk | April 10, 2007 12:45 PM

WPost online, the new layout is such a disappointment. so is the way you've ignored all the comments.

Posted by: still not used to it | April 10, 2007 12:46 PM

I agree with all the detractors. This new version is poorly organized, visually cluttered, and frankly, it's too exhausting to try to find anything. I'm depending on bookmarks and searching to find my faves. Am very disappointed in the new layout.

Posted by: D-Johnson | April 10, 2007 12:53 PM

Here's a screenshot of what I see when I look at the new design. As you can see, the nav is broken for me. I'm using Firefox & WinXP--not exactly an uncommon combo.


Posted by: usability tester | April 10, 2007 01:38 PM

Sorry, that should be: http://new.photos.yahoo.com/waposcreenshots/photo/294928804323219682/0

Posted by: usability tester | April 10, 2007 01:46 PM

Is there any location where I can view the most emailed articles? On the previous website there used to be a link for this.

Posted by: mking | April 10, 2007 02:28 PM

Just want to make sure that people following this section see that a response from the editor has now been posted here: http://blog.washingtonpost.com/washpostblog/2007/04/update_on_new_home_page.html

Posted by: Andrea | April 10, 2007 06:02 PM

Nope, it doesn't measure up to what the Washington Post site should be, first and foremost - a news site. I'm going to have to change my homepage for the first time in five or six years. Too much scrolling, too hard to find things, Doesn't play well with different browsers. Doesn't play well with me. Roll back!

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Posted by: ruslik | April 11, 2007 02:30 AM

mking, the URL has appeared several times in these comments. Search for "mostemailed" and you'll find it.

Posted by: OMG | April 11, 2007 02:41 PM

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