Greg, Vanessa and Joey talk with Sara Gregory, Managing Editor for Online at the Daily Tar Heel, who helped to launch a new site on Drupal on Saturday and Will Davis, Editor in Chief at The Maine Campus, who brings light to their switch at the beginning of the summer from College Publisher to WordPress MU.
The Daily Tar Heel switched to Drupal, Sara Gregory says, because is more compatible with paper’s existing structure, size and content. She’s making online publication simpler by eliminating copy editors and desk editors from the process. Now only one desk level and one management editor read each online story before publication. Thanks to the redesign, readers can now subscribe to two different newsletters (regular and breaking news) and choose from numerous RSS feed options. The paper’s staff also added a new Community Manager position that is responsible for both of the paper’s regular and breaking news Twitter accounts as well as its Facebook account. Gregory’s upcoming projects include incorporating major linking within stories.
Will Davis made the transition to WordPress MU because he wanted The Maine Campus to have a variety of plug-ins and the potential to build a blog community. He set up custom-user permissions so writers post drafts to the Web site as well as a plug-in that emails staff when a draft is posted, cutting down the workflow to just two steps. The site also has a RSS feed for the entire site and newsletter for subscribers. Davis is in the works of launching “Campus Currents,” a user-generated wiki-based community site, and a user-generated restaurant guide. He hopes to integrate more multimedia production and interactivity online in the near future.