- The Washington Times - Friday, May 17, 2002

Vibrant news site also useful archive

"I have just recently begun downloading and reading your Net production and am very pleased with the refreshing views of world events you bring us," Bud Bruneau says by e-mail from Alaska.
The Internet edition of The Washington Times (www.washingtontimes.com), introduced just six years ago, has become the much-used "bookmark" for readers throughout the nation and the world.
When the Web site debuted on the newspaper's 14th anniversary May 17, 1996 it featured only about a dozen news dispatches and columns. Nevertheless, The Times soon had one of the most popular news sites on the Internet.
In a survey of thousands of Internet users conducted by American Journalism Review only six months later, the Web site of The Times was voted 10th out of 50 news sites ranking with CNN Interactive, The Washington Post, USA Today, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.
"Most of the other large newspapers rehash the same sort of news and information, making them all similar and sometimes even boring," Wesley Pruden, editor in chief of The Times, says. "Our Web site reflects a fresh perspective, and this is one of the reasons it became so popular so quickly."
The site expanded in March 1997 to include 30 to 40 new staff-written news reports and opinion columns a day, a photography gallery and the complete Washington Daybook listings.
The electronic edition of The Times, which continues to rank in the Top 10, early this year recorded a peak of 18 million monthly "page views." The site, subject to frequent redesign as more features are added, includes most of the staff-written news stories and columns found in the paper-and-ink editions and provides links to breaking news from Associated Press and United Press International.
Internet manager Steven Sweet created a fully searchable archive that retrieves articles dating back to 1990, and the site is increasingly easy to navigate and search.
More than 9,300 other Internet sites link to The Times, providing entryways for millions of prospective readers from around the world. Unfamiliar as it may be to readers of newspapers of an earlier era, it's nevertheless solidly in the tradition of the bold and brash paper-and-ink editions.


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