The internet is fast becoming an important part of modern man’s life in his quest for fast information and communication. The internet has the great ability of amplifying human potential by making information instantaneously available for reference and for its potential for information transfer. The internet has therefore made the world smaller with its information exchange potential. It is slowly breaking down cultural barriers and has opened up new doors for businesses by shrinking time and distances. Websites are designed with the specific purpose of making information about a given subject easily accessible. They should therefore be easily navigable and their design should reflect the owner’s aims so as communicate with maximum effectiveness with the intended audience.
It should therefore be designed towards this goal in terms of information available, aesthetic appeal and accessibility. With greater connectivity in the globally, the internet is emerging as one of the greatest catalysts for change, and in some areas, is surpassing the old media like newspapers, television and radio. The design and appeal of blogs is therefore an important part in the quest for effective communication with internet users.
The old media is being faced by stiff competition from the internet. It is therefore trying to cope with this pressure by expanding into the new through integration. One such example is the British Broadcasting Corporation, BBC, which is the world’s largest broadcaster. The BBC has a website which it is using to reach a wider audience through the sharing of information that is instantaneously available and that is made more conveniently available. It has organized the information it provides in subjects, languages and according to their dates and times. The website provides help for accessibility, major world stories, and some links to external sites.
Due to its rapid growth, the internet has acquired a large following as a result of its wide applicability and therefore the media is interested in reaching this audience. Though the internet remains a preserve of the young, the older generation-though often technologically challenged-is catching up since the information it provides is non-generational and it is becoming a source of information for many and a place for its exchange. The BBC and other networks are thus drawn to this new media and with the inception of websites seek to rein in customers opting for the new media and draw in new ones. With its strong global reputation for impartial news, the BBC is able to draw in a diverse audience the world over and thus the need for a multicultural or culturally-neutral website. The website is therefore also provided with multilingual portals for world news. The BBC is primarily a news provider and thus the website is designed for the provision of information and may also direct one to their old media which increases their audience.
The website has the primary objective of providing brief news summaries and the integration of the old media with the internet. Thus one can listen to radio live on the internet which expands their audience and also may help in drawing in new listeners. It is also possible to get earlier broadcasts on the net which is not possible with the old media forms. The web is also a platform for interaction with their audience since it allows them to send their views to the broadcaster. This enhances their broadcasts since they would be more audience oriented and would thus reach and appeal to greater numbers. The audience can further contribute to live broadcasts by sending messages which are instantaneous and would thus enliven debate due to the diverse views offered by the audience. Messages are advantageous in that they can be screened as opposed to the telephone call that-in live broadcasts-is open to abuse by respondents.
The home webpage for the BBC gives prominence to world news. It provides links to other relevant websites, channel for both radio and television and podcasts. The site also gives prominence to sports news, recent global news, world financial news, and weather news. This allows the broadcaster to reach a large and diverse audience due to its varied news assortment. This is further enhanced by the inclusion of links to different major world languages that its reach and accessibility. The arrangement also includes links to live feeds from their broadcasts. The site also includes customer service options like the inclusion of a complaints link which would enable them to serve the public better. Its arrangement clearly sets the BBC apart as a global news provider with strong audience linked services. A destination finder is incorporated into the website which also communicates the BBC’s professionalism and reliability as a neutral multicultural service provider.
The website of the BBC is formal in its nature which would communicate professionalism and reliability.
Color- It is mostly done in cool colors that serve the purpose of appearing somber as would be a reliable messenger of world news. Garish colors could communicate unprofessionalism since they would appear gay as opposed to the sobriety called for.
Font- the font used is times new roman which conveys a businesslike attitude since the BBC is essentially a serious world news provider. The headlines are enhanced by the use of bold larger font which is easily visible enabling the reader to scan available news fast and the follow links related to them.
Graphics- Graphics are an important part of a website since they are typically a visual source of information. Graphics are used to help in the interaction of the user with the interface in that they can convey messages fast without the need for words. The webpage contains pictures that easily identify and which help deliver news pieces forcefully. Graphics on the pieces on weather help convey news and forecasts powerfully and render them easily understandable.
Most activities can be broken down into simpler actions which the design of the webpage emulates. It is possible to show that the blog is an activity system that has small activities like clicking on a link lead to the whole, maybe the access to a video which is watched. The blog emerges as a tool that is slowly being understood by more people who will use it to and then it becomes a part of interaction which is woven into the public consciousness. The blog and by extension the internet become an essential part of communication as more and more people learn how to use it. Digital context helps in the development of methods through which abstract ideas and data can be easily understood and thus turn them into knowledge. The graphics turn these abstract ideas into easily understood actions that most people can learn.
With the inception of these blogs people get new ways through which they can communicate and which are easily accessible. The blogs increase cultural exchanges since they are designed by diverse people who, when they incorporate their cultural heritage into the blogs, will give others a taste of it. The blogs which originate mostly from economically stable countries bring with them this cultural leaning. Thus the BBC though it may appear global in its broadcasting and sourcing of information still preserves most of its workers philosophies and way of thinking and thus carrying to subtle cultural overtones. There are also viewpoints that the broadcaster’s managers seek to indoctrinate into their audience and this is carried in the stories that are broadcast as a result of editing.
British Broadcasting Corporation, (2009). Accessed on June 15, 2009 from http://www.bbc.co.uk/