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My post-CNN news sources

With the horrendous redesign of CNN, I quickly determined I had to find a new news source (or sources). After browsing the comments to my post, and doing some searching, here are the changes I’ve made in my news reading.

The first change is the biggest—I now use an RSS reader for the majority of my news reading. I’ve always used an RSS reader for most non-news sites, but preferred reading news directly on a web page (not sure why).

But as most sites seem to be heading in the image overload direction, I decided to find news sites with good RSS feeds, and read them using Vienna, my RSS reader of choice.

Why Vienna? I’ll write about that in a future post, I think…but its excellent keyboard controls, and its ability to open articles in background tabs, are two of its key features for my reading habits.

The second change is obviously what sites/sources I use in Vienna. Here’s my list of new sources, with both the web site and RSS URLs provided:

BBC – US and Canada web RSS
UPI – Latest News web RSS
UPI – US News web RSS
Reuters – Top News web RSS
Reuters – US News web RSS

There’s obviously some overlap between these sources, but that’s OK; it’s easy to mark/skip duplicates in Vienna. When I’m visiting a site on the web, all three (BBC, UPI, and Reuters) present a clean interface, without invasively large photos, and zero auto-playing videos or scrolling marquees. In short, all three are a joy to use on the web, unlike the “new and improved” CNN.

Sorry, CNN, but you’ve permanently lost at least one viewer; your new site makes it too hard to get what I want, which is news. The BBC, UPI, and Reuters understand that news is what viewers come to a news site to see. Perhaps there’s a lesson there for CNN, if they can see it behind those enormous photos and CPU-sucking videos.

6 Comments

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  1. Right. Back home in the Netherlands, with fiber speed internet not really a problem, but in our temporary residence in France we have max. 1Mb download speed in good conditions. So, CNN is not anymore the news source. Maybe they should have a text only site for viewers with limited bandwidth, or mobile users who don’t like to spend expensive MB’s on mostly useless images or vids…

    1. It looks interesting, but it’s a web app on the Mac — and I can’t stand web apps, for any number of reasons. If I start reading more news on iOS, though, I’ll give it a look.

      -rob.

  2. I appreciated your data driven analysis of the change in your first article. As a follow on, you may be interested in checking out http://www.alexa.com for the traffic statistics for cnn.com. An obvious drop off in mid January. It will be intersting to see if cnn tries to remedy the situation. I’ve switched over to BBC.

  3. This was super interesting and helpful. I came looking for a news outlet to replace CNN.com because the new design annoys me greatly as well. Thanks for posting!

  4. Thank you all for the information. CNN.com locks up my computer every time I try to visit it but I didn’t really know why. Time to try BBC and Reuters. Goodbye CNN. Thanks for all the posts.

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