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TagesWoche Newscoop 4.4 Implementation

frontpage template

Common elements

Featured articles ('Front page' playlist)

Controlling the order of new articles on frontpage is done using featured article list (also known as article playlist). In backend, in featured article list manager, editors can drag-and-drop desired articles from left pane (where all articles are listed, with powerful filtering optiosns - by type, date, author, etc) to the top position of article list in right pane, or any position under it. 

[screenshot: featured article lists manager]

This gives editors freedom to promptly decide and change featured story (or any other story under it) without depending on pre-defined hard-coded ordering by recency or some other rule.

Type of article that is put into playlist is also flexible: it can be news article, blogpost, newswire article, link, paid content - every type has it's own specifities thus the template is programmed to check the type and show appropriate inforamtion. For example, article teaser of article type 'link' - when clicked - doesn't open full article page, but rather leads to linked content, and also such 'link' teaser has slilghtly different styles (it has specific pink-ish color for 'read more' link). Another example of fine tuning: if article is of type 'news' and has 'dateline' defined, then that value will be shown above article title, otherwise - section name. 

Further, depending on the position of article in playlist, size of teaser image can be bigger or smaller. Also there are cases covered when content is authored by multiple authors (then it is carefully crafted information that also depends on content, for example if aritcle has switch 'Kommentar' turned on, then list of authors will start with 'Ein Kommentar von' - otherwise just 'Von').

Further on the front page, older articles from playlist are shown in slider that shows four artcle titles per slide. This way bigger number of articles are approacheable already from the frontpage of the site without need to click through archive/search or section pages.

Front debatte ('Debatten' playlist)

Debate articles are those articles assigned by editors with topic 'Debatte'. Debates part of the front page is controlled by another featured articles list. Although the list is manually curated, behavior of articles inside of it is highly automatized:

  • 'Debatte' article can be any type of article, not necessary blgopost or news article. This gives editors freedom to act according to circumstances - they don't need to plan in advance that some piece of content is going to be 'Debatte' or not. Instead, if topic appears to be discussed by community and provokes different reactions, it can promptly become 'Debatte' article
  • frontpage list shows four articles from top of the list
  • template checks if article is less than ten days old and/or latest comment was posted less than three days ago
  • if any of these two conditions is met, then article is shown as active, otherwise it appears as 'inactive' (grayed out)
  • If an inactive debate article receives new comment, it automatically becomes active again
  • if editors decide they don't want 'Debatte' articles or they want less than four, it can also be controlled by playlist


Front highlights ('Selection' section)

This section of frontpage consists of three parts:

  • editor picks (six interesting stories hand-picked by editors, using featured article list 'Editor picks'), 
  • youtube videos (six videos from Tageswoche's playlist on Youtube, functionality driven by specialy crafted plugin that accesses the youtube api)
  • dossiers (six dossiers from yet another playlist 'Dossiers'). Dossiers are collections of hand-picked articles that cover one topic in depth, enriched with more contextual information on the topic - like general introduction, cover image, map, sources etc - as well as automatic index of all related articles (shown in separate tab on dossier page)
These three parts are visually put together in section 'Selection' and appear as three separate sliders of six items each

Front big map

Option exists for editors to highlight one article that is location-aware by showing map and POI markers in full width of main content column. This feature is rarely or never used.

To show such article under 'Selection' section, editors would need to turn 'show_big_map_on_front' switch on for one article, being it news, newswire, blog or any other kind of article in any section or issue.

Front photo blogs

Photo-blog 'Bildstoff' is featured on frontpage in form of film strip and it consist of 5 images, one per blogpost. Last five posts are presented here. This section is automatically updated whenever new post is published.

Right-hand sidebar

Omniticker is the real-time information feed of latest incoming news from news agency SDA, as well as other types of activity on the site.

These are the types of information recognized by omniticker and appropriate icon that accompanies information in sidebar widget:

  •    - article of type 'news'
  •    - article of type 'newswire'
  •   - new dossier published
  •   - new user registered
  •  - new tweet
  •   - new event
  •    - new comment
  •   - article of type 'link'
  •    - new blogpost published

 Of course, this list is fully automatic.

Newsdesk message is the sidebar widget that shows who is currently editor-in-charge. Widget shows editor image, name and standard email to contact news desk directly. This element is manually controlled by editors.

Auf den Punkt gebracht is the widget showing slider of seven user comments that editors have emphasized site-wide.

For this widget, Sourcefabric developed plugin called 'Featured comments'. Similarly as featured article playlist, it offers all user comments (most recent on top) in the left pane, with possibility to drag-n-drop chosen comments to the right pane. Also, comments can be quick-edited (for example, if editors want to show only one sentence from the longer comment, or simply to extract the most interesting point from it). Quick editing is not applied to original comment but to its clone which is kept separately in the database.

On frontend, shown comments are linked to original article to which they were posted, but also to public profile of the user sending it.

Sidebar links is the widget showing seven article of type 'link'. Here on frontpage, list is filtered to those 'link' articles having switch 'Front' turned on (widget exsists on section pages as well, where it is filtered to appropriate switch which corresponds with the section name). 

So, the list is automatic and editors are affecting it by selecting  appropriate switches (for example, if some 'link' article is to be shown in the Links widget on front page, Section Basel and Section Sport, article switches that should be turned on are 'Front', 'Basel' and 'Sport'.

Teaser boxes is the rarely on not anymore used feature developed as an option to show advertisment content not as classic banner ad, but like thumb image plus short textual description that links to external resource. For example, this was used to announce various events.

Honorieren widget is Call-to-action element that offers site visitors to become supporters of different levels by paying annual contribution.

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