posted by Kroc on Thu 27th Nov 2008 17:28
Conversations What does OSnews mean to you, and what do you think it should focus on?

Articles?
Community?
Size?
Features?
Interactivity?
Customisation?
Quality?
Participation?

It's easy to complain, but it's harder to think about where you would steer the ship if you were in control. Which direction would you point the ship?
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Comments:
.
by Buck on Thu 27th Nov 2008 19:24 UTC
Buck
Member since:
2005-06-29

Whoa. Sounds like Kroc got in charge.
Anyway, I'd focus on quality and unbiased news first. Less editorialisations. It's already pretty good but what ruins it is when somebody says "What this news story tells us is..." I can figure it out myself, thanks.
Otherwise it wouldn't hurt to find a niche and work in it, like stop publishing hardware news entirely for example... Because you either give the whole picture - publish every relevant story in that department, or not.

Reply Score: 2

RE: .
by Kroc on Thu 27th Nov 2008 23:16 in reply to "."
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

No, I'm not in charge of anything--but I do care about OSnews and hate to see constant negative and off topic discussion about moderation.

It'd be more interesting to see what everybody upholds as personal standards of quality that they would like to see reflected through the site. ;)

Reply Score: 2

Yup
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 28th Nov 2008 00:40 UTC
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

More editors.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Yup
by Kroc on Fri 28th Nov 2008 19:14 in reply to "Yup"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Done.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by Kroc
by Kroc on Fri 28th Nov 2008 13:32 UTC
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

This is what I would do.

Define the nature of the site, and then focus on it. No longer be a general tech news site with an interest in OSes - be an OS site, and nothing but.

* Drop the common / popular news everybody else aready has.
* Drop any controversal news / flamebait / off-topic

* Build close and personal relationships with alternative OS makers and skunkwork projects
* Through these relationships, be the source of exclusive interviews and news for all alternative OSes.
* Provide greater means and encouragement for the community to contribute
* Hold regular writing competitions and themed cmmunity events

* If you must keep the popular/regular news - move *all* of it to page 2. Page 1 should be nothing but OSes / niceh / exclusive content

* Simplify, streamline the website

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Kroc
by RandomGuy on Fri 28th Nov 2008 14:23 in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
RandomGuy Member since:
2006-07-30

And that'd give what, like one article per week?
Simplification has some appeal but the effort required to find one interesting article that's not on OSNews is probably 10-100 times higher than the effort of ignoring an article that doesn't sound interesting.

If you significantly change the focus of OSNews you're bound to lose a lot of users while you may or may not gain new users.

I don't really think OSNews needs to slim down because it's already a lot slimmer and more focused than most competing sites.

What keeps me here is the interesting news mix of
-Linux
-programming languages
-hardware reviews

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by Kroc on Fri 28th Nov 2008 15:09 in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Then spin the mainstream news into a new site and keep that running. Being all things to all people is no fun.

The staff have repeated that OSnews is run as a part time project and the ad revenue is put into hosting costs. Of course, I can't speak for them, but a loss of users can't be a bad thing if you're not relying on them. Slimming the community down to those who care much more deeply about the subjects on hand can only be a good thing.

Digg has bought us nothing by utter crap news and utter crap comments.

And I don't agree that there are not interesting stories out there. There is so much going on in the hobbyist world, and I could write a few articles myself, and contribute links to the stuff I discover that most haven't seen or heard of.

--I do agree that programming language articles are great, that I would include.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Kroc
by google_ninja on Fri 28th Nov 2008 17:38 in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Fantastic ideas, I don't disagree with any of them.

* Drop the common / popular news everybody else aready has.
* Drop any controversal news / flamebait / off-topic


I would add on drop any exposing of karma of any kind, including post level votes to take away gaming aspect that karma whores feed on.

* Build close and personal relationships with alternative OS makers and skunkwork projects
* Through these relationships, be the source of exclusive interviews and news for all alternative OSes.
* Provide greater means and encouragement for the community to contribute
* Hold regular writing competitions and themed cmmunity events


Also, dramatically reduce the linux/windows/osx content. "Pulse audio now sucks slightly less" and "Windows 7 now uses teal windows by default" are just noise. The site has basically become Windows News/Linux News.

* Simplify, streamline the website


Jquery ftw. The profile menu and a few strategic xhrs are the only javascript on the site. imo www.stackoverflow.com is a great example of a site that dynamic and flashy in a good way.

Reply Score: 2

My thoughts
by grfgguvf on Fri 28th Nov 2008 16:25 UTC
grfgguvf
Member since:
2006-09-25

I know Eugenia started OSnews but her recent posts are totally off-topic. If she no longer cares about OSs but video production, then she should start videography.com or something, and not spam OSnews.

To the contrary of what someone above says, I would like to see MORE editorial opinion and in depth look behind the news. For example, recently Genode OS framework X.Y was released. And that's it. But I would like to know what it is, and whether it matters at all (probably not), if yes, why and what is especially interesting about it. These kind of posts would of course take more time to write... which brings us to:

More editors. This would mean more time available to write per post = more in depth and better quality posts.

An OS knowledge base, or call it wiki if you will. People could add their definitions to it, but probably it shouldn't be open to everyone to edit. The advantage over Wikipedia would ideally be quality, conciseness, professionalism, etc...

Reply Score: 2

Fine as it is
by Michael on Sat 29th Nov 2008 23:50 UTC
Michael
Member since:
2005-07-01

Just looking at the front page, most of it's very much OS related. There's some hardware news, some legal news and one or two articles that are only tangentially related to OSs but what the heck? Better than monotonous distro releases.

If you don't like an item, don't read it and don't comment on it. Reward good behavior, ignore bad.

Reply Score: 2

Suggestions
by Bobthearch on Sun 30th Nov 2008 17:21 UTC
Bobthearch
Member since:
2006-01-27

News. The focus should be on alternative operating systems - news, updates, and announcements that aren't centralized anywhere else. Some Lunux/Mac/Windows news is to be expected, especially major releases, but shouldn't be the focus; that stuff can be found anywhere.

Hardware reviews are OK sometimes, but should emphasize the OS-related aspects. Lose the hardware/appliance articles that are completely OT.

I did like the Page 2 idea. "Page 1" for OS-specific announcements and news; "Page 2" for other technology news, opinion essays, and stories.

The recent articles on vintage machines have been especially interesting, but have noticeably lacked information on the machines' operating systems, often not even a screenshot. Great filler material for Page 2...

More community interaction. Moderating was a PITA I realize, but the old forums were an incredible asset for alternative operating system authors, users, and hobbyists, an asset that hasn't been replicated anywhere since.

Reply Score: 2

Another example
by Buck on Sun 30th Nov 2008 19:14 UTC
Buck
Member since:
2005-06-29

So the newest news item, about Linux being ported to the iPhone. And there we have Thom again with his annoying opinion on how you shouldn't be happy because Apple is not perfect. That's exactly the thing that annoys the HELL out of me! Nowhere did the dev team stated that they were annoyed by strict software policies or whatever. They just do it BECAUSE THEY LIKE HACKING STUFF! Moreover, just porting Linux won't exactly accomplish the task of showing Apple how they were wrong. But I won't go into that. We really really ought to take the bias and opinions out of news. Why don't editors just go to the comments and say what how they feel like THERE instead?

Reply Score: 2

Seems OK to me...
by sbergman27 on Mon 1st Dec 2008 00:31 UTC
sbergman27
Member since:
2005-07-24

Do any major changes really need to be made? I can't really think of any changes to OSNews itself that would excite me. Users might consider being a little more considerate of each others' opinions, and pause more often to actually consider the other side of the argument. But that's not something that can be imposed by policy.

I'll start off by saying that while I try to be diplomatic most of the time, my diplomacy sometimes slips a bit in KDE related threads. I'll try to improve in that area. But don't expect me to sugar-coat, either! ;-)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Seems OK to me...
by Soulbender on Tue 2nd Dec 2008 17:10 in reply to "Seems OK to me..."
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Do any major changes really need to be made?


Well, I think we could all do with a little less "some blog somewhere that no one reads mentioned something unimportant about [Windows7|Ubuntu|Linux] in a [bad|good] way".

my diplomacy sometimes slips a bit in KDE related threads.


I'll say... ;)

Reply Score: 2

What do you think OSnews should focus on?
by irbis on Tue 2nd Dec 2008 13:50 UTC
irbis
Member since:
2005-07-08

Articles. And news. Good, interesting and informative news and articles are the reason why most people come here and read OSnews. Of course, other things can and should be improved too, but those other thigs are just extra.

Reply Score: 2