What is the Purpose of "ZDNet UK Live"?

First things first. This is not intended as criticism, it is a sincere question.

First things first. This is not intended as criticism, it is a sincere question. I know that there has been a huge amount of work put into the new design of the ZDNet UK web page, and I applaud that. But there are a few things that puzzle me about the new design, and I want to ask about two of them here.

So, what is the purpose of the "ZDNet UK Live" area? Besides being a handy place for the self-aggrandizing to post over and over again "Look at what I wrote on ZDNet UK", (i.e. "xxx xxx xxx by me" ad nauseum)? It is mildly interesting to see that others are recommending articles and blog posts from ZDNet UK, but it seems to me that a simple scoreboard/counter of some sort, showing the number of Tweets or whatever, would serve just as well and take less space. Assuming that you are not particularly interested in who specifically posted the link, there is not much interesting information in that area.

Then, related to the above, is there any chance of getting back the "recent comments" area, or whatever it used to be called in the old design? It really was an easy and convenient way to see what was being said at a glance, and then click through to the actual comment if it was of interest. I know there have been a few other comments from long-time readers and contributors here about the new design being "difficult" or "tedious", and some have atually given up, or just gotten frustrated and drited away. I think this difficulty of easily tracking conversations might be a large part of the reason for that.

Personally I am getting tired of the only two choices available - either slog through all of the big egos promoting themselves and their posts here, to find the few links to actual comments and new content, or slog through any number of posts that might be interesting to see if anything worthwhile has been added. The "Most Discussed" area comes somewhat close to what I think would be nice, if you can remember what the counters were the last time you looked... but with things dropping off that list based exclusively on age, there have been a few times when some still-lively discussions passed from that list into oblivion.

As I said, thanks and congratulations to all of those involved in the new design. Please don't take this as negative, it isn't intended that way.

jw 20/7/2010

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