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ZDNet Asia goes global on local

As some of you may have noticed by now, the ZDNet Asia site has gone through a pretty intense makeover. We now sport not just a new look, but also a new framework for how visitors to our site navigate.

As some of you may have noticed by now, the ZDNet Asia site has gone through a pretty intense makeover. We now sport not just a new look, but also a new framework for how visitors to our site navigate.

There are several key driving forces behind the relaunch. Topmost is the aim to enable all readers, regardless of where they are located, to access ZDNet's global news coverage on one single platform. At the same time, this platform will still highlight localized content and services, and feature site tweaks that are unique to its local audience. The idea is to make it global-local, as we coin it internally.

When I was informed that ZDNet Asia will be one of three ZDNet sites to take the first step in adopting this concept, I was apprehensive.

To complement this global-local approach, there needs to be a unified design across the three sites and I had concerns about how that would impact the level of control we would have in customizing site design and features for our own ZDNet Asia audience.

I've always felt that Asia as a region is sometimes unduly overlooked in its significance as a player in the global tech industry, and was sure this treatment would spill over to other areas.

But, I fully appreciate the benefit of giving readers easier access to global news--no one region can operate alone in today's borderless cyber world, as much as one would like to deny this. So this enhanced reader experience should outweigh any compromise we may have to make on our end.

Another key driving force behind the redesign is site navigation, which is now centered around content driven by industry topics, based on audience demand and feedback. The idea is to organize all coverage including news, blogs, special reports and whitepapers, around the latest hot topics so readers can more quickly get to the most relevant content on the site.

We've also integrated social media networks and communities, where a new feature called ZDNet Asia Live highlights live feedback and commentary feeds on our stories from within the site as well as platforms such as Twitter and Digg. These streams of content are intended to reflect how the user community shares and discusses tech issues as they develop in real-time.

The IT landscape no longer thrives in isolation. We are all increasingly connected and every business is no longer influenced only by the country or region it operates in but also by developments in all global markets.

By reengineering ZDNet around these principles, IT professionals, CXOs and department heads will be able to better access content and resources to help them make well-informed decisions on their business strategies.

There are several other new features on the site so do check them out. There's a quick photo tutorial that explains some of these new highlights, and you can access this on the homepage by clicking on the link that reads, "What's new on ZDNet Asia?"

It's very fitting the relaunch falls on the week the first dot-com domain name popped up on the World Wide Web exactly 25 years ago, marking the start of the dot-com era.

ZDNet's own roots originate from the dot-com days and we're focused on delivering the best of the online platform, combining the strengths of our local and global editorial experience.

If you have any feedback on the new site design, we would love to hear from you so do leave your comments on Talkback.