About the new Echonetdaily
As our readers will have noticed, Echonetdaily has changed its format. To help people get the most out of the new website here is a brief explanation of what the new site offers and some background as to why the changes were made.
The new website launched in August 2013 on a much more versatile platform. It allows the publishing of new content without producing a complete edition. There are many benefits to the new format, such as the content now being fully searchable, including our story archives going back to the birth of Echonetdaily in 2011. The homepage is a launch pad to featured and recent stories and the many different sections of our site. Our rich selection of content can be found in our main category pages with various types of stories collected together for easy browsing. Main category pages can be selected from any page via the main menu, or the prominent navigation arrows can move through them in sequence, like the pages of a newspaper – allowing easy browsing of the wide range of content. A key benefit of the changes we have made is the site is now dynamically mobile-friendly. The same content you see on a PC or tablet will adapt to better present itself on a small screen. No matter what internet device you have, now or in the future, the full Echonetdaily experience is only a click away.
In the past Echonetdaily published editions in an online equivalent to a daily newspaper. Readers of our printed newspapers and our staff with their long experience in newspapers both found this format appealing, with the experience being similar to a traditional paper daily. But readers’ habits and technology are changing and we have needed to overcome limitations inherent in the original format. As producers of traditional media and their readers are adapting to the digital age, so are we. The Echo is determined to continue in its long-established tradition of entertaining and informing the residents of the NSW north coast. Changes have been made to to our website to ensure Echonetdaily remains useful and accessible to everyone, now and into the future.
Under the surface of the site still lie our many stories on the issues that matter most to our community: Local news coverage and articles delivered with a passion for free speech, independent of the vested interests that plague modern media, and with a healthy irreverence. Echonetdaily aspires to be a community portal, relevant and useful to the whole of the northern rivers. To achieve that aim we value contributions and feedback from our readers. If you have news that you want us to cover, please let us know. Submissions of articles are also welcome and encouraged. Please comment on and share our stories. Let us know what you like or don’t like and help shape the Echonetdaily of tomorrow.
We are also determined to make Echonetdaily a joy to use. There are planned improvements still to be completed, and suggestions are most welcome. You can expect The Echo to continue to improve and adapt into the future. While we have had some teething problems with the new site, they are being fixed. With the wide range of internet devices in use these days there are glitches some readers may experience that still need to be resolved. Information on any bugs will be gratefully received – details such as specific page URLs, devices and browsers will help us fix any problems quickly.
Please send editorial submissions and letters to the editor to onlineeditor[at]echo.net.au.
Please send constructive criticism and descriptions of bugs found to feedback[at]echo.net.au.
To protect ourselves from spambots the email addresses above need @ substituted for [at].
Integration of the Byron Echo archives
The Byron Echo website has been integrated into Echonetdaily. This has been a cause of some confusion so here is an explanation of why this was done.
The ageing Byron Echo website had reached the end of its effectiveness around the time we started working on the new Echonetdaily. It was based on systems that were not compatible with modern technology, and it was becoming impossible to maintain because services that it relied on were being discontinued. The new platform we were creating for Echonetdaily provided a natural opportunity to solve the problems of the Byron Echo site.
Some who were use to reading the Byron Echo online have asked why when they go to www.echo.net.au they now find the Echonetdaily homepage, instead of the current edition of the printed Echo. This is a deliberate change to reflect the changing landscape of printed and digital media, and where The Echo wants to position itself in that landscape. The Byron Echo is limited by the practicalities of physically printing and distributing a paper. We cover the area of the Byron Shire – and we cover it well. Online we have the freedom to cast our sphere of influence wider, so Echonetdaily is a publication for the whole of the northern rivers. Locating the archives at www.echo.net.au/byron-echo is not relegating it to position of lesser importance. Rather it is a reflection that online The Echo will continue to grow and improve as a digital publisher into the future, and will offer our readers much more than what can physically fit within the limited pages of a printed publication.
Maintaining and improving the online archives of the Byron Echo continues to be a priority for us. Now that we have a more flexible platform we have been able to improve the usefulness of our archives. Once complete it will go back further than the old website did and be much easier to navigate to and read past editions. It will also work on smartphones and other small-screen devices. Editions added since the website’s launch will also have selected stories in html format for easy online reading.
The Byron Echo is here to stay – in print and online. If you can’t get your hands on the printed copy it will always be available online, wherever you may be and whatever internet device you happen to have, now and into the future.