This is an assignment done recently for class (ENGL 408C: The Rhetoric of Digital Design). The goal was to “Discuss the design of an online newspaper … Combine the terminology of newspaper design with the observations of social semiotics.” I chose theglobeandmail.com mostly because they recently did a redesign ‚Äî it got mixed reviews (exhibit A, exhibit B, exhibit C, Google the rest yourself!) and from an aesthetic standpoint, I’m not the biggest fan either ‚Äî which gave me quite a bit to talk about.
I’ll warn you that it’s not the best and/or most invigorating piece of analysis in the world; many of my points are either rushed and/or exaggerated and/or unnecessary. It’s not very thorough either; I only touch on various aspects of the site and ignores lots. Plus, it’s an analysis from a social semiotic standpoint which is not the most exciting thing in the world. Simply put, you should probably just pass on reading this. But, I figured I’d throw it on here anyway since some of the points I make are valid and/or interesting.