If you’re a regular visitor to PC Invasion, then you’ve probably spotted that we haven’t been focusing quite so heavily on news for the past few weeks. You’ve probably also noticed that, today, the front page looks a little bit different.
Recently, we’ve opened up a new feature called News Bites, and you can find a link to this on the right-hand side of any page on the site. Probably even this one. Look to your right. See it, in the little box? Just above the comments feed? That’s the one. Click the big text at the top of that box and you’ll be taken to the current News Bites page, which will be continually updated throughout each day with smaller tidbits of news, each of which will usually only be a couple of sentences long.
This offers two upsides. Firstly, it lets us cover a lot more news a lot more quickly, which means we can now cover news items we wouldn’t normally do. Secondly, while our front page will still offer the larger news items we’d traditionally focus on, the News Bites offers a page you can refresh a few times over the course of the day to catch up on everything else that’s happening. It’s news we think you will want to know about but doesn’t warrant a full editorial news piece.
Has an MMO we don’t play been patched up? Has an indie game we don’t usually cover got a release date? Is one of Steam’s daily sales worth a bit of attention? The News Bites page is where you’ll find all of that – and, in fact, that’s a pretty good summary of what cropped up in the inaugural post.
I couldn’t find a decent image to stick in there, so I opted for a vaguely appropriate musical interlude instead. ELO is always appropriate.
We also try to be as transparent as possible, so I’ll admit that there’s a third upside: to stop wasting your time. If you’ve ever worked on a website, then SEO is a term you’ve probably heard bandied around; essentially, it’s a way of getting your pages linked near the top of search engines. There are a lot of ever-changing requirements for this, one of which is word count. Quite honestly, we don’t want to force you to read more by bloating out a 100-word snippet of news to 300 words just so that Google is happy with it, and we don’t want to waste our time writing pointless text to fill out an arbitrary word count. News Bites will, we hope, let us avoid this.
Obviously, as this is a new feature, there are almost certainly going to be some bugs and some issues we haven’t anticipated. It’s going to take us a little while to figure out where certain stories should fall, based on our own individual interests and what we reckon you lot are interested in, and at what time we roll over to the next “day”. We’re also working out how best to archive the News Bites posts themselves, but for now, everything posted in there will show up in searches and by clicking on any associated tags.
As such, apologies for any weirdness over the next few days, but please do let us know if you spot any major problems or if you have any comments to make on this new system. (As an aside, you may have already noticed that the Featured Content section at the top of the front page – offering our latest articles – has changed a bit. We’re playing around with that right now to get it a little closer to what it was.)
TLDR: our front page will continue to offer exactly the same stuff it used to offer, with larger, more focused news items, alongside all of our features and reviews and idle ponderings. That hasn’t changed, so what you like about PC Invasion is still identical. The News Bites page is an extra, where you can find a quick overview of everything else going on, all in a handy bite-sized format.
We hope you approve, because – as much as this sounds like some sort of bullshit PR line – we really are trying to make this the best site we can, for you. The PC Invasion continues apace.