Conservative Diary

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Coming for Party Conference - a ConHome redesign

Screen shot 2013-09-15 at 17.29.40
By Paul Goodman

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Since I became Editor of this site in April, it has changed a lot: Iain Dale, Marina Kim, Jesse Norman, Priti Patel and Stephen Tall are now columnists, which means that almost half of all of them are new.  And since I became Editor, it hasn't changed at all: the categories under which we write - ToryDiary, Platform, LeftWatch, MPsETC - are all exactly the same.

That both claims are true hopefully helps to explain how I think change should work and the site should develop.  In a nutshell, I believe that Tim Montgomerie left the site he founded in fine condition, and that evolution is better than revolution.  Which means not destroying the wheel and then reinventing it.

I was therefore reluctant to commission a redesign of ConservativeHome.  My experience is that newspapers and websites reach for a redesign, it usually means that they've given up on not improving the content - or, worse, no longer know who they are.  However, I've been persuaded that a redesign can improve the site both for old readers and new.

Its main aim be is to separate the news and comment more clearly and to project the latter more decisively. Our aim is to have it up and running next week.  This is ambitious timing, given the demands of the conference season, and mistakes will doubtless be made as we grapple with the new format.  So apologies in advance - but none the less, this is change worth making.

For clarity: what won't alter is that this site is a home for the conservative family, wants to get comments and views from all parts of it, and will continue to build on its own style of conservatism - what Tim calls Little Guy conservatism and I call Bolton West conservatism.  Watch out for more of it as the Conservative Conference gets closer.

To draw the attention of as many readers as possible to the coming redesign, this ToryDiary will run again on ConservativeHome during the coming week.



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