Interview with Ed Roussel, digital editor of The Daily Telegraph
Ed Roussel, is the digital editor of The Daily Telegraph.
nt: How closely linked is the digital operation of Daily Telegraph with the print operation? You’re all in the same room now, right?
E. Roussel: We’re very closely linked. We’ve gone through a big operation in terms of integrating the two, and from a physical point of view, we’re all in one large open-
nt: Did that take much of an adjustment in the workflow to get that to work out?
E. Roussel: Yeah, it did and it does. I guess the first battle was persuading the senior editors that this was the right thing to do and that the health of the traditional newspaper company was dependent on building this strong website as opposed to having a weak website and hoping that people will buy your newspaper because they haven’t been able to access your content online.
So, I think the first battle-
And that’s really matter of insuring that we have a breaking news team who are able to take news wherever it breaks, however it breaks and knock out 150 words to 250 words to get content up there quite quickly, but also getting the message across to reporters that if it’s their area of expertise that we will be calling on them to file content for the web, not in terms of filing 100 words in the next 10 minutes but certainly in the next hour we’d be expecting them to file something more authoritive.
nt: Do you notice a big change now that you’re all in the same room? Is this really helping you?
E. Roussel: Yeah, a much bigger change ... the particular design of this office has meant that we had an instant uplift in terms of the quality of the website.
It really comes down to those two things: it’s better news judgement because all of the experts are in a concentrated hub around the middle where people shout across and say we really need to get that story up as the splash or we’re missing this story, or we’re missing that story whereas that conversation simply would not have happened before. So better news judgement, and also the ability to expedite stories much more rapidly so as a breaking news story takes place you can turn to the relevant expert or editor and they will assist you in terms of getting the news out and the third area is simply initatives, people saying ‘Well, it would be great to have video with that story because I’ve seen some CCTV footage that is precisely of that crime.’ So, the news judgement has improved, the flow of news has improved and also the richness of the news has improved.
This interview was conducted by Brian Veseling, senior editor of newspaper techniques.
Page first published: 16.01.2007