The website, continually refreshed 24 hours a day, uses both real-time data insight and audience knowledge to deliver loyal readers the stories they want, packaged in a way that makes them most accessible. The homepage itself is structured to offer different readers different content from one central hub. While our splash is typically our big story of the hour, our skyline blocks advertise content from across the site - sport, lifestyle, features and more. Stories within a vertical are carefully branded with consistent, site-wide colourways. Clearly flagged opinion then sits in adjacent locations, allowing readers to get both the story, and the opinion about it, side-by-side. We've also developed a unique byline image presentation on opinion articles themselves to deepen reader engagement with the author.
Below the splash, we dynamically adjust the presentation of stories to match the content package. Topical news stories are broken out into collections to highlight the range of our coverage on Ukraine, for example. On that defining news story of the year, i broke a story of global significance, revealing the existence of Russian filtration camps and the treatment of those inside. Using painstaking open-source technology, investigations correspondent Dean Kirby identified the location of a camp 11 miles east of Mariupol – an image that was used by news organisations around the world including the BBC and the Guardian. For this story, we used our unique banner format, which is an image-led, full-screen unit, highlighting that very impactful journalism. We also use interactive graphics and video on vertical pages to offer alternative ways for readers to engage. Our politics poll tracker has been very popular this year, where it has augmented our extensive, original politics coverage. Political Editor Hugo Gye and Policy Editor Jane Merrick were relentless in their pursuit of important stories. Jane was the first journalist to identify the Covid ‘super variant’ that became known as Omicron, and illustrated how flaws in the government’s Covid strategy allowed it to run rampant throughout the UK. Hugo established that Boris Johnson was planning to ‘appease’ critics in his party by reducing the number of EU laws that apply in the UK. Chief Political Commentator Paul Waugh broke the story that the government was planning to lift the cap on banker bonuses. This fusion of high-quality, public interest reporting, and a clean, fluid, easy-to-navigate site means that in a year, i has grown its audience by more than 50 per cent and added more than 130,000 registered users. With almost 30 million people reading digital articles each month, i can clearly demonstrate that it has produced reporting that many millions of readers value.