Comparing 9/11 coverage online

Today marks the seventh anniversary of 9/11. Most major news sites featured something 9/11 related on their front pages. We'll take a look at how coverage differs.

CNN was the only major news site to not feature something grandiose about 9/11 on the front page. To get to the coverage, you have to navigate to the U.S. section (and half an hour later, it's not even the lead U.S. story anymore).

But, that's not necessarily a bad thing. It's a prime example of how CNN is constantly updating their site and changing their front page story. It was also bold of CNN to put the patriotic day on the back burner to cover issues that are happening now (like, say, a little hurricane called Ike?).

BBC News

BBC News had coverage that seemed to closely mirror CNN. Their video felt more feature-like and less broadcasty than CNN's. The slideshow was a little plain, but necessary. One thing I liked was how they tied in current events to 9/11 by getting views from people in the Middle East about security and militancy in their countries.

The Washington Post had the most going on in terms of 9/11 coverage. Three articles (each with a different focus), video, an interactive flash tour of the memorial, an "audio tour" (something new to me), a forum for community discussion, two photo galleries and a three videos. For information about the 9/11 anniversary, the Washington Post was definitely the place to be. They even had live travel updates with traffic information for people wanting to get to the memorial. One video also gives great insight into the planning process for the designers who built the memorial. The Washington Post definitely gets an A+.

The New York Times

When I visited the New York Times around 10 a.m. PST, there was a rotating slideshow of photos from the 9/11 tribute and an interactive feature on the center of the home page. The NYT was the only site of the five I looked at that featured interactive content embedded within the front page (as opposed to links to multimedia).

Los Angeles Times

The LA Times didn't have the greatest 9/11 coverage, but that's probably because they're located at the wrong end of the country. The video was just a clip from KTLA, but they did have a bland little "interactive feature" (really it was just four photos of ground zero).  They did do a good job of bringing it home to California with a local story about how SoCal firefighters were honoring the event.

Google being unpatriotic?

And this is just for fun, but I noticed Google didn't have a special 9/11 logo. Interesting that they would make a custom logo for the first hot air balloon flight or the 50th anniversary of the LEGO brick, but not to honor an American patriotic holiday.