New NewsDesk format

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  • Updated 2 years ago
  • (Edited)
I wanted to find some old articles about Christopher Nolan. When I clicked on NewsDesk (which says it has over 29,000 articles about him), I was taken to a page that displayed several recent articles and then had a "Load More" button at the bottom. I couldn't find the usual links to different years of the article archive. Nor did the URL ever change to reflect different pages within the NewsDesk, so I couldn't even manually enter a large page number to go way back. Is there really no longer any feasible way to access old articles??
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patty1

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Posted 2 years ago

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gromit82, Champion

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I agree with Patty that this format (as seen at http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0634240/news) is a bad idea. If someone wants to look at articles about Nolan from, say, 2015, is there any effective way to do so now?
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patty1

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Hey, IMDb folks, could someone please respond to this? Have you permanently ruined the ability to find older News Desk articles??
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Col Needham, Official Rep

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This is part of the changes outlined at https://getsatisfaction.com/imdb/topics/upcoming-changes-to-several-imdb-features-du6man1opd5q0 

It is a permanent change, however, we are interested in the specific use cases here to see how we could better serve them via future enhancements to the news viewer.  While we could add a year search, even by date, Christopher Nolan has a huge number of articles in each year.  Were you hoping to find something around a specific title or name or event? What kind of searches / filters would be helpful? 
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patty1

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Hi, Col. What a nice surprise to hear from you. FYI, I was one of the contributors to your original Usenet version of IMDB, lo these many eons ago...

A search function in NewsDesk would be wonderful! Definitely better than the previous year-by-year categories. I certainly hope you'll implement that, because right now, there's no way to find anything past the first several articles without lots and lots (and lots and lots) of scrolling.

What brought the NewsDesk changes to my attention was that I was trying to find articles from about 2010 that explained why Christopher Nolan had been given the Batman franchise. (A friend and I rewatched "Memento" the other day and were wondering who had the insight to turn over a huge comic-book franchise to such an unexpected director.) I wanted to go back to the 2010 section of Nolan's NewsDesk pages and look for such articles. (When I couldn't find them on IMDb, I googled and found a couple of good ones.)

Here's what I would suggest: offer both keyword and time search terms. That way, for example, I could search on "Batman" but limit the search to a time period (say, 2009-2010) that would only return the very early stories, not the thousands of articles that were written after "Batman Begins" went into production.

I sure hope that you'll implement a search feature soon, because right now, those millions of articles in the NewsDesk archives are virtually unusable. :-(


Thanks.
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Steve, Official Rep

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Hi Patty,

Thanks for providing your suggestions! I am adjusting this post to an 'Idea' so others can provide their input and we can review these comments as we continue to make updates to our site.

- Steve
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gromit82, Champion

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Steve: At a bare, bare minimum, it should be possible to search a person's news items for items posted within a given date range. After all, all the news items already have dates attached to them.

However, I would sincerely like to get an explanation for why the newsdesk pages were redesigned this way. Does this new method reduce the load on the servers to improve performance of other parts of the site? Or does it somehow make it easier for the programmers to implement other improvements to the site which are as yet in development? Or did someone say, "You know, I think people will enjoy clicking 'Read more' 1,400 times in a row to read the oldest articles about Christopher Nolan"?
(Edited)
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Col Needham, Official Rep

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Or does it somehow make it easier for the programmers to implement other improvements to the site which are as yet in development?
It is closest to this, but not the full story.  We are also trying to keep the interface as simple and consistent as possible across all the different IMDb platforms (web, mobile web, apps, and to some extent, IMDbPro) both from how it looks to customers and how the technology operates behind-the-scenes.  We are going back to basics in a number of areas, including news. Once we have everything on the same modern platform where it can be more easily maintained, we can move forward building extra features which work everywhere instead of the current almost random experience across every IMDb interface (which means a feature is sometimes implemented five or six times). 

It does mean there are some unfortunate short-term casualties.  We do need to keep the interfaces simple to address the needs of the majority of customers, however, instead we are planning much more powerful search experience for those customers who need it.  The old news interface was restricted to crude, year only filtering, and no search, whereas the new one has far greater possibilities, while keeping the basic interface simple and fast. 
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patty1

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Or did someone say, "You know, I think people will enjoy clicking 'Read more' 1,400 times in a row to read the oldest articles about Christopher Nolan"?

LOL! That's about the size of it, Gromit!

Col or Steve, do you have any idea when the search feature will be implemented? Right now, we've lost the ability to jump to a specific date (as I mentioned, it was easy to manually adjust the URL to fine-tune the results after clicking on a year), but we have not yet gained the ability to search NewsDesk, so we currently have the worst of both worlds.
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gromit82, Champion

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Col: You may remember that a couple of years ago (?), GetSatisfaction.com implemented a similar system, whereby 20 threads were displayed on screen at a time, and to access older threads one had to click "Load more", "Load more", "Load more", thus keeping threads beyond the first page effectively buried.

I asked about that on the GetSatisfaction community board (that is, the board for GS overall -- http://getsatisfaction.com/getsatisfaction) and they said they had done so to improve the experience for mobile users. However, I and others were eventually able to convince GetSatisfaction that it wasn't even an improvement for mobile users, and so they implemented the (much better) current paginated format where one can skip from page to page at will by manually adjusting the URLs.

Col, I no longer have access to the GS community board so I can't review that thread nor can I remember all the exact details, but you most likely do, so perhaps you can still find that discussion for reference.