Topix.net on the Tennessean (and a nitpik)

Topix.net on the Tennessean (and a nitpik): Here’s an obscure note for a few of you. In the last few days, I’ve begun to see a feature on the Tennessean‘s website that integrates a search feature provided by Topix.net, a company that Tennessean parent-company Gannett is part-owner. The service is likely a part of the deal announced today between AP and Topix.net. In short, the feature (as shown on left) suggests you click for related stories from the web. That leads you to search results from the topix.net database, which as I said many times, is a great alternative to Google news. Topix.net is a service owned and operated by a company that has several newspaper companies (in addition to Gannett) as investors.

The screen grab above compares the Tennessean version vs. the generic Topix.net version of current “small business” stories. If you scroll to the bottom of both pages, you will note a subtle (but significant to a few folks like me) difference: On the Tennessean page, you cannot subscribe to an RSS feed of future stories in the way you can using the Topix.net version. Same results — one without the RSS feature. For those who don’t know what this means, set up an RSS newsreader. That nitpik aside. I think adding the topix.net feature to the Tennessean is a smart move for all involved.

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  • Jackson

    No RSS is a shame. I have never checked out Topix.net though. Thanks for the tip.

    BTW, not sure if you saw this, but it looks very similar (and right up your alley):
    http://www.techcrunch.com/2006/05/22/timecom-adds-sphere-it-links/

  • rex

    You’re right, Jackson. It is right up my alley. I’d seen it earlier, but hadn’t checked it out. Thanks. I guess Technorati was too busy doing deals w/ everyone else, they didn’t get in on this.

  • Chris Tolles

    Rex:

    The related stories feature has actually been up for about six months on about 177 different publications, including all of the Tribune, Knight Ridder and Gannett sites and a smattering of others.

    Glad you seem to like it — the placement as well as some of the features are at the papers discretion, although we’ll have to take a look at whether the RSS is something we could add to the default page on the co-branded sites.

    I’ll point out that we have topic based forums on all of our pages as well, which most of the co-brands don’t have as of yet, which enable the public to talk back to the news in ever locality and topic on our site.

    Chris Tolles
    VP Marketing
    Topix.net

  • rex

    Thanks, Chris. I guess I just hadn’t noticed it on the Tennessean.