In a move that shows how The Globe and Mail is shifting from newspaper-first to mobile-first thinking, the paper built an entirely new site for its Olympics coverage on the free WordPress platform. 

By Tamara Baluja, Associate Editor

In a move that shows how The Globe and Mail is shifting from newspaper-first to mobile-first thinking, the paper built an entirely new website for its Olympics coverage on the free WordPress platform. J-Source spoke with the site’s creators—mobile editor Matt Frehner and multimedia editor Stuart A. Thompson.

Here are five neat things about the site:

  1. The “big moments” toggle feature allows readers to catch up with the most important updates easily, while the “live updates feature” is constantly updated.
  2. Thompson and Frehner built a tagging system from scratch that allows readers to filter content by the sports in which they’re interested. These preferences are saved, so when readers return to the site, they’ll only receive the updates they want.
  3. The big moments and tagging features can be combined, so that readers only get the most important updates for the sports they care about. 
  4. The Globe’s main website is text-driven, so multimedia elements like graphics, videos and photos are relegated to specific locations on the page. The WordPress platform allows for greater integration, so multimedia components are woven into the text in a way that makes more narrative sense.                                     
  5. Did we mention it was made with no money? That’s right. Frehner and Thompson say they built the site in their down time with no extra money. The only cost is the site’s hosting fee. 

Correction: An earlier version of this article said Frehner and Thompson did not receive any help from other website developers. While the pair did receive guidance. they were the only ones actually involved in the building.

Tamara Baluja is an award-winning journalist with CBC Vancouver and the 2018 Michener-Deacon fellow for journalism education. She was the associate editor for J-Source from 2013-2014.