I am not an expert on news or design. But I am a consumer of news, and a worker bee in the field of online journalism. And I have an opinion.

The Register-Guard newspaper has a really pretty front page. They have good photographers, their images are great. But I have a bone to pick with them… after the jump.

You can see images on the Register-Guard’s front page. They have really pretty photos. But when you click through to a story, the images are nowhere to be found.

The most visually appealing thing on this page are the ads! Why would you not use graphics if you have them? I don’t understand why the Register-Guard does this. Do they want to limit enjoyment of the website to drive traffic to their print edition? Or are they blind to online content in favor of ad sales?

The Statesman Journal, a site with the same basic layout, has a different problem. Here is their front page:

The SJ has more content in the top of their page including an image slider, though I personally find the Register Guard’s color scheme more appealing. At any rate, click through to a SJ story and you can see their images on the page, a real bonus.

In a way, however, this is much much worse. In the midst of the article, the Journal always has these horrible, horrible scam/fake news ads “by AdBlade.” WHY DO YOU DO THIS, Statesman Journal? It’s embarrassing! In my work as a news aggregator for a daily newsletter, my editor has told me on occasion to NOT link to the Statesman Journal specifically because of these ads. There have to be local businesses who can advertise with you. Or at the very least, text ads.

My suggestion? Put photos in the midst of text on the left. Leave your ads in the separate, right column area.

Or am I missing something? Leave a comment and let me know.