A new era begins

January 16, 2014
43 Comments

Welcome to the new Tico Times.

After months of research, design, redesigns, tweaking and developing, we bring you our modern site that works across every platform (the site looks beautiful on a smartphone, by the way). We’re not done yet, either: Expect more changes and innovative features in coming weeks and months. This is only our minimalist beginning, but we feel it’s a rather attractive one.

When we last redesigned www.ticotimes.net in 2010, we still published a print version of the newspaper, and, unfortunately, the website came second. With this redesign, we bring you the first step in what will be a constantly evolving publication. The site will be capable of keeping pace with technological innovations – and the latest news.

Redesigns can appear overwhelming, and we encourage you to explore the site and see how it works. It shouldn’t take long to adjust. The new Tico Times will improve the way you get the news from Costa Rica and the region. That being said, if you notice any glitches or errors or have any other comments, email us at feedback@ticotimes.net. We’ll be monitoring the inbox, and doing whatever we can do ensure the site’s launch is a smooth experience for readers.

With this new look and delivery platform, we can change the way we cover the news. We’ve transformed from a weekly print newspaper to a 24-7 digital publication. You’ll no longer have to wait for tomorrow morning’s paper to see what’s going on today. Updates throughout the day will alert you about everything from major breaking political scandals to videos of an incredible goal by Costa Rica’s national soccer team. The context and analysis that always has set The Tico Times apart from other media hasn’t been forgotten either. There’ll be more of that, too.

Creative director Haime Luna collaborated with our digital team to build a website that’s designed for the reader. Our vision for the redesign was to take the charisma of The Tico Times from the days of yore and combine it with the sleekness and functionality of a cutting-edge website. We believe our longtime readers will appreciate that. And we’re excited to welcome new readers to an award-winning paper with a 57-year legacy.

Here’s a quick primer on what to expect with The (new) Tico Times:

Cleaner article pages, bigger photos and responsive design

There is a lot of white space in the design. All the latest newspaper redesigns love white space, and so do we. We’ve wielded white space and crisp fonts to make stories easier to read. The layout gives our photos more pop. The new gallery function allows our most vivid, exciting photos to receive the large space they deserve.

Our redesigned logo is smaller, in order to place the emphasis on our content. That’s not to say we didn’t put any effort into redesigning the new logo – quite the contrary.

During the last Tico Times redesign, the iPad didn’t even exist. On our mobile phones, Tico Times stories were unreadable. The new site has a responsive design that automatically adapts to the device you’re using. Stories  look great on any platform – whether it’s a cellphone, tablet or massive desktop monitor. Try it out!

Easier to find the news you want to read

We’ve created a navigation system that permits readers to move fluidly through the site. After reading a story, you won’t need to trek back to the home page to find the latest news. Instead the latest articles will appear in the left-hand column, which scrolls separately from the main site.

All new articles appear on the site’s main page. You’ll no longer need to search through murky special sections to find a brand-new hotel review or a recent business report. The page’s header has a search bar to help you find stories in our archive. The infinite scrolling design allows you to effortlessly move through headlines and articles.

Follow stories with The Tico Times newsletter and social media

Get Costa Rica news delivered straight to your inbox every weekday morning with our revamped Tico Times newsletter. The service is free and all you need to sign up is an email address.

You can also keep track of Costa Rica news through our social media platforms. We have Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The Tico Times site includes buttons that make it simpler to share favorite stories.

Commenting is back

We want to bring discussions back to The Tico Times website (and away from our Facebook page). Starting today, you can comment on stories again. We soon will be adding a registration system for commenters to log in through a Facebook, Twitter or WordPress account. Editors will monitor comments to try to ensure civilized, intelligent conversations.

More great features to come

We’re still planning a host of updates. You’re currently viewing the barebones version of the site. It’s only going to get better from here on out.

Our forthcoming features include: an overhauled classifieds page, a calendar and events section, a Costa Rica traveler’s guide, recommended articles, long-form stories (watch out tomorrow for reporter Lindsay Fendt’s story on jaguar-human conflict), photo stories, expat advice columns, expanded business coverage and of course, gifs.

Give us your feedback

Whether you’re a new reader or have been with us from the start, welcome to our new site. Let us know your thoughts. Love it? Hate it? Find a glitch? Let us know at feedback@ticotimes.net. (Please try to be constructive in your criticism.)

Continuing a legacy

It’s no secret that the main impetus behind this redesign was necessity. We couldn’t survive without a change. The old site lacked many of the capabilities that a modern news publication needs. The business was unsustainable. The old website had disparate, jarring ads that bothered readers and advertisers alike. The redesign incorporates ads organically into the layout. It’s a lovely look. A special thanks goes out to our advertisers, who were willing to take this leap with us.

Our objective won’t change. Since our founding in 1956, nothing for The Tico Times has been more important than producing top-quality, uncompromising journalism. In 2014, we plan to bring you more investigations, fascinating feature stories, credible advice columns, smart opinions and a less boring approach to the news – all with an eye for seeking the truth. We’ll show enthusiasm when we find something awesome, call someone out when they’re distorting the facts and keep you informed on all the latest in Costa Rica. That’s substance with style.

This is not just an exciting time for The Tico Times, but also for Costa Rica. There are plenty of stories to look forward to in 2014, including presidential elections, La Sele’s return to the World Cup, the future of the Moín port project, and so much more.

The new Tico Times will be there to cover it all. Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

 

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