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New York Times: Political Reader for Teens

How might we help teens to get into the habit of reading the New York Times? 

 
 
 

THE PROBLEM

The New York Times is an American news institution with worldwide influence. In the internet era where much of the news is free and the average age of a New York Times subscriber is steadily increasing, how can we grow the number of subscriptions to the NYTimes and make reading the New York Times a habit?

THE SOLUTION

We created the NYTimes Political Reader Mode, which helps to educate teens on political current events. When in this reader mode, teens can see supplementary information about current events which give them more context on the issues. 

 

 

Scope: 5 Weeks

Categories: UX Research, UX Design, Prototyping

Role: Research, idea generation, prototyping

Collaborators: Abhinav Sircar and Glenda Capdeville 

Advisor: Renda Morton (NYTimes) 

 

 

THE SOLUTION

 

 

 

 

Background INFORMATION

When in the NYTimes Reader Mode, politics articles start off with a quick background on the issue to contextualize the teen. By expanding the sections, you can learn more about specific terms and events mentioned in the article. 

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THE TIMELINE

The Times has a rich repository of past articles. Linking relevant past articles that are relevant to the article help to contextualize the series of events 

 

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SOCIAL MEDIA ENTRY

Leveraging existing behaviors of teens, we thought to use social media, such as Instagram or Snapchat as an entry point for teens to enter the NYTimes Reader mode. 

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OUR DESIGN PROCESS

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INTERVIEWS

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We interviewed children, adolescents, young adults, and parents to understand current news reading habits at different stages of life. From these interviews, we discovered that there was a clear inflection point where adolescents started to become more curious about politics and current events. We also learned that the NYTimes was considered reputable but not accessible to most of our interviewees. We therefore saw this desire to understand politics as an opportunity for the Times to make their platform more accessible. 

 

IDEATION

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THE USER

Through our interviews, we noticed a pattern where teenagers started to become interested in politics and current events. Often, they tried to get more information from their parents and peers. Because we saw the need to learn about politics as a opportunity, we decided to focus on teenagers age 14-18. 

 

THE USER Journey

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WIREFRAMES

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KEY LEARNINGS

  • When considering a mobile platform, we need to consider Fitt's law. 
  • Contradictory interactions can be confusing to users
  • Project direction can change from unexpected research findings
  • Leverage existing resources