“New York Times” Redesign

Posted by Paityn Langley
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With the advancements of technology, the once black-ink-on-white-paper publications are being forced to expand into uncharted territories. A place where folded corners are replaced with digital bookmarks; where scissors and Elmer’s glue are replaced with the right-click of a mouse; where the term “below the fold” takes on a whole new meaning. That’s right: I’m talking about the digital world.

The New York Times Magazine (NYT) took a leap of faith on Sunday, Jan. 22 by introducing their new digital-friendly publication design. The first edition, titled “The Global Issue,” features international stories from an array of various topics.

The need for digital design has been forthcoming for quite sometime now, yet many big publications, NYT being no exception, are cautious to make such a change. While the attempts to preserve authenticity and tradition were long lasting, publications across the board are now realizing the positive implications of a digitally responsive and streamlined design.

The arguably tremendous task of redesigning a 119-year-old publication was put on the shoulders of editor Jake Silverstein, design director Gail Bichler, and art director Matt Willey.

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Because the publication is so well known, it was important to Silverstein that the general look and feel stayed familiar and recognizable. With the subtle implementation of new fonts, logos, and heavier-weight paper, the publication sought to refine their branding without overwhelming their loyal readers.

GQ art director Anton Loukhnevets helped to design individual page structures while typographer Henrik Kubel, of A-2 Type, drew up an entirely new font family for the NYT’s exclusive use. Designer Matthew Carter made subtle revisions to the ever-recognizable logo in attempt to make it look more modern.

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All design decisions were, of course, made with the knowledge that content would be presented in both print and digital platforms. The official NYT website was rebuilt to ensure responsive design on all platforms including optimization for smartphones, tablets, and desktops alike. Special emphasis was placed on the inclusion of photography, video, and interactive online elements.

So, I have to ask. What do you think about the conversion from print to digital? Is it as important as they say it is? In what ways can we excite laggard publications and readers about the upcoming changes?

Most importantly, do you think the redesign was successful? If you’re so inclined, read what others think.

Be sure to subscribe to the New York Times Magazine today.


2 responses to ““New York Times” Redesign

  1. emily.vanschmus

    I think the conversion from print to digital is inevitable. If a publication wants to retain readership, they need to be able to accommodate the way in which the reader wants to consume content. I can appreciate that they want to preserve the tradition of the publication, but I also think this was a much-needed step they needed to take to keep up with the times.

  2. Molly Lamoureux

    I agree with Emily. As journalism majors, we have to accept that these types of things are going to happen. Our jobs are going to be geared towards social media and Internet bases. In my opinion, I think the digitalization is late. They should have done it 5 years ago – but better late than never.

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