BBC2.0: The BBC’s 15 Web Principles


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Tom Loosemore, BBC Future Media & Technology, gave this talk at the JISC Annual Conference in Birmingham in March 2007.

Published in: Technology, Design
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  • Hello Thank you for inviting me here today Though of course, I’ve got a lot more to thank you for than just The opportunity to present today I’ve got you to thank for my passion, and for my career Why? Well from 1990 to 1994 While I pretended to be at University I was in fact learning far, far more Courtesy of my Janet connection So Thank *You* Why all this 2.0 nonsense? Well, never look a gift horse in the mouth, my mum used to day And as someone who’s been yearning to reveolutionise the BBC’s 2574 Websites I was not going to forgoe The opportunity presented When the BBC’s DG returned from A trip to the West Coast Laden with the trendy vernacular of Web2.0 So I banked the Buzzword, And embarked on a top to bottom Six month Review of everything the BBC does on the Web From what sites we should offer To how we measure success To design & navigation Technology platform To what audience insight we need Right through to how we work with partners And competitors All focused on how to give more Public value to the 16million People in the UK who use the site regularly And how to reach the other 44million Who either don’t visit us Or are not yet online During the project We developed a set of fifteen Web principles Aimed at helping the BBC develop websites Which people *love*, rather than like But before I dive into these Principles I wanted to give you a bit of background As to why the BBC is on the Web at all For this, I’m going to need the help of Flossie the calf
  • BBC2.0: The BBC’s 15 Web Principles

    1. BBC 2.0 The BBC’s 15 Web Principles Tom Loosemore BBC Future Media & Technology 13th March 2007
    2. Photo credit:
    3. “ The purpose of the BBC is to make great programmes”
    4. “ The purpose of the BBC is to make great programmes” WRONG
    5. ?
    6. Photo credit:
    8. The Public Purposes of the BBC — <ul><li>sustaining citizenship and civil society </li></ul><ul><li>promoting education and learning </li></ul><ul><li>stimulating creativity and cultural excellence </li></ul><ul><li>representing the UK , its nations, regions and communities </li></ul><ul><li>(e) bringing the UK to the world and the world to the UK </li></ul><ul><li>(f) in promoting its other purposes, helping to deliver to the public the benefit of emerging communications technologies and services and, in addition, taking a leading role in the switchover to digital television. </li></ul>
    9. How the BBC delivers its Public Purposes <ul><li>(1) The BBC’s main activities should be the promotion of its Public Purposes through the provision of output which consists of information , education and entertainment , supplied by means of— </li></ul><ul><li>(a) television , radio and online services; </li></ul>
    10. <ul><li></vellum> </li></ul>
    11. The BBC’s Fifteen Web Principles DRAFT
    12. Principle #1 <ul><li>Build web products that meet user needs: anticipate needs not yet fully articulated by users, then meet them with products that set new standards. </li></ul>
    15. Principle #2 <ul><li>The very best websites do one thing really, really well: do less, but execute perfectly . </li></ul>
    18. Principle #3 <ul><li>Do not attempt to do everything yourselves: link to other high-quality sites instead. Your users will thank you. Use other people's content and tools to enhance your site, and vice versa. </li></ul>
    19. P articipation: John Peel Day
    22. Principle #4 <ul><li>Fall forward, fast: make many small bets, iterate wildly, back successes, kill failures, fast. </li></ul>
    24. Principle #5 <ul><li>Treat the entire web as a creative canvas: don't restrict your creativity to your own site. </li></ul>
    27. Principle #6 <ul><li>The web is a conversation. Join in: Adopt a relaxed, conversational tone. Admit your mistakes. </li></ul>
    29. Principle #7 <ul><li>Any website is only as good as its worst page: Ensure best practice editorial processes are adopted and adhered to. </li></ul>
    30. The BBC’s worst page?
    31. Principle #8 <ul><li>Make sure all your content can be linked to, forever. </li></ul>
    33. Principle #9 <ul><li>Remember your granny won't ever use Second Life : She may come online soon, with very different needs from early-adopters. </li></ul>
    35. Principle #10 <ul><li>Maximise routes to content: Develop as many aggregations of content about people, places, topics, channels, networks & time as possible. Optimise your site to rank high in Google. </li></ul>
    37. Principle #11 <ul><li>Consistent design and navigation needn't mean one-size-fits-all: Users should always know they're on one of your websites, even if they all look very different. Most importantly of all, they know they won't ever get lost. </li></ul>
    39. Principle #12 <ul><li>Accessibility is not an optional extra: Sites designed that way from the ground up work better for all users. </li></ul>
    41. Principle #13 <ul><li>Let people paste your content on the walls of their virtual homes: Encourage users to take nuggets of content away with them, with links back to your site </li></ul>
    43. Principle #14 <ul><li>Link to discussions on the web, don't host them: Only host web-based discussions where there is a clear rationale </li></ul>
    45. Principle #15 <ul><li>Personalisation should be unobtrusive, elegant and transparent: After all, it's your users' data. Best respect it. </li></ul>
    48. And if Fifteen is too many… <ul><li>… here’s Five : </li></ul><ul><li>Straightforward </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(simple, uncomplicated) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Functional </li></ul><ul><ul><li>( usable, useful) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Gregarious </li></ul><ul><ul><li>( sociable, participatory) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Open </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(exposed, unguarded) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Evolving </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(emergent, growing) </li></ul></ul>
    49. Thank You [email_address]