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Why Every Enterprise Is A Publisher

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"The Internet will make every enterprise a publisher," says Steve Case, chairman of AOL Time Warner. If you want to make a success of your intranet, extranet, or public Internet website, you need to take a professional approach to creating, editing, and publishing content.
This article is derived from Content Critical: Now Everyone's a Publisher, What Makes Your Content Better? (Prentice Hall, 2001, ISBN: 027365604X).
This chapter is from the book

"The Internet will make every enterprise a publisher," according to Steve Case, chairman of AOL Time Warner. But what does that mean? It means that if you want to make a success of your intranet, extranet or public Internet website, you need to take a professional approach to creating, editing and publishing content.

The Activity People Do Most On the Web

What's the activity people do most on the Web? They read. What's the next most important activity? Gathering content. Not searching for content, because searching implies that you know exactly what you're looking for.

People don't usually know exactly the content they want. Mostly, they're looking to buy a laptop, to visit a country, to learn more about XML, to find out what this guy is going on about publishing for. They need guidance and context. That's what quality classification and navigation is about. It puts content in context.

Why does the article you are now reading use black text on a white background? Because it's easier to read black text on a white background. Why is this article under 1,000 words long? Because people don't read long articles on the Web. Why does this article use lots of sub-headings? Because people scan read on the Web, and sub-headings let them glance over an article to see the key topics.

Why should web paragraphs, sentences, and line lengths be short? Because reading on a screen is difficult. Short paragraphs, line lengths, and sentences are easier to read. They are. Honestly.

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