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New Johnston Press entertainments website goes live

Regional publisher Johnston Press has launched its new nationwide entertainments platform in the first of a series of new websites designed to repackage its existing content.

Called, the website will enable people to search a database of over 500,000 events across categories including film, music, theatre, food and drink.

Populated with content from the publisher’s stable of more than 170 local and regional newspapers, the site also enables users to book tickets, travel and accommodation online.

The site is a key plank in chief executive Ashley Highfield’s strategy of creating new websites using aggregated content from existing platforms.

Group editorial development director Paul Napier said: “We’ve created WOW247 with the wishes of the audience and the needs of the advertisers clearly in mind.

“People coming to WOW247 will find a huge, rich database of events which is easy to search and gives all the information anyone could need to take part in a leisure activity.

“On top of that, there will be lots of previews, reviews and opportunities for the audience to share their thoughts on what they’ve seen and enjoyed – or not – as well as publicising their own events.

“And advertisers have many attractive options to put their event in front of the people who are most likely to be encouraged to respond.”

Paul said the site would bring content from around the country together into one place and would work equally well across smartphones, tablets, laptops and  desktops.

The site is being managed by a digital entertainments team, headed by an entertainments content manager, based in Edinburgh.


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  • December 20, 2012 at 2:35 pm

    Not quite sure about this. If you are going to build up a standalone listings platform, isn’t that going to detract from readers going to the newspaper sites? And if so, won’t that undermine the core products?

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  • December 20, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    Dear oh dear oh dear!

    And still Johnston Press can’t get their websites to look right.

    Great idea! Should have done this ages ago.

    But the website itself looks appalling. Front page is so cluttered, text too big.

    You can tell it is headed up by a newspaper man!

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  • December 20, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    I think it’s’ supposedly still in beta, so they can iron out these problems – it is too ‘in your face’ and with too much going on – where do you start?
    Very surprised that they’ve gone public with it before it’s ready though. Maybe, given that they’re already around 5 (10?) years too late, they’re just too keen to get it out there.

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  • December 21, 2012 at 2:21 pm

    The site is an absolute disaster with the same cinema listing repeated more than 20 times on the home page. Why would anyone use a national aggregation site when it is so easy to search for local events via google. Even if it was designed properly and all the links actually worked…where will the revenue come from?

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