The International Herald Tribune's website is no more, but is being rebranded as 'The Global Edition' of the New York Times (global.nytimes.com) in a move that is part of a wider attempt to further integrate the publications. The new joint site "combines the international voice of the IHT, the breadth and depth of The New York Times's international journalism and the digital expertise and reach of NYTimes.com," according to the a note from IHT publisher Stephen Dunbar-Johnson, to provide 24-hour coverage "from a truly global perspective." The global home page retains the IHT logo.
IHT.com users will be automatically redirected to the new Global Edition, and buttons on the home pages of both the US and global editions will allow readers to navigate easily between the two. There is also a mobile site: mobile.nytimes.com/global, and readers will be able to sign up for a 'Today's Headlines Global Edition' email service which is delivered twice a day, to coincide with both Asian and European mornings. Plans to combine the websites were announced last summer, along with a redesign of the IHT print edition.
Since the NYT acquired full control of the IHT in 2003, there has been a considerable effort to integrate the papers. Dunbar-Johnson drew attention to the appointment of Martin Gottlieb as editor of global editions, the creation of continuous news desks in Paris and Hong Kong as well as in New York, and the way that news flows and practices have been brought "into sync." Last year, the IHT dropped its 142-year-old logo from its nameplate to replace it with the phrase "The Global Edition of the New York Times."
This further step towards integrating the papers comes at a time of financial difficulty for the New York Times Company, just days after it announced across the board 5% pay cuts for its staff, and 100 redundancies on the business side. The decision seems to be aimed at upping the aggregate traffic to the sites and presenting a more coherent brand. However, according to Gawker, "inept Times webmasters just killed hundreds of thousands of their own Google hits" by failing to correctly redirect old IHT.com links to the same stories on the new NYTimes.com server and sending users to the home page instead. This problem is likely to be swiftly solved, but it will take some time to assess whether merging the websites will have a significant effect on traffic.
Source: New York Times, Gawker