Case Study: The Wall Street Journal: Real-time news with WordPress

Summary: The Wall Street Journal uses WordPress in several different ways to power their content, as the engine of their popular blogs, and as a curation and organizational tool for their real-time news streams.

The Wall Street Journal Blogs

The biggest benefit of using WordPress in their site workflow is the time-to-market. They use standard templates which can be customized, and usually it only takes a few hours from the request being submitted to launching the site.When the WSJ started using WordPress with their editorial blogs several years ago, they launched with an initial four blogs. Today, they have 30+ active blogs, and 70-80 total blogs. Sites remain online in the WSJ Blog Archive after special events have concluded, such as Obama’s First 100 Days, the Olympics, and the G-20.

In particular their “Real Time” blogs, like India or China Real Time, are a tool for them to venture quickly into a new news market and to create ad hoc topic-focused news portals. They create localized, mini versions of WSJ.com in different languages using WordPress and can be up and publishing to that readership in a few hours.

In addition to the speed-to-market reasons for using WordPress, the ease-of-use of the interface is also critical for their publication. The WSJ uses WordPress’ flexibility and user roles to set up a streamlined editorial review workflow which means content can be published faster and editorial workflows are optimized instead of forced by the software. As they expand their newsroom and sites, they are working with a greater number of collaborators to cover all the local markets, subjects, and real-time news. Using WordPress means they can work with collaborators without time-consuming and expensive CMS training to get them up to speed.

Beyond the WSJ.com domain, several other sites in the WSJ Digital Network use WordPress as well – most notably MarketWatch, SmartMoney, AllThingsD, and Barron’s.

WSJ Streaming Stories

WSJ Streams are a new interface from The Wall Street Journal for reading about large events, breaking news stories, markets coverage, and other areas at the core of the Journal’s reporting. A stream is a single page that a reader can leave open and, without reloading, watch the news develop in real-time including headlines, articles, breaking news alerts, markets data, documents, photos, Twitter tweets, and generally any new information about the subject or event.

The WSJ uses WordPress as the tool to integrate and curate content from multiple CMS, APIs, and services to provide a centralized stream of activity. Journalists select custom post types in WordPress which then create a query which pulls in all the relevant articles, images, and other media from their internal Newscloud through internal APIs into WordPress, to create the WSJ Stream. The stream provides a real-time feed which users can follow and get updates about a particular topic.

WSJ plans to rely more and more on WSJ Streams to tie all the content they are already producing in one centralized location, especially in the case of breaking news. They use WordPress so the editors can leverage the administration panel and dashboard instead of creating yet another web tool that they have to log into and manage. For more information on the WSJ streams, read more about on the WSJ Streams here on VIP News.

Want more information about WordPress for large-scale / enterprise installs? Contact WordPress.com VIP Services.

2 thoughts on “Case Study: The Wall Street Journal: Real-time news with WordPress

  1. Wow I have been using WordPress for about 3 years now and I did not know that huge companies like The Wall Street Journal and others you mention here use WordPress to power their blogs. That is just another sign of how powerful and useful the WordPress platform truly is.

  2. I had no idea that they were using WordPress! That solidifies my belief that I chose the right blogging platform (I was torn between blogger, tumbler and wordpress originally).

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