News websites aren’t always great at linking out. But they might put a bit of effort into it for good causes. So how well did news sites do at linking to rednoseday.com, the site for the high-profile fundraising day for Comic Relief, when they covered it?
In particular, how many of them mentioned the website and DID make it a hyperlink? And how many DIDN’T make it a hyperlink?
To find out, I did a search on ‘rednoseday.com’ at each site and checked the latest story on or before Red Nose Day (13th March). If no results were found, I did a search on comicrelief.com instead. (The FT largely ignored the event, so isn’t shown. And the BBC organises it, so it’s not shown).
Sites that managed a link: Telegraph, Guardian, Mail, Sun, Five, ITV.
Sites that didn’t: Times, Independent, Express, Mirror, Channel 4.
Times Online: URLs were not made links
Page checked. “For more information on Comic Relief and how to donate money go to www.rednoseday.com. For more information on Jeccdo, go to www.smcfethiopia.org”. Not a link.
Telegraph: Proper link
Page checked. “Today is Red Nose Day. Visit rednoseday.com for fund-raising ideas, and comicrelief.com to donate money”. A link.
Guardian: Proper link
Page checked.Â “To sponsor the team visit rednoseday.com”. A link.
(Although I had to check it wasn’t doing the Guardian’s usual trick of linking brand names and other keywords to one of its own pages …)
Independent: Not a link
Page checked. “www.comicrelief.com”. Not a link.
Mail: Proper link
Page checked. “To donate to Red Nose Day visit www.rednoseday.com”. A link.
Didn’t mention the websites in its coverage. Perhaps because of the comments on this page, which probably deserve a post of their own.
The Sun: Proper link
Page checked. “To find out more or to make a donation to Comic Relief go to www.rednoseday.com”. A link.
Mirror: Not a link
Page checked. “(Barry) Islands In The Stream is released tomorrow and available from www.rednoseday.com.” Not a link.
Channel 4: Not a link
Page checked. “To sponsor the team visit http://www.rednoseday.com/sponsortheteam.” Not a link.
Five: Proper link
Page checked. “Visit the Red Nose Day website to find out how you can contribute.” A link.
ITV: Proper link
Page checked. To help the team raise a mountain of cash…sponsor the team at www.rednoseday.com. A link.
So, some news sites can provide links (now try to do it more often …). While others can’t easily or won’t link out, even for charity. Try harder.
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