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August 01, 2005


Some further information that I've come across recently regarding the FT's IT section:

Gradual changes have been happening for a while - it dropped its issue slated for 18 May and at the official explanation was that Ben Hunt, the supplement's recently-appointed editor, was working on a complete revamp. There have been changes on the ad-side too. However, the word on the street is that an all-new FT-IT will launch itself on the world on 21 September. The changes look likely to be substantial.

Out will go the six-year-old FT-IT masthead. In comes a new title: FT Digital Business.

The supplement's editorial focus will broaden out from its former CIO-only positioning. The new remit will split 50/50 between making technology "work for business" and "writing about the business of technology" -- ie: the industry itself. A big shift.

FT Digital Business will also expand its personal tech coverage with two new formats. The first, a "How To. . . " feature, will apparently instruct readers on such topics as how to use a Mozilla browser. Another new feature, entitled "Best Thing Since. . .", will cover personal technology that grabs the attention of the editorial team.

A modest number of other new features are planned. For example: "From The Blogosphere" will try to tap into the "energy and innovation" of non-establishment online technology writing.

The biggest single change is the much broader editorial remit. The fact that FT Digital Business will be covering the industry in a straightforward fashion should be good news for PR folks as we have all struggled to sell in stories related to IT department end-users – its previous readership. There will also be broader coverage of personal tech, too.

The other interesting point to note is that traditionally Andrew Baxter (former editor) used mostly freelancers to write copy for the supplement. This is changing and it looks like FT's full-time tech and telco correspondents will be doing the bulk of the writing from now on.

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