Digital Media Director Mike Wilson said the change is part of a rebranding effort by the newspaper to focus the site on the print product after years of “convergence.”
Convergence is an industry term for integrating content online from print, television or radio outlets, usually owned by the same entity. WBRZ-Channel 2 and The Advocate are owned by the Manship family.
Wilson said that The Advocate’s website will still have some content from WBRZ, which created its own website last year, just less of it overall.
“We will still have some WBRZ stuff, but the primary focus of the site will be The Advocate,” he said. “It will be more closely aligned with the paper.”
David Manship, the newspaper’s publisher, issued a statement saying that The Advocate and WBRZ “will continue to work with each other to keep the people of Baton Rouge and the surrounding area informed with the latest on what is taking place that affects their daily lives.”
Users slow to make the change will get to www.theadvocate.com, Wilson said, because they will be redirected automatically even if they still include the numeral when typing in the website address.
As for other changes, Wilson noted the page will have a different look.
“The first thing they’ll notice is a lot of red,” he joked.
Wilson said the change also coincides with an update of the newspaper’s iPhone and iPad apps, which give people access to content using Apple’s phones and tablets.
The newspaper also connects with readers through Facebook, Twitter, online newsletters and text messages.