Rajasthan Patrika, one of India’s fastest growing media groups aimed to enter the English newspaper segment by introducing a news website. Called Catch News, it aims to bring quality investigative journalism to various constituencies of readers and also a wide range of content, in a variety of modes, media types and device forms. Problem space News sites are in an metrics ‘arms race’—for unique visitors, page views and engagement—which compels them towards the same set of ‘best practices’. Ironically, this grinds away at their distinctive voices, and leaves them to fight for diminishing rewards. Second, short form reading and mobile readership have emerged as key criteria. Third, a brand’s prestige comes from opinion makers who tend to be politically aware and value original perspectives, while the metrics come from casual skimmers who want popular news and ‘light reading’.
We led Catch to see themselves as a bridge between these dualities. Catch would provide accessible content with challenging perspectives, and treat all readers as intelligent people. It would provide quality short form reading, and offer new formats for both the mass and the evolved reader. Catch would also challenge and bridge well-set ideological viewpoints such as ‘left’ and ‘right’. Accordingly, we defined this unique character as a challenger, dubbed “the well-dressed revolutionary”. The product responded to the idea through structure, content and visual design.
The website juxtaposed different types of content, heavy with light, at every scroll. Some special content forms were developed—deck, x-packs, quick pills—which facilitate quick reading with graphics that lend Catch a distinctive voice. These bridged different online reading habits, and work well across devices. Another web property under the Catch News umbrella—the speed news segment called Catch Live—has been integrated into the website to provide the most recent news updates.
The identity and the visual style also responded to the brand’s character. The colour palette and the typeface were chosen for their stark, arresting and powerful effect: bold yet elegant. A unique style of illustrations replaced the standard agency photographs. It was designed to be fully responsive, the first Indian news website to be so.
The current website, gone live on 8 April 2016, is not resolved as per the submitted design and functionality, as the backend team is still addressing certain issues.
can online news be distinctive and popular? catch says yes
Catch provides accessible content with challenging perspectives, and treat all readers as intelligent people. It presents quality short-form reading, and offers new formats for both the mass and the evolved reader.
we defined this unique character as “the well-dressed revolutionary”
The website juxtaposed different types of content, heavy with light, at every scroll. Some special content forms were developed that lend Catch a distinctive voice.
to bridge different online reading habits, we devised many different forms of news presentation
special content like—deck, x-packs, quick pills—which facilitate quick reading with graphics that lend Catch a distinctive voice.
the identity and the visual style responded to the brand’s character
The colour palette and the typeface were chosen for their stark, arresting and powerful effect: bold yet elegant.
Partner-in-charge Lisa Rath | UI/UX Director Lisa Rath | UI/UX Concept Lisa Rath, Avi Agarwal | UI/UX Development Avi Agarwal, Saumya Kharbanda, Kshitij Tembe | External development & Maintenance ByteBrick Systems | Development Supervision Avi Agarwal, Lisa Rath, Vikrant Gupta, Saumya Kharbanda | Illustrations Niloy Kundu, Palash Jain, Kshitij Tembe | Webpage Photographer Palash Jain | Alternate Design Concepts Kshitij Tembe | Project duration 1.5 years