When we launched the new pages, I said it had been an unintended consequence of our changes
that we were no longer making full feeds available. We recognised that significant numbers of people use RSS readers - particularly those who read a lot of blogs - and we hope the development will be welcome.
I should also note that following feedback to the earlier post, we also changed the way comments are displayed by default on correspondent pages. Unlike news stories - where the first visible comments are those most recently added - the default on correspondents' posts is chronological order, oldest first.
We've also started including correspondents' tweets on their pages. An example is my colleague Dominic Casciani
, home affairs correspondent, who was recently tweeting from the Old Bailey and from outside St Paul's Cathedral among other places. The growth of web-based short-form journalism, seen also in our Live Pages
, is fascinating and is one of the ways in which our blogging is kept fresh.
The past 12 months have not been easy for BBC World Service. Following a significant cut in funding from the Foreign Office in October last year, it has involved painful decisions to close five language services, make stringent savings across the board and lose highly valued colleagues.
Protesters celebrated in Tahrir Square after President Mubarak stood down
Yet despite the tight financial environment, we have continued to raise the bar on quality and creativity in our services. Today, impressive new figures are published which demonstrate that the BBC's international journalism is as valued, vibrant and relevant as it has ever been.
New independent research shows that people across the Middle East have increasingly turned to the BBC during the Arab uprising with an unprecedented rise in audiences. Overall audiences to the BBC's Arabic services have climbed by more than 50% to a record high of 33.4 million adults weekly - up from 21.6 million before the Arab Spring.
BBC Arabic TV's audience has risen to 24.5 million from 13.5 million - up by more than 80%. Weekly reach across Egypt, Iraq, Saudi, Jordan, Lebanon and Morocco has nearly doubled to a weekly reach of 18.4% from 9.8%.*
The biggest increases were seen in Egypt, where the BBC Arabic TV audience quadrupled to a weekly reach of 16.2%, reaching 9.3 million people.
BBC Arabic TV also saw its weekly audience increase by almost a quarter in Iraq to a weekly reach of 26.6% (from 21.5%) reaching 4.9 million people. In addition, its weekly audience more than doubled in Jordan (weekly reach of 22.4% from 8.8%) and in Saudi Arabia (weekly reach of 24.6% from 12.2%).
These figures show that, in turbulent times, the BBC's aim to provide trusted news and impartial information is as valued as ever. International audiences in the Middle East are turning to us for independent, dependable and unvarnished news that they can trust.
Behind the numbers, and in an increasingly competitive media market, this is proof that there will always be space for high-quality journalism that seeks to inform all, even-handedly.
I am proud of our journalists and staff for never losing sight of the BBC's core purpose and hope our journalism makes a practical difference to people living through fragile times and sometimes frightening change.
* Weekly audience estimates are based on independent studies that were carried out by the Broadcasting Board of Governors' International Audience Research Program (IARP) in Egypt, Iraq, Saudi, Jordan, Lebanon and Morocco. The Broadcasting Board of Governors is an independent federal agency responsible for all US government-supported, civilian international broadcasting.
Liliane Landor is languages controller of BBC Global News.
For the avoidance of doubt, James' blog is about changes to the main BBC homepage at www.bbc.co.uk
not the BBC News homepage which is here
Welcome to The Editors, a site where we, editors from across BBC News, will share our dilemmas and issues. Here are tips on taking part
, but to join in, all you need do is add a comment.
You can stay up to date with The Editors via these feeds.
John Craven on the 40th anniversary of Newsround.
Mark Thompson hints at U-turn over local radio cuts.
Lord Patten, the chairman of the BBC Trust, says self-regulation for the press is vital.
BBC director general, Mark Thompson's 2011 Radio Festival speech.
Thousands of jobs to go as BBC shrinks.
Other posts from this blog
Change of season at BBC Weather website
A few weeks ago we announced that we were making some improvements to the BBC's Weather website, including a clearer, more focused design of the homepage. Since then we've been running a "beta" version of the new site to allow...Read more...
Sponsored programmes on BBC World News
Today the BBC Trust publishes its findings into an investigation of the funding arrangements for certain programmes broadcast on our international commercial television news channel, BBC World News. The Trust has concluded that 15 programmes broadcast in our weekend schedule...Read more...
Live coverage on BBC News Online
Some of you might have come across a test page for something we're working on for the BBC News website and I wanted briefly to explain what we're up to. During the past few years the "live page" format has...Read more...
Knight-Mozilla and BBC News
The web has created many challenges for news organisations but also lots of opportunities for telling stories in new and innovative ways. In particular it allows us to bring together multimedia combinations of text, graphics, video and audio, and gives...Read more...
Topical posts on this blog
Past twelve months
These are some of the popular topics this blog covers.