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December 19, 2008

Rhys Jones court case blog a success with readers

By martinabooth

The Liverpool Echo’s live blog of the Rhys Jones murder trial has proved a success with readers, claims the paper, attracting 100, 000 page impressions throughout the court case.

Sean Mercer, 18, was found guilty of Rhys’ murder and jailed for life on Tuesday, following a nine-week trial at Liverpool Crown Court.

11-year-old Rhys was tragically shot dead in Croxteth, Liverpool, in August 2007, as he walked home from football practice.

In what the Echo claim is a media first, copy was filed straight from the court by reporters and published onto the blog within three minutes, which also displayed pictures and videos shown to the court.

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Alastair Machray, editor of the Liverpool Echo, said: “The fact so many people have logged on and followed proceedings on our website shows that putting the resource into the live blog was the right thing to do.

“Unusually for our live blogs, we have not allowed user interaction, but that has not stopped people submitting comments thanking us for the blog. Other than actually sitting in court, this was the only way people could continually monitor what was happening.

“The success of the live blog has confirmed to me that live news must be delivered on demand and that the deadline is now.”

The blog was also hosted on the Liverpool Daily Post’s companion site.

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