News Portals and Search Engines

As vital as general-purpose search engines and web directories are to helping us navigate the web, they aren't the best tools for searching for news. This isn't a criticism -- they simply aren't designed for the purpose.

A much better way to find news on the web is to use a specialized news portal or search engine. Here are a few of the best.

- News Portals

Yahoo News Full Coverage
With something called "Full Coverage" you expect a lot, and Yahoo delivers. Full Coverage is maintained by human editors just like the Yahoo directory, and is updated with links to new stories throughout each day. News is organized into categories, and each category has links to news stories, related web sites, magazine articles, opinions and editorials, audio and video, and links to Yahoo directory categories.

While many of the links point to coverage by major news organizations, links to other sources abound, including some very obscure or out of the ordinary resources, but all very high quality. Pursuing a Yahoo Full Coverage category is an excellent way to get a very broad, yet deep overview of a particular news event.

HeadlineSpot is a "true" news portal in the sense that it has links to hundreds of sources of news and information, organized in categories. Major categories include news by subject, news by region, media type, opinion pages, and so on.

Other categories point to resources helpful to news junkies. These include links to "cool tools," resources for journalists, kids and teachers, and a category that takes you "behind the news."

NewsCenter, maintained by colleague and expert online sleuth Gary Price, is designed to help you locate and quickly access a wide variety of online news resources. From news wires to front sections of major papers to international news to government press releases, you'll likely find the link you're looking for on this page. Tip: Use your browser's "find" function (usually Ctrl-F on the keyboard) to search for a specific news source once the page has loaded.

Gary also maintains two other pages of interest to newshounds: "Current Awareness" resources using streaming media such as audio and video, and a Speech and Transcript center where you can access the words of newsmakers verbatim.

Current Awareness Resources Using Streaming Media˜gprice/audio.htm

Speech and Transcript Center˜gprice/speech.htm

Aileena contains over 5,500 Links to newspapers, radio and TV Stations in 174 countries.

Easy access to thousands of news sources, including more than 3,600 newspapers, 4,800 magazines and hundreds of television stations worldwide.

NewsTrawler is a meta search engine that lets you search the archives of hundreds of news archives on the web.

- Search Engine News Services

Though they don't generally include news stories in their indexes, the general purpose search engines do offer separate news services. These range from simple repackaging of headlines from Moreover, to extensive, near real-time news search capabilities. Among these offerings, Northern Light's Current News Search stands head and shoulders above the others.

AltaVista News
A bare-bones news offering, powered by

Excite NewsTracker
News Tracker allows you to create your own customized news links. Create topics using keywords, and NewsTracker will search from hundreds of sources and display all of the news it can find relating to your topic.

Lycos News
Lycos News combines news from Wired with headlines from Reuters and the Associated Press.

Google News and Resources
Google's News and Resources is a simple list of links to major news and information sites around the world.

Northern Light Current News
Current News provides a search of the past 2 weeks of news stories from over 70 sources from 33 newswires and online publications, including AP Online, UPI, and PR Newswire, as well as numerous international sources.

You can also easily limit your search by recency (last two hours, today, or the past two weeks), topic (14 categories ranging from "Business" to "Weather Conditions") and sort your results by time or relevance.

Tomorrow: Tools and resources for creating your own customized news.

Search Headlines

NOTE: Article links often change. In case of a bad link, use the publication's search facility, which most have, and search for the headline.

Microsofts MSN plans to step up rivalry with AOL...
Seattle Post-Intelligencer Oct 16 2001 1:21PM GMT
A Closer Look at Weblogs... Oct 16 2001 11:59AM GMT
Search Engine Marketing: Luxury or Necessity?...
InternetDay Oct 16 2001 11:51AM GMT
Pop-up ads influence Web rankings...
ZDNet Oct 16 2001 11:46AM GMT
Google Says in Content Pact With AT&T Wireless... Oct 16 2001 11:45AM GMT
Excite cuts staff, stops ad sales...
National Post Online Oct 16 2001 11:01AM GMT
Brills Content Closes; Is Cut Back...
New York Times Oct 16 2001 4:13AM GMT
Govnet would be costly, prone to failure, experts say... Oct 16 2001 2:46AM GMT
Yahoo sells ring of community sites...
CNET Oct 16 2001 1:54AM GMT
The Big Question: Whats the worst thing about the web as an advertising medium?... Oct 15 2001 10:36AM GMT
Five years ago: Jim Barksdale on Netscape Communicator 4.0...
ZDNet Oct 15 2001 8:03AM GMT
How the Net Is Documenting a Watershed Moment...
New York Times Oct 15 2001 6:19AM GMT
MSN Arabia launches... Oct 14 2001 11:00PM GMT
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About the author

Chris Sherman is a frequent contributor to several information industry journals. He's written several books, including The McGraw-Hill CD ROM Handbook and The Invisible Web: Uncovering Information Sources Search Engines Can't See, co-authored with Gary Price. Chris has written about search and search engines since 1994, when he developed online searching tutorials for several clients. From 1998 to 2001, he was's Web Search Guide.