The Virginian-Pilot is testing a new way to add context to a story, and asking readers to help


By Erica A. Smith, online editor and director of digital strategy, The Virginian-Pilot, Norfolk

Our newsroom works to tell the stories of Hampton Roads. That may be sharing the significance of the area's last yock restaurants, a look back at a concert, a breakdown of the upcoming high school football season, action taken at a city council meeting, or the story behind a tragedy.

Recently we began asking how we can more effectively share the story behind those stories, key people or terms, whether that's background information or a related video or story. In partnership with Hindsight Technology Solutions, we are launching a feature called Smart Tagging that will provide quick background on key words and phrases in a story and recommend related Pilot stories. 

Smart Tagging reads through an article and identifies key terms, which it highlights in gray. Click on a highlighted word or phrase to learn more about it without leaving the story, or opening a new application or browser window.

Click here to read more and see how it works!

This experiment is only available on desktop browsers, and only in the military news section. And it's a beta feature, meaning we're still working on perfecting it. Your feedback will help us with that.

Try it out, and let me know what you think. On a story with Smart Tagging, click the "give feedback" link at the bottom of the recommendations, or send me an email at

Norfolk, Smart Tagging
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