Since Google just brought out its new reading age analysis tool, I've used it to compare the UK national newspaper websites. I've included three news aggregators - Yahoo, Newsnow and Google - to give a baseline (although Newsnow doesn't fit the common Yahoo and Google baseline).
No big surprises that the Sun, Mirror and News of the World sit together at the bottom of the list, or that they're joined there by the commuter freebie Metro; nor that the FT contains almost no "basic" language pages and the most "advanced". But the middle of the table is more interesting, with the Guardian scoring much the same reading age as the Daily Mail, and the Independent sitting at the top of the qualities isn't necessarily what I'd have guessed.
It's also curious that Google's own news aggregator (and Yahoo's) seems to have a higher reading age than almost any news publisher. Perhaps this tells us something about the Google News algorithm and the way it prioritises content on the basis of language complexity?