It's really, really, really bad
August 19, 2004 8:24 AM   Subscribe

The World's Worst Website? Well, yes, it is really bad, but is it the worst? More importantly, isn't there a better way to educate budding web designers? How about sites that encourage, with examples of what to do, rather than the opposite? [via The Red Ferret Journal] [SFW, annoying MIDI]
posted by tommasz (14 comments total)

 
Hosted, appropriately, on Angelfire.
posted by trharlan at 8:41 AM on August 19, 2004


Why is all the text centered?
posted by Outlawyr at 8:43 AM on August 19, 2004


How about sites that encourage, with examples of what to do, rather than the opposite?

There are thousands of sites that show you how to do it right. A List Apart is a good one.
posted by jpoulos at 9:13 AM on August 19, 2004


by supposedly being an example of how not to do things, this website, in fact provides a service by it's very nature of being poorly done. hence, it cannot possibly be the worst website ever.

except for the fact that this has, in fact, been done before, thus making it irrelevant and in fact the worst website ever.
posted by glenwood at 9:26 AM on August 19, 2004


How can a worst site be Best of the Web?

Wow, that's deep. Pass the bong.
posted by terrapin at 9:40 AM on August 19, 2004


i know several websites that are awful. microsoft's site is one of them; i went to the MS office page today, got a warning that i was using an unsupported browser and thus might experience problems. (mozilla is "unsupported" even though it's supposed to be ok to use netscape 6 there, according to their list of supported browsers. nice detection script, guys.)

so i did a check - over 140 html errors on that page. i didn't even bother checking the css. don't blame the visitor for using an "unsupported" browser if you can't even validate your friggin' code in the first place. that makes you a bad designer, it does not make your visitors bad for not using your favorite browser.

i regularly hit websites when at work that are very poorly designed. not in terms of midi files or animations, but in terms of godawful navigation and useless search features.

as a recent example, i did a search for a new product. the first hit was from a major company, a press release for exactly what i wanted. but things went downhill from there. i don't understand why a company would issue a press release touting a new product, then (a) not give a direct link to the product info page, (b) not give the catalog number of the product in the press release, and (c) not get a single result from their own search engine, when searching their site using the name of the product, cut and pasted from the press release. so i did what any sane person would do - i bought a competitor's product instead, because i could actually find ordering info on their site.

the days of complaining about link color and flashing gifs are pretty much over, i think. what we need now is to start letting the folks who own corporate websites know just how damn user-unfriendly they are.
posted by caution live frogs at 9:41 AM on August 19, 2004


This was one of the first webpages I ever visited, back in 1995...I'm amazed it's still up. If it's not the worst web page of all time, it's certainly got the worst wallpaper.

glenwood - That site might have been the worst if the pictures trailing the cursor didn't keep cracking me up, giving the site some legitimate humour value.
posted by The Card Cheat at 10:27 AM on August 19, 2004


the days of complaining about link color and flashing gifs are pretty much over, i think. what we need now is to start letting the folks who own corporate websites know just how damn user-unfriendly they are.

Amen. It's not the badly designed personal sites that are the scourge of the web, it's the corporate/business ones that demand flash (personal irritation) or have incredibly cryptic site architecture. I remember spending an hour, ripping my hair out all the while, trying to figure out how much a weekly Tube pass for London costs by running through a demented webmaze of a site. Why is it so difficult for people to hire someone who has an idea of what usability consists of?

And don't even get me started on technical manuals.
posted by jokeefe at 12:26 PM on August 19, 2004


I agree about commercial sites that are hard to use. There's nothing more annoying that wanting to spend money and being unable to do so because of the site. How many companies would erect a maze between their shelves and the checkout line?
posted by tommasz at 12:59 PM on August 19, 2004


And don't even get me started on technical manuals.

I spent a few months re-writing technical manuals for a company supplying them to Hewlett-Packard, and I can tell you that a lot of engineers are barely literate.
posted by The Card Cheat at 1:11 PM on August 19, 2004


The site appears to follow the "while many may argue as to what is beauty, everybody agrees on ugly" philosophy.

And I agree with The Card Cheat - engineers are a notoriously illiterate bunch. I work with a bunch of them, and their whitepapers typically need a "buddy writer" assigned to them so that they don't give our editor the screaming fits.
posted by FormlessOne at 3:35 PM on August 19, 2004


What, no frames?
posted by SPrintF at 6:55 PM on August 19, 2004


How many companies would erect a maze between their shelves and the checkout line?

Other than Ikea?
posted by Kwantsar at 10:26 PM on August 19, 2004


Wait—error messages that scroll with the page are fake?
posted by DrJohnEvans at 6:34 AM on August 20, 2004


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