February 25, 2002
12:29 PM   Subscribe

Welcome to WildlyInappropriateUseofFlashland Bless you, hack designers. You brighten my day.
posted by davebush (28 comments total)

This post was deleted for the following reason:

Don't blame Flash, blame incompetent ten-minute teen "designers" and ignorant clients.
posted by mkn at 12:40 PM on February 25, 2002

(I am not a designer. This will soon become obvious.)

Why is it "inappropriate"? Because it's about funerals? Or because some people just think Flash is stupid?

At any rate, there's a "Skip Intro" button right there if people don't like it.
posted by Skot at 12:53 PM on February 25, 2002

I think it's considered inappropriate to be muslim these days. Is that it? Help me out, here.
posted by jpoulos at 12:57 PM on February 25, 2002

that wasn't that bad. Can't you find better? I mean worse?
posted by ParisParamus at 1:03 PM on February 25, 2002

is it because they don't use the blocky little font that all the cool designers seem to have required each other to use this year?
posted by badstone at 1:03 PM on February 25, 2002

"Overseas Shipping Available"

I was thinking of sending a dead Muslim to my cousin in Paris.
posted by etc. at 1:14 PM on February 25, 2002

At any rate, there's a "Skip Intro" button right there if people don't like it.

Tried the "Skip Intro" button? More bad Flash. The point here is that zooming, flipping text is wrong (in fact, funny) in this context. Thought that would be a given.
posted by davebush at 1:14 PM on February 25, 2002

Skot : animated headings bouncing around everywhere and (reasonably) bright colours seem kinda inappropriate, given that the business deals with those who are... less than animated, shall we say?

That and the simple utter lack of attention to detail... the main menu's items aren't even aligned and spaced evenly.

It's just wrong on so many levels, starting with this line:

<meta name="Generator" content="Microsoft Publisher 2000">
posted by cheaily at 1:18 PM on February 25, 2002

Pot. Kettle. Hack.

posted by rodii at 1:38 PM on February 25, 2002

(I guess I was off-base with my "muslim" comment above. I honestly didn't get the "inappropriate" bit.) I just don't see the point in bashing some little mom & pop business's site. I mean the hit counter when I first saw it was under 800. I give them credit for trying.
posted by jpoulos at 1:50 PM on February 25, 2002

Inappropriate because it does not add anything and it cannot add anything. All flash can EVER do is make things a little more entertaining. HTML and perl can pretty well handle the getting-information-to-the-reader bit.

Flash is overused. Warp records uses it unobstructively, but when you get down to it, even this exceptional example simply demonstrates how it can make things slightly cooler. Fact is, if you're in the funeral business, your webpage is gonna be boring regardless of what you do. Using flash just makes it tasteless.
posted by Settle at 2:26 PM on February 25, 2002

Using flash just makes it tasteless.

Or intriguing in a short-attention-span theater kinda way. Sorry, I just have to chime in on the side of much ado about nothing. I didn't find it repulsive or bombastic, it seemed pretty straight forward: This is what we do, these are your choices here. To be honest, it seems kinda arrogant to be dissing these people (designers) based only on a poorly supported personal view of tasteless. Furthermore, the lavender background and white and orange lettering is hardly what I would call bright colors. I find it much more soothing than browns, blacks, greys, and the other colors some cultures might conscider appropriate for death.
posted by Wulfgar! at 2:43 PM on February 25, 2002

I don't know about anybody else but after someone very close to me has passed away the last I want to be looking at is a) a web site, b) a web site with the words "Autopsy Policy" dancing around.
posted by victors at 2:48 PM on February 25, 2002

You know, Muslims are supposed to be buried within 24 hours of death, which is coincedentally the length of time that it takes to watch this Flash file.
posted by laz-e-boy at 2:54 PM on February 25, 2002

It just looks like someone with no taste who doesn't know much about flash and less about html has put together a website.

Ain't nothing wrong with that - not everyone is a designer.
(or a funeral director)
posted by Spoon at 3:00 PM on February 25, 2002

blame incompetent ten-minute teen "designers"

A good amount of the "teen" designers I've seen are just as competent as their older counterparts. This flash file is tasteful compared to 99% of the crap out there.
posted by owillis at 3:06 PM on February 25, 2002

It just looks like someone with no taste who doesn't know much about flash and less about html has put together a website.

Oh for pity's sake, is anybody actually gonna back up any of these claims of no taste or ignorance on the part of the designers?
posted by Wulfgar! at 3:06 PM on February 25, 2002

Welcome to the wildly inappropriate misunderstanding of a basic cultural fact. Different cultures deal with death differently. Ever been to a Polish funeral? How about a Vietnamese funeral? I've been to both, though never to a Muslim funeral. White is the color of mourning in Vietnam, fer instance. Besides, there's a certain soothing rhythm to this particular piece of Flash. Okay, the Flash animation is not the most skilful, but flying titles may be a great comfort to some folks. Let's not be judgmental. (I would draw the line, though, at titles using that Powerpoint sound effect of screeching tires.)
posted by barkingterrier at 3:50 PM on February 25, 2002

Right. I suppose this is more tasteless to designers than to the public. Designers see the purpose and the time spent making the damn thing more than the product.

The designers are not at fault here...really. I mean...it isn't badly done. The problem as ALWAYS GRM<GMNG is clients, who know good design is good, but don't know what it means when they see it. They want flash they get flash. Companies want flash so schools teach flash. Designers know flash so designers suggest flash. Never ending eternal cycle of shit.

Design is nothing but problem solving. That's all it is, and good designers are people who take more into account, the bigger picture, when they do this sort of thing. The problem with teenagers is that they use flash because they like using flash...when you've only got a hammer everything starts to look like a nail right?

Wulfgar is right on though. This is only bad design to those who make it their business to be in the know about it. If you need someone to dig a hole in the ground for your dead family member, complaining about the dl time isn't high on your list of priorities.

Side note: Flash isn't actually that bad...what I hate is Java...and advertising.
posted by Settle at 3:50 PM on February 25, 2002

I don't really disagree with anything you say, but how about the more radical notion that some people might actually like the piece of Flash held up to scorn here? That it might just fit the bill in certain ways, for some people? Designer culture is not exactly coincident with corporate culture, but there is a kind of conservatism, however hip, that folk culture is not constrained by. And, yes, there is plenty of folk culture on the web. Sure, we're hip, we're cool, we know to order Cuervo 1800, but our culture is just one (sub)culture. I like the folk culture of the web, which is why I check out everlasting blort almost daily. Anyway, I want to suggest the possibility that for the intended audience the funeral ad is just right.
posted by barkingterrier at 4:11 PM on February 25, 2002

They are about 6 blocks from where I live. I'll go see them tomorrow.
posted by swift at 4:12 PM on February 25, 2002

> WildlyInappropriateUseofFlash

Redundant. As soon as you've said "Flash" you've said the whole thing. EWWWW, flash is so tacky (...shivers...)

> Don't blame Flash, blame incompetent ten-minute
> teen "designers" and ignorant clients.

flashers and flash peddlers, respectively.
posted by jfuller at 4:29 PM on February 25, 2002

What bugs me about Flash is that they expect you to read the text at a certain .......... s.....p....e...e....d.... whereas in HTML you can scan the entire document on your own time. It's also annoying to be told what the important and memorable statement is. The web has been about letting the user find what they are looking for, Flash is about telling them what the marketing hacks want them to hear. Of course, there are some Flash sites (best I saw lately was Donny Darko) which are genuinely innovative and interesting. But they usually dont have any point and are promotional tie-ins to movies that must have cost a small fortune to create (like the wicked Traffic website from last year, or was it 2000?) Even those cool Flash things are confusing, though. I hate it when they are just movies without interactivity and you click all over the screen thinking that you are affecting what is happening, until a minute later it dawns on you that you're supposed to just sit there like you're watching TV. Did anyone see that beautiful Yugop Flash clock that was posted last week? Now that was impressive.
posted by fellorwaspushed at 6:23 PM on February 25, 2002

I wouldn't call this use of Flash "wildly inappropriate." It's visually bland, and yes, unnecessary given its blandness, but c'mon - the words-float-by-at-a-glacial-pace genre of Flash work sucks even in the hands of good designers. (Like what fellorwaspushed said.)
posted by furiousthought at 6:29 PM on February 25, 2002

Actually the page is not so much offensive as extremely juvenile, and the fact that it's for a funeral service merely makes it seem offensive (although evidently there's a lot of you looking to find offense in most anything today). The big point of contention is the complete and utter abuse of transition effects (the "Ma, look what I can do" syndrome) combined with the author's apparent inability to left-align text.

Also if I were to abuse my viewers by sucking up their bandwidth with a vector-based Flash file, I'd at least choose a more interesting font for the shapes than Arial/Helvetica, and I'd bother to make the page look interesting instead of boring them to, er, death.
posted by clevershark at 6:30 PM on February 25, 2002

Not sure if I understand the connection between bandwidth-sucking and vector-based. Vector-based text is typically smaller than bitmaps, especially at large sizes. Smaller file size was one of the original arguments for the use of vector formats. If this piece of Flash was static (do such things exist?) it would probably be very small.
posted by rodii at 6:36 PM on February 25, 2002

My first attempt at flash animation was a movie of a cow exploding during a meteor blast (right around the time that Armageddon came out). It was worse than this. We all gotta start somewhere.

Now my job restrains me creatively, and the work that I get to do in Flash is mainly advertisements catering to the post dot.bomb era. Talk about a tough room.

The only things I would have done different with this particular site is spend more time on the interface, dressing it up with buttons and graphics instead of making the text dance around moronically (I mean, come on! Someone just DIED!). It would also help give the page a more consistent feel if the movie background were the same colour as the page background.
posted by schlaager at 7:31 PM on February 25, 2002

ah. to have one's digit on the pulse of the folk web... could life BE any better? :-)
posted by quonsar at 2:31 PM on February 26, 2002

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