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The Daily Sucker - Current examples of bad web design

The Daily Sucker

Sites featured in articles like Worst Websites of 2010 often are redesigned, which explains why some sites mentioned in my articles don't match their current look. The Daily Sucker features current examples of bad web design which haven't been fixed (yet).

If you see a site that you think sucks, email the URL to me. No personal pages (personal pages are supposed to reflect the individual's personality and artistic freedom) or web site designers (it would look like a conflict of interest), or others of their ilk.

If I think there's some merit to your selection, I may post it along with some commentary. If you know of a site that qualifies, let me know.

State of Utah’s New Website – An example of bad web design for June 13, 2011

June 12th, 2011 11:11 pm by Vincent Flanders

Vincent Flanders’ comments: The State of Utah’s new HackTML5-based web site is interesting. It’s a marginal Daily Sucker, but it provides an opportunity for us to learn from websites that cost lots of money and are cutting edge. I call it HackTML5 instead of HTML5 because you have to use all sorts of hacks to make HTML5 work. Then again, almost any HTML is hacked to some extent (thank you, Microsoft Internet Exploder).

If I scroll down the home page In Google Chrome, I can’t get the bottom menu to stay in place like I can with Firefox 4.

There are a lot of behind-the-scenes issues. Yslow gives it an F (40) while Page Speed gives it a 74. (Page Speed always grades on the curve. Earlier versions were tougher than Yslow, but now they’re pussycats. BTW, 40 is the lowest score I’ve ever seen. Even the ridiculously crazed format of TechCrunch gets a 48.) The site isn’t using the asynchronous version of Google Analytics, tsk tsk. There are 15 separate Javascript files and 4 external stylesheets. Here’s a screenshot of the Yslow report.

The material on the “Highlights” page scrolls too quickly. I read at a reasonable speed (I yam a kollege gradiate), but I can’t keep up.

Clicking on “Highlights” or “in Utah” or “News” brings up a scrolling DIV. It’s a nice concept, but it doesn’t work that well on my iPad. Why does that matter, because they have a file called ipad.js that’s supposed to make the site work on an iPad. It doesn’t quite get it right. Here’s what they say their site looks like on an iPad and here’s what I get on my iPad. Notice the cut-off text at the bottom. It gets worse. When I clicked “in Utah,” this is my screen.

THE REAL PROBLEM WITH THE iPAD VERSION is the iPad must be in landscape mode. Putting the iPad in portrait mode causes major problems because the site prevents scrolling (user-scalable=0). Here’s what you get for the home page when in portrait mode.

When you click on “in Utah”or “News” and you have a large portrait monitor, you get a repeating background. That sucks. It sucks because when you click “Search” or “Highlights” you don’t have the problem.

They’ll fix this—probably by the time you read this—but the Education page blows up in Chrome and Firefox, but not IE9. Hmm.

On the plus side, what they’ve done with content is pretty amazing.

State of Utah

Posted in Daily Sucker, Usability, Web Design |

Netflix – Another Example of Bad Web Design for June 10, 2011

June 9th, 2011 9:09 pm by Vincent Flanders

Submitter’s comments: Netflix released a new design of their site. You need to be a subscriber to see the monstrosity that they have unleashed but I think you might have a candidate for next year’s awards. The overall usability has fallen off the charts.

But don’t take my word for it – read some of the 1400+ comments on the blog that have been posted since yesterday morning about this thing.

Vincent Flanders’ comments: Wow. I was thinking about joining. My son-in-law has it so I’ll have to check it out.

Netflix explains their new navigation. When you have to explain your navigation, your navigation sucks. I’ve never seen an example to disprove this theory. Sounds like they’ve added Mystery Meat Navigation.

Here’s the Netflix blog discussing the redesign along with 1,500+ comments

Posted in Bad Business Practices, Daily Sucker, Usability, Web Design, Worst Web Sites |

Premier Fishing – An Example of Bad Web Design for June 10, 2011

June 9th, 2011 6:06 pm by Vincent Flanders

Submitter’s comments: This site sucks, because it only works in IE….except it doesn’t even work in IE9 – it just hangs.

Vincent Flanders’ comments: Wow. You don’t often see a website where it demands you have a certain browser. It didn’t work in Google Chrome, but it also didn’t work in IE8. Hmm. I guess it basically doesn’t work.

Premier Fishing

Posted in Daily Sucker, Usability, Web Design, Worst Web Sites |

Friday Fun: A Real Life “Fuck You. Pay Me.”

June 9th, 2011 4:04 pm by Vincent Flanders

fuck you pay meIf you have clients, you need to watch the FYPM video. Historical note: the phrase comes from Goodfellas.

It’s a great video that most of us can identify with. A friend of mine has the distinction of having many of the excuses clients use to not pay thrown at him in one afternoon.

Email from Cool Graphic Artist to Vincent Flanders

Thanks for sending the Fuck You! Pay Me! video. Love it. It got me so fired up that I used it on a recalcitrant customer. Here’s the email exchange that took place today.

Email from Cool Graphic Artist to Connie Conniving-Customer

Could you please get a check going for this invoice? (See attachment). It seems to have slipped through the cracks.

Email from Connie Conniving-Customer to Cool Graphic Artist

The production of the flyer was not approved by the Association prior to John Doe giving you the approval and as such, the Association is not responsible for payment of the invoice.

Email from Cool Graphic Artist to Connie Conniving-Customer

John Doe has acted as a representative for this organization from the beginning. Hell, he commissioned the logo, which was paid for by the organization. So the issue of payment for my services is between you and him. And I suggest that you take it up with John Doe and pay me. The amount of ill will generated by not paying me is not worth $165.

Email from Connie Conniving-Customer to Cool Graphic Artist

I have spoken with John Doe about this matter previously.  By the way, I need our logo as I have never received it from you. As the President of the Association, I need to be provided with a camera ready copy of the logo.  Please forward it to me immediately.

John Doe may act as a representative but he does not have unlimited authority to spend the Association’s money without prior approval.  It may have been in your best interest to verify approval.  The Association has officers in place and there have been many changes in the Association since the time the logo was purchased from you.

As I previously advised you, the Association did not approve the project for the golf tournament and we are not in a position to pay for an invoice that was not approved.

Email from Cool Graphic Artist to Connie Conniving-Customer

Nah. I’m not sending the logo until you pay me my $165. Or you can get John Doe to pay me. I don’t care.

Email from Connie Conniving-Customer to Cool Graphic Artist

I’ll tell you what, you send me the logo, I will send you the $165 and we will take our business elsewhere.  I am NOT sending the check until I have the logo in my possession.

It escalates:

Email from Cool Graphic Artist to Connie Conniving-Customer

Nope. It doesn’t work that way. I’ve been doing graphic design 30 years. I’ve always been fair. Send me a check. I’ll send you the vector art, JPGs for in-house use, color and black & white versions. I’ll also send you PDFs of all of the ads for the directory that still hasn’t been produced. You’re welcome to take your business elsewhere.

I’m not trying to be obstinate, but I was hired to do your Association’s business. If you want to be mad at someone and go after your money,  talk to John. I don’t think I should be put in the middle of some internal politics. I was requested to crank a flyer out in a hurry. It was presented as an Association fund raiser. No one called me and said- “John Doe is working on his own. He doesn’t represent the Association.

I do all of the advertising and collateral for your (name deleted) Non-Profit Organization. Every time someone from marketing or elsewhere in your Non-Profit Organization requests some work, I’m not going to call the VP of Marketing to get an OK because the precedent has been set. If someone were to step outside of their authority and order something, the Non-Profit Organization would pay it and deal with the person that made the request. That’s how it works from an ethical standpoint—and legal one as well. It’s not much money, but in this day and age I’ve got to go after what’s owed me.

Hope you can understand where I’m coming from.

Email from Connie Conniving-Customer to Cool Graphic Artist

Well, okay I will have the logo reproduced elsewhere.  Please return the camera-ready ads to the people who paid you for their work as those items do not belong to Association.  I will work with them directly. I do need to make it clear that you were NOT hired by the Association, you were hired by John Doe. Neither the Association nor myself are going to be forced into paying something that was not authorized.

Email from Cool Graphic Artist to Connie Conniving-Customer

Well, if that’s the way you want to play it. Just so you know, you don’t own the copyright to the logo. I own the copyright. This article explains it very well.

If you decide to have a logo done, it better not look like mine or you will be in violation of copyright law. Oh, yeah. Good luck getting someone to do a logo for $165.

Email from Cool Graphic Artist to Vincent Flanders

Vincent: This is where things stand Friday afternoon. I should have just said “Fuck you pay me.”

Posted in Bad Business Practices, Daily Sucker |

RushBiddies – An Example of Bad Web Design for June 9, 2011

June 8th, 2011 8:08 pm by Vincent Flanders

Submitter’s comments: I thought you might be interested in this site I have recently come across. I don’t necessarily know how it ranks compared to all the rest of the internet, but I have a feeling it’s pretty bad on just about any scale. Just be prepared for the visual assault before clicking on the link.

Vincent Flanders’ comments: When I saw the URL – rushbiddies.com- I thought it had something to do with Rush Limbaugh, a bunch of annoying old ladies (biddies), a bunch of annoying old ladies being annoyed by Rush, or a bunch of old ladies annoying Rush. Nope. It’s about recruiting high school girls to go Greek. Hmm. That has an unpleasant sound to it. I should change it to “Girls Gone Greek.”

Lots of text problems—contrast, size, centered and flush-left on same page, plus the use of frames.


Posted in Daily Sucker, Usability, Web Design, Worst Web Sites |

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