Here’s Something Interesti…Hey, Want An Email? Do ya? Do Ya Huh? I’ll Bet You Want An Email!

Sometimes it doesn’t happen for a while and I forget how much I hate it, but then it happens twice in ten minutes and all of a sudden I want to slap someone…repeatedly…with a shovel.

Dear website people:
I like newsletters. I subscribe to several of them. But you know what I don’t like? At all? When I’m struggling to figure out the cluttered layout of your stupid website so I can read a story somebody wants me to see and then boom, my entire screen gets taken over by a pop-up letting me know that you can send me emails if I’d like. No, I would not like. Not yet, anyway. I hardly even know who you are. I’m just here to read a story, a story that I can’t find because your shitty ass navigation doesn’t make any sense and it’s taken me about 12 times longer than it should to figure out where the text is.

And that’s another thing. If you’re going to use headings and landmarks and such for navigation, use them the hell properly, would ya please? They’re not just meant to be cute little decorations or some shit. They’re actually designed to help folks like your blind friend here find what they’re looking for. Your main landmark is not a place to put 37 advertisements or a random bunch of links and/or share buttons. It’s supposed to signal to me that hey man, this is where the most important things start happening. It’s where you want to be.

But back to the point, if you must use these pop-overs, could you at least have the decency to deploy them immediately rather than somehow timing them to a moment when I’m finally a few paragraphs deep and right in the middle of a sentence? Interrupting people is rude. You learn that shit in preschool. And if you could allow me to hit the close button on the damn thing and wind up back in my spot instead of at the top of the page, that would be fabufuckinglous. Yes I have a find feature, but I have to pick a word you haven’t used 77 other times or it’s gonna take me just as long to find it again and this time I’m mad so it’s even harder.

Maybe some of you think I’m getting a little worked up and that this is no big deal, but I’ve literally stopped going to websites I kind of like because they constantly do this, so please knock it off. If I want your newsletter I’ll find it, especially if you have a user experience that isn’t bitched up to such a degree that it requires I have a detective’s license.

Thank you.

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    1. And I just realized that I forgot to mention the ones where the close button doesn’t actually work by keyboard and you have to leave the entire site if you ever want to use your internet again.  That doesn’t happen to me often, but god I hate that.  I’m sure your competitors don’t though, guys.

  1. Oh wow. Thank you for explaining what a landmark was for. I feel dumb, because I never knew that until I just read this. Also I’ve never seen a website do that. Apparently I need to read more or something.

    1. Don’t feel too bad.  It took me a while to figure out landmarks too.  I wasn’t sure what they were supposed to be for until one day I kind of realized that there are patterns here and each type is meant to signal a specific thing (navigation for links, main for article bodies and so forth).  That’s how they’re supposed to work, anyway.  But now it feels as though 3 quarters of the world’s website builders are like “Oh, they want accessibility? Let’s give ’em some landmarks!” and then proceed to put no further thought into the whys and hows of it.

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