Did anyone else notice how annoying many of the Webby Award winners were this year?
From taking over your browser (plus numerous other examples), to playing annoying Flash intros to being slow to load, to taking over your browser and playing annoying Flash intros with music, many of these sites seemed deliberately designed to annoy, confuse and have the user reaching for the close tab button as quickly as possible.
I would guess that maybe 50% of the official winners were all Flash sites. Why? What is this obsession that -design- advertising agencies have with all-Flash web sites?
Is it because they are scared to write content? Or is it because the written word is a little too boring? With this latest round, the Webbies are in serious danger of straying into Communication Arts awards territory.
What’s also funny is that the only time I ever come across these sites is when I visit awards sites like the Webbies. They just don’t seem to show up on search engines — I wonder why?
I mean, how on earth could Sony have won the best home page award?
Their home page looks like that of any other electronics company except that they pointlessly built it all in Flash — what, so that the rollovers could look a little more sexy?
Thank goodness for the people’s voice, who in this instance chose The New York Times — they clearly know a lot more about web design than the judges. How can these two home pages even be considered in the same league?
I could go on but I think I’ve already made my point. And, yes, I do realize that a lot of traditional web design has been recognized. But the number of all-Flash winners is ridiculous.
But let me finish with one last rant. How could Ikea’s dream kitchen mini-site win for best navigation/structure? This is an insult to professional information architects.
Yes, it’s clever and gimmicky, but why not recognize a site that has to make thousands of pages easily accessible to a range of audiences — like the New York Times maybe. Now there’s a tough IA job.
Let’s hope that in 2008 the Webby Awards do a better job of recognizing the sites (and the people behind them) that have made the web the indispensable part of our lives that it is today.