Sunday, February 15, 2004

Something to vent over

Why is it that so many MT-based blogs have a stupid pop-up comments box that is not resizable?

It's bad enough when one is reading a blog with dozens of comments, which requires continual scrolling, but it's far worse when a commenter leaves a naked URL which breaks the comment function, causing the whole thread to be wider than the box, which means scrolling from side-to-side as well as up-and-down.

One well-known blog (I won't mention the name, but it is on my sidebar), is even worse, because clicking on the "open in new window" option causes a javascript "Page cannot be displayed" error.

MT *does* give the option of changing the comments pop-up box to something other than the rather narrow default, and it also allows people to resize the box to full-screen or whatever size is desired, IF YOU LET THEM. Please, if you run a MT blog, allow the comments box to be resized. Thank you.

posted at 07:49 AM | permalink | Comments (4)

Well, it can't be mine, because you said "well-known". :)

I've added the resize code, anyway.

posted by CGHill on February 15, 2004 10:32 AM

Thank you for pointing this out. It is one of my two biggest peeves where people who take so mush time to put out great work fail to attend to the details.

The other, and far worse, little problem with blog design is those blogs whose links open new windows. This behavior is enough to keep me away from many blogs. In a world where there is so much choice, a writer who cares not a whit for the reader's convenience, and instead attempts th keep the reader captive, creates another barrier to clicking on the bookmark.

posted by Michael Gersh on February 19, 2004 06:48 AM

Perhaps I'm not reading Mr. Gersh's comment correctly, but in what way does opening a link in a new window "keep the reader captive" or inconvenience them?

I, personally, far prefer new windows for links, so I can not have to backtrack or right-click to open in a new window, and can flip back to the post in question without having to worry about what window has what where in its history.

posted by Sigivald on February 19, 2004 12:30 PM

Sigivald - If opening new windows is your preference, you can do that yourself, with any link. Many of the rest of us, however, prefer to have control of our browsing experience, rather than being sent to a new browser window against our will. The reason web designers open links in a new window is so that the originating page stays up, and must be returned to. It breaks the window sequence that modern browsers keep track of, though.

This may be too "inside baseball" for you, but, when I was a web designer, we called this type of approach "keeping eyeballs captive," and I find it annoying to be kept captive in this way. It is a standard on commercial sites that inside links open in the same window, and outside links open in a new window. Most blogs, a more personal type of web site, open all links in the same window. Some blogs, however, open ALL links in a new window, and I avoid these sites unless the content is really exceptional.

To each his own, though. The web designer makes his choice, and the reader makes his. My post referred to the fact that there are many sites that suffer lower readership due to this behavior, as I am by no means the only one who eschews these sites. In my opinion it is bad design if it discourages any readers at all. To each his own, however.

posted by Michael Gersh on February 29, 2004 01:05 PM

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