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Snap’s preview anywhere gizmo is ruining the reading experience for millions of people. Its intrusive, obstructive and unuseful in almost every respect and use case. The fact that so many big blogs are using it, big well respected blogs, does not mean that it’s useful, it just means that they, like most bloggers, have all the self restraint of a magpie in a sparkly things factory.
That’s not to say im any better, but it is true. As a group , most bloggers are only a small step away from the flashing, rotating logos of 1997 or the neon pink backgrounds and blaring teen pop auto play bollocks of your average 17yr old MySpace user — and I include myself, though i dont use SPA, im as guilty as the next blogger of “bling envy”.
Let me point out a few truths about Snap Preview Anywhere, in the vain hope that this misguided ‘helper application’ will die a quick death as we all start to see the sense of a usable website as opposed to a trinket magnet for the design challenged.
- Accidental triggers: When scrolling, or just moving from one element (maybe a link, maybe a photo etc) to another, the unintentional triggering of the SPA popup is distracting, at best. It draws the eye away from the task at hand, and causes annoyance, and loss of concentration — if you’re actually selling anything, pay close attention to this point!
- Click stalling: Quite often, when trying to click a link that features the Snap abomination, I have to click several times to get the damn thing to work. This is too much effort. If your site is that hard to use, you can bet I wont be back, and neither will others.
- I trust you: No, really I do! Im at your blog, despite like everyone else being really busy, im at your blog! I just want to follow the fucking link ok? Dont crowd me like some over-eager second hand car salesman trying to sell me a dodgy link, just let me see that its a link, read the anchor text and decide if I want to click it. I dont care what the bloody site looks like, if you’re linking to it, that’s good enough for me — really, get out of my face.
Wow, glad I got that off my chest. I’ve had this post in mind for a few weeks but Duncan reminded me, and finally pushed me in the comments of another post.
All joking aside, SPA is not helpful, it’s not cool, and it’s not winning you readers — It’s bling, a silly little shiney thing designed specifically to increase awareness of Snap.com — no bad thng, and certainly an shining example of how to use widgets to gain links and attention, but, come on ladies and gentleman, show a little self restraint, show a little consideration for your users.
Complaints, abuse and protestations of innocence, ignorance or terminal stupidity to my inbox or the comments below 🙂