Thursday, March 24, 2011

INTERNET: And Strike Another From The List

I visit a lot of sites daily. Right now the total is 130. Add in links on those pages, the total goes to maybe 175. Google Reader checks another 80 or so sites, multiple times a day. While I scan over the Google Reader headlines, I click on maybe another 80 a day in total (George Strombolopoulos accounts for a good half-dozen a day himself). So, rounding off, maybe I look at 250 sites a day.

Every one of those sites is planning an upgrade some time in the future. And the number of upgraded or redesigned sites I like better than what was there before? ZERO. Some sites have gone from useful to incredibly unuseful bad memories no longer on my daily visit list (My YEARLY visit list is up to 21 right now). There is a monthly and a weekly list too. Just to see if common sense prevailed and the website returned to the earlier useful design. It's never happened. Some people can't admit their mistakes. Me? Well, I can, it's just that I don't make any.

Some sites DO roll back parts of re-designs. Oddly enough some very famous ones. Ones that I don't visit. So my perfect record of imperfect redesigns remains pristinely at 100 per cent.

Latest to fall from grace is Rotoworld. And I have to tell you, this one hurts. I've depended less and less on the site as my interest in Roto Sports has declined. I'm going to win the OOPS hockey league this year, but that was a draft and no trade league this season. Soooo, no need for regular information acquisition. The Ed Jovanovski Memorial Stanley Cup Pool and the Chris Bosh (Just Another Guy) Memorial NBA Playoff Pool are each draft and hope things. I'm probably not even going to have a BBL Baseball league this summer. So, I hang on to Rotoworld more out of curiosity than need. But no more. It's been stricken from the daily rolls.

It used to be that I could directly go to Rotoworld's American League Player News. With their new redesign, not so much. Nope, actually. You have to click on a drop down menu to American League and then click on a go button. And getting there is a lot of fun. If you're at the TOP of the page, you know, the place my mouse cursor is MOST OF THE TIME, getting to the drop down menu means passing over the site menu, which AUTOMATICALLY EXPANDS, OBSCURING THE TARGET DROP-DOWN MENU. Which means mousing down half the page and then coming back up to the drop-down menu. Blechh!!! (Actually, I use stronger language than Blechh!!!, but I've promised myself and my blood pressure that I would stop my recent descent into perpetual cursing).

And it gets worse. The site auto-refreshes as soon as I click on its tab. Remember, I load all my sports sites at once through middle clicking on a folder of such bookmarks. Gawd, it's annoying to arrive at the just loaded site and then watch it reload. THEN, I discovered another little fly in the ointment. I left the site on my screen and did something else somewhere else. I returned to my computer and noticed the data had refreshed and, once again, I was looking at the data from ALL major league baseball teams, not just the American League player news. Honestly, as much as I like Lyle Overbay, I have NO INTEREST whatsoever in Pittsburgh Pirate player notes. None. Zero. Zilch.

So, for the second time, I write Customer Support. The first time, was right after the re-design when I told them I really, really needed a direct to American League link capability. They said, "Noted." No action, just noted. Sooooo, it was with less than a little hope that I wrote to their support team about this refresh idiocy even AFTER using their go button thing. Mentioned I was using Firefox 3.6.15 (And NO, I'm not switching to FF4 yet. See earlier posts). Oh, and that I was talking about auto-refresh.

The reply? Linda wrote me saying she couldn't reproduce the issue. Clicking the refresh button in her Firefox 4.0 didn't cause the reload to over-ride the American League choice. The ticket is now closed.

Notice anything vaguely STUPID about that response? Different version of Firefox. Actively clicking the reload button rather than waiting for the unwanted automatic refresh. That's what passes for customer support now from Rotoworld. I HAD moved the links to the baseball and hockey pages from the daily folders to the weekly folder. And truth be told, other sites were already giving me better information. But I've decided to just delete the links completely. Not move them to weekly permanently, not even to the monthly check-in and not even to the ultimate garbage can for the guy who keeps EVERY LINK EVER. Rotoworld doesn't even deserve a spot on the yearly list.

Maybe I CAN beat this packrat compulsion. Maybe the first step is a site that's been redesigned into less usefulness with a support team who can't read and cares less than nought about legitmate user bug info. Maybe Rotoworld is doing me a favour by being the straw that broke the back of my resolve to continue hoping once great sites will return to their former glory.

Think I should thank Linda for that little wake-me-up? Nah, I don't think so either.

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