I can't explain why exactly, but I am fascinated by a pair of truly horrendous web pages I ran across in the last week.

  • Opening Page is a screeching roll of outrageous claims of wealth that will befall whoever buys the domain openingpage.com. He can't really believe this stuff, can he?
  • I think HavenWorks is trying to be a helpful news site, but with the oops-wrong-palette color scheme, rows of tiny photos with blue link borders, and razor-thin columns running down the page, it's a usability nightmare, a case study in all the ways not to make a web page.

When I was growing up in New York City, Carvel ice cream had commercials on TV with Tom Carvel himself doing the narration. These commercials stood out even to children as having remarkably low production values. The theory at the time was that it was done intentionally to make an impression. Are we seeing the same tactic with these web sites? Or am I reading too much into it, and these are simply horribly designed?

In the case of HavenWorks, the owner seems proud of his distinction, since at the bottom of the page is this notice:

!-! Nominated for Most Poorly Designed Website in the World by Digg.com

and he even has a page of his other designs.

tagged: , » 6 reactions

Comments

[gravatar]
Michael Chermside 6:59 AM on 14 Oct 2008

Aaarg! My eyes are burning!

[gravatar]
Kevin Dangoor 7:58 AM on 14 Oct 2008

Those are terrible! Thanks for sharing!

[gravatar]
Joshua Richardson 8:31 PM on 14 Oct 2008

Those two sites bring me back to sometime around 1998 when font-tags were the only thing that existed and geocities happened to be what everyone built their site with.

[gravatar]
paul 3:48 AM on 15 Oct 2008

Wow, I think s/he(HavenWorks) should be digged for worst online web portfolio. Almost everyone is Ugly!!! It appears some of them he did for free. But I would ask him to pull them down if it was my site.

[gravatar]
pandelume 1:47 PM on 17 Oct 2008

Helpful? In what sense?

[gravatar]
Nancy Bea 3:12 PM on 25 Oct 2008

Wow, Havenworks really IS the worst website I have ever seen. It looks deliberate to me.

BTW, growing up in NYC and CT I too recall those Carvel commercials with great clarity and fondness. My brothers and I would mimic them at the dinner table (to my Mother's annoyance) "Now, here is a delicious addition to any dinner table: a refreshing pot roast with carrots (wheeze, gasp!) Doesn't that look beautiful ladies and gentlemen?"

Add a comment:

name
email
Ignore this:
not displayed and no spam.
Leave this empty:
www
not searched.
 
Name and either email or www are required.
Don't put anything here:
Leave this empty:
URLs auto-link and some tags are allowed: <a><b><i><p><br><pre>.