If you’ve been following my blog for a while you have probably noticed that i’ve changed the template several times in the last few months, and have ended up keeping this current “ugly” (I prefer to call it ‘special‘) template .. It just seems that I can’t find one that fits my unique style, so i figured I would go with what works over at GrownUpGeek.com : UGLY.
The look & feel of GrownUpGeek.com is considered by many to be plain at best, “amateur” looking by some, and just plain ugly by many – but I think that the plain-jane look of GrownUpGeek.com has contributed to it’s almost instant success. Because the target audience of GrownUpGeek.com is “beginners”, particularly beginners at using the internet and computers, the simple layout and ease of maneuverability makes the site un-intimidating and inviting. Many ‘pretty’ websites on the other hand are often crowded, are difficult to maneuver, and are jamm-packed with too much krap, including too much advertising – and can scare away or just plain frustrate many internet users that just want to find what they are looking for.
My goal for this blog, just like at GrownUpGeek.com is to make it easy to read so that you can find what you’re looking for and maybe even learn something. I’m not trying to impress you with fancy coding, Ajax or Flash, and I’m not trying to jam a bunch of popups or banner-ads up your ass so I don’t need to squeeze all my text down to a 6pt font to be able to squeeze-in yet one more banner ad.
If you aren’t following along or aren’t sure what I mean by a “pretty” site, look at the difference between my ‘ugly’ site’s functionality and a ‘pretty’ site: compare GrownUpGeek.com to this section of about.com – Now imagine for a minute that you are new to using the internet or computers and want to learn some of the basics. Which website is easier to move around? Which is easier to read? Which one is less intimidating? Which is easier to find something on? Which one doesn’t jam a pop-up banner or pup-under up your ass? Which one would you come back to? Get my point?
GrownUpGeek.com is not the only successful website that happens to be visually-challenged (my mother taught me that calling others ugly was not nice). Consider PlentyOfFish.com, which reportedly earns over $300,000 per month, or DSLReports.com, which has hundreds of thousands of active members, and WebMasterWorld .com which is one of the most popular online forums for webmasters. And of course let’s not forget the KING OF UGLY websites, Myspace.com – most popular site on the web; it seems that many Myspace users try to make their page look as distracting and ugly as possible – as if it’s cool to have an ugly page.
Internet users have spoken, and the popularly and earnings of these ugly websites prove it – Ugly is the new black and I wear it proudly.
Edit: Since we’ve moved to the new blog, we aren’t quite as ugly as we were.. But we are still on the “plain” side..Ugly Is the New Black by Randy "Wilson" Brown