[thelist] "Web 2.0 sites with the big friendly fonts"

Barney Carroll barney at textmatters.com
Thu Feb 22 09:58:30 CST 2007

Rob O'Rourke wrote:
>> I just read over that post - please ignore it, there's way too much 
>> vitriol there than needs be. Instead, a tip:
>> <tip type="web philosophy, standards">
>> Information architecture and Web 2.0 are terms to be weary of. They are 
>> 'big and clever' and vague, and when used to speak authoritatively and 
>> simplistically about established and sensitive disciplines, they provide 
>> all the symptoms of deceptive pretense.
>> </tip>  
> That tip is down to one article and one site and your opinion. 

Granted, it's opinion. I'm still petitioning for it to be made fact, and 
I'm funding research to extract the same noises from more people but as 
it stands, it's advice based on my experience. The site and article are 
particularly terrible examples of this, but it's something I've seen in 
a lot of places.

> Information architecture is pretty important really. If there's no 
> consideration for it then the contents of a website would be all 
> higgledy piggledy and hard to find. I thought Web 2.0 was never meant to 
> be taken seriously as industry terminology anyway seeing as most web 2.0 
> sites don't mention the phrase 'web 2.0' anywhere and ones that do are 
> taking the p*ss.

You're right, I need to justify this.

Web 2.0: Semantically misleading term, referring to various properties 
already available in the [one and only] existing 'web' that has been 
around for over a decade. Engineered as a hype/sales device to 
legitimise simplified, standardised advanced networking and 
interactivity abilities as exemplified in blogging, multi-authored 
document tracking, complex server-side applications accessible to the 
user, and advanced DOM manipulation.

Information architecture: Semantically plausible term, in its proper 
sense referring to modern thinking in file-system object models, 
metadata, and complex data systems. Regularly misused to imply expertise 
and higher knowledge of existing advanced disciplines such as 
information design, end-user psychology, and corporate branding.

A bit better?

IA in its true sense is completely legitimate, but the vast majority of 
the time I see it used as a badge by people who claim to have a bigger 
picture of brand new web philosophies which render previous expertise 
obsolete, allowing them to casually make massive assertions under the 
banner of 'fresh new attitudes'. 'The future is now! Come with us or get 
left behind!'. This kind of stuff.


More information about the thelist mailing list