Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Bad redesign

Normally I’d welcome a site which has been redesigned to be standards compliant. But the Independent seems to have fouled theirs up big time.

  • Firstly, all the article URLs have changed. And there are no redirects.
  • If you want to find the article again then you’re out of luck because there’s no search facility.
  • You might be able to find the article if you know when it was published using the ‘Day in a Page’ function, but at the time of writing it kept returning HTTP 400 (Bad Request) errors.
  • The Javascript used for the menus is very slow in Internet Explorer. Yes, I know IE sucks but it’s still used by the majority of web users
  • Some of the links are barely indisguishable from text. This is very bad design; links should be distinguishable by colour and by some other means – preferably using the standard underline.
  • The columns idea is a nice one but it’s annoying having to scroll back up to the top of the page half-way through an article, and it breaks the semantics.
  • It just generally looks dull – too much white.

Can’t say I’m a big fan of the changes, I’m afraid. Apparently I’m not the only one. (Link via Simon Waldman of The Guardian)


  1. Agreed. I think they going for the online newspaper style but they even mucked up on that.
    Do they have any idea what they are doing by changing the permalinks, making all references false.

  2. At least they have a one column button. But I agree, the 2 column layout is about the worst change on the site. No search engine is inexcusable in this day and age.

  3. I agree. I was glad the old background image had gone but there is not enough difference between type sizes on the home page, and within the article, the fact I need to scroll back up is annoying.
    What were they trying to accomplish? The columns in the article suggest a replication of a print look—but if that were so, the headlines would be in a bigger point size. It’s very half-hearted.
    If they wanted columns, the International Herald–Tribune does an infinitely better job.