Wait, Do You Find My Blog Annoying?

Filed under administrative

After this

and this

and this

took place at Ulysses on Friday night after work, my friend Eric turned very seriously to me and said, “I have to tell you something, Katie.”

His wife-to-be looked at him like, “Oh, my god, what totally embarrassing thing are you about to say?”

It turns out he really hates my SnapShots. You know, the little boxes that pop up every time you mouseover an external link. Like this:

He said he understands that I use them because they make me money, though. But, um, they actually don’t. I put them there for you. So that you know what you’re clicking on before you click. And in the case of Wikipedia links, you can actually read the definition of whatever I’m linking to without even clicking on the link.

But that isn’t the first time someone’s told me that he hates it. Another friend said that if he didn’t know me, he would’ve exited my blog the first time one of those things popped up and never looked back.

So, how do you feel about them? Love them? Hate them? Never even notice them?


  1. Andrea says:

    I read you in my RSS feed mostly, so I never see them.


  2. Cassie says:

    Honestly, I thought he’d comment on the background.

    • Actually, me, too. He’s the same friend who said donuts4dinner.com was so ugly it made this site seem decent in comparison back when I started that.

      These computer science guys are all about their non-seizure-inducing site design.

  3. Cristy says:

    Every now and again, I find the SnapShots useful, but mostly I ignore them. I’m with you, though; when blogging, I’d rather give more info in case the reader wants it than less.

  4. bybee says:

    I’m so dazzled by your blog that I could never find fault with it!

  5. Tessa says:

    Um, it doesn’t do that on this compooter.


  6. Eric says:

    I may have come off a little harsh, but it was out of love I swear. But to the point, find me one professional site on the internet that uses SnapShots. If they were really that useful then sites would be using them all the time.

    For me it comes back to the Principle of Least Astonishment (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Principle_of_least_astonishment). People can always click a link if they want to see what’s on the other side, it’s not a huge cost really, and that little popup either distracts or gets in the way. If a roll over the donut icon in the right nav, the SnapShots box blocks the lower two items, forcing me to hover off, wait for it to go away, then hover back on the next button.

    • Eric says:

      Before someone else says it, yes, the SnapShots button helpfully loads up the Wikipedia link in my previous comment. It’s still not worth it.

  7. Jessica R. says:

    He’s rather blunt with you huh? I’m not a fan of them, never have been on any site. But, I usually read yours in my feed reader then come here to comment, so they don’t bother me.

  8. Admitting to not noticing seems painfully similar to the stereotypical sitcom guy who doesn’t compliment a woman’s new hairstyle…
    “I have always thought those pop-ups look very nice…”
    All I know about life I’ve learned from bad television.
    Great success! (Or… not.)

  9. Tracey says:

    I, too, read you in my reader and haven’t even noticed that you use SnapShots, but I suppose I DO find them sort of annoying when I encounter them online. I like to be able to mouse over links and look at the web address in the status bar to see where they might take me before I go, but I don’t need a pop-up to show me. The only thing that really gets under my skin on a blog is when someone changes all of their links in bit.ly for their own tracking purposes, thereby keeping me from seeing where they go in the status bar.

  10. Sandy says:

    I hate them. For a while I thought they were those virus things that highlight random words then take you to hentai sites. Just me? OK then.

  11. tasha says:

    When I leave my feed to come comment (which seems to be usually) they bug me. One of my least favorite internet features ever, actually.

  12. Dishy says:

    Umm.. I must not be scrolling around enough b/c I don’t recall noticing them before. But I do hate pop ups in general so I go w/ BOOOOOOO!!

  13. Julie says:

    At the risk of betraying how self-involved I really am…

    I love them, especially when I mouse over my own comment, and I see a little snapshot of my own blog…and I think that’s why I love them.