Useless to Mankind

A few weeks back, Robbie Shepherd wrote an article about every web designers dream of telling the client where to get off.

I had just finished reading the article when I got an e-mail from a client wanting stupid changes to their project.

The project in question was a two page job to promote a live project we had just finished. The concept was to give the punters an idea of what the product would do before they parted with their hard earned cash. The pages were created, with the obvious banalities of click here removed from the page — word processor users just can’t seem to wrap their heads around hyperlinks.

You would expect the promotional site to look exactly like the live site, but with more branding and contact information — well, most people would, this client however just didn’t see that point.

On top of the dumb changes requested, was a major change to the live site. This is a project that has already been approved, signed off and paid for, yet the client is trying to sneak a major change through on a minor project. Yes, we can do it, but the client will pay for it to be done and should be going through the proper channels of organising a change request.

The whole process has just gone off into meeting land — I’m mostly banned from client meetings due to a lack of tact — and I’m hopeful of a reasonable resolution. The client will be educated and will learn what is and isn’t an acceptable course of action within a project. I live in hope.

Most of us have had to deal with brain donors like this at one time or another. In the field of corporate web design, no matter how cool or clued up the company is, the people you are dealing with usually fall into the realms of sales and marketing — both of which seem to have little idea of what their company actually does or how to deal with non sales and marketing people in the outside world.

These are people who can’t tie their own shoelaces and can’t hold a conversation that isn’t peppered with jargon and marketing speak. After half an hour in their presence you’ll be reaching for a blunt instrument to end the torment.

Also under the category of useless to mankind are movie executives who churn out film versions of dumb television programs, like The Beverley Hillbillies; anyone involved with reality tv; the designers of clothing who add fake pockets to their products; the upper management of corporate monopolies; the annoying, yet cheerfully vacant, people who try to convert you to their form of religion; media magnates who try to convince us that soundbytes, celebrity gossip and sports interviews are a substitute for news; and anyone who willingly works for Microsoft.

I propose the Douglas Adams’ solution of telling these twats that the world is about to explode, piling them into a space ship and launching their inanity off into the night sky.

I look forward to the day with much anticipation.

Published WrittenByMe — 12.07.2001
Published Nytewolf — 29.06.2001

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