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September 14, 2008

Bye Bye, Sitemeter


It's annoying because now I'm going to have to switch to someone else, and "lose" the record of my past visits. Not a big deal, I suppose, but annoying.

I cannot begin to explain how awful Sitemeter is now. Stuff I used to be able to access I can't. And it takes multiple clicks to see even the most basic information.

I have news for programming geeks: There is a learning curve to using applications and, unlike you guys, who seem to get off on learning new menus and the like, the rest of us do not have the time or inclination to re-learn this kind of thing. We do not find the prospect of sitting for hours pushing buttons in frustration to see where information is now hidden (and how it has been renamed) exciting or even interesting. At all.

Where are my weekly stats? Yearly? Monthly? No idea. Oh, I do have a big pie chart telling me that 45% of my visitors enter the site at ace.mu.nu, and smaller numbers of people enter into various individual-post pages. Thanks for that. I had no idea.

You guys seem to have the idea: "Oh, it's like a little game. It'll be fun for them to learn where we've hidden stuff." Why do you believe this?

My suspicion is that they're trying to monetarize Sitemeter and force us to pay the subscription. I can't fault them for that -- however, I damn sure am not paying for this crap.

Let me have the old system back and maybe I'd be willing to pay $3 a month for it.

Not $7.

And there's no way I'm paying a dime for this crap in its current incarnation, where stuff that ought to be simple to find is now a fun little mini-game for me.


Rollback: Reacting far more quickly than Coca-Cola, Sitemeter is rolling back to its old implementation.

Here's the thing: If you want to add gadgets and doohickeys, or offer a new interface, fine. But don't lose the old functionality, for God's sakes. Some strange people may prefer the new interface -- fine, let them select it. Or even make it default, and let me select old-school.

But what is the deal with losing nearly all the old functionality and replacing it with unusable nonsense?

It cannot be stressed enough that bloggers want to see how their traffic is doing and, especially when it spikes, where that traffic is coming from. The new system did not have, as far as I could tell, any report about referring sites.

None. Nada. Zip. The second-most important feature (possibly the first) was just zapped, for no particular reason.

In exchange for that, I get to see pie charts telling me that most people are viewing the site on Windows XP operating system.

Sitemeter is doing the right thing by going back to the old system. Again, add all the bells and whistles you want, but don't change the basic layout. Add a few more buttons -- trust us, we can find buttons, and we can click on them if we find the new information useful.

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posted by Ace at 03:38 PM

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