If it’s not broke, don’t fix it: Website redesign causes problems

 

It’s that time of the semester: time to register for classes in the spring. Unless you’re a student that has all of their general education classes out of the way, you need to figure out what general education classes you can take to get that dreaded fine arts credit.

Let’s see what Malone offers to cover that category. It’s on the Malone website, right? It was last semester. Not anymore! Malone changed what works. Who was it that said, “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it”? Apparently Malone didn’t get the memo.

Yet again, Malone is making changes and not for the better. Have you taken a good look at the “new” Malone website? I use the word “new” loosely because it is a new website to us but it looks as if it was created in the 90s (i.e. watermark background, tabs that take up the width of the page). If you have used the website recently you know how difficult it is to read it. Light blue words on white and dark blue words on gray dots are nearly impossible to read without squinting.

The background in better contrast. The building name is highlighted and enlarged in order to see better.

Oh, did I forget to mention the wonderful pictures Malone has given us? Smiling students everywhere you go. You would think that when you are on a university’s webpage, you would see pictures of the university. Well not with Malone! You get to see students sitting up against a white wall from who knows where. Or when you view the page on the Wellness Center you would think that you are going see a picture of the Wellness Center. Wrong again! They show you a picture of a dorm room.

Don’t forget the new “historical section.” Can you find it? It’s on every page. Still can’t seem to find it in all that poor choice of font color? For you computer geniuses, copy the background of the website and enlarge it. This is DeVol Hall, isn’t it? Scroll to the left side of the picture; do you see the name of the building? College Hill. For anyone that started at Malone in the past four years, you will have no idea where this building is at on campus. That building is now DeVol, changed from the previous name of College Hill not too many years ago.

[Editor’s Note: According to University Relations, the background image has recently been updated with a current image of DeVol Hall.]

Let’s take a different approach. Go back to the time when you were looking for a college to go to. Do you remember how you started looking at prospective colleges? For me, the Internet provided a lot of information on universities. I would go to the university’s website and learn all I could about them. I usually had a bias towards the university that had a nice, beautiful, navigable, modern, legible website.

I am sorry to say Malone will not be a favorite of new prospective students. Now, I understand that a website should not decide what university you will attend, but it is an influence and plays a major part.

Before I end, let me point out that one great part of this website is the athletics page. Check it out! It’s a great example of what a exceptional website can look like.

Malone needs to start asking questions before making changes. Students and faculty are here and are willing to give their opinions. Malone just needs to learn to ask.

Micah Thomas is a contributing writer for Aviso AVW

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