I have to do a lot of my browsing at work now and, when I do, I am forced to use IE. It’s not my choice but there is absolutely nothing I can do about it. What has prompted today’s little grump is the increased incidence of the following:
I agree that Firefox is a vastly superior browser to IE for a lot of reasons. I aplaud the attempts to spread the word. But I don’t think pissing off your readers is the best way to go about it. If I could switch to FF at work, I would (I made them instal FF on all our lab computers last summer *devil*) but alas I don’t have the luxury of working in a small university lab any more. We’re locked into IE and that’s all there is to say about it. Telling me that I am doing something wrong when there is NOTHING to be done about it bugs me. Simple as that. I’m less likely to read your excellent (and I know it’s excellent because I read it at home – using Safari by the way. I tried Firefox and switched back) content and more likely to spread my disatisfaction in blog posts. Like this one.
On top of that what about the people out there like my poor mum? She wouldn’t know a browser if it got up and introduced itself, let alone be able to make an informed decision as to whether FF is better than IE (we’re talking hypothetically here. My Mum uses Safari). If she comes to a site and is greeted with a “click here” message she’s likely to click here (her browsing is still at the more luck than judgement stage – she hasn’t yet developed the ‘ad blindness’ long-term surfers develop as a survival tactic). As far as she’s concerned if it’s on your webpage, it’s a legitimate link. Which in this case is fine I am sure, because you’re not going to be evil and try to take over my mother’s computer with an evil virus? Are you?
My point – my wonderful Mum doesn’t need to know what a browser is to look at webpages. All she needs for now is to know to click on the blue compass to open up the program she needs. If she ever wants to know the finer details between browsers, well, I will be more than happy to explain but somehow I think that day is a long way off. She’s just going to get confused, baffled, and upset if your site is constantly telling her to change how she does things. That leads to a phone call to me, which in turn leads to a long involved conversation that ends up with me battering my head against the desk and cursing the day you decided to code a webpage.
So there you have it – Cas’ plea to the Firefox Evangelists. Stop telling me the way I do things is wrong. It’s rude, annoys me, and has the potential to make my Mum upset. Trust me, you don’t want to be the one who made my Mum upset.