You may have heard that the new Beckett.com launched this week. You might also have heard that early reviews have not been positive. In fact, a posting on their blog has generated 93 responses–which range from complaints, to thanks from other site operators for increasing their readership, and yes, a couple of complments mixed in.
Maybe I should have taken my duties as a beta tester a little more serious (that’s right–despite the fact that I’ve been negative in the past, I was approved as a beta tester). If I had taken the time, I could have told them that the site seemed slow–especially given that only beta testers were using it. I also could have probably told them that they were making what should be a fairly simple concept, and making it waaaaaaaay too difficult (I have to agree with the commenter that chastised them for launching something that basically REQUIRES users to watch tutorials to be able to use it–that’s just not good practice).
I don’t fault Beckett for trying to improve things–their previous site sucked. Unfortunately, it seems like they may have tried to take too big of a leap. And maybe too soon. And without looking before they leaped. And into the wind. Whatever you want to call it.
In the mean time, despite the mis-step, and all of the other problems I have with Beckett, I look forward to seeing where they go with the site, because I do think that it can be useful (for certain things). I’m just not sure I’m willing to continue to pay for an annual subscription right now to see that progress.
**UPDATE** Eric’s comment below reminded me that I did have one other point to make about the situation created by the new site–and that is to commend Eric for the job he’s doing in handling the response, specifically in the post I linked to above. I have a feeling that if 30+ people (probably even more off blog) started unloading on me in comments (even if some of them are warranted), I don’t know if I could keep things as calm and composed as he has–although it is a problem I hope to have on this site at some point.