Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Bad taste ruins everything.

You know, I gave my benefit of the doubt when spam hit facebook, I really did. I harnessed confidence for the team to fix it, for everyone else to be appreciative enough to tighten their security settings.

Some 3rd degree friend stalked and tried picking up my friend with awe-inspiring broken English, but I decided not to blame the game, I blamed the players.

Yet it was when I received an invitation to change the colour of my facebook page yesterday, to personalized my page, to 'design my own true self', that I realized facebook is now a cross dresser between myspace and friendster.

I get it. I do. With success comes money, with money comes a widened target market, and a broad target market means open source developing and that means anyone can hop on to this monster truck and we are all very familiar with people that would pay to watch 'Outback Thunda vs. The Undertrucker'.

I'm always skeptical when it comes to giving the power of design to the open public. I'm not saying there should be tyranny in design, but surely there has to be guide. If we can't judge subjectively on what's good, at least let us be objective on what's really shit?

Thanks to House and Vignelli, I lean towards the notion of comparing design to treating diseases. Bad design happens when clients read on the internet, they seek double second opinions, they treat doctors like shit, they want to have their own say even though they're the patient. And when the clean sophisticated social network gets polluted with spam, virus, open source ding bat, pink flower wallpapers, they panic and ask for help. That's when the options are limited to a) pull the plug b) not pull the plug.