FSF, GNU sites updated -> butt-ugly 2.0

I just read an article about the improved navigation and appearance of the gnu.org, fsf.org and the Free Software Directory sites. Good news since I’ve always found them to be antiquated looking and a general mess. I decided to go and check them out.

While they may be an improvement in a navigational sense, I’d say the appearance improvement is very very marginal. They’re still ugly. And it’s frustrating to me.

I’m sorry, but I don’t care if you are a non-commercial entity, there are thousands of free software users out there who are talented web designers (I’m not one of them) and who would be happy as a clams to provide some guidance and help on site design. As it stands, I still think they’re a mess. I’d love to point somebody to these sites and be proud. I can’t. I’m not sure if it’s the font choices, the colour schemes, layout or all three. But definitely something is missing.

And I’m not talking about rounded corners and earthy tones. The Free Software directory has that. But it also has mixed up font styles and a very primitive looking blog template. The search box looks like something I’d design (and that’s likely not very good).

C’mon FSF and GNU. I realize the content is the important thing, but so is image. We’re talking about software, technology and freedom. You want to inspire people into understanding the message. It’s hard to do that with an uninspiring series of websites.

And one other thing. Call me a freedom hater if you want, but I can’t stand that GNU logo. I don’t like it and never have. I’m no big fan of the whole penguin thing, but it’s tolerable. But the GNU? No way. Sorry. I don’t care who designed it. It’s simply unappealing. They should change it.

Am I just a raving freedom-hater? What do you think?

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