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(Slate)   Stop Pagination Now: Why websites should not make you click and click and click for the full story   (slate.com) divider line 95
    More: Obvious, Iran Nuclear, web editors  
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7517 clicks; posted to Main » on 02 Oct 2012 at 12:51 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-10-02 01:43:16 PM
Is this a thing now? Are we to add this to the list of things we cry about, like slideshows? and videos rehosted?
I swear their is an immense about of stupid floating around the tubes these days.

oh noes... a slideshow. whatever am i to do. I know to the forumns of a different website, where i shall vent my nerdrage to all who will hear!
(insert rehosted videoes in place of slideshow and reread)
 
2012-10-02 01:43:19 PM
Well, that was a weak topic for an article.

I don't get the pagination hate, and I'm on the Internet all the goddamn time. I would never have noticed, honestly, except for all the biatching about it here.
 
2012-10-02 01:44:55 PM

Pocket Ninja: Whatever. Pagination is about creating an interactive experience. It allows the reader to actually participate in reading the page, rather than being a passive stooge just drooling at text scrolling by on the screen.


No it's not you retard. It's 4-up, 8-up and plate it already. Press is waiting. Fark, fix the cyan already. Wait what's that? Shiat is on a screen now an we're outta work? Well damn.....So much for Quark and PageWaster.
 
2012-10-02 01:45:08 PM

Diogenes: Maybe if they added some conditional logic that says, "Hmmm....Page 2 will only have two and half lines. Let's default to one page, then."


Wasn't sure if that was the programming or if it was deliberately pushed onto a second page for the lulz.
 
2012-10-02 01:46:30 PM
I would much rather deal with Pagination than Infinite Scroll.
 
2012-10-02 01:55:05 PM
"learned-helplessness" = resignation 

Our language -- learn it.
 
2012-10-02 01:57:52 PM

Pocket Ninja: Whatever. Pagination is about creating an interactive experience. It allows the reader to actually participate in reading the page, rather than being a passive stooge just drooling at text scrolling by on the screen. In a nation where obesity is a growing epidemic, we should be doing everything we can to make innately passive activities as active as possible. I mean, why stop at pagination? A lot of articles use multiple pictures across each page of the article...why not turn those pictures into mini slideshows, so that after clicking to get to the new page, you click to see each picture, too?

And that's still just same-old same old. Why not explore *real* innovation. Like, who says the "next" button has to always be in the same place? Why not make finding it an adventure, something the engages the reader critically, creates the opportunity for some good old fashioned problem solving? We need to be developing critical thinking skills. Maybe each page in the article, or each picture, could have a clue as to where on the web page the reader might find the hidden button that will allow for the next page to be accessed. Think of the sense of achievement people will have after having successfully found them all! We're always talking about building self confidence; here's a real chance to do just that.

And why not use the web to help develop motor skills, too? Who says the buttons have to be static? Why not have them moving around the page, flickering and jumping around and maybe turning invisible for a while? So the readers have to play a reflex game to hit it after they find it?

Reading a web site doesn't have to be boring, in other words. It can be fun.


The flip side of that whole argument is that pagination is driven nearly entirely by the desires of advertisers to shovel fresh content in your face.
 
2012-10-02 01:59:35 PM

Pud: I was originally going to make a joke


No Fark for you.
 
2012-10-02 02:02:03 PM

Stephen_Falken: I've been on the Internet since 1994


Fetus.
 
2012-10-02 02:12:31 PM
And while we're at it, can we get rid of "after the jump" ... whatever the fark the "jump" is?
 
2012-10-02 02:18:50 PM
DNRFA; Let me guess: Is it a slide show?
 
2012-10-02 02:22:40 PM
I don't mind reasonable pagination. The problem is there is a lot of unreasonable pagination out there. They need to be more flexible. If, for instance, you set your pagination line at 1000 words per page and your article runs to 1100 words, and you put 100 words on the second page, you deserve to be shot.

(More Below the Line)

As a general ratio I'd suggest something like this (assuming that your page word 'limit' is 1000 words)

- Up to 1250 words, keep everything on one page
- Between 1251-1750 words, divide your words roughly evenly between two pages
- 1751 words up, divide words evenly, with a goal of keeping pages in that 751-1250 word per page range.

I don't worry about slide shows, because I'm going to hell because I'm an atheist (or so I'm told) and I figure I'll be on the level right above people who make slide shows. I'll get to defecate on them for all eternity, and while I know this will in no way even the scales, it still gives me some small measure of satisfaction.
 
2012-10-02 02:27:55 PM
And as a side note, I do actually think pagination can serve a purpose, particularly when you start dealing with articles that are long enough that you might want to cite them, or long enough that scrolling becomes a pain in the arse. I certainly wouldn't want to read a book all on one page without some sort of modified slider on the side, although the ability to skip to 'page number' like in a PDF would be fine, or dynamic web links like on Wikipedia that take you to the right portion of the page.
 
2012-10-02 02:36:34 PM
this is mother farking 2012 and I've had it with these mother farking paginations.
Pagination is what happens when you let people who are too stupid to be on the internet be on the internet.
/Adjusts onion.
Back in 1980, when there were like 5 of us on the internet on any given saturday night, someone mentioned how everyone would have access to the net in 20 years. I said, well, I hope they have a special place in hell for who enver opens those Gates.
Little did I know how close I was.
Anyway, here you are, and you saw how hard it was to kill Geocities.
You can't put the toothpaste back in the tube, now, can you?
You have to let the kids eat at the big table, don't you?
What the hell, might as well let peopl with AOL accounts speak up, they're certainly the more brilliant amungst us.
Fark it.
If you see and article is paginated, just close the window.
They understand being ignored.
And if they don't, hell, they're probably print media masquarading as something they are not, and they are dying anyway.
Now excuse me. I have to go shoo some kids off my LAN.
 
2012-10-02 02:46:24 PM

j__z: stpauler


No mention of Cracked?

No kidding, that was the first thing I thought of as well.


Was the first one I thought of too. Three pages for nine paragraphs. Honestly. :/
 
2012-10-02 02:54:07 PM
You know what else needs to stop?

More information after the jump

WTF? Knock that shiat off
 
2012-10-02 02:57:39 PM

Bio-nic: The flip side of that whole argument is that pagination is driven nearly entirely by the desires of advertisers to shovel fresh content in your face.


If only there was some way to update the ads in the sidebar when you scrolled half way down the page. We should invent some sort of device that can dynamically update the display with content fetched from a remote repository in response to user input. Then we could get the same number of ad views without actually paginating stories.

But web ads aren't billed by the minute, they're billed by the page view, so it's not simply a matter of shoveling fresh ads down your throat, it's also a matter of the ridiculous ways that advertisers measure their "success".
 
2012-10-02 03:05:43 PM

xanadian: Bonus: The story has 2 pages.

/lulz


Slate is one of the worst offenders. Typically after you click to a page, it just loads a full-screen version of the story and throws you back to the top of the page, which is worse than useless.
 
2012-10-02 03:12:29 PM
Tl;Dr
 
2012-10-02 03:15:07 PM

Pocket Ninja: Whatever. Pagination is about creating an interactive experience. ....Reading a web site doesn't have to be boring, in other words. It can be fun.


Until I saw who posted this, I was ready to farking explode.

:)
thanks PN.
 
2012-10-02 03:23:34 PM
THIS IS AN OUT
 
2012-10-02 03:23:45 PM
I find pagination annoying sometimes (I'M LOOKING AT YOU, CRACKED, AND YOUR TWO-PAGE FIVE-ENTRY LISTS), but for the most part it just serves to remind me that hey, AdBlock is still working, so here's page two of your deliciously ad-free article!

Oh, what's that, FlashBlock? You kept that video from auto-playing? Why, thank you! I like you, too!
 
2012-10-02 03:24:10 PM
RAGE
 
2012-10-02 03:34:13 PM
I wonder if the author of the article took into consideration eye tracking studies?
 
2012-10-02 04:22:27 PM

OneFretAway: xanadian: Bonus: The story has 2 pages.

/lulz

Slate is one of the worst offenders. Typically after you click to a page, it just loads a full-screen version of the story and throws you back to the top of the page, which is worse than useless.


So, this is one of those times when "Ironic" would be usable. :/
 
2012-10-02 04:36:46 PM

WarszawaScream: PC LOAD LETTER:
This is what you show up as:


Pocket Ninja [TotalFark]
2012-10-02 10:13:14 AM
(favorite: Poe's Law incarnate)

Mind if I borrow that? PN needed a good one...


For me, it says "tl;dr - brevity is the soul of wit"
 
2012-10-02 05:14:22 PM

Sybarite: I think they should try to replicate the experience of physically reading a newspaper, and the story should be continued on an entirely different website that's really hard to find.


And you could make millions selling mice that excrete a black residue, leaving the reader's fingers black.
 
2012-10-02 05:21:50 PM
Can the author do his next article on websites that offer useless mobile apps when viewed on mobile devices?

//cant wait for the "I have an App for That" fad to be over
 
2012-10-02 05:22:15 PM
Because you didn't ask, here's what I do:

Any site linked on Fark that consistently pisses me off gets it's logo blocked. It keeps me from clicking through to articles on pages where they have dumb cookie/java requirements, pagination, more than 3-4 script servers... I mean, if all I want to do is read your article and look at a farking picture or short video I'm NOT going to allow a dozen+ random servers. Fark that! I don't leave thinking, "Damn, I wish managing scripts was easier. Maybe I should just give in..." It leaves me thinking, "Damn, whoever designed this broke-ass website is retarded."

It's really improved my experience here. And it completely deprives those dumbass sites of my traffic. One person worth of traffic may not be a lot on its own, but that's all I've got. Voting with my wallet as it were.

And if your site has a slideshow you're getting exactly one click out of me. Once I see that slideshow I'm gone. Fark you.
 
2012-10-02 05:45:14 PM

WarszawaScream: PC LOAD LETTER:
This is what you show up as:


Pocket Ninja [TotalFark]
2012-10-02 10:13:14 AM
(favorite: Poe's Law incarnate)

Mind if I borrow that? PN needed a good one...


I accept checks and female porn stars as royalty payments.
 
2012-10-02 05:50:33 PM

HoratioGates: And as a side note, I do actually think pagination can serve a purpose, particularly when you start dealing with articles that are long enough that you might want to cite them, or long enough that scrolling becomes a pain in the arse. I certainly wouldn't want to read a book all on one page without some sort of modified slider on the side, although the ability to skip to 'page number' like in a PDF would be fine, or dynamic web links like on Wikipedia that take you to the right portion of the page.



Agreed.  On very lengthy NY Times articles, its all good.  They put a reasonable amount of text on page one.... but you have to admit there is a limit.  At some point, if there's too much text on one page, its easy for readers to lose their place.
 
2012-10-02 07:11:24 PM

Honest Bender: Because you didn't ask, here's what I do:

Any site linked on Fark that consistently pisses me off gets it's logo blocked. It keeps me from clicking through to articles on pages where they have dumb cookie/java requirements, pagination, more than 3-4 script servers... I mean, if all I want to do is read your article and look at a farking picture or short video I'm NOT going to allow a dozen+ random servers. Fark that! I don't leave thinking, "Damn, I wish managing scripts was easier. Maybe I should just give in..." It leaves me thinking, "Damn, whoever designed this broke-ass website is retarded."

It's really improved my experience here. And it completely deprives those dumbass sites of my traffic. One person worth of traffic may not be a lot on its own, but that's all I've got. Voting with my wallet as it were.

And if your site has a slideshow you're getting exactly one click out of me. Once I see that slideshow I'm gone. Fark you.


I'm right there with you. If a site doesn't work without JS and cookies than the site doesn't work at all. I dated a web dev for a while and kept trying to explain that a plain text file with its file extension changed would display text and HTML1 or 2 was enough for images. She didn't believe me since I wasn't allowing for a doctype tag. So once again it appears to be true: never attribute to malice that which can be explained by stupidity. I'm starting to think these people don't actually know how to write a page.
 
2012-10-02 07:48:21 PM

PC LOAD LETTER: Pocket Ninja: Whatever. Pagination is about creating an interactive experience. It allows the reader to actually participate in reading the page, rather than being a passive stooge just drooling at text scrolling by on the screen. In a nation where obesity is a growing epidemic, we should be doing everything we can to make innately passive activities as active as possible. I mean, why stop at pagination? A lot of articles use multiple pictures across each page of the article...why not turn those pictures into mini slideshows, so that after clicking to get to the new page, you click to see each picture, too?

And that's still just same-old same old. Why not explore *real* innovation. Like, who says the "next" button has to always be in the same place? Why not make finding it an adventure, something the engages the reader critically, creates the opportunity for some good old fashioned problem solving? We need to be developing critical thinking skills. Maybe each page in the article, or each picture, could have a clue as to where on the web page the reader might find the hidden button that will allow for the next page to be accessed. Think of the sense of achievement people will have after having successfully found them all! We're always talking about building self confidence; here's a real chance to do just that.

And why not use the web to help develop motor skills, too? Who says the buttons have to be static? Why not have them moving around the page, flickering and jumping around and maybe turning invisible for a while? So the readers have to play a reflex game to hit it after they find it?

Reading a web site doesn't have to be boring, in other words. It can be fun.

This is what you show up as:


Pocket Ninja [TotalFark]
2012-10-02 10:13:14 AM
(favorite: Poe's Law incarnate)


I have him as Frozen Concentrated Troll Juice.
 
2012-10-02 07:49:38 PM

RevBigfoot: You know what else needs to stop?

More information after the jump

WTF? Knock that shiat off


And may the creator of slideshows die a horrible death.
 
2012-10-02 08:06:18 PM
Mr. Ekshun
a plain text file with its file extension changed would display text and HTML1 or 2 was enough for images. She didn't believe me since I wasn't allowing for a doctype tag.

It's probably just the shortness of the explanation, but neither makes much sense to me (except the enough for images bit). Maybe you two should have gotten married. ;)

I'm starting to think these people don't actually know how to write a page.

As far as doctype tag and character encoding are concerned, almost all developers just use whatever their template contains as a default value without thinking too much about what they're going to write or what encoding their editor or system actually uses.
Not to mention that the system they're writing their things on might use something else than the webserver they're deploying to; added fun if parts of the page are loaded from a database server which has to match as well.

Thanks to the Umlaut characters it's rather obvious if you browse German websites; you often get ISO-8859-1 (probably Windows' default) labeled as UTF-8.

i.imgur.com 

/ will get that shirt someday:
 
2012-10-02 09:57:27 PM

Pud: Gecko Gingrich: Pud: At least they had a single page option on their 6 page article about how paginating is a bad thing.

[www.slate.com image 568x160]

You know how I know you didn't RTFA?

I was originally going to make a joke about how the second page only had 2 sentences (I'm sure it was intentional). But then I saw that picture in the middle of the article, and decided it was just too easy to pass up


And if they had left out the picture, there would have been room for the extra two sentences.
 
2012-10-02 10:13:43 PM
tldr
 
2012-10-02 10:36:28 PM

downstairs: Agreed.  On very lengthy NY Times articles, its all good.  They put a reasonable amount of text on page one.... but you have to admit there is a limit.  At some point, if there's too much text on one page, its easy for readers to lose their place.


Yeah, I'm generally speaking, a fan of some pagination. Of course, if you are long winded and a hater of pagination there are other ways to break the page up. I used to do page layout on my college newspaper (a tabloid sized paper, not a full pager) back last century, and we used something called the dollar bill rule. The idea was you shouldn't be able to lay a dollar bill on the page the long way in any direction and not come across some line or box to break up the text. It's harder on a computer to follow that rule though, because everyone has different sized monitors and may be using different font magnifications (although clever code could take that into account).
 
2012-10-03 05:57:52 AM

downstairs: At some point, if there's too much text on one page, its easy for readers to lose their place.


Efficient page layout is a very good thing. Pagination (particularly in an electronic context) is, at best, a lazy way to achieve that.

Also the scroll, window size, and font size controls available on virtually all browsers allow users to set their page to whatever size they prefer given their own situation and preferences. Forced pagination substitutes a pre-fab layout for that existing customizable control.
 
2012-10-03 07:04:21 AM

HoratioGates: downstairs: Agreed.  On very lengthy NY Times articles, its all good.  They put a reasonable amount of text on page one.... but you have to admit there is a limit.  At some point, if there's too much text on one page, its easy for readers to lose their place.

Yeah, I'm generally speaking, a fan of some pagination. Of course, if you are long winded and a hater of pagination there are other ways to break the page up. I used to do page layout on my college newspaper (a tabloid sized paper, not a full pager) back last century, and we used something called the dollar bill rule. The idea was you shouldn't be able to lay a dollar bill on the page the long way in any direction and not come across some line or box to break up the text. It's harder on a computer to follow that rule though, because everyone has different sized monitors and may be using different font magnifications (although clever code could take that into account).


Don't forget to leave one pica between everything and every other thing.
 
2012-10-03 11:40:26 AM

profplump: downstairs: At some point, if there's too much text on one page, its easy for readers to lose their place.

Efficient page layout is a very good thing. Pagination (particularly in an electronic context) is, at best, a lazy way to achieve that.

Also the scroll, window size, and font size controls available on virtually all browsers allow users to set their page to whatever size they prefer given their own situation and preferences. Forced pagination substitutes a pre-fab layout for that existing customizable control.



Maybe, but I wouldn't want to read a 10,000 word article on one page no matter what.
 
2012-10-03 01:14:27 PM
I have now gone one week without clicking on any pages past the first one on any slide show I run across. My own personal boycott. The ridiculous emphasis on page views and ad views for making marketing decisions is what drives all this crap content in crap formats. The higher the page views, the lower the ad clickthrough rate. If a company is focusing on just views and branding, well I suppose the more views the better, except that it cheapens the entire ad buying marketplace with an endless supply of views, further driving down the CPM, putting further pressure on publishers to cut costs and produce the cheapest, crappiest content possible.
 
2012-10-03 03:11:38 PM

Perducci: We also need to see an end to the phrase "...after the jump."


Not it it's the publisher jumping off a roof.
 
2012-10-03 03:22:34 PM
Also, if a site loads an interstitial or modal, whether it's a "please help us learn how rubbish our site is" or a "to get to the story that brought you here, you have to wait for this ad to run just long enough for you to make up your mind never to buy what it's selling and then click here," I hereby claim the irrevocable legal right at my discretion to knee those responsible in the respective groins.
 
2012-10-03 03:50:53 PM
The problem is simple: bean-counters who equate pageviews with sales.

Pageviews are meaningless. For that matter, eyeballs are meaningless.

Clickthroughs matter. Conversion rates matter. And forced pageviews (pagination, slideshows, etc.) not only do not enhance either one, they can detract from them, either by driving away customers entirely, making them focus so much on the content they're trying to get to, one ... snippet ... at ... a ... time, or by causing them frustration and active dislike of the advertisers, to the point that they will not (for example) click on an ad that they might have otherwise found interesting.

But they don't get that. After all, it's hard to count unique visitors (you've gotta ... process your logs!). It's hard to count clickthrough rates (see above). But hey, the pageviews are right there for God and everyone in management to see. So we'll count that.

And they persist in hampering their own best efforts because they're trying to use (or touting) the wrong metric.

It's never been about pageviews, not since a caveman chiseled an ad for stone axes into the wall of the communal cave. It's about connecting the person with something to sell with the person who wants to buy it -- and not making the latter say "oh, to the devil with those idiots and whatever it is they're trying to sell me" in the process.
 
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