Please God, no more pop-up links

by Mathew on December 13, 2007 · 7 comments

Let me just say I’m glad to see Yahoo moving into the Web 2.0 social-media area, integrating its services with blogs through the Yahoo Shortcuts service/widget for WordPress — and I’m a huge fan of Alex King, the WordPress plugin genius who designed the feature (and also did the wonderful Share This plugin) — but this new Yahoo offering makes me very nervous. Why? Because of the potential for an outbreak of one of my least favourite features: pop-up links.

I don’t just find pop-up links irritating — I absolutely loathe and detest them (I’m not the only one). In fact, I will go out of my way to avoid websites that use them. And I don’t particularly care whether they are informative or advertising-based. I don’t like Snap’s pop-up windows, even though the link is placed beside the text, because it is automatically triggered when your mouse moves over it.

I don’t really like Adaptive Blue’s links either, but at least they aren’t triggered automatically. And don’t even get me started on those text-link ads that pretend to be hyperlinks (except they have two underlines instead of one) and trigger a gigantic popup with a Microsoft search or an advertising link in it. As soon as I see those links on a site, I am gone.

To be fair, Yahoo’s widget just gives you the stuff — the stock chart, or the Yahoo search results, or the Flickr photos (which I must admit is kind of cool) — and you can then decide to include them right in the body of your post or attach them as text link pop-ups. For the love of all that is good and holy, please don’t do the latter. I’m begging you.

  • http://paul.kedrosky.com Paul Kedrosky

    I'm tempted to add it just out of spite :-)

    More seriously, this kind of thing can be highly useful if done tastefully and with fine-grained control over which things get tagged –but I don't get that sense yet on this one.

  • http://www.mathewingram.com/work mathewi

    I kind of like the ability to find Creative Commons images and other
    content — to embed in the post, that is. Put it in as a text-link
    popup and your blog is dead to me :-)

  • http://operawatch.com Daniel Goldman

    Mathew,

    I also find the popups extremely annoying. I was wondering, however, why then do you have the MyBlogLog popups on the outgoing links?

  • http://www.mathewingram.com/work mathewi

    That's a good question, Daniel. I hadn't even thought of that.

    I guess I don't mind them (on my own or anyone else's blog) because
    they don't appear on every link, and they're very tiny. Plus I kind
    of think of them as informational, in the sense that they tell people
    what others clicked on. But perhaps that's not a good enough excuse.

    I actually enabled that feature more for my own purposes than to show
    others. Maybe to be consistent I should remove it.

  • http://operawatch.com Daniel Goldman

    Mathew,

    I also find the popups extremely annoying. I was wondering, however, why then do you have the MyBlogLog popups on the outgoing links?

  • http://www.mathewingram.com/work mathewi

    That's a good question, Daniel. I hadn't even thought of that.

    I guess I don't mind them (on my own or anyone else's blog) because
    they don't appear on every link, and they're very tiny. Plus I kind
    of think of them as informational, in the sense that they tell people
    what others clicked on. But perhaps that's not a good enough excuse.

    I actually enabled that feature more for my own purposes than to show
    others. Maybe to be consistent I should remove it.

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