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Visitor Complaints About Pop-ups. Really?
tonynoriega




msg:3798389
 6:09 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

why is it people are so freaked out by pop ups...

we use a few different methods to open new windows to display dynamically generated PDF's... target="_blank" and window.open

and got a message from a user that stated he refuses to "cripple" his computer to allow popups from our site...

what in the hell has this world come to... "oh my god.. popups.... shut down, shut down..." chill teh f*** out... its not the end of the world...

im tired of all these technophoic users who think that every little piece of the web that they dont understand is a monster....

you pop up haters need to get back..

 

Quadrille




msg:3798403
 6:26 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

Nice of him to tell you ... how many others just went to your competitor without taking that extra trouble to try (obviously in vain) to help you?

Uninvited pop-ups are no different to a total stranger poking his head through your window and asking you buy his cr*p.

If you like that, fine, but I and many others, reserve the right to reach for a 14lb sledge hammer. Or the technological equivalent.

If you want happy visitors who will (presumably) give you money, then it's time you considered their tastes, regardless of how anti-social your tastes may be.

As it happens, I deal with many sites that use pop-ups for legitimate business purposes, and they have all been set up to provide their services without abusing me.

You need to learn better ways of indulging your obsession - without scaring away customers.

It's entirely possible, I promise you.

tonynoriega




msg:3798409
 6:38 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

tell me one good reason to block pop ups from a legitimate website of a company that you pay on a monthly basis for our services...

thats like me going to the Verizon site which i pay for services on a monthly basis and saying... "oh no, verizon has pop ups, they are up to something evil"...

ridiculous. the pop up is to display a dynamic PDF for the viewer to print and/or read without having to completley leave our site or hit the back button.

how is that crippling his computer?

tedster




msg:3798578
 9:27 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

Just to clarify, this is not an automatic pop-up. It's a new window that opens after a user clicks somewhere, right?

MadeWillis




msg:3798605
 9:56 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

I agree with you in a way, but at the same time your visitors are probably the most important thing about you site, no?

It is probably worth investigating to see if other visitors feel the same way.

tonynoriega




msg:3798615
 10:07 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

it is upon submission of a form.

they enter critera into a search form, which dynamically generates a form in a new window via:

'Run crystal report passing criteria params
ResponseHelper.Redirect("prov_dir_display_results.aspx", "_blank", "")

tedster




msg:3798633
 10:29 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

I have clients who use informational pop-ups - they are always generated by a user click and have provided a very functional interface with literally no compaints in over 8 years for some cases.

I advise clients to include a small notice next to the click-point (will display in a second window) so as not to surprise the new visitor, and let them know that they may need to approve the new window depending on their pop-up blocking apps.

Receptional Andy




msg:3798639
 10:39 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

got a message from a user that stated he refuses to "cripple" his computer to allow popups from our site...

Fuggedaboutit ;)

IMO someone that blocks every popup, even from sites they use frequently, is going to end up frustrated soon enough and reconsider.

I agree with ted's "pre-warning" advice, and if a popup is blocked (but javascript is enabled), it's possible to give the user some useful feedback about why the window may not have opened.

IMO, your complainant is a customer service issue - he needs to be convinced that this popup is of use to him.

StoutFiles




msg:3798674
 11:22 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

tell me one good reason to block pop ups from a legitimate website of a company that you pay on a monthly basis for our services...

Some people just lump popups as "bad" and have them all blocked. You need to weigh if your current setup is worth that risk.

thats like me going to the Verizon site which i pay for services on a monthly basis and saying... "oh no, verizon has pop ups, they are up to something evil"...

I'm confused here...are you trying to convince us that popups are great? It really doesn't matter what my opinion is...or yours for that matter. The only opinion that matters are your visitors.

ridiculous. the pop up is to display a dynamic PDF for the viewer to print and/or read without having to completley leave our site or hit the back button.

I've seen sites do it both ways. Neither bother me much, but people are used to hitting the back button. Most people will prefer to not add another tab or browser to view a page. In some cases though, this is unavoidable.

how is that crippling his computer?

Obviously it's not. But people will lump good popups in with the majority of bad ones...even I cringe a little when sites use window.open.

Either ignore his advice or do something about it, but trying to convince us that he's crazy doesn't make a lot of sense. Do what you think is best for the majority of your customers...the important thing to find out is if he's part of the majority or just an outlier.

[edited by: StoutFiles at 11:25 pm (utc) on Dec. 2, 2008]

tonynoriega




msg:3798689
 11:32 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

sorry.. this topic had some personalization to it...

no i wasnt trying to convice you pop ups were good or bad...

i was trying to convey that a customer claimed that he had to "cripple" his computer to get the information he needed from out site and it was a ridiculous claim.

my verizon point was, why would this person think we want them to "cripple" their computer when they pay a state wide company for services we provide... uhhh yeah thats our mission to have everyone disable pop ups so we can infultrate your systems.

i just get tired of people taking technology waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay to seriously... LIKE TYPING IN CAPS... big deal... if you can actually hear me shouting you have a deeper issue.

i will in fact take into consideration all aspects of this issue, but the majority will remain in tact. and considering this is the only actual compaint we have received in 2 years, he might be SOOL

jimbeetle




msg:3798692
 11:38 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

"cripple"

It might not be the pop-up itself, maybe the user's computer is choking on Acrobat. It isn't a very friendly app and older machines can have problems with it. Your user might just be attributing the wrong cause to what's "crippling" the machine - it's not the pop-up itself, but what's in the pop-up. Maybe.

grelmar




msg:3798700
 11:52 pm on Dec 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

"Cripple" is a strong word.

Usually, it works fine so long as you warn:
LINK (PDF - Opens in pop up window)

You have to be really clear what it's going to do. People hate surprises.

hutcheson




msg:3798724
 12:35 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

Popups have a bad reputation, because of the worst of the abusive advertisers. So a lot of people have them turned off, to avoid the irrelevant, ubiquitous travel or dietary or spy-camera advertisements.

That's the reality of the web, and we all (users and webmasters alike) have to deal with it. Designing a site that depends on popups to function correctly is, pure and simply, designing a site that won't function for many people: just like ignoring web standards and coding for the Internet-Explorer-bugset-du-jour, or coding a site that won't work without gratuitous Flash navigation.

The other reality of the net is: surfers see a lot of sites that were designed to work on the webmaster's machine, rather than on the net. Most of the time we just blow them off: very rarely do we bother to tell the webmaster why his site isn't worth the trouble of figuring out whether it's worth the trouble of modifying the security that we're comfortable with.

My recommendation is to climb off of your high horse, recognize that by forcing people to turn popups on you're enabling the advertising scum of the internet to harass your visitors even after they've left your site, and redesign the site so it doesn't require popups.

Or, if that's too much work, at least warn your visitors up front that the site won't work without popups, so surfers can leave quickly without getting frustrated.

There are lots of good sites that work fine without popups. The many surfers who don't like them can probably get along fine without them--and without your site. And they have that choice.

But, for that matter, you can probably get along fine without 20% of your potential visitors. And YOU have THAT choice.

wheel




msg:3798725
 12:36 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

I've got popups disabled AND javascript and most browser plugins don't work on my machine. And that's how I surf.

So I don't see your media presentations and half of your menus and Google analytics doesn't track me very well (it's scary how many sites use GA). And most of the time I don't even notice if there's a popup. Many sites have all these little areas that I have to click on if I want to see whatever advertisement is supposed to go there - and trust me, I don't bother.

In some very rare occassions I will allow a popup or turn on javascript. Most times though I just shrug and leave the site. I know that's harsh and out of the ordinary, but it's what I do. I can and do take my money elsewhere.

See, my attitude is not that a popup is the end of the world. It's just that I really am disinterested if some web programmer decided that I had to have popups turned on in order to do business with you. I kinda look at it like they don't have a clue as to what they're doing. Plus it's actually easier for me to go elsewhere than it is to turn on popups one time or enable javascript. Particularly when I'm not a fan of either.

I don't disagree that getting all excited about typing in caps is a bit of a funny thing to be offended about, but people do. They actually react to caps as if you're shouting. They *feel* you shouting.

ZydoSEO




msg:3798728
 12:40 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

tell me one good reason to block pop ups from a legitimate website of a company that you pay on a monthly basis for our services...

>>>>>>>>>>>>

Pop-up blockers were developed and added to browsers for a reason. They are annoying as hell. While your site might be 'legitimate' and use them the correct way, other sites which 'look' to be 'legitimate' abuse them in numerous ways often times making it nearly impossible to close them all.

I keep pop-ups blocked. I choose when to temporarily enable them on a case by case basis when I notice the browser has blocked a pop-up.

As far as the guy having to 'cripple' his machine, I think I'd tell him to get a new machine or find an internet cafe when he needs to do business with you.

piatkow




msg:3798736
 12:56 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

I suspect that jimbeetle is right. pdf files can be a total dog to download even with a decent connection.

If the file is of any size I would explicitly warn of the file size as well as it opening in a new window.

whoisgregg




msg:3798740
 12:57 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

One point that hasn't been made yet... We as webmasters are pretty savvy with selectively blocking pop-ups. When we do encounter them we know it's because we've entered a "bad neighborhood" so our expectations are in sync with our experience.

The lay user encounters the worst kind of annoying pop-ups on a more frequent basis, has less of an understanding of "good neighborhoods" and "bad neighborhoods" and lacks the tools or experience to control the pop-ups they will encounter.

We have to make up for that by being extra sensitive* about how we use pop-ups (and even inline pop-ups since some users won't make the distinction).

*Forgive me for using the word sensitive, if you're :::ahem:: sensitive about that word. ;)

koan




msg:3798741
 12:58 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

Do you guys consider links with target="_blank" to be pop up windows too? I use it for "print this article" or "email this article" links so the user doesn't lose track of the original pages. They are normal links however, I don't use javascript such as window.open, and certainly don't mess around with disabling menus and such, which I consider rude.

PS: to the OP, ALL CAPS POSTS are very annoying to others however, and when I see one of those, I just disregard it, as I feel it's more difficult to read and I assume the poster is some egoistical guy who thinks his post is more important than others or some tech newbie who can't figure out how to use the caps lock key. In either case, not worth reading.

vincevincevince




msg:3798744
 1:17 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

To me, a pop-up is entirely unacceptable if it is not the single immediate response to my click. i.e. click -> popup. If the popup is in addition to changes on the main page or is fired after any form of delay, it is not acceptable and will be blocked by most good popup blockers.

About crippling his computer - his language is strong but his sentiment is right on the money. If using your site would require him to disable his popup blocker then it does mean he is degrading his browsing system just because of your poor UI.

The worst popups of all are those embedded within Flash. Flash designers need to realise that 100% of popups launched from Flash are blocked, and in most instances to see them would require allowing popups for the entire domain (not just allowing through the one instance this one time).

Do you guys consider links with target="_blank" to be pop up windows too?

I consider it to be depreciated (as that is what it is...)

zeus




msg:3798747
 1:21 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

I use pop unders on my sites, also be cause I dont myself mind pop up/unders just not more then 2 if more Im going nuts.

koan




msg:3798749
 1:24 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

I consider it to be depreciated (as that is what it is...)

Do you mean "deprecated"? It still validates for me...

vincevincevince




msg:3798774
 2:38 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

deprecated
- yes that's what I meant to type. The target attribute was deprecated in HTML 4.01 - if you are still able to validate it you must be using an old DOCTYPE.
koan




msg:3798775
 2:40 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

The target attribute was deprecated in HTML 4.01 - if you are still able to validate it you must be using an old DOCTYPE.

I use XHTML 1.0 transitional. Is there an equivalent to target="_blank" that validates for strict doctypes?

tedster




msg:3798778
 2:50 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

Form what I read at the W3C, the target attribute is not valid for strict HTML and XHTML doctypes. But it's still valid for the frameset doctypes, and for transitional HTML and XHTML doctypes as well. The target attribute was always considered frame-specific, and now that's being formalized.

As for making informational pop-ups more friendly to the advanced use who prefers to have javascript turned off, I find that this code helps:

<a href="popup-page.html" onclick="popUpFunction('popup-page.html');return false;">link</a>

The link still works in a "same window" fashion if javascript is turned off.

koan




msg:3798791
 3:27 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

tedster, last time I played around with combined links like that, it seemed it worked best when the onclick javascript code was placed before the href part, otherwise you had a popup AND the original page went to the linked page as well (might be with certain browsers only).

whoisgregg




msg:3798798
 3:42 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

@tedster: You can save some typing there:

<a href="popup-page.html" onclick="popUpFunction([b]this.href[/b]);return false;">link</a>

tedster




msg:3798800
 3:46 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the tip - that works nicely.

JS_Harris




msg:3798801
 3:50 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

A good reason: I CHOOSE to open the pages I want to open, force them on someone else.

incrediBILL




msg:3798804
 4:00 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

I've been running a directory for over 10 years that opens sites with a "_blank" and not a single complaint. It's really hard to go thru a lot of listings if you keep losing track of the directory.

In Firefox it just opens a new tab which is even better.

Glad I don't have your crabby visitors!

fischermx




msg:3798842
 5:34 am on Dec 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

Wait a minute: "target=_blank" alone, will not cause a popup, at least, it is not consider a popup for most popup killers.

This 60 message thread spans 2 pages: 60 ( [1] 2 > >
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