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My response to “Blogs Will Kill The Web Design Star”

Dear Reader,

My breakfast buddy Bill Seaver posted a real interesting post on his blog titled “Blogs Will Kill The Web Design Star”. I started a comment to it but it quickly grew into a post by itself. So before you read this, go visit Bill’s blog and read it. (and while you are surfing, don’t forget to drop by his podcast, The New Mediology and give it a listen.

My response:

Hi Bill!

I couldn’t agree with you more. The days of paying someone big bucks for a simple site are gone. I actually covered this on Sixty Second Tech a few weeks ago in the episode The Secret to Cheap and Easy Websites. WordPress makes a great simple blog and with the explosion of good, cheap/free skins, there’s really no reason for people to pay for simple web needs. I did get some flack over on iTunes on that episode because a listener considered my approach to the subject denigrating to web designers. :)

If your needs are more than WordPress can provide, Joomla is a great next step. It’s several order of magnitude larger and more complex than WordPress but it has a great plugin structure and like WordPress it has an active community.

BTW, my favorite WordPress theme site is I’ve used several of their themes as starting points for my projects.

Also, I’ve been saying for a few weeks now that the job title to have for the next five years is “App Skinner”. Wife 1.24, The Lovely and Talented Kathy who is a web designer has been able to successfully deploy several complex sites including an e-commerce site, without having to employ a programmer. This opens up new doors for the company she works for because instead of having to hire a programmer to write yet another shopping cart, she can deploy Joomla and spend her time concentrating on developing a look and feel that will set it apart from the competition.

Bill, thanks for the post, it was great.

Until next time,

2 thoughts on “My response to “Blogs Will Kill The Web Design Star”

  1. Hi Cal,

    Nice, thought-provoking post. I tend to agree with whoever made this comment:

    “I did get some flack over on iTunes on that episode because a listener considered my approach to the subject denigrating to web designers.”

    It’s not that I disagree with you, but regarding web design in particular, I think we all need to adjust our thinking slightly. The people who are being hurt by WordPress and “skins” are exactly the type of people who didn’t deserve to be called web designers in the first place. I think it has been an annoyance to the web design community as much as we might get annoyed that people who know how to install phpBB promote themselves as PHP developers:

    I’ve been trying to do my part to respect web designers by not describing their work as “skinning.” True design goes far, far deeper, and should impact development, information architecture, content, and all other aspects of the user experience.

    Good designers are very expensive and worth it. :-)

  2. Cal,
    Thanks for this post and your kind words. I actually thought about mentioning Joomla in my post but decided that would lengthen the post more than I really like so I’m glad to see that you mentioned it here.

    It’s great to hear what Kathy is doing with WordPress and what she’s doing is exactly what I think many other companies are waking up to. It’s no longer necessary to pay for the technology in many cases. The technology for most people’s needs is already out there and, as you say, there’s a community around it to support it. I like where it’s going…but I’m not a web developer or designer.

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