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You Are Not a Web Professional Unless You're Rich, Single, Childless and Can Hire a Maid  

:: Monday, November 21, 2005 ::

Can you feel the pressure? Have you conformed to web standards yet? Do you feel embarressed when someone says your site doesn't look "professional"? What the hell does that mean, exactly?

Someone had the brilliance of mind to ask about this at Cre8asiteForums. What are the elements of professional looking webdesign?.
"I can spot a website with a pro look when I see it, but I fail to pinpoint exactly what can be done to make a average site look great. It would be nice if someone has a checklist or some pointers."

I recently attended a search engine marketing conference and left feeling as though this question weighed heavily on the minds of many attendees, especially those who had their web sites reviewed in the Usability Web Site Review workshop led by Scottie Claiborne.

I realized, and became concerned, that we, the people who run forums and blogs and write articles on web design topics aren't reaching the people who need us. I asked about this in We're not reaching everybody. Why? I wrote:
"After recently attending another SEO/SEM weekend seminar, once again I see how many people don't have correct information or enough information to do their jobs.

I was struck, as I've been so many times before, by how many web site owners, or employees who work in web site related roles in all the fields web design touches, don't know even some of thel basics.

What they do bring with them are SEO myths, tales of being burned by unethical SEO companies or practices and they're feeling pretty beat up. They all come looking for assistance and solutions they can trust and they rely on the speakers of the events to guide them.

I can tell from their questions how much mis-information is out there and you can see from their sites that they're not getting proper help.

And yet the help is out there."

The issue is still unresolved, in my mind.

Go To Your Room

But, this interview really took a lot of nerve. Interview with Andy Clarke (AKA Accessibility, the gloves come off)
"While I understand that for many, learning standards based development is difficult, particularly for creative people who have not been required to work with code before, I believe that the time has now passed for those working with old fashioned methods to be called web professionals. There are now so many web sites, blogs or publications devoted to helping people learn standards and accessible techniques that there are now no excuses not to work with semantic code or CSS. Those people still delivering nested table layout, spacer gifs or ignoring accessibility can no longer call themselves web professionals."

Sigh. Doesn't leave much hope for a one-person shop like me, who runs a forums for free (unpaid years of work), and has 3 web sites in dire need of rebuilding to meet all the same standards I'm hired to help companies with.

I guess good site rank and making a living from home (and raising 3 kids) just don't count anymore. I am not a "web professional."

Clearly, most of them have wives.

:: posted by Kim Krause Berg on 11/21/2005 12:48:00 PM

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