A new study from Catalyst Group Design on the usability of blogs has found that all New Yorkers know nothing about blogs and related concepts including comments, RSS, trackbacks, and navigation.
The indepth study of 9 New Yorkers: “Net Rage, A Study of Blogs and Usability” (pdf) also concluded that the bloggers are to blame with a conclusion that reads:
“Even assuming mainstream interest, current blog design standards ‘€“ at least in terms of navigation, nomenclature and taxonomy ‘€“ are a barrier to consumer acceptance. In fact, the design of most blogs can incite net rage”
Other statements in the report included the belief that RSS is what made a blog a blog and that people who had never visited blog couldn’t always identify they were on a blog unless authors placed the word “BLOG” in a big, flashing animated gif at least 200px high at the top of the blog, and that not identifying a blog as a blog is a terrible thing.
The report also stated that big orange XML buttons don’t mean anything to the residents of New York, but an “add me to My Yahoo!” button is easier for New Yorkers to understand, although many of them fear that such buttons are really just fronts from spyware and viruses to get on their computers.