daily mail online feels like my nightmares

in which my good internet dream is shattered by a swirl of shouty headlines and repeating pictures of samantha cameron


like a beautiful piece of design thinking, like the work of isambard kingdom brunel, the online experience is marching towards an ever greater sense of fluency, clarity and simplicity. the ruthless impact of unlimited user choice demands it. that type fonts become clearer. that things are easier to navigate. that images please the eye, but don’t distract from it. that html must triumph over flash. that i win.

in fact, surfing the internet now feels like my most liberating dreams – where i can fly, move with effortless speed, and shape the world around me. i feel stress ebbing away, and power seeping into my body.

but the daily mail online is the stuff of my nightmares.

like a nightmare i have set in a fairground

i shall leave any personal or political disagreements i have with this fine media outlet, and focus instead on style. have you ever had one of those dreams, where the same figure, menacing and strange for no good reason, keeps turning up in multiple places, with the same strange expression, like a hideous echoing noise? well check out this page, with its endlessly repeating samantha camerons. at least six on this page, i think all of them identical though framed to look slightly different. and for that matter, two andrea mcleans from loose women, looking alarmingly like the twins in the shining.

stay out of my dreams, strange repeating woman

totally mindbending.

and then the text. just so much of it, almost all of it BOLD SO IT FEELS LIKE IT WANTS TO SHOUT A THOUSAND TIMES AT ME AT THE SAME TIME WITH A THOUSAND MOUTHS AND TONGUES. This is like that bit at the very end of a nightmare just before you wake up where everything starts going much too quickly and you start getting panicky. me no like.

WHY ARE WE SHOUTING?!!!!

i know i can’t avoid my nightmares. but this is the internet god dammit. NO-ONE had to go there. and yet apparently many people do.

there can be only one conclusion. just as some people want a newspaper that scares the living daylights out of them every morning for no good reason, some internet users must want to find an online experience that makes them feel stressed, panicky and disorientated. and they are flooding to the mail online, basking in the experience of a simulated nightmare with grinning reflections in fairground mirrors coming from every direction, and a thousand angry journalists standing around them shouting.

it doesn’t make any sense. but i guess it takes all sorts to make the world. even people who prefer feeling like they are having a terrible nightmare when they could just go elsewhere for their news…

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