Internet service provider Be There has redesigned its home page in a way guaranteed to get it talked about.
The site is absolutely hideous. But worse, several Reg readers were presented with other people's account details when they first logged in. Customers could see other customers' addresses and phone numbers but payment details were not revealed, according to the BeThere user group.
The site went live yesterday but was pulled offline at about 8.00pm.
BeThere told us: “During the relaunch of the BE Broadband website (www.bethere.co.uk) it was identified that in certain instances logged in BE members were shown incorrect DSL and address details for their account. Since the issue was identified, the new Member Centre has been taken down while we fix the problem. Members can still access their Member details by logging into the old Member Centre at avatar.bethere.co.uk.”
Readers wearing sunglasses can go here to see the monstrosity for themselves. Several forum commenters mistook the site for evidence that it had been hacked.
The company explains the thinking behind the move on its site: "One of the last comments I heard from the beta blog about the new identity was that it looked 'unfinished', and that is kind of the point." Well they've achieved that alright.
But in a later Twitter update the company said:
We get the gist of the feedback; our new website is live and you don’t like the look of it. We’ll listen and learn over the next few days.
Comments from Register readers include:
The new design really does look like something from a 1999 geocities hosted site. Anyway its worth checking out if u can get access to their customer forums".
"I'm sure you're more than aware of the mess Be have made of their website relaunch, but in short:
it's badly designed. They've borked the ssl cert. They've had to rollback the members pages, as it was randomly giving out other customers data."
Various threads here:
http://forums.thinkbroadband.com/beunlimited/3672023-new-be-website-design.html?fpart=2 here: https://nodpi.org/forum/index.php?action=printpage;topic=1788.0 and here: http://www.beusergroup.co.uk/
show a fair number of uphappy customers (my self included!)"
"My ISP BE emailed me last night to tell me about their new rebranding exercise (www.bethere.co.uk), and I’m sure you will agree it is the most hideous new design ever seen. They have created a new room in the forum to discuss the rebrand, and there is not a single positive post. Their latest twitter post (http://twitter.com/bebroadband) is pretty clear – everyone hates the rebrand. The site doesn’t validate (http://validator.w3.org/check?uri=www.bethere.co.uk&charset=%28detect+automatically%29&doctype=Inline&group=0) and doesn’t display properly in IE6 (which they acknowledge at the footer of their email).
The whole thing seems to have been the idea of some marketing geniuses, but it has backfired badly."
or how about:
"quite possibly the most horrific web design I've seen since, well MySpace.
I recieved an email from them asking for feedback to their new future looking web site.
At first I thought they'd been hacked, and it was a phishing site.
This was kind of backed up when the site became innaccesable today at 8pm, then all my traffic on port 80 dropped out."
But hey, there's no such thing as bad publicity right?
And as a disclaimer, we all remember well the universal love given to our own redesign...®