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Oct 06

Flash in disguise: Why I want my browser environment please!

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I just went to Brightcove, a new Web 2.0 company (of course), founded by Mr. Jeremy Allaire (good guy).

When you go to the home page, you have this weird feeling where it looks like a normal webpage, but something is wrong.

But, then you try to use it like a normal web page, and it breaks:

  • RSS link: I can’t right click on the RSS feed icon and use my context menu to add it to my feed automatically
  • Links: The links are weird. They don’t mouseover like normal, and again, I don’t have a normal context menu… but a crippled one.
  • More links flipping my world: Also, a friend pointed out that if you go to the “Company” section, the current “link” is the one with the underline, and the true links have none! Absolutely the opposite to what you would expect.

My entire browser world is taken away from me. None of the numerous browser plugins that go cool things, and let me work the way I want too, are allowed to play nice.

The reason? This is a web page in disguise as a Flash file :)

This entire page is an <embed src=”brightcove.swf” …> wrapped in a table (with the usual object for those browsers).

Now, I have nothing against Flash. I think it is great technology, and you can’t argue with its reach. I even think that it plays into my Ajax world.

However, why would you break every users world to get this functionality? Sure there are some nice effects? Sure you may not have to worry about browser incompatibility, but really?

Isn’t Web 2.0 about participation? This Web 2.0 should let us participate again. Let me wield my mighty greasemonkey ;)

I like the idea of BrightCove… the more ways to get content out there the better! Come on internet TV!

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