Wal-Mart makes video downloading awful; even Microsoft wouldn’t dare do this in public

“How bad can Wal-Mart make its web site? …Not only is it DRM infected but it is so badly broken in Firefox I can’t see enough of it to figure out what is broken,” Charlie Demerjian reports for The Inquirer.

“This is an embarrassment of awfulness, any teacher would flunk a first time HTML student for turning in a basic assignment that looked like this, much less a real web site,” Demerjian writes.

Demerjian writes, “You have to question if it tested this at all. There is a ‘beta’ tag that you can see near the top, but even Microsoft wouldn’t dare do this in public.”

Full article, with screenshot of Wal-Mart’s jumbled mess of a site in Firefox, here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “LinuxGuy and Mac Prodigal Son” for the heads up.]
Come now, Mr. Demerjian, deeming any company’s software testing as worse than Microsoft’s is hitting way below the belt. wink

And Wal-Mart’s brick and mortar stores do have some merit at least: they’re excellent places to catch free freak shows at any time of the day or night.

Related article:
Wal-Mart excludes Mac and iPod users with new low-res TV show, movie download store – February 06, 2007

43 Comments

  1. Come on everybody, this is Wal-Mart’s first stab at the downloadable video market. Give ’em a break.

    Who doesn’t want to see Wal-Mart exclusives like “Reba” and “The Billy Ray Cyrus Christmas Special?” I applaud Wal-Mart for delivering such great content at such low prices!

    If it’s one thing us Window PC fans love it’s low-cost, inexpensive, cheap products and services. That’s what makes Windows PCs so much better than your glitzy high-cost Macs. There are more Windows PCs out there, so they’re better, and they cost less, so again, they’re better. I’ll break it down for you Mac dorks: More at a lower cost.

    Can’t wait to subscribe to the “Fishing with NASCAR All Stars” exclusive, and for the kids, “Strawberry Shortcake Meets the Smurfs on Mars” special. Wal-Mart has a knack for taking it up a notch. I can’t wait.

    Your potential. Our passion.

  2. Yikes! As a web designer I would never post such a site even as a beta for my client to see. In Safari, the graphics and text at the top left are mucked up: text over text and a missing image. I’ve tried clicking on the Category and Studio links. All I get is a spinning “Loading” wheel. It never stops. In FireFox and Camino it’s a disaster. I refuse to open IE.

    What were they thinking? Oh, sorry, they’re weren’t!

  3. To War,

    “So, an old movie, such as Ice Age, costs $15 but I can go into Target and get the DVD for less than that. I thought Wal-Mart was supposed to be the king of retail but it appears that they don’t even understand basic consumer economics. I have no problem with Wal-Mart but downloads should cost less, not more, than the physical DVD copy.”

    Walmart is on the beginning of a long downhill slide. No one is in charge that really cares about the company and its people. When Sam died and then his son, the jackels took over. All they care about is their exectutive bonuses.

    Yea, Walmart uses its size to beat price drops out of suppliers, but it used to work with them to get better prices, now it just beats them. Same with video and audio downloading. If they can get someone else to run the show, they think they get off cheap. Walmart, slowly dying mega creature. 🙁

    PS, in many stores, vendors like coke etc have to stock the shelves themselves. OK, some of it makes sense cause they can monitor useage, but then the execs get into the show and it becomes about saving Walmart money and the crap starts.

    Just rambling today.

    N.

  4. …”they’re excellent places to catch free freak shows at any time of the day or night.”

    LOL!

    You know, I thought it was just me that thought strange-looking people came out of the wood-work to shop at Wal-Mart.

  5. So I broke down and tried (I say tried) to view it in IE. No go. It’s actually worse in the old clunker that Mac users are stuck with than in Safari. Their CSS works better in Safari. I was even unable to order a download in IE. There are no previews available. In Safari, there is a shop by category listing on the left. That doesn’t even shop up in IE. Clicking on any categories on IE doesn’t work either.

    LOL! What a pile of Sh!t!

    No movies in any browser and no matter if it did work, the product won’t play on the iPod. It’s like a gas station that only sells gas to Jugos! And the pumps are turned off! What a disaster. This is not a Beta; this is an OMEGA!!

  6. Don: “MDN, a lot of people — including my sister with 4 kids — shop at Wal-Mart because there prices are so low and they need to in order to make end’s meet. Consider them “freaks” huh?”

    Well, maybe if she hadn’t HAD four kids (or any) they could make ends meet w/o going to the Wal-(expletive deleted)-Mart.

  7. okay – for all those walmart shoppers who are offended by the freak comment – grow up and get a backbone. i have been to walmart twice in my life – and yes, it is a freak show. is everyone there a freak? no, but the freaks outnumber the normal ones 10 to 1. it’s the same with foodlion. i mean, tom cruise, foodlion must hire all the ugly people to work there – scary.

    sure, they have low prices, and yes, they cater to the common folk in america. but i have no sympathy really. this is coming from the same group that wants to roll back tax cuts for household who make over $120K per year because they are “wealthy.” my tom cruise butt, our household makes over $165K and all we can afford is a 1300 sq. ft. townhouse with 2 bedrooms. we have 2 kids, 2 cars, we both work full time just to make ends meet. we are by no means wealthy, but the stardard of living here is so high it makes things so tom cruise tough. so you walmart shoppers, tough. i have to make ends meet also, but i do have standards.

    flame away people!!!

  8. WHOEVER coded this site needs to be sacked bloody fast!

    I have seen 12year olds with better coding skills.

    Jesus – this site has put web design back 10 years.

    Thanks Walmart for ruining the image of web designers/developers.

    Stick will selling stuff in a store and forget about online – you just havent got a clue… (hangs his head in despare)

  9. I think it is pretty humorous how so many think that ZT is some kind of Microsoft Zealot. This is absolutely not true. He is parodying MS Zealots. From today’s Post.

    If it’s one thing us Window PC fans love it’s low-cost, inexpensive, cheap products and services. That’s what makes Windows PCs so much better than your glitzy high-cost Macs. There are more Windows PCs out there, so they’re better, and they cost less, so again, they’re better. I’ll break it down for you Mac dorks: More at a lower cost.

    No one could be that dumb to believe that just because there is more of something or that it is cheaper, that makes it better. This is parody folks, pure and simple. I actually laughed pretty hard at this post. Excellent! Everytime ZT posts something, applaud his efforts rather than trying to start an argument with him. Most of the time, they are quite funny. I mean “Welcome to the Social”

    This is the reason why the Sabotage ad from Apple was canceled. Most people are so dumb that they don’t get Parody.

    PG

  10. that page has 8530 lines of HTML, 6194 of them are empty !

    the remaining 2336 contain 528 syntax errors !

    it contains TWO doctype tags (a single tag that is supposed to be at the start of the document)

    it contains 26 script tags !

    a horible mess, it’s a miracle that any browser can display it at all !

    one of the problems is that it pretends to be a strict HTML 4 document, it’s not at all.

    another problem is that it’s generated by many jsp pages, probably written by different people (none of them good at their job)

    it contains 117 comments, that should have been removed.
    it’s not using a style sheet, but the style attribute, very unflexible.

    it uses attributes that don’t exist, or are not supposed to be used in HTML 4 strict

    at least 12 tags are not closed.

    etc etc…, i have never seen such a mess.

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