Review 2567

My first impressions of Pistalwhipped.net were very good. It has a really clean site design with a nice cartoon logo at the top. It is a simple design too and I like simple- no long blog lists or other unnecessary gubbins usually found in blogs. There was a menu at the top which led me to a rather superficial FAQ (an “About me” page basically) and some other potentially great features too. There is a Tutorials page, although there is only one at the moment about some simple Javascript, which seems well written. There is also a forum (forums for blogs are hardly ever used in my experience and this one is no exception), a large DVD list and some downloads.

One of the advantages of this site is that the owner hosts it himself with his own server. This means that he has posted up a lot of pictures, video clips and even an MP3 which can be downloaded. Some of these can be found in the download section, some can be found in the individual posts. I was also pleased to discover in the FAQ section that the site had been running for a couple of years now, so I expected a fair bit of content.

Having perused the site generally, I was pretty impressed- if the content could match the site design and extras, I figured we could be looking at a 5 site here. Unfortunately the score was slowly whittled away by a number of disappointments encountered once I started reading. The first few posts were entertaining enough I suppose, though there wasn’t much actual content to be found other than a few superficial observations about his insomnia or some movies he had seen. I have used the word superficial twice now and it sadly sums up all of the content really.

Before I go further, a word about the archives. There is no link to the archives on the main page (or any other page for that matter.) To access the archives, you must click on either “[link]” or “[comment]” and then click the “archive” link which then appears at the top. Either that or go straight to http://www.pistalwhipped.net/archives/. A glaring oversight and an inconvenience, especially from someone who seems to have put so much work in to the site’s appearance. So what is in these elusive archives then? Well again, more links for stuff to be downloaded (usually relating to celebrity scandals, US politics and occasionally technology) and um… not much else. I read through all the archives and learnt very little about the author. Except that he watches American Football, drinks beer and has learnt how to swear quite a bit. Bearing in mind the site has (supposedly) been running since 2001, I was also disappointed to find the archives only go back to January of this year. I guess the previous archives got lost somewhere along the line.

Now I would like to think that I am not a prude and I understand there is a need for quality sites which expose celebrity gaffes (albeit gaffes which involve them taking their clothes off) or satirise US politicians. Unfortunately though, this isn’t one of those sites. I feel there needs to be more analyses or observation about whatever is posted up here – I don’t think the quality of the pictures/ video clips are high enough for them to hold their own without something being added. The occasional personal posts also need to be either scrapped altogether or embellished significantly. The general lack of direction is frustrating and it suggests a certain apathy. Putting up “controversial” videos to download may improve the hits rating significantly, but to improve the blogging quality, more effort is needed, particularly in the written content. Pistalwhipped

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