back to article Web 2.0 bloat trebles web's waistline

The web is getting fatter faster than a middle-aged November goose on an all-spaghetti diet, thanks to webmasters and bloggers greasing their pages with Web 2.0 lard. The mean size of a web page has more than trebled since 2003 from 97.3KB to more than 312KB, according to a review of available research by WebsiteOptimization. …


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  1. druck Silver badge

    87% Toss

    "87 per cent of web video streaming sessions are abandoned in the first ten seconds" more likely because well over 87 per cent of web videos are complete toss rather than any problems with buffering.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Spot on. That's the main reason I stop them after a few seconds.

  3. James Le Cuirot

    I blame MySpace

    Opera shows the total amount downloaded for a page. I've seen it go as high as 10MB on some MySpace pages.

  4. Paul Charters

    What makes me laugh.... that people are STILL designing web sites based around the concept that 'flasher is better'.....there are still loads of game and movie sites that you have to sit there and watch loading before you actually get any information....and because of the way Flash works you STILL can't use the back button to go to the information you were just reading - you have to make your way through pathetically-designed and poorly thought-out flash menus which take 10-times longer to use than a simple image. (The Force Unleashed website is a perfect example).

    And why-oh-why does EVERY d*mn web page I come across nowadays ask me if I want to fill in a f*cking survey? I don't. I don't want to do your job for you, and when I want to give you my opinion I'll give it to right now!

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Oh no!

    I also hear that people are designing pages that require 800x600 and - get this - not using web-safe colors! Something must be done!

  6. Mark Broadhurst

    or 500K+ if your el-reg

    not that I'd consider it a Web 2.0 site.

  7. bothwell
    Thumb Down


    As is most Web2.0 bollocks.

    Page sizes might be increasing, but I sure ain't downloading most of them. I've been known to turn javascript *and* CSS off to browse because I'm so tired of other people's crappy design ideas.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Speak for Yourselves, Fatty

    My Pages are Pretty Consistent at 40K or less, and I cram all kinds of Bloat 2.0 goodies in them.

    I think a lot of the problem is bad coding and Flash ads. Try opening a MySpace page with a stopwatch going.

  9. Conway


    It's about the best free widget I ever found. I can now read web pages without being in danger of motion sickness. Easy to switch flash on, just as easy to switch it off.

    Mine's the stationery one over there.

  10. Tomothy Toemouse

    Dilbert went flash and that's damn slow too.

    Stupid flash.I didn't have a look at how much was being loaded. Must have a look at that Opera suggestion

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Paul Charters

    Because without some idea of their prospective audience, they can't sell advertising space.

  12. This post has been deleted by its author

  13. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: What's a web crapp?



  14. Lee Willis
    Paris Hilton

    Wonky figures ...

    I wouldn't trust these figures. The site helpfully tells me that my site doesn't support compressed content and that my javascript downloads total 107k when I know for a fact I serve it compressed at around 29k ...

    It's in their interests to tell you your site is bloated so they can sell you consultancy to fix it ...

    Paris, because she can't count to 29 either ...

  15. Joe

    @ Lee Willis

    You're right! I like that. Like Marx (or someone) said, look who is set to gain...

    It's a bit like taking health advice from Mars Confectionery.

  16. Anonymous Coward

    Seconded - the ads are the killer.

    I accept that pages need to be funded somehow. I'm prepared to look at adverts around the story that I actually care about, and might occasionally click on one.

    What I'm *not* happy about is ad servers that can't keep up and delay the loading of the web page for over a minute. More of a problem is the ones that spread over the story I'm trying to read (the banner ad in Slashdot always does this to me, although I have to assume my Firefox is confused), eat 100% of the CPU, and memory leak. Most of the latter applies to the damned HP floating spaceman advert that crops up everywhere and slows the system to a crawl as soon as it appears, and accompanied this article. Sadly, I need flash enabled for too many other sites, and it's not worth faffing with disabling it when I can just restart Firefox with a session manager (to reload the 40+ pages I usually have open) when it gets too bad.

    Advert designers, more than any other, need to be given some basic awareness of how this kind of thing should be done. If it were a static image of a spaceman that loaded in a fraction of a second, I might be interested in what switches are doing in space (or whatever it's trying to say - I refuse to look). Because it eats all the resources of my machine in making the space suit float about and cover the story when I sneeze near it, I navigate away as fast as I can.

    I'll second the comment, too. Grr. Sounds like a crap-free version is coming, fortunately.

    Given that web pages get so huge, why can't more sites give you all the information you want in one go? Given the choice of downloading five lots of banner adverts and finding where to click, I'd rather wait a few more seconds for the original page to load and use the magic technology known as scroll bars. If only sites like Sky's TV guide would do this, it would be possible to use the browser's search facility to find things rather than relying on the broken version on the web site (tip - never try to find out when "House" is on unless you want to sort through five hundred unrelated programmes).

  17. Paul Charters

    @Anonymous Coward

    I'm sick of advertising. I don't look at it, I don't read it, it has no relevance to me - even if it was Phormified it STILL wouldn't have any relevance to me. As I only buy from people when I go out and seek them for a product, it is relevant when they try to slap me across the eyeballs with their cr*p.

    It's time we worked on the World Adfree Web...

  18. Mark Cathcart

    I blame Berners Lee

    Yeah, HTML was such a bloat after TTY and ANSI graphics, can't we go back to 3270 datastreams, they were such more more network efficient.

    Smilie because I can still remember how to program an erase write alternate...

  19. Ken Hagan Gold badge

    Re: Dilbert

    Dilbert works fine in Opera if you just disable scripting and plug-ins for the site. Efficiency aside (and yes, that is the point of the main article) there's no need for a crap-free version of the site, just a crap-free version of your browser.

    I wonder if the PHBs at Dilbert have noticed that the new site actually gives them fewer hits on their ads, because it has forced so many "regulars" to turn the screws on their browser settings?

  20. Anonymous Coward

    The good old days

    Ah, ANSI control codes and teletext. Such fun.

    It's been a long time since I tried to read a web site via a telnet session. Last time, it was because I was trying to read enough of the site (JamJar's) to be able to find a contact for the web admin, so that I could tell him that my inability to read his site under Linux ("please install Internet Explorer") had lost them my custom.

    As for 800x600 and web safe colours... you'd be absolutely right to complain. My phone runs Opera at 800x480, so a site which requires x600 would annoy me. I've just had a play with a Pocket Surfer 2, and it appears to have 1 256-colour display (Slashdot is dithered) at 640x240. I've got an n770 at home which gets reasonable use, too. On a PC, if a site needs to have large pages then so be it - but if it's large just because "people have big screens", they're missing the point: I have a 3840x2400 desktop because I want lots of windows open, not because I want enormous images in one window. With lots of windows open, I'd also like them not all to hog the CPU and memory.

    It actually *is* possible to make a web site pretty without making it unusable for limited hardware or the visually impaired. It just needs more than a BTEC in installing Flash plug-ins.

  21. Captain DaFt
    Thumb Up

    @ Paul Charters

    "And why-oh-why does EVERY d*mn web page I come across nowadays ask me if I want to fill in a f*cking survey? I don't. I don't want to do your job for you,"

    Oh C'mon! That's the best part of a website to play with! Nothing like letting them "know" I'm an 87 year old lesbian grandmother, and a devout Wiccan Republican with an engineering degree in advanced gravitics!

    (And you wonder why those off the wall ads keep showing up?)

  22. This post has been deleted by its author

  23. Anonymous Coward

    @I blame Berners Lee

    ....IBM may have been archaic, arrogant and had cookie-cutter blue shirts and dorky haircuts, but not much beats their efficiency on the network ... 9600bps SDLC to support 20 users and a printer (via cluster controller)? ... 2Meg ADSL will hardly support 1 user these days based on the amount of drivel thats available on the web.

    Digression though... the main points highlighted are true: primarily there is too much stuff, and secondly you have to have the knowledge to configure your browser to ignore bloats.

    And the last point I made in previous posts: the HI(Happy Ignorants) to IT (as in people in the IT industry) ratio is still too high... HIs will not question but do - they'll put up with the bloatware because they don't know any different. PCs are like toasters to them....although you can burn bread on the top of some disk drives.

    smiley, coz somethings are just way to-o-o obvious

  24. Theresa Jayne Forster
    Paris Hilton

    Myspace is bloatware

    I refuse to go to anyone's myspace profile as it is ridiculous as I run a tiny Mac Mini with 512mb ram and most myspace pages just swap like crazy and has anyone tried finding the Music off switch on a Myspace page, - If i wanted to have heavy metal blaring out of my computer I would play an mp3 or CD,

    it really wipes out the Spicegirls albums on permanent loop....

  25. Paul

    800 x 600

    I just checked, 12% of the visitors to our main site have 800x600 displays, the second largest segment after 1024x768, as it turns out. As a business selling single, high-ticket items at a decent profit, we'd be insane to blow off that much of the customer base. We're in business to sell stuff, not impress the visitors with our technical gee-whizzery.

    So, our sites work with 800x600. They also adapt to wider browser windows, because fixed-width sucks, there's no excuse for doing it, and it should go the way of frames.

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