Craigslist Is Ugly
I frequently mention Craigslist in my writing and talks. I also love what Wikipedia has accomplished.
Both have these great aspects to them that people rarely understand:
“Why does Craigslist look like it’s from 1998? Why don’t they update it?”
“Who has time to do all this work on Wikipedia, and for no pay?”
It’s worth paying attention to products that gain traction despite being ugly, or lacking features, or requiring the work of thousands of volunteers without pay.
There’s probably something fundamentally important about these products that is too often ignored by developers, designers, product managers, entrepreneurs, vc’s, etc. What many people see as faults are actually strengths for these products. These faults may actually be some of the more sustainable competitive advantages out there.
P.S. Here’s a little explanation of the behind-the-scenes thinking at Craiglist: How To Design Kick-Ass Products