We had to wrinkle our nose at this post on 6 famous web design atrocities. It may be more about which re-designs caused the most backlash – draw your own conclusions – but the overall sites seem to be doing fine regardless.
Gawker – Wait, what changed? We barely noticed.
TechCrunch – Look, any guru worshiped by his own personal cult can’t be said to fail at anything.
StumbleUpon – Guilty as charged, but Stumble has been concentrated on shooting themselves in the foot since they grew beyond being a Firefox plugin. Whatever they do to their site doesn’t matter now.
Netflix – Again, people still flock there.
YouTube – Ditto. And again, we barely detect any change since Google bought it.
Target – Hey, they’re a brick-and-mortar store. Do they even care about web traffic?
Still, it’s a good guide to what your user base might backlash about. Our take-away: Prioritize function over style.