Great Web links are like New Yorkers

A good link has no time for small talk or niceties; what you see is what you get.

If most of today’s Web links were married they’d be heading for divorce because they never keep their promises. “Darling, I’ll be home at 10.” But the cad of a link doesn’t come home until four a.m.

The link says, “Launch online application form.” What’s a reasonable expectation? That if you click on the link, an online application form will launch. So I click. Nothing launches. I just get a page of useless text telling me: “This is a secure site designed to help customers correctly complete a passport application online.” Well, fancy that.

So I scan the page for a link and I find: “Start application process.” From launch to start, am I moving forward at all? I click on that and arrive at a page whose heading is: “Before you start.” Hello? I already launched, then I started, now this page is telling me that I haven’t even started yet. What’s up?

On another Web site the link says “Become a member.” I click on it. The next link says, “Join.” I click on it. The next link on the next page again says, “Join.” I click on it, and get another page of useless text. But I’m making progress because the current link says: “Join Now!”

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