I've been creating a site for a big US based brand. Like big big.
It was so cool - all HTML5 and HTML5 video and beautiful. Glorious, beautiful site with glorious beautiful commented code.
The purpose of the site is a bit of a webapp - something you would previously build in all flash - where you press a button to play the video. The image is a photograph of the real life product. It's a mimic of what some customers will be actually getting - a physical video player. This is the online version.
Because the product was taller than it is wide, we made the whole site vertically responsive so the size of the product is equal to the browser window. It worked, everything was perfect, iPhone, iPad, Android, Macs, PCs, 800x600 or 1920x1080. Then sent it off 2 weeks ago.
Got feedback Monday saying that they can't see anything but an error message. Now, keep in mind, in all our wireframes and pre-production and contracts we explicitly stated that the website would only work for HTML5 browsers and included a list of browsers that do not support HTML5 - like IE8 - with the usage % of said browsers as of June 2013. We told them these browsers would display an error message.
So we get an email Monday from the director of digital communications and branding or some ridiculous fucking title. And he sends a screenshot of the error message telling him to upgrade his browser. Unfortunately, due to the fact it's a huge company with a lazy/incompetent/overworked/underfunded IT dept, they are all using IE8 & unable to install anything new without the IT guy coming to do it. If it was one guy at the company, I wouldn't be so worried. I would outline the security risks of using an outdated browser and explain that all the hard work a number of web developers and designers put into a site are lost in IE6-8. And to upgrade his fucking outdated browser.
But the 18 levels of approval needed would also be using IE8.
So I set the normally responsive container to be 800px*616px. Done. Now on extra small screens they have to scroll and on extra large they'll have to zoom in or squint. We also had a introductory "how to use this" image that displays in a sleek animated popup with a basic cookie that only makes it pop up every 25 or so refreshes of the site. Gone. Now it's a "?" icon with a link that opens an image - like imgur status. Just the image. Instead of the last instruction being "press the x to close and get started" it is on the other side and says "press the back button."
So ghetto. And disappointing. And icky. And blah.
But because we've already used our allotted budget and I have 8000 other projects and my management doesn't understand this shit anymore than their director of bullshit, that's all they get. Bummer.
Lesson: let people know what they are doing be empowered and do their job, even if you don't understand a lick of what they are doing. Empower them to make decisions and get passionate and excel. Status quo my ass. I want my shit to be damn beautiful. But now, I don't really care about this project or the other projects I'm on. My co-worker feels exactly the same. We used to be excited to come into work and problem solve our way to paradise. But now we just do whatever they want to the lowest standards and don't ask questions and simply tell them it's not possible (even when we could probably find a way to do it). Now they have a fed-up, underpaid, ranting, whiny bitch who doesn't feel like trying anymore and hopefully will be at a real tech-literate company within 3 months.