Bionic Spirit

UX Tip: Don't Hurt Me On Sign-Up, Wait Until Later

To illustrate the shit I was talking about in Outside the US, Don't Require Postal Codes, here's a concrete example:

Phone validation is broken - apparently DZone doesn't like the fact that I've got a nice / memorable number with repeating digits (that's not my number btw, but I just changed the digits for this article, the format is the same). The phone is required too, . Why the heck do you need my phone number anyway? Isn't email enough? I always check my email, I'm always connected. And it should be up to me to decide what contacting options you receive. I complained to them about this. 24 hours later, no response.

This is one of those cases in which people want to show their cleverness. Oh, look at my form, it's so clever. Just like the people that think a maximum password length of 16 to 30 chars is a good idea (DZone does this too btw) - in the spirit of always validating your inputs. After all, those plain-text passwords in their database eats up space.

Zip/Postal Code is required. I don't know it by default, I never use it anyway, never. For DZone I didn't even bother to look it up. I never bothered to provide a correct one for Amazon, which is actually sending me stuff, like purchased items or money. So I provided a fake one.

Why is Company Name required? - Maybe I'm an independent. Maybe I'm unemployed. Maybe I don't want to freaking tell you about it. Are you going to harass me through my employer in case I don't behave? I won't even mention the required-ness of the job title / job function. Would that prove I'm qualified? That's just sad.

Maybe you want to simulate Facebook's original exclusiveness. However make sure people actually want to be members first.

I don't know the size of the company I'm working for - maybe this is a no brainer for the people that actually care to put this on their business cards or talk about it at stand-ups within the company, just before gathering around a fire singing Kumbaya. However, the company I work for has people distributed in remote locations and I don't interact with all of them, while big corporations have centers all over the world - to not lie, you'd basically have to do a google search, or ask around, just to get past a freaking form (that doesn't send you money for the effort).

So there you have it, a good example.