First (and Last) Impressions of Xanga - weblink, 1 star
I've finally found a reason to join Xanga: commenting on my friends' Xanga blogs. Yes, this is literally the only good reason you can possibly have to join this horrendous so-called “service.” Every single feature provided by Xanga is provided elsewhere and is executed at least ten times better.
First and foremost among Xanga's failings are their blatant disregard for Web standards. This has a powerful and direct impact on its users in the form of browser compatibility. The only way you're going to get a halfway decent user experience browsing Xanga sites is by using Internet Explorer 6.
“Okay, but Blogger won't let me have multiple profile pictures,” you might be saying. True, but LiveJournal does. Even better, LiveJournal's focus on community makes keeping track of and organizing your friends' blogs a snap. And keeping up with your seventy-million friends is made even easier by letting you read their RSS or Atom news feeds in your favorite news aggregator or reader, something Xanga doesn't yet publish.
In addition to those bonuses, LiveJournal makes it drop-dead simple to join and post to community blogs. In contrast, Xanga pathetically offers blogrings as its form of community, which are really nothing more than lists of Xanga members who claim to be interested in a specific topic. Bafflingly, there is no search feature for Xanga's blogrings, which means that finding the few blogrings you want to join out of the thousands that have been created is masochistic at worst and an exercise in patience at best. In response to this stupidity, hundreds of blogrings have adopted ridiculously decorative names such as “°°°//!ChRiS!\\°°°” (note the stupid symbols everywhere) in order to be listed near the top in Xanga's default alphabetic sorting order.
If you think using Xanga to organize your social life via it's “Events” feature, is going to help get you in order, then you're in for a nasty shock. First of all, no body's going to look at your events page out of sheer fascination, and Xanga's not going to help you attract attention to it. No, you actually have to email your event to folks to let them know about it after you create it.
In all fairness, screw that, and get yourself on over to Multiply, which will actually make sure your friends get notified of your events via email alerts and news feeds! Moreover, Multiply offers numerous things Xanga can't even begin to dream about, like classifieds listings, a personal photo album, and more.
For the geekier of us out there, Xanga is even more annoying. Have you actually tried to create your own header using valid, semantic markup and inline styles? Well, don't bother, since Xanga actually filters out certain CSS attributes from tags such as the
position property. Imagine my frustration after checking and re-checking my code four times only to discover that it had been altered without feedback right under my nose! Augh!
To top it all off, Xanga adds insult to injury as they slather my pages with advertisements for their own “Premium” service. It appears that they really haven't yet understood that teasing users with innocent-looking links to features that are unavailable and then demanding that they pay for a feature other services provide for free is not the best marketing strategy. Besides, designing the home page like it's 1996 (with its 74 validation errors and busy appearance) certainly doesn't inspire much confidence in the reliability of the service.
To be fair, the one thing Xanga has that no other service has are “eProps.” What are eProps? I'll let my friend explain that one.
Blarg. [eProps are a] 13 year old girl's wet dream.