Ten days after I said the new online Portland Oregonian that replaces the print newspaper for screwed-over subscribers three days a week sucks, I am not pleased to report that... it still sucks!
Why my subscription price hasn't been reduced by 3/7, or thereabouts, baffles me. There is absolutely no way I can read the Oregonian on my Retina MacBook Pro laptop or iPhone 5.
At least, not without experiencing so much frustration, any interest I have in the newspaper's content vanishes within seconds.
Early in October, right after the dreadful digital rollout, I expressed my dissatisfaction to the powers-that-be at the Oregonian. So far I have gotten exactly zero response.
No "we're working on improving things." No "thank you for your feedback." Nothing. Nada.
Guess the "O" in MyDigitalO actually is a zero, not an O. Because that is both how much I'm able to use the site, and also how much Oregonian executives seemingly care about whether subscribers are able to read the newspaper online.
When I head to MyDigitalO, I'm presented with a facsimile of the newpaper that can't be navigated in any reasonably pleasant fashion by my not-exactly-rare MacBook Pro.
The arrow keys on my keyboard are non-functional. Scrolling on the trackpad is impossible to control. I can doubleclick on the first page headline and read it in a pop-up box, but reading other stories is absurdly difficult.
I was advised by an online Oregonian editor to click on View today’s digital edition using iPhone, iPad, tablet, Android.
Doing that leaves me utterly frozen on my laptop. Pages won't scroll. Arrow keys don't work. I'm stuck staring on the top of the first page. Yet, as noted above, I'm still being charged for three newspaper editions a week that I can't read.
I keep waiting for the Oregonian to put up an online poll asking subscribers how they like MyDigitalO. I'd love to express my opinion. Whatever the lowest, crappiest rating is, I'd choose that.
Then add a comment: "multiply my distaste for your online newspaper ten fold, then double that hatred quotient for an accurate measure of my opinion."
Yesterday I was pleased to come across a Portland Mercury post, "Why Does the Oregonian's Digital-First Strategy Suck So Much?"
While they're cutting back on the thing they do well (printing newspapers and bringing them to people) they're adding more inept digital features. You can now get a look-alike edition of the paper at MyDigitalO.com. My. Digital. O. Have you guys never seen the Internet? The absolutely first test any product needs to pass is "does it sound like a porn site?" This sounds more like a porn site than Bang Bus, which one could possibly think was about driving to Hammer School.
But even if you can convince yourself it's okay to click on, you're rewarded with the paper in the least convenient format I've seen for anything on the web. It takes several minutes to load and then appears as if like they e-mailed you a .pdf of the paper but they thought Acrobat looked too nice and was too easy to navigate.
The title of that post is an excellent question. But I'm getting to the point where I barely care why the online Oregonian sucks so much. Until MyDigitalO changes its suckiness, the Oregonian is dead to me on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday.
Advertisers, take notice.