Website background

From time to time, people have complained that the background on the Charley Project’s website (which isn’t on the casefiles but is on every other page) is a tad bit busy and makes the text hard to read.

Towards the end of fixing this problem, I have put together a prototype of a more readable version of the site. I didn’t change much: I just inverted the colors of the background image (making the light colors dark and vice versa), changed the main text color from black to white, and make the dark green headline text a lighter apple-green so it was more visible against a dark background. The top headline banner remained the same, because the drawings of Charley Ross on each side looked a bit creepy when the dark outlines were changed to light.

You can see my new template idea here. I used the Charley Project’s FAQ page.

So what do y’all think? Should I implement this as-is? Do you want some other change made? Or are you happy with things as they are right now?

17 thoughts on “Website background

  1. AJS-75 August 1, 2017 / 10:58 pm

    I like the green type because it’s easier to read but think it would look better on a solid dark background

  2. Jasmine August 1, 2017 / 11:05 pm

    If you do make the change, I think you should change the color of your links.

  3. M86 August 1, 2017 / 11:28 pm

    For me, the inverted colors are hard on my eyes and harder to read (it could just be the font too… I’m not a huge fan of Times New Roman). I would keep it as it is, or maybe try something else.
    Just my 2 cents, of course… Keep up the great work! 🙂

  4. Awakebutnapping August 1, 2017 / 11:44 pm

    Ack! Personally, I don’t like the change — too hard to read. I enjoy the way the site is now.

  5. Fiona August 1, 2017 / 11:47 pm

    Speaking personally, I find the prototype very difficult to look at and I wouldn’t even attempt to read it if it was like that – which would be a big loss for me. I like the set-up you have now, which I find clear and readable, and the un-fussy look is businesslike and straightforward.

  6. Codebreaker August 1, 2017 / 11:49 pm

    You should use more of a blue background and a different font.

  7. Andy Stout August 2, 2017 / 12:17 am

    I agree with Fiona. The prototype seems very creepy, even with the unchanged banner.

  8. Tara August 2, 2017 / 12:54 am

    I used to work on websites quite a bit. I was always told that sites that look like the prototype are going to naturally turn people away. After reading for a bit they strain your eyes.
    Personally I would use a plain background with black type. It’s easiest on the eyes.

  9. Laura August 2, 2017 / 1:09 am

    It is easier to read but I think the color of the links is too dark. Maybe something similar to the apple green would work better.

  10. Liz G August 2, 2017 / 10:36 am

    Maybe its because I frequent this site so much but I don’t find it hard to read . I definitely prefer how it is now .

  11. Kat August 2, 2017 / 3:18 pm

    Don’t know how to answer this. I’ll give that the current background could use some darkening or something, but I do NOT like that prototype. It’s so jarring. And it reminds me of website ca. 2002 or some such. Feels dated, I guess. So a no for me, but at the end of the day you do what you want, and we’ll all still be here!

  12. Mike August 2, 2017 / 8:47 pm

    I think it’s easier to read black print rather than white

  13. terromangerro August 3, 2017 / 9:59 pm

    I like the new format, I find it easier to read especially at night. There is one thing I noticed that perhaps you could use– on the Reddit site letsnotmeet (its written like that), they have an option where a reader can click on a tab or icon that allows them to view the page either with dark print on white like here, or switch to black background and light text. I dit know what’s needed to do it but you could look into it.

  14. Vincent August 4, 2017 / 1:12 pm

    I just would like more updates, please. I’m jonesing hard for updates.

    • Meaghan August 4, 2017 / 5:46 pm

      I am sorry Vincent. I have been totally guilty of slacking as of late. I don’t know why but I’ve been unusually tired lately, been sleeping a TON during the day. But I’ve got a few updates already written up and I plan to put something up today.

  15. Julie August 4, 2017 / 2:27 pm

    The prototype is SO harsh, made my eyes water. It’s cool that you’re asking for your readers’ opinions.

  16. Mion August 6, 2017 / 2:56 pm


    Keep it the way it is. That template looks so GeoCities, I got flashbacks to elementary school.

    That said, maybe you can introduce an optional “night view” version that the user can toggle on and off. A dark grey background similar to Reddit’s night mode would probably be less harsh than a solid black one.

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