Friday, January 05, 2007

The Worst of the Worst

The annual Foley awards are distributed to mark the utter incompetence of both American governmental agencies and policy makers in the domain of digital media. While I and non-American readers may not be automatically familiar with these agencies/policies/politicians, the links provided make for some good laughs. My un-favorites include:

Worst overall web design of a government website
"It started parodically bad, it continues to be appallingly bad, and it seems like it won't cease to be bad any time soon. The prize for the all-around worst government website still goes to, which merits the recognition in a number of categories. The fact that they created a truly abysmal children's page this year (see this story in July) and threatened the Federation of American Scientists with a trademark infringement lawsuit because they made a critical counter-site (see this story in August) makes them worthy of the dishonor."

Worst government-funded videogame
"I asked Ludology czar Gonzalo Frasca this question, who said, "I would say that by far the worst government funded game is the War in Iraq. And they're losing!"
I like the Federation of American Scientists otherwise, but I think the NSF-funded Immune Attack is probably the biggest unrecognized taxpayer turkey this year. Not only is this a classic example of "content stuffing" into a genuinely un-fun game, but the representations of microscopic body components are often wildly inaccurate in color, size, and behavior."

Worst regulation of technology in response to a craven fear
"Banning access to social networking sites in schools and libraries may be the worst regulation of a common technological practice in response to the bogeyman of the child sexual predator who was haunting the House Energy and Commerce hearings all this year. The Deleting Online Predators Act may have many unintended consequences for those who depend on Internet service as a cheap alternative to long distance phone calls for the poor or as a way to access social services and other important cultural goods."

See the whole list of 'winners' here.

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