Clean is Happy, and the Prospects for Video-Centric Websites

Via Amber, I discovered the unusual design for Washlet.com, a site promoting a, uh, toilet. The site is more or less entirely comprised of little bits of video (note to designers: fix your title tags), discussing the pros and…well, just the pros, of their fancy new toilet.

The toilet-promoting monologues are hilarious because they’re so carefully worded. They never say the word ‘toilet’, and are constantly dancing around the actual nuts and bolts of our bodies and the device’s operations. I kind of feel for the poor actors–they seem so darned convinced of the Washlet’s awesomeness.

I’ve been watching the slow but steady rise of video-centric websites over the past few years. I actually don’t mind this approach at all. However, all of the information should be conveyed and easily available (and linkable) in text form. Why? Arguments for SEO aside, maybe I’m a verbal learner. Maybe I want to cut and paste a chunk to send to my bidet-obsessed friend. Maybe I want to blog about a particular product.

I actually prefer a hybrid model,with video naturally integrated into a text-based site. Coast Capital Savings and Steady Hand do this well.

I was reminded of an amusing Phillips campaign that I blogged about a while back, called Shave Everywhere. They’ve changed the content on that site, but the new stuff looks as good or better than the old.

2 comments

  1. When you said “Clean is Happy,” I was just expecting it to refer to clean design.

    They do say “toilet” but only in a quotation. It’s pretty clever, but didn’t answer my big question (maybe I didn’t look hard enough), how much extra water does it use? Is there an environmental benefit over using paper? Most people don’t have grey water systems. Overall, though, really clever.

  2. Gah! I *hate* video-centric websites. If I wanted to watch TV (which I never do), I would (which I never do).

    I really hate it when someone includes a video clip to make their point, and then posts only, “See? See?” I can read a transcript in less time than I can watch a clip.

    And I really hate it when someone posts a comment that’s just a link to a YouTube video — no word on what the clip’s about.

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