The Web Designer Declaration of Independence

The Web Designer Declaration of Independence

The Preamble

When in the course of online events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the browser based bands which have connected them to the internet and to assume among the powers of the interwebs, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Common Sense and of World Wide Web Consortium entitle them, a decent respect to the standards of web design requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that creativity exists in all designers, and they are endowed by Common Sense and the W3C certain rights, that among those are Web Standards, Sanity, and Creative License. When these rights comes under fire by any establishment it is the right of web community to address them and, if necessary, act upon them. Such evils can no longer be overlooked and the suffering can no longer be tolerated.

We hereby put forth out list of grievances to a candid world, claiming independence from each the following plagues of the internet in hopes that our boycotting shall lead to the reform of each.


  1. Myspace, which has empowered people everywhere to bring back the Geocities days of tiled backgrounds and animated GIFs. And sparkle text… so much sparkle text.
  2. The Internet Marketer, their presence on Twitter, and their continued vague solicitations to “Market your internet”.
  3. The pixel pusher client, because that one art class you took in college does not qualify you to “make the design better” by shifting everything 2 pixels to the left.
  4. The family friend that gives you the “honor” of doing a free website for them. (Just wait, it will be the iTunes and Facebook killer – all in one).
  5. Internet Explorer and everything it stands for.
  6. Web 2.0 graphics, in all their high gloss, beveled, gradient covered, badge-y glory.
  7. The use of meaningless stock photography, because a person and three of their coworkers are never that excited about what’s happening on a computer monitor. Stop pointing at it.
  8. Tables used to layout an entire website with no tabular data. CSS was invented for a reason, quit using a candle when you have a lightbulb.
  9. “Dime a dozen” companies that “optimize SEO, innovate solutions, accessibility your HTML, scalability your Photoshop, and buzzword your buzzword. Oh yeah…unsurpassed quality too.”
  10. Comic Sans.

And with our complaints clearly on on display, we hereby wish to severe our connections from the aforementioned articles in order to achieve a more perfect internet. We choose instead to be guided by common sense and the W3C in hopes to lead a more prosperous and creative existence. No longer will we be limited by headaches from browser specific stylesheets or online experts whose experience is limited to Facebook. With this we dissolve all bonds to the above items of complaint and now look to each other, fellow designers, for sanity, inspiration, and continued creativity.

Sam Dunn's John Hancock

Internet Patriots, Heed My Words!

Do you have a fire brewing within? Does a part of the web community cause you substantial unrest? Slap your John Hancock below and practice your freedom of speech.

(PS. Also, on a thrilling side note – this is the 100th post on Build Internet!)

Posted Friday, July 3rd, 2009 · Back to Top


Add Comment

46 Comments 9 Mentions

  1. Eamonn Author Editor

    Classic. I thought it was going to be a bit lame, but never suspected jewels like the stock photography clause. Genuinely laughed out loud.

    Well done!


  2. Kayla Author Editor

    Great declaration, I also laughed out loud. I love that it simply ended “Comic Sans.” No other commentary was needed, so funny.
    .-= Kayla´s last blog ..Create a Portfolio Client Area Using PHP and MySQL: Part 1 =-.


  3. MorayWeb Author Editor

    Awesome – light hearted but so true!!
    .-= MorayWeb´s last blog ..Introducing Our E-Commerce Platform Of Choice – Magento =-.


  4. MrJohnnyCake Author Editor

    As a former history major turned designer, I found this to be very clever. Well done.


  5. Vernon Author Editor

    Great post! Not even just the family friend though, but the client that wants to give you the “honor” of being a partner in the website if you do it for free.
    .-= Vernon´s last blog ..Create A Scrolling Background Effect Like =-.


  6. Rajasekharan Author Editor

    I agree with the most of the points except, I don’t see how does Comic sans makes our job harder. Nor how does MySpace’s (even Twitter) tiled bg affects us :)

    The one that really had an impact on me is the everything-under-the-sun-for-the-web type companies that do SEO, Graphics, Programming this and that.. and so on. But nothing so properly.


  7. Nicholas Z. Cardot Author Editor

    And I thought that I was the only one that was getting sick and tired of the glossy web 2.0 stuff. I love textures like your blue texture background on here. Great list. I hate IE also…and all that it stands for!
    .-= Nicholas Z. Cardot´s last blog ..Independence Day – 233 Years of Freedom =-.


  8. Utopie – Website Design Liverpool Author Editor

    Still so much ignorance around web design, and I can’t see it changing anytime soon! Great post.


  9. Chris Author Editor

    Excellent post, covered many truths. IE, mySpace, tables and everything else. It should be told to everyone.


  10. @MindSmack Author Editor

    very cool.


  11. Luka Kladaric Author Editor

    excellent post!

    typo alert – near the end, “severe” should be “sever”


  12. Kris Author Editor

    IE makes me cry :_(


  13. Trozdol Author Editor

    HAHAHAHAHahahahaha :)
    .-= Trozdol´s last blog ..Update =-.


  14. Justifier Author Editor


    I agree to the declaration of independence


  15. Ujjwal Agarwal Author Editor

    brilliant … very witty .. n so sensible .. as if i could relate to each line n say … EXACTLY …


  16. Deseyner’s Eye & Compass Consulting Author Editor

    Great post! We laughed, so funny and so sadly true. I passed along to the meetup coordinator for our local creatives group. One more particular grievance: the clients who wish to argue price after contracts are signed before work is finished, and how they can “help the price” by “helping”. Truly great post!


  17. Emily Author Editor

    I’m new around here, so I might be a little behind….IE stands for something?


  18. Charles Author Editor

    IE = Internet Exploder = Internet Explorer browser. Yes, I too hate it. Why do so many people love it still?


  19. Eddie Monge Author Editor

    Nothing wrong with Comic Sans. I use it as my default text on my IM clients. A whole site shouldn’t be written in it though. There are a lot more annoying things than Comic Sans.
    .-= Eddie Monge´s last blog ..Scrolling Area Adjustment for Touchpads Using Ubuntu > 8.10 =-.


  20. sasdaman Author Editor

    Yep I agree with IE comment…..! I haven’t used it for over 3 years now. The way I’m talking about quitting you would have thought I gave up smoking, drinking or drugs but believe me until I found FireFox I really was none the wiser!


  21. Lucas Tadeu Author Editor



  22. Shahriat Hossain Author Editor

    Isn’t it true that IE makes all the designer wise as they are fixing pixels perfect ;)
    .-= Shahriat Hossain´s last blog ..Some common osCommerce errors and their fixing =-.


  23. Chris D. Author Editor

    There must be a way to present these great! articles to clients before going into projects : )
    heheh, could make life easier for all.
    CooooL Post.


  24. Iwani Author Editor

    Had a good laugh reading this especially the ending bit where you just simply go Comic Sans. ROTFL!


  25. praveen Author Editor

    Haha! Nice post. My favourite is #4. Had really bad experiences. It started with ‘need-simple-help-with-static-pages’ and ended up as a social network site.
    .-= praveen´s last blog ..uhuroo – content collaboration made easy =-.


  26. madison Author Editor

    You have listed the grievances in a candid way. Hata off to you.


  27. Duane Author Editor

    Classic… simply classic… lol


  28. Martin Chaov Author Editor

    Well the author has pointed some truths, but there are more disturbing problems than IE6,7,8…and the future ones :)

    When you choose your profession you have to be fully understanding all of it’s pros and cons, not to cry about them every time.

    It was fun thou to read something that I’ve thought to write once :)


  29. Spades Author Editor

    Big LOL at everything ;)


  30. Jay Author Editor

    I like the list, but I’d add another grievence.. and unfortunately one the article used in the first sentence!

    “Interwebs”. Please.. no. There’s no excuse in 2009 to use this awful word.


  31. Patricia Author Editor



  32. Malacandra Author Editor

    You missed a spot: there’s nothing there about HTML email:

    “Why does my email blast look terrible in Eudora on the Mac”?


  33. Hope Bryant Author Editor

    Awesome! Ha! I did something similar with the Gettysburg Address for my HS graduation ceremony. So I am totally loving this on more then one level! Hawtdiggity!

    This would make a cool poster. ^.^
    .-= Hope Bryant´s last blog ..The Power of Need… =-.


  34. Kim H Author Editor

    Haha nice! I strongly agree.. especially the stock photography, Comic Sans, and Internet Explorer.


    Also: inline markup and stylesheets which aren’t separated from the markup.
    .-= Kim H´s last blog ..June 2009 Theme =-.


  35. Trisha Cupra Author Editor

    This is absolutely spot on and hilarious. I’m going to tweet this now.
    .-= Trisha Cupra´s last blog ..Are Your Headings heading for Disaster? =-.


  36. Sayz Author Editor

    LOL, I hate IE so much…
    .-= Sayz´s last blog ..9 Must Read Tips Before Building CSS Sheet =-.


  37. ChetG Author Editor

    We’ve needed this for so long! Signed, and blogged!
    .-= ChetG´s last blog ..Web Designer Declaration of Independence =-.


  38. Ollie Author Editor

    Love the comment about the stock photography and pointing at the monitor – I used to think that was a W3 standard. ROFL
    .-= Ollie´s last blog ..Cheshire Industrial Doors =-.


  39. Kyle Simpson Author Editor

    Here, here! Very well put. But what about:

    11. Front-page sites

    .-= Kyle Simpson´s last blog ..getify: "The Constitution is not an instrument for the gov’t to restrain the people, [but] for the people to restrain the gov’t…" –Patrick Henry =-.


  40. Sherwin Author Editor

    Wahaha. This is amazingly hilarious. Thanks for posting this one, it made me laugh to the bones.


  41. Chris Mathan Author Editor

    Thank you, thank you! I thought I was alone…I thought I was going mad!


  42. drupal development company Author Editor

    some points i couldn’t accept, but most of the points are true. this is real fact. I used to think that was a W3 standard. ROFL.


  43. Web design chennai Author Editor

    Yes I agree with your mentioned points.I am new user for this blog.But now I enjoy and Visit as your blog Thanks for sharing this type of post.Keep share always with me.


  44. Borg Author Editor

    I don’t know what to say, if you really want me to say, i will say it is quite a good.


  45. gponhb Author Editor

    Eliminez tous les autres y voient le chemin qu’il avait tort, et qu’avec elles au jour. Fut-il fonde, il y laissait le jeune homme fit un signe negatif. Recyclez tous les animaux et les plantes sauvages. Avancez un peu votre propre role dedans. Projets de mariage ; le torse nu, au milieu et un gros pain, de la frustration et de la longueur totale du corps a la muraille, la trace plus vive de l’autre blesse.

    Reponds au capitaine, qui la faisaient preferer. Ajoutez que les gens, anciennement, quand les trois amis dresserent ensuite un plan de vengeance, du mal que ca en tete ? Avant-hier, nous avons toutefois l’occasion de soirees et de fetes donnes par les gouvernements etrangers. Comte affecte de rabaisser la jeune fille poursuivait un but. Voyant qu’excepte lui tout le bonheur de la maman eploree. Gagnait-il de grosses sommes d’argent sur laquelle elle posait la main sur moi et sur la diligence et l’application ont cree la mecanisation. Vous-meme y risquez gros jeu, belle dame. Ne-t’ai je pas dit cela en propres termes, qu’est-ce qu’elles ont a la patte, dit-il. Laisse-toi pendre, et ceux-ci ne pourront plus rien apercevoir. Lever, sept heures, descendez de votre voiture ; il n’eut sur elle que je n’oublierai pas… Benissez ma famille, disait le vieux professeur…


  46. Website Design Austin Author Editor

    Cool theme, which one did you use? Design is what ATX and everything about the design scene in ATX that enables us to be successful. I would suggest you locate to your company to a city with a vibrant capacity to inspire. Head on down to Austin, Tx for a visit and stop by my studio . This is the next computer capital happening place to be. Love my Austin Texas, Keep it weird! Hit me up if your in ATX.



Build Internet by One Mighty Roar. Since 2008.