Glen Murray, Toronto Centre MPP and former mayor of Winnipeg, announced today that he's running for the leadership of the Ontario Liberal Party in the wake of Dalton McGuinty's resignation.
We at the Peanut wish him luck in this new endeavor. He may very well make a decent Premier. I believe that had he stayed on longer as Winnipeg's mayor, we would be in a better place today than we currently are. He seemed like a credible guy and he had some vision, but unfortunately he didn't stick around to follow it through. Perhaps the higher office of leader of a provincial party / Premier will satisfy his ambitions.
Winning an election is about connecting with people, and to that end Murray is off to a bad start with his new web site: http://www.renewliberal.ca/.
The web site is terrible. His picture is blurry because it's a low-res photo blown up to a larger size; the logo looks like it was ripped off from Target; the website emphatically blinks every 10 seconds as it refreshes; but most of all the layout is awful.
The most common screen resolution of visitors to this blog, anybody-want-a-peanut.blogspot.ca, is 1280 x 800. This is what his web page looks like on that size of monitor:
That banner ... that banner is massive. Glen Murray's face alone consumes over 10% of the visible area on a 1024 x 768 display. If you've ever seen Glen in person you'll know that he does indeed have a big head. Physically. It's quite a large melon. However on a web site these are things you have control over.
Compounding the inefficiency of the web site is a vast amount of wasted space. A good web site will have a clean look and appear uncluttered, but this web site has gone to the extreme of making the welcome page almost entirely devoid of content.
As for the content itself, I have to assume it will improve, but some initial thoughts are:
Twitter: this is NOT a Twitter feed from Glen Murray. It is a feed of tweets from Glen's RenewLiberal campaign twitter account, ensuring that nothing of interest will ever show up here. This ought to be a real-time feed of Glen's own tweets, and Glen should ensure that his tweets are not the usual boring drivel that most politicians are prone to. (More on my thoughts about this here.)
News: Here you will only find undescriptive links to policy statements by Glenn himself. These are not news items at all, and there is no information to grab the reader. Why not at least add a brief synopsis of the item? "Smart Government" is nothing more than a catch phrase. I'm not going to click on that. Sorry.
Upcoming Events: as of right now, the only event posted has already passed. Perhaps this should be renamed "Past Events" if they don't plan on being proactive with this.
Discussions: I'll cut him some slack on not having anything here yet, but it would have been a great idea to get a discussion ready for the launch of the web page. How likely am I to return if I see nothing there?
To summarize: I don't understand what they were thinking when they set this thing up. Premier hopeful Glen Murray will have a difficult time engaging voters if his web site is not the least bit engaging.
Glen's head actual web-site size: