Why are some of the ugliest sites on the Web also the most popular?


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If you’ve been on the Web in the past decade, you’ll likely have visited Reddit, Craigslist, Wikipedia, 4Chan, Hacker News, or The Drudge Report at some point. While these sites are all vastly different, they have two things in common: they’re all extremely popular among their audiences and they all look, well, terrible.

Web technologies have come so far in the past few years and designers now have a vast array of tools and techniques at their disposal. Yet these sites feature unflattering layouts that have no connection to the modern design philosophies seen around the Web today.

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