More from the world of useless error messages


I have a new pick for the most useless error message. Some web-based apps are using the phrase “Your browser is not optimized”. What they actually mean is, “We don’t support your browser so you should switch to another one.”. Why can’t they just tell you that? Beats me. Maybe they don’t want to come across as too bossy, or something like that.

As it stands, this message leaves the user wondering how they might change a myriad of browser settings to improve things, and feeling like they’ve done something wrong. Even worse, I’ve seen this same phrase used in sneaky pop-up ads on various websites, which is not something you want your product to be associated with.

I think the takeaway here is simple: Don’t say something generic just to soften the blow of a message. Either say what you mean, or don’t bother showing an error at all.