Advantages Free, free, free, oh and it provides a great range of tools
Disadvantages Not many- but how long can it last?
As the media persuades the unsuspecting public that everyone should have a website, more and more people try their hand at creating their own ‘home on the web’. However, there’s one barrier to this- many of these people don’t have the knowledge- or tools, to create a good website- however good their ideas. Even if you know HTML in great detail- adding other ‘bits’ such as a chat room, or forum can be a difficult and expensive business. This is where Bravenet comes in handy.Bravenet provides advertising-funded (therefore, free to you) web tools, such as counters, forums, chat-rooms and mailing lists. They even provide free hosting and tips on using HTML. Whether starting a site from scratch, or looking for additions- there’s something for all.
The services they provide are all very easy to set up, and can be used straight away. You simply sign up for a free account- and click on the services you want and follow the no-jargon instructions.The tools they provide allow you to create a site that looks professional, and is interactive. They prevent your site just having the boring 'my first website look'- and turn them into the kind of place that people might actually choose to visit. Additions like mailing lists and forums etc. are what brings people back to a site- would you visit Ciao if it was never updated- or you couldn’t join in? Exactly…
Obviously, it's what's on your site that counts- but without the right tools you could be doomed to fail- even if what you write is amazing. For example, a counter allows you to see who is visiting your site- and lets you adjust your content accordingly (i.e. if everyone uses Netscape to access your site- you don't want to have an Internet Explorer only site!). Without Bravenet, you would need a CGI server- which most ISPs don't provide (and can be expensive to use), licenses to run CGI software on the server (yes, more money)- and a lot of IT knowledge (I wouldn’t know where to start).My only complaints would be that the site is very much geared to Americans (fair enough though, it is in America…), you can get subscribed to some awful mailing lists if your not careful (read the small print when signing up), and some of the services provided are a little simplistic (the forum looks quite dated). However, remember how much it costs? Nothing. I can hardly complain…
In a world where the internet free-lunch is dying, Bravenet is still sticking to the freebie thing, after over 4 years, but for how long? There are now more ads than ever before on the site, and with the down-turn in ad revenue- lets hope it can survive!
Attention, this is the first review from this author
Instead of giving a negative rating, consider:
Help this member by giving your advice
Report fraud (for example plagiarism) or other issue with the review to the Ciao support team
Add your comment