We have been soundly confused about the reaction to some of our recent changes around the web site. Admittedly, we floundered a bit when we went searching for a new theme for the web site and made some clear mistakes with some of the themes we tried. But when we settled on our current theme, there was, for a time, peace in the valley. Over time, though, some people began to complain that they missed the old web site theme, insisting that it was simpler and easier to use, and pointing out that it put the Malleus Maleficarum front and center without a whole lot of ancillary material as a distraction.
Well, since we’ve watched the number of visitors go down over the last month or so on the web site, we found ourselves pondering those complaints. Perhaps those people made some valid points. After all, if less people were visiting, there was clearly a problem of some sort.
So… what did we do? We switched the format of the web site to put the Online Introduction to the web site front and center, just like it used to be with the old web site theme. Problem solved! Right? Right?
Well… actually… no…
After that last change we received a deluge of e-mail that supported the last web site design, with some people pointing out how much they liked the inclusive information and the opportunity to get a quick glance at ways in which witchcraft and the persecution of those alleged to be involved with witchcraft is still a very real problem in many parts of the world, and appreciated being made aware that the so-called “Burning Times” are not solely a relic of ancient history.
Honestly, after that we just threw our hands up. It was easy to switch the theme back to displaying more information, so that’s what we did. The web site is now what it is, and will remain so for the foreseeable future. We’ve moved some things around and made some adjustments, though.
- Table of Contents has been restored to the sidebar.
- Ancillary material has been moved to the footer slots.
- Sponsor links have been moved to the footer slots.
- Featured products tabs have been moved to the footer slots.
We hope these changes will make folks happy. In the end, though, the Malleus Maleficarum web site itself suffers from being too successful at what we were trying to do way back in 1999 when we got the ball rolling. Our plan all along was to promote the Malleus Maleficarum so that this blood-stained work would not disappear from the public consciousness. In 1999 most people had never heard of it. Now, thanks in part to this web site, public awareness of the Malleus Maleficarum is on the rise. Our PDF files have been pilfered by some of the brightest minds on the Internet and have been used as the basis for most of the e-books you’ll find across the Web. Almost 24,000 people have downloaded our PDF file on Scribd in just the past year alone.
In short, the Malleus Maleficarum can now be found in so many places all across the Internet that the popularity and importance of this web site is on the wane. That’s just fine with us, because it means that we’ve been successful at what we set out to do, and the Malleus Maleficarum is unlikely to be forgotten in the modern era. Sure, there’s a little sadness involved. You always hate to see folks move on. But it’s the nature of the beast, yes?
Anyway, here we are. The web site is how it is, and will likely stay this way for some time. We’re finished noodling. Some things can’t be improved upon. As ever, we are appreciative of your regard and support, and we wish you well in all that you do. Whether you’ve used this web site in your college studies or just came here out of curiosity, rest assured that you will always have friends in us.
Walk in light and peace.
~ Wicasta Lovelace