AAA Wanted New(s) staff for Major Tourism Portal

Geography optional
Grammar skills not necessary
Pay: commensurate with experience, starting at €20mil. per year
Start: a few years from whenever you can sign the contract, as convenient to you…

Sounds like a joke, but looking back it really doesn’t seem out of line with what has happened in the past few years with the Italian National Tourism Portal italia.it.

How else can you explain “improvements” that don’t really improve anything?

We’ve already complained about the “news” which isn’t really anything new and the news which randomly disappears and the generalized inaccuracies of the mapping skills of the italia.it editorial staff, but it seems that they are getting worse instead of better as things go on…

Let’s start with the home page that displays the title “Cosa accade in Italia” – “What’s up in Italy”. The English section is still like we saw it in our previous rant, but the Italian side is being diligently worked on…let’s take a look:

Update 9 March, h.8.30 the Events map once inside the site is empty again (Italian section – the English hasn’t been “updated” yet)

Tarvisio according to italia.it

I really don’t care WHAT sort of geographic projection system you are trying to sell me, you are never going to find Tarvisio along the Mediterranean coast, not now not later not never not ever (mai ma mai).

Let’s see what the patron saint of world geography, St. Google de Map has to say in his teachings:

Tarvisio Google

Wow, they seem to have confused Trieste and Tarvisio, don’t they? And the Slovenian border with the Austrian border… Oh well, they’re only tourists, who cares.

And while we’re at it, typically grammarianistical skills like punctuation seem optional as well:

L’evento più importante

Now the news hasn’t disappeared (at least not here), only the apostrophes that come so handy in Italian when hooking words together…
I’ll go out on a limb and guess that this data is going into a database somewhere using a CMS (maybe something like IBM’s Websphere?) and then getting pulled back out again later, and some (dumb) programmer just didn’t bother to check the ‘ character correctly somewhere along the line.
HAY (oops, meant hey, hay is for horses and horses don’t make this kind of generalized, error filled, useless excrement; at least a horse’s excrement can be used as fertilizer) it’s only a little apostrophe, who cares. The CMS only ran several million €€€, they need time to iron out the kinks with things like unexpected oddball characters [can you say “code injection” boys and girls?], give ’em a break, the Portal is new, and innovative, and has only been online for a coupl’a weeks, they can’t get everything right on the first try, maybe it is the first time they tried using contracted forms with the apostrophe, or maybe the Websphere manual said not to use it or it would break the database and then some wisecracker in the editorial staff decided they’d use the apostrophe just the same, who really knows why they aren’t allowed to write simple Italian phrases (maybe it wasn’t specified that punctuation would be necessary when they signed the contract???)?

Hey, just noticed that the apostrophes here don’t disappear, maybe we should suggest to the italia.it team to use WordPress instead of Websphere, but no, we can’t, they don’t have any way to send feedback to the italia.it team.

Oh, and can someone explain to me, in any case, what the “news” is about the fact that Austrian tourists pass Tarvisio first on their way across the border? maybe that was news when the borders were set down a few years back, but it ain’t no more… were we in a section called “curious Italian travel facts”, maybe, but “What’s up”? And is it really news that the favorite Italian destination for German tourist coming to Italy is Ischia, like the (now, not then) Pope did in 1993? (And did they really write that it made the Pope “ecstatic”? Can you use that kind of terminology about the world’s most celibate head preist while he is still alive?) Or the German Chancellor in 2006 (but, if I recall correctly, she came for an International Government meeting, when most of Naples was shut off for the VIPs so she probably had most of the island to herself as she saw it). I am sure that the Adriatic Riviera will be happy to hear that they have lost out to Ischia in the collective German heart.

And let’s just imagine that the “News” of this new tourist mecca Tarvisio piques our interest? If we were to become curious about Tarvisio, after learning that it has all kinds of different ways to stay (hotels, B&B, apartments, camping grounds, wow what variety!) and desire to know more detailed information, we click on the little red arrow at the end and end up in a general description of…

the Province of Udine where Tarvisio is mentioned, yes mentioned by name, at least twice (but sorry, we don’t have any more information for you about Tarvisio here, maybe try Udine, it’s nice too…).

As they say, “mah si può?”

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