Flash is Officially Dead: A Digital Marketing Fable

Posted: in Website Optimization

For those of us that remember the web of the early 2000s, it was a bleak: static images that took ages to load, bland text, terrible tiled backgrounds that made reading near impossible. The animated GIF did try to offer some wow, but usually ended up terrifying.

If you want to walk down memory lane, check out the Worst Website in the World.

Flash was the answer to the boring static web, with rich animations, media, and actions. It was a prolific technology that inspired many new content creators on the web. Whole new industries were spawned by the advent of Flash websites, including flash games (many of which were ported to mobile devices, as Flash interactivity predicted many of the ways we would interact with our smart phones years in the future.) In its day, Flash was a revolution.

But times change. Google Search will stop supporting Flash later this year. In Web pages that contain Flash content, Google Search will ignore the Flash content. Google Search will stop indexing standalone SWF files.

Fortunately, most users and websites won't see any impact from this change because the web has moved on from Flash. This is the important point of the story – all technology, even the platform a website is built upon, has an expiration date.

As states:

  • The web is not a movie.
  • The web is not a plugin.
  • The web is not a single vendor.
  • The web is not a single technology.

The "truthiness" of these things is part of what makes the web better.

The world moves on, but has your web experience moved with it?

Michael Cipielewski