Standardizing the Social Bookmarking Buttons
I don't know about you guys, but I get frustrated when I work so hard on a design only to have it look broken and weird once I add the much-needed Vote Up social bookmarking buttons. I am calling for a revolution, the creation of standards for services to follow. It should not be a stretch for them considering they already offer many option for their users to choose from, the problem is none of them match with any other service out there.
This will be a hard battle to win but its worth a shot! I know every service has its own brand identity to protect, so I am not talking about re-branding anyone, just simply reworking their buttons, or simply adding an additional button to their collection that fits the new standard sizes, whatever those might be 64x64 etc.
I took the liberty of re-designing a few of these buttons all within a 64x64 box in order to showcase how easy this would be to do without distorting the familiarity of these iconic buttons, and how much better they would look right next to each other on everyone's website. Obviously I did not go through and redesign every single one of the buttons but enough of them to make a point.
Here is a list of the services currently providing us with such buttons: Digg, Reddit, DZone, Buzz up, retweet, Facebook, Design Bump, Design Float, Stumble. (I might have missed a couple, feel free to share in the comments area.)
Here is a screen shot of what the social buttons look like currently on feedgrids.com
And here is how they could look:
As you can see just by slightly resizing and reworking a few pixels what a difference it can make, everything looks cleaner and more balanced!
What can we all do to help?
Well, I don't have the answer to that yet, maybe we can start by approaching our favorite up and coming services like Design Bump and Design Float and asking them to consider such a move, and make our way up to the big boys. I have not put much thought into what can be done to get this movement going, I just had to post this out of frustration, plus I want to leave it up to the whole community to decide, if I'm just crazy, if its something worth pursuing, or does it even matter enough?
I would love to know what you guys think, and where you stand on this issue, feel free to flood our comments, and let's see what comes out of this.