Audible Barely Usable

I’m a big fan of audio books from Audible.com. Some I put on my iPod to listen to when I run, others I burn on CD to listen to on long car trips. Their selection is good (not great) and they are the only outlet for much of the content they offer.

That said, Audible is easily the most annoying site I frequent for one simple reason: all links are javascript links. Mouseover the average Audible link and you’ll see something like this:

javascript:linkThis(‘/store/myBasket.jsp’)

Why is this so annoying? I can’t take advantage of tabbed browsing. I can’t SHIFT-click and open a new tab, I can’t right-click and open a new tab at a link. I can’t have separate searches going on in separate tabs. Their linking strategy makes me an incredibly inefficient browser on their site. If I could get these books anywhere else, I’d do it in a heartbeat.

The silliest thing about this problem is that there is no good reason to require javascript links. Pick apart the linkThis javascript function and all you find are some conditional parameters and location.href calls. There’s nothing in there you couldn’t accomplish by embedding these parameters directly in standard anchor links. Arghh!!!

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