When I interviewed at CDT eight months ago, I was asked to grade their website. I'll be honest - I was not entirely honest when I gave it a C+. I knew they were looking to re-invent the site in Drupal, but I didn't want to be too harsh. Here at the Center for Democracy & Technology, we do a lot of valuable work in protecting the Internet, but on our old site, that work wasn't so easy to find. When you have a wealth of material and it's too hard to find it, that's more of an Incomplete grade.
Since early this year, we've been working hard to push our site to an A grade. We decided it was time for a fresh new look, and more importantly, a structure that is evocative of our ideals of being Open, Innovative, and Free. We wanted to create a cdt.org that is easy to navigate, makes it easy for users to find specific content, and takes advantage of all the new technologies that have graced the Internet since the launch of our old site in 2005. That meant re-organizing our content from the ground up, adding new capabilities for community engagement, bolstering our security, and doing it all while protecting the privacy of our users.
At times, it was extremely difficult. We had over 5000 pieces of original content on our old website amassed over the years, and tagging every single document was a daunting task. Scripts were written, code was punched out, feathers were rankled, nights and weekends were lost, but we knew it would be worth it. We knew that our new site would help us unleash the new tools we've been dreaming of, and now it's finally here, albeit a few months later than I'd hoped. But our website is not late, nor is it early - it arrived precisely when we meant it to (I had to stick a dorky reference in here somewhere).