Feeds

Shiny new UK.gov stats website a 'disaster' - MPs

Numbers chief admits it's hard to use, navigate and search

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The official website designed to give the British public access to government statistics has been branded a "disaster" by MPs.

Andrew Dilnot, chair of the UK Statistics Authority, was brought in front of the Public Administration Committee yesterday to explain why it's so hard to actually pull up any information on ons.gov.uk.

He admitted the relaunch of the site last year wasn't "one of our greatest moments" and that the site was "difficult to use, difficult to navigate and difficult to search", but said there had been "significant" improvements recently.

The committee also questioned Conservative MP Nick Hurd, who is the minister at the Cabinet Office responsible for the policy on publishing statistics.

Labour MP Paul Flynn said that Hurd didn't seem to be on top of his responsibilities, hinting that other Conservatives had left the meeting out of possible embarrassment over his answers.

"The changeover to the new website was generously described as a disaster - in fact it was probably worse than that," he said. "The journey that you're taking is one backwards, into a denial of information."

On Tuesday, Will Moy of fullfact.org, Chris Giles, a journalist at the FT and Michael Blastland, a freelance journalist, all gave evidence to the committee on how hard it was to get information on the site.

Giles said that trying to figure out if unemployment was higher or lower than it had been in the 1990s was "very, very frustrating".

"There is absolutely no way of getting an answer to that question if you are a lay person," he claimed.

Dilnot promised the MPs that the statistics authority was making efforts to fix the site. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
DOUBLE BONK: Testy fanbois catch Apple Pay picking pockets
Users wail as tapcash transactions are duplicated
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
In the next four weeks, 100 people will decide the future of the web
While America tucks into Thanksgiving turkey, the world will be taking over the net
Microsoft EU warns: If you have ties to the US, Feds can get your data
European corps can't afford to get complacent while American Big Biz battles Uncle Sam
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.