October 3, 2013

TRYING TO FIGURE OUT why ObamaCare websites suck.

The White House has released the most recent numbers on visitors to healthcare.gov — 4.7 million unique visitors, reported Jake Tapper on Twitter (presumably, he means since the Oct. 1 launch). Other accounts put the number of visitors on the first day at 2.8 million. According to Tapper, the White House claims not to know how many people have enrolled. The cynic in me wonders if that number isn’t in the single digits.

No one I know has managed to create an account on the federal exchanges, as opposed to those operated by the states. Either they’re stopped at a “please wait” page that never does move them onto enrollment, or they get to the enrollment page and are presented with drop-down list of security questions — an empty drop-down list. I tried putting random words in the boxes and hit “enter;” that brought me to a screen announcing that an account couldn’t be created at this time. Most people, though, got stopped at the security questions. Apparently some folks got through, only to be routed back out to the beginning of the account-creation process.

4.7 million uniques in a bit over 24 hours isn’t that much — it’s in the neighborhood of what I get in a month, and sometimes I get significantly more — and InstaPundit runs pretty reliably. Sure, it’s just a blog — but it’s also, you know, just a blog, not a major IT project backed by 3 years of effort and the resources of the federal government. So if I can handle something over one-thirtieth of the traffic of the nationwide ObamaCare exchange network without a hiccup, why do they suck so badly? If the proffered explanations at the link are correct, it’s because nobody involved knew how to design a website. Maybe they should’ve hired Stacy Tabb. . . .

Meanwhile, the traffic in Connecticut doesn’t look exactly overwhelming: “Today, the CT health exchange @AccessHealthCT received 28k visitors, and took 167 applications for health insurance. Day 1.”

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