In a world without Net Neutrality, we’ll likely be seeing a lot more annoying loading animations around the web.
These buffering icons are what you see when an app or video is loading, before you actually view it. And without net neutrality, internet service providers can make some sites load even more slowly (the horror) if their owners don’t pay up. That means more buffering hell.
If you have good, stable, and fast internet connections, you hardly see these — but many internet users around the world are not so lucky, and soon, you could be among them.
Since we could be seeing these loading animations a lot more often, we might as well be seeking the best out there. Buffering designers, listen up.
10. Google Chrome
The chrome buffering animation is just frustrating. There’s nothing fun to look at while you wait, just a plain old circle that you stare at until you start banging on your keyboard.
The Imgur icon is a twist on the classic spinning wheel of death icons — it’s hypnotizing, but look at it for too long and you start to get dizzy. Be careful not to fall off your swivel chair.
Consider yourself blessed if you’ve never come across Facebook’s loading screen — a template of the News Feed where placeholder images animate as you wait for the site to load all your friends’ annoying, but irresistible updates. Get familiar with this one, because we all go to Facebook more times a day than we can count.
We’ve all been there: your Messenger group chat is popping, everyone’s making jokes, you’re all roasting that one friend, and you have the perfect meme to share, but you can’t because you just see this.
The YouTube animation is like an old friend — you may not hang out that much anymore, but you grew up together.
Like many other games, Go! Eat! Bomb! has an awesome loading screen. You start off with a dinosaur egg that slowly starts to crack before a dinosaur eventually pops out.
Anyone who uses Safari is very much accustomed to the wrath of the rainbow wheel. It may look cute and bright, but don’t let it fool you. It’s pure evil and will torment you. “Rainbow wheeling” happens enough as it is, so just get ready to pull out even more hair if net neutrality disappears.
Whether you’re starting a new episode of the show you’re binging or tucking in for your third movie of the night, the Netflix loading animation is a comforting backdrop as your reflection stares back at you from your laptop screen.
Woohoo! Sending goofy pictures to friends and getting back even wonkier responses is so fun! That is, until the snaps won’t actually load and you’re staring at a purple spinning circle. If your Snapchat app won’t load, your friends won’t know how fun and cool you are, and you won’t be able to keep tabs on the minutiae of everyone else’s lives. That’s simply no fun at all.
1. This Octopus-ish guy
Designed by artist Joshua Schaeffer, this little guy isn’t actually in any apps yet, but if we’re going to be waiting around all the time, it might as well be for something as pleasant as this calm, soothing sea creature.
Let’s face it: even the cutest of these loading animations are frustrating when you see them too often. Learn how you can join the fight for net neutrality here.