Click on the link to the Dupont Circle Club website from your web search engine, and a modern, brightly colored page will appear on your screen. The top of the page presents three pictures: one of the layout of the meeting rooms, one showing the exterior of the building between Comfort One Shoes and Lou Lou’s, and the last showing the bible- like Alcoholics Anon book that each recovering alcoholic reads. The site is decorated with orange, yellow, and tan which resembles the interior of the club itself which has yellow painted walls and bright yellow lights. The aesthetic of the page also resembles the aesthetic of the physical club through its pictures, logo, and eagerness to welcome all people. The homepage has a sensible amount of information, encouraging people to remain on the site. The digital document is easy to navigate with obvious hyperlinks on the opening page so that even a person with the least amount of technology experience can explore the site. The web designers created the page to attract as many people as it can in order to present information on the club and get people to donate to their cause.
The main header of the home page reads, “Your Local Meeting Place in DC for 12-Step Recovery.” The common perception would be that the page is targeted towards the addict looking for a recovery program due to the updated lists of “Today’s Meetings” and summary of how the club helps an addict. However, the side advertisements seem to target a non addict seeking help for a loved one with an addiction. Subsections on the page read, “Become a Supporting Member of the Dupont Circle,” “Make A One-Time Donation,” and “Shop at AmazonSmile and Amazon will make a donation to: Dupont Circle Club Inc..” The first line in the synopsis of the club mentions that Dupont Circle is a non-profit organization, and then continues by explaining their mission which is to create a safe, clean, organized, and welcoming space for various 12-Step Recovery programs. In the summary of the club, the author of the page asserts that the non-profit program is a welcoming place designed to help addicts, however, as a non profit, they desperately need the donations of outsiders. This cry for help is not targeted to the addicts because most addicts struggle financially because the majority of their income goes to spending money on what they are addicted to. Rather this site speaks to family members and people who have a passion for helping addicts in their recovery process.
Click on the “Become a Supporting Member Today” link from the homepage and a visitor will land on a page that goes further into detail and explains that different types of members with their corresponding fees. There are seven membership categories with the lowest being a Senior/Student Membership with an annual $50 charge and the highest being a Club Sponsor with an annual charge of $2400. The website lists four ways to make a payment and gives four detailed examples on how the becoming a member truly enriches the club and allows the club to help those in need for free. The layout of this page is tactical, for it gives a brief sentence about why the club was created, explains how donating will help the club, informs the potential donor in bold that all donations to the club are tax deductible, then afterscrolling, the prices of the memberships are displayed. The author of the page excites the potential customer so that he/ or she feels more obligated to donate and less fixated on the price. Even if the person decides to click on one of the other six sub headers that link to other pages within the site, the advertisements aligning the side of each page will remind people to donate.
The website continues by presenting information that persuade people to want to get involved with the Dupont Circle Club. Their Holidays and Events page justifies their claim that they are open 365 days a year with special events for every holiday and extra meetings for the days such as New Years where many people like to indulge in alcohol which the recovering alcoholics cannot do. Each event is intended for both the recovery and their family and friends. The club is advertising itself similar to the way a church advertises their work. In my experience, Christian churches host fun events in order to obtain more members and get people excited about the main purpose which is a community which learns and spreads the word about Jesus. The Dupont Circle Club is not much different from a typical church because both organizations pride themselves on being welcoming. Both are also non profits which ask for donations to continue their humanitarian work. As I sat in on the alcoholics recovery meeting, I felt very welcomed and was moved to donate money to the basket that was passed around at the end of the meeting. Lastly, the club is associated with Christianity, as they pray in the meetings and have bible verses hanging on the wall.
Although the website presents itself to obtain donations, the site is still informative and portrays the positive, caring qualities of the club. Any visitor can easily find information on meeting times, the 18 different 12-step recovery programs, other recovery clubs, upcoming events, and directions to get to the club. The Dupont Circle Club website is skillfully designed so that the club can help others while receiving they help they need to further the organization.
Digital Description: Digital Record #1
This is the top half of the first page a visitor will see as he or she opens the site. The picture of the chairs resembles the setup of the meeting room. Also shown are the links on the left hand side of the page that prompt people to donate to the club. The right hand side displays the meeting schedule which is intended to inform alcoholics looking to recover and family members attempting to help their loved ones. As mentioned, the page is bright and in coherence with the colors in the logo.
Digital Description: Digital Record #2
Here is a screenshot of the syntax used to encourage people to donate to the club by becoming a member. The information is distributed through bullet points in order to give visitors a quick read through of the effects of their potential contributions. The information about tax cuts for donors is italicized, bolded, and underlined in order to provide a final incentive for donating.
Digital Description: Digital Record #3
This is the second half of the membership page. The prices for each level of members is shown with different accompanying fees. There is the option for a monthly payment and a annual payment. At the bottom of the page are the four methods of payment which makes donating easy for anyone.
Digital Description: Digital Record #4
This is a list of the holiday events and meetings. The opening sentence stresses that the club is opened 365 days a year, and the claim is supported by the events scheduled for holidays which is when most places are closed. The list presents fundraising, formal, and holiday events which would also occur in a church on the same dates. Like the church, the club also acts as a place that provides fun activities on nights where people would normally commit sins or actions that oppose recovery such as overindulging in drinks.
Digital Description: Digital Record #5
Here is a list of all the meeting times. This page changes daily with different scheduled meetings for each day. The aesthetic of the club’s appearance and colors are displayed again to make the site uniformed. The meetings page is also an example of how the side panels and their advertisements remain the same for each page a person visits.