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Tech-Centric Museum Without a Functioning Website? What Happened to CooperHewitt.Org? UPDATED

UPDATE: Almost immediately after I posted this, the Cooper Hewitt’s website returned to functionality, hopefully this time for good.

In yesterday’s post on the renewed and renamed Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, I wrote that the website for this technologically souped up institution seemed to be down. The museum’s spokesperson told me I was wrong at that it was working (which seemed unlikely to me, since I had tried it repeatedly, on four different devices). Then she corrected herself, saying that there had been a problem with the servers, which had been fixed…

…or maybe not. Although it was working for a while, late yesterday, the site is now down for me again, notwithstanding this tweet at 8:26 a.m. from the museum. Another tweeter responded to the Cooper Hewitt’s tweet, saying that the site was still down for him (as it is for me). The site also hadn’t been working for me directly before its relaunch, but I attributed that to the transition.

What’s more, today there’s a new message in the upper right corner of the image that comes up when you go to “ expired on 06/17/2014 and is pending renewal or deletion.”


Tech 101: Renew your website’s URL before it expires, or you could lose it. When I started this blog, I grabbed “” (which forwards to my ArtsJournal URL), just so no one else could usurp it. I shell out a renewal fee each year. It seems that whoever manages the Cooper Hewitt’s website may have dropped that ball.

I wonder why the Cooper Hewitt doesn’t follow the practice of other Smithsonian museum websites, which use, not .org. Presumably the Smithsonian reliably keeps the registration of all its websites current.

I’m hoping that the Cooper Hewitt’s tech gurus will have this all sorted out by the time you read this.

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