From a post by Tara Hornor on website design, which is about using dark backgrounds and what you have to do to help visitors who, say, are coming from the bright white pages of the Google:
Paco Underhill, in his groundbreaking book “Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping” (2000), describes how we have to carefully transition customers from the parking lot of a brick-n-mortar store into the physical building. Basically, we have to give them time to adjust from the hot asphault and bright sun to our dimly lit, air-conditioned atmosphere. Nowadays, most large chains have a long walkway from their entrances to the first set of merchandise displays to help with this transition.
Do you believe that? I can think of examples, I suppose -- Home Depots and some of the bigger, newer Wegmanses I've been in, but I can also think of plenty of stores that have merchandise ready for you to look at all through those walkways.
Anyway, back to websites. I think this is a delight to look at, but I find that if I happen upon a blog or other site with long stretches of text, the content has to be about three times more immediately appealing for me to want to read it. I think this is a learned reaction to the pain of going back from a site like that to the white background on most sites.