Late to the party, but... I also like wedding websites. I admit that they sounded kind of silly at first, several years ago when fewer people were using the Internet much, but if you have a lot of guests who are traveling, I think it's a great place to collect information of interest to them. I also do like it when the HC has some pictures, story of how they met, story about the bridal party members, etc.. I've also seen that stuff on the program at the wedding, or it's in the speeches at the reception.
For necessary stuff like directions, I would also have paper copies available, and send them to everyone by default, or at least the people you're sure won't get much use from the website. In other words, I wouldn't have the website be the ONLY source for really important info.
I would not share the wedding website with non-invitees. However, the most recent wedding website I saw was, indeed, for a wedding I wasn't invited to, of a former co-worker. They shared it with all their Facebook friends and I went there, looked around, learned a lot about them I didn't know, and ultimately used their registry links to send them a gift, which they weren't expecting but were very pleased by. So although it was not what I would have advised them to do (sharing the wedding website with all), I was not offended when they did so, and the gift I sent was of my own free will.