Discussion: Add Titles Comment Thread
Beginning this month, I'd like to try a new procedure for adding titles for our master list:
Using a dedicated Comment thread in which any titles for our list are added as Replies to the comment.
I know - change is always a little uncomfortable. Personally, I kind of hate all changes of any kind (except an increase in income). Too often, change makes things worse, not better, e.g., Netflix's new format for "My List," and Netflix's new approach to content.
Some things, however, do cry out for improvement. There are some problems with the way we have been putting titles in Comments on the Home page, so I decided to brave the dreaded Change, and try something different.
Specifically, the problems are:
> Comments with titles - especially just one title - can get lost in between a lot of other kinds of comments, many of which have multiple replies.
> Even if people are careful about looking for the titles, it takes time to scroll up through all the other wordier comments, making sure to check those, too, in case they have a title included.
> If people are in a hurry, and just want to quickly check for new additions for our list since the last update, all that scrolling can be annoying, even more so if there aren't any additional titles, after all.
> It also takes me longer to find the title comments that have been up for at least 4 days, so I can delete them to keep Comments from getting to be too much of a scroll.
> Sometimes one title on a long list will generate multiple replies. Then I have to leave the whole list up, so the replies will make sense.
> Add to all these the additional problem of some comments drifting away from the subject of expiring titles, and getting into other kinds of discussions.
The "best" solution will vary depending on the individual follower/contributor, and what is optimal for him/her. Whatever we end up doing, we won't be able to make everyone completely happy. Darn!
Here are the ideas I came up with, and my thinking regarding them.
1. Just keep it the way it was, and do the best we can with it.
We might end up with this, but whatever we decide, there will be some accommodating to be done, so let's try something else for a month, and see how it goes. Sometimes change does make things better, we just need to give it a chance.
2. Make the rule that only titles can go in Comments on the main page. All other comments have to go on another page.
3. Make some other rule that is less restrictive, but still limits comments on the main page, e.g., anyone who wants to reply to a comment has to copy it to another page and reply there.
Solutions #2 & 3: Restrictive isn't the style of this blog, and I'm not open to changing that.
4. Crack down on comments that aren't about expiring titles, moving them to another page.
I don't want to "crack down" on anything, but I do want to encourage everyone (including myself) to give some thought to where a comment best belongs. If it's something important that you want to make sure no one misses, you can put a brief note on the main page to see your comment about such-and-such on Whichever Page.
5. Find a way to isolate titles from all other kinds of comments, so people who are looking only for titles can find them easily.
The Add Titles Comment Thread is my best shot at doing this. I have tried to make it easy to access with links at the top of the page (paragraph before the Decoder), just before comments (in case Comments are closed, and you need to open them), and at the very bottom of the page, in the footer.
I think the best thing about this solution is that everyone knows exactly where to look for title comments, and need not go anywhere else if that's all they care about for the moment.
I think the biggest challenge of this solution will be getting used to making our title comments, and looking for recent title comments from others in a slightly different way. But I don't think it's so different as to make anyone miserable - just a little uncomfortable while getting used to it.
6. Something else - ???
Please hang in there for October, and leave comments on this page about:
> Any problems you have
> Whether or not the Add Titles comment thread is working for you
> And especially if you have any ideas for Solution #6 - I'm always open to a better way.