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Rolling Update Changes - End 01 May 2017

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Everything else, I am reading and again, people have totally missed - 01 May 2017. Debating with yourself about things is a non-starter... I have a big list of things to do, and noise is wasting my time from getting it done.
Might it help to put the list into the first post? If everyone can see that an issue is going to be addressed then they won't need to ask about it.

Delighted to see the amendments to post titles.
If everyone can see that an issue is going to be addressed
I'm not saying whether an issue will be addressed or not. What a member deems an issue vs. what is an issue, two different things. Members need to voice their feedback, then stop debating with themselves about it and turning their feedback into rants / personal agendas.

You will know what is, what is not, come 02 May, the day after my deadline.

I'm working on things as fast as I can go.
I don't mean you ranting... others have been.

Again, if members stop debating aspects amongst themselves, just leave feedback and thats it, that would suffice. What gets implemented is not for debate. I will read feedback. I will ignore some. I will action some. I have no intention of focusing members onto either one. Members need to control themselves, otherwise I go back to locking these threads and not giving members feedback opportunity.

Feedback defined: helpful information or criticism that is given to someone to say what can be done to improve a performance, product, etc.

Debate defined: to discuss a question by considering opposed arguments, to argue about

When members begin debating points here vs leaving their feedback, then feedback threads like this are defeated. I've banned two members from this thread already for failing to know the difference.
I'm not on here daily, so this is the first time I've seen the 'new look'. My opinion on the changes follow...

With regards to avatars, I appreciate that if they are gone, they're gone, in which case, why not get rid of them completely... they look like toilet/restroom signs so what's the point in them even being there? It also does feel a bit archaic to label people by gender.

And while I appreciate it's not up for debate, just following this conversation, without avatars has been a big struggle. That visual clue of who is saying what, really helped me follow the conversation. It may sound harsh, but after many years on this site, and following certain threads, there are posts that when I recognise an avatar I ignore, posts that I read, and then the in-betweens, that get skimmed initially. Even this thread, because it was 7 pages long I was trying to pick out the 'important to read bits', i.e. the posts from @anthony, and admins, then maybe skimming back to the post that warranted the reply. But I found it really hard to follow the conversation. I think you (@anthony) appreciate how difficult it can be for the PTSD brain to just read a page of information. Colours to differentiate the important stuff from less important stuff, well written text and visual clues such as avatars really help my PTSD brain. A page full of black, white and grey is a bit of a block for me. Perhaps I'm in the minority, but while I understand you need to meet your mobile audience, you also need to meet the needs of a PTSD sufferer/survivor. For me, the avatar isn't about identifying myself, it's about identifying one member from another.

For some reason, (I assume because it is mostly white), the screen is really, really bright, to the point that I don't want to engage here for long. Whilst I am probably in the minority, I am a PC user (although I think you said 29% - which at just less than a third, perhaps shouldn't be ignored), I'm not going to be altering my screen setting every time I view this site. Whilst it's easily changed on a mobile device, I frequently pop between windows on my PC, so to change the brightness settings simply wouldn't work out.

Maybe, because I mainly use my PC to access this site, I'm a little negative about the changes, however, I do also use my mobile devices to access the website, so I'm not oblivious to mobile use, it's just that when I see a long thread I'd like to read, or I want to post a reply that is more than a few sentences, I move from the phone or tablet to the laptop to do that. Again, I could be in the minority, but if I'm following a thread, I may read occasional updates on my phone, over a day or several days, then come to my laptop to read further and reply. Perhaps you have statistics on that, but I don't think the assumption should be made that mobile users only use their mobiles.

Moving on from that, change #2 has no impact, #3 & #4 has no meaning to me.

Removing all my previous PC's, without any warning however is a bit harsh. Some warning would have been nice, to be given the opportunity to look over those PC's and privately saved any that were important to me would have been nice. I've had some brilliant conversations, and some really helpful advice from people (@anthony included) over the years here, and while I may not have re-read those conversations recently, I kind of assumed that those conversations were here forever to review in times of difficulties. Had I known they were just going to be cut I would have personally saved some of those PC's. Absolutely gutted that all my PC's have just been erased, with no warning.

I'm also a little confused about this post in a different thread "I know -- people often don't like change, so what I'm going to do is perform this on a test server where members can login, look around, get used to changes first, prior to rolling out here. I will post that URL and access details at a later time." - did I miss the URL or this it?

Anyway, that's my opinion/feedback.

Regards, CB.
Summarizing feedback (critical, positive, and observational) so far:

  • The avatars previously helped members identify other members through color and visual cues, as opposed to text. Can this be accomplished by some other means? It would improve the reading experience by making it easier to follow who is speaking, when.
  • Gender is evolving in its expression (in many countries), and 'male, female, other' is becoming outdated. Is there something more useful that could occupy that space?
  • For some, avatars were a means of self-expression, which humanizes a digital experience. Do the other forms of self-expression offered in the new plan suffice to accomplish this aim?
  • There is a certain value in needing to read through titles to find threads, rather than just skim for avatars; it creates the opportunity to stumble on new, interesting content.
  • Sufferer, Supporter, Guest are also relevant/useful individual statuses for users.
Color Scheme:
  • The preponderance of white is difficult for some to tolerate (eye strain, the challenges of dyslexia)
  • The lack of color feels 'cold', which may not be conducive to feeling welcomed/comfortable.

  • Brand consistency is valuable, and fast is good.
  • Customization has value to an end user, and is an opportunity to monetize; consider how/where that will/could still be available.
  • I'm just glad the site is here, and don't get fussed about the changes.
  • Losing PC content without notification was unpleasant. Advance notice would have alleviated the problem.
  • The top menu bar returning is very helpful.
  • Losing the donor link at the bottom of the page may be missing an opportunity.
Reminder to the thread: this is not the time to try and 'solve' the problem; @anthony has a vision of where he is going with this, and until it's been completed, we aren't getting the full picture. Also, just FYI, he's informed me that style issues (color, white space, user info banners/etc) will likely be last in the process. I'm letting you know that because they are among the most commented on aspects of the changes, and everyone would be better served to just assume that those elements won't be adjusted til very close to the 1st. That doesn't mean feedback is not still welcome; it simply means, you will probably not see how those things will change for another three, four days.

I don't believe I've missed anything - this is just a mid-thread post to capture where we currently are with the feedback.
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