19 votes

Could we have a different color for exemplary new comments?

Currently exemplary comments are highlighted with a blue outline, and new comments are highlighted with an orange outline. Is it possible to use a different color, or to interweave the colors when a comment is both new and exemplary?

The reason for this is that it's impossible to check back into a thread that has a dozen new comments and know if the exemplary ones have already been read or not, or it's impossible to see that a new comment is exemplary (not sure which color takes priority).

32 comments

  1. [14]
    skybrian
    Link
    I think we might want to move beyond colors? As you say, they don’t stack, and I also have trouble remembering what the different colors mean. Tagging exemplary comments in a different way than...
    • Exemplary

    I think we might want to move beyond colors? As you say, they don’t stack, and I also have trouble remembering what the different colors mean. Tagging exemplary comments in a different way than new comments would make these annotations easier to combine.

    (It would also be nice to have a “best of Tildes” page for exemplary comments.)

    24 votes
    1. viridian
      Link Parent
      I really like the idea of a "best of Tildes", to be honest! To heck with my tildes suggestion, this is the real move right here.

      I really like the idea of a "best of Tildes", to be honest! To heck with my tildes suggestion, this is the real move right here.

      15 votes
    2. [3]
      Eylrid
      Link Parent
      I think that's a good idea for two reasons: First is accessibility for the colorblind. Second is the philosophy behind using text instead of icons on Tildes: Icons can be confusing if you don't...

      I think that's a good idea for two reasons: First is accessibility for the colorblind. Second is the philosophy behind using text instead of icons on Tildes: Icons can be confusing if you don't what they mean, but text is clear. The same thing applies to using colors to mark comments. Colors give even less information than icons to those who don't already know what they mean.

      10 votes
      1. Gaywallet
        Link Parent
        Blue/orange is colorblind friendly, but perhaps we shouldn't share the same space for both new and exemplary flagging as we end up with the problem OP listed. They are two vastly different...

        Blue/orange is colorblind friendly, but perhaps we shouldn't share the same space for both new and exemplary flagging as we end up with the problem OP listed. They are two vastly different categories for a comment, so I feel like a division in design makes sense here. Exemplary coloring on the title, header, another border, or some other flagging would be ideal.

        7 votes
      2. skybrian
        Link Parent
        Well, my argument isn't that one approach is always better than another, but that if you use orthogonal approaches then they are more easily combined and less easily confused. So, using color for...

        Well, my argument isn't that one approach is always better than another, but that if you use orthogonal approaches then they are more easily combined and less easily confused. So, using color for one thing, and maybe an icon for one other thing, and Tildes already uses a lot of text.

        But it all depends on what looks good in the design.

        2 votes
    3. [3]
      AugustusFerdinand
      Link Parent
      I disagree entirely. Discussion here is and should remain generally high quality purely on the basis of keeping the site at a high level. Unless someone specifically goes looking for a reason...

      It would also be nice to have a “best of Tildes” page for exemplary comments.

      I disagree entirely. Discussion here is and should remain generally high quality purely on the basis of keeping the site at a high level. Unless someone specifically goes looking for a reason behind the colors and memorizes them (orange is obvious the first time anyone enters a thread they were in prior) they mostly go unnoticed. The statements given when exemplary is labeled should be the extent of the recognition a commentor receives and I am of the opinion that vote counts shouldn't be displayed either. A vote count or any other award/point/recognition system is inherently flawed and leads to little more than pandering to an audience to fit in (comparison is the thief of joy) for that minute dopamine rush when someone "likes" your response. These things are what has made reddit little more than an echo chamber with comment sections filled with jokes. Even here I've witnessed dissenting opinions be labeled as noise because people just can't give up on having a downvote button for anything they disagree with or doesn't match the status quo.

      9 votes
      1. skybrian
        Link Parent
        I think it would be worth having a page with the highlights so that newcomers to Tildes get a better idea of what makes Tildes worthwhile. Maybe manual curation might be better, though? As far as...

        I think it would be worth having a page with the highlights so that newcomers to Tildes get a better idea of what makes Tildes worthwhile. Maybe manual curation might be better, though?

        As far as incentives go, it’s a balance. You do want some incentives for writing things other people are interested in, but not too much.

        5 votes
      2. ThatFanficGuy
        Link Parent
        Thing is, most Exemplary comments are, as a matter of fact, exemplary. (The rest should tell their exemplifiers to learn some discipline. Exemplary label is not for anonymous replies.) Someone...

        Thing is, most Exemplary comments are, as a matter of fact, exemplary. (The rest should tell their exemplifiers to learn some discipline. Exemplary label is not for anonymous replies.) Someone could benefit from reading them, whether it's for solid insight into a common technical issue or a greater understanding of their own personal problem.

        I'm okay with Tildes building a guide to high-quality insight on the periphery of its main function. There has to be at least a way to catalogue it without filling your bookmarks to the brim. Your own browser – sure, but I think we collectively have said enough mindful things that it's worth publicizing.

        A vote count or any other award/point/recognition system is inherently flawed and leads to little more than pandering to an audience

        Funny thing: unless it's @Deimos, comments with high votes usually relay insight.

        The difference between how you get recognition is in the place itself. Reddit is a cesspit when it comes to pandering, but it also allows great young artists to see their work displayed. Tildes is small and geared towards insight, if not conversation and discussion, with a moderator whose duty apparently only stops when he sleeps.

        Might be worth to applying the same measurements to two different boxes.

        5 votes
    4. [6]
      ThatFanficGuy
      Link Parent
      Beyond color is not strictly necessary. I think you might want to make labels more apparent. How about this?

      Beyond color is not strictly necessary. I think you might want to make labels more apparent.

      How about this?

      2 votes
      1. [5]
        hungariantoast
        Link Parent
        We basically had something like this at one point. You know how when your own comment gets labeled as exemplary, you get that little blue box that literally says "Exemplary" under your username?...

        We basically had something like this at one point. You know how when your own comment gets labeled as exemplary, you get that little blue box that literally says "Exemplary" under your username? Previously, that box used to show up on any comment, whether your own or another
        user's, in addition to the blue line on the sidebar. It even used to show how many times the label had been applied to any comment, just like it currently does for your own comments.

        So, if the blue line just isn't cutting it for enough users, maybe the easiest thing to do would be to just re-enable exemplary boxes being displayed on every comment that receives the label. For your own comments, you'll still get to see how many times the label has been applied, and read whatever nice messages users left you, but when looking at another user's comment, you'll just see a blue box with no amounts and no messages, as it used to be.

        Then, because that box would show up on any comment with an exemplary label, the orange sidebar line for new comments could then take precedence over the blue line for exemplary comments, just like it currently displays above the white sidebar line for comments by the OP.

        As far as I can tell, that solves all the complaints, and it might even just be a matter of reverting a commit or two to the site's code to restore the functionality.

        4 votes
        1. Deimos
          Link Parent
          I've done this now: the "Exemplary" badge will show up on all comments again (but it will still only show the actual number of Exemplary labels to the author), and reversed the "priority" so that...
          • Exemplary

          I've done this now: the "Exemplary" badge will show up on all comments again (but it will still only show the actual number of Exemplary labels to the author), and reversed the "priority" so that if a comment is both new and exemplary, it will use the new color for the stripe. I'm trying out a couple of other things so I might change this more, but I think it's a good and easy approach for now.

          Overall, I think the colored stripe is a good way to help subtly indicate comments that are special in relatively minor ways, so they're easier to notice while skimming through a thread: new comments, your own comments, and comments by the OP. I think Exemplary comments are probably more significant than that though, so indicating them with only the stripe wasn't great.

          12 votes
        2. [2]
          skybrian
          Link Parent
          Maybe just a star or check mark would be enough? The box seems a bit distracting.

          Maybe just a star or check mark would be enough? The box seems a bit distracting.

          1 vote
          1. Akir
            Link Parent
            I kind of like the idea of having a medal emoji (🎖️) positioned right on top of the left border so that it looks like it's pinned on but still stays out of the way. It's also a lot clearer that...

            I kind of like the idea of having a medal emoji (🎖️) positioned right on top of the left border so that it looks like it's pinned on but still stays out of the way. It's also a lot clearer that the comment is valued than a blue bar.

            3 votes
        3. ThatFanficGuy
          Link Parent
          Pretty sure I'm the reason they no longer do, so yeah: I 'member. ;)

          Previously, that box used to show up on any comment, whether your own or another user's, in addition to the blue line on the sidebar. It even used to show how many times the label had been applied to any comment, just like it currently does for your own comments.

          Pretty sure I'm the reason they no longer do, so yeah: I 'member. ;)

          1 vote
  2. [8]
    MetArtScroll
    Link
    From the Inspect Element browser function, the border is applied to .comment-itself, which is a <div>. Since that <div> is composed of three parts (.comment-header, .comment-text, .btn-post), I...

    From the Inspect Element browser function, the border is applied to .comment-itself, which is a <div>.

    Since that <div> is composed of three parts (.comment-header, .comment-text, .btn-post), I would suggest the following for new AND Exemplary comments: the “new” colour is applied to the header only, and the “Exemplary” colour is applied to the rest.

    5 votes
    1. [4]
      Deimos
      Link Parent
      A similar possibility is striping the two colors down the whole border: https://i.imgur.com/iS6mVzd.png It's pretty ugly/weird, but a New+Exemplary comment is also quite uncommon, so maybe it's...

      A similar possibility is striping the two colors down the whole border: https://i.imgur.com/iS6mVzd.png

      It's pretty ugly/weird, but a New+Exemplary comment is also quite uncommon, so maybe it's not so bad for the rare cases that happens.

      3 votes
      1. [3]
        Wes
        Link Parent
        I think that might look better if the stripes were longer. Or perhaps, if they were side-by-side. You wouldn't be able to use a simple border property anymore though. Prioritizing the new stripe...

        I think that might look better if the stripes were longer. Or perhaps, if they were side-by-side. You wouldn't be able to use a simple border property anymore though.

        Prioritizing the new stripe as you've done above is probably best. The exemplary label will show on the next refresh anyway.

        3 votes
        1. [2]
          Deimos
          Link Parent
          You can actually still do stripes with border by using a repeating gradient-that-isn't-really-a-gradient-at-all, that's how I made that screenshot: border-image: repeating-linear-gradient(...

          You can actually still do stripes with border by using a repeating gradient-that-isn't-really-a-gradient-at-all, that's how I made that screenshot:

          border-image: repeating-linear-gradient(
              var(--alert),
              var(--alert) 10px,
              var(--comment-label-exemplary) 10px,
              var(--comment-label-exemplary) 20px
            ) 20;
          

          That does horizontal stripes, but to get vertical ones you could do it like this, effectively looking like you're "stacking" the two borders:

          border-image: repeating-linear-gradient(
              90deg,
              var(--alert),
              var(--alert) 3px,
              var(--comment-label-exemplary) 3px,
              var(--comment-label-exemplary) 6px
            ) 6;
          border-left-width: 6px;
          margin-left: -3px;
          

          That comes out looking something like this: https://i.imgur.com/I1bQwt0.png

          5 votes
          1. Wes
            Link Parent
            Good show. I've never unlocked the magic of gradients. That does look better, if going for a twin-stripe approach. Maybe with 1px padding in the center to help break it up. I'm happy to try the...

            Good show. I've never unlocked the magic of gradients.

            That does look better, if going for a twin-stripe approach. Maybe with 1px padding in the center to help break it up. I'm happy to try the current changes out instead though, and I think that'll be less confusing.

            3 votes
    2. [3]
      ThatFanficGuy
      Link Parent
      Like that?
      2 votes
      1. [2]
        MetArtScroll
        Link Parent
        My idea was that the comment header (username, timestamp, technical links) would have a “new”-coloured border on the left and the rest (the comment body and the Vote-Label-… pane) would have an...

        My idea was that the comment header (username, timestamp, technical links) would have a “new”-coloured border on the left and the rest (the comment body and the Vote-Label-… pane) would have an “Exemplary”-coloured one, also on the left.

        1. ThatFanficGuy
          Link Parent
          See for yourself. I would advise against it 'cause the colors just clash together noninformatively.

          See for yourself. I would advise against it 'cause the colors just clash together noninformatively.

          2 votes
  3. [5]
    Bauke
    Link
    I had this thought earlier that instead of using the comment border to indicate new comments, what about putting it in the header. I envisioned a little button that just said "New" in a similar...

    I had this thought earlier that instead of using the comment border to indicate new comments, what about putting it in the header. I envisioned a little button that just said "New" in a similar style as the Exemplary indicator, where the current date is for the comment. Clicking on the button would remove the indicator and reveal the actual date. Something like this, thoughts?

    5 votes
    1. hungariantoast
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      I like this idea. It seems somewhat common that users get confused about what all the sidebar colors mean. I also imagine that eventually Tildes will have a couple of themes that break the usual...

      I like this idea. It seems somewhat common that users get confused about what all the sidebar colors mean. I also imagine that eventually Tildes will have a couple of themes that break the usual color patterns (such as a theme, like Zenburn, not having an orange color, and thus having to use a different, non-standard color for new comments).

      Just moving everything that the colored sidebars are currently supposed to signify into text, somewhere in the comment, would hopefully cut down on the confusion, and offer more flexibility for theming the site in the future.

      Oh, and then just as a bonus, since we'd be removing any sort of meaning from sidebar colors, we could then start color-coding comments based on their order in comment threads, like some reddit mobile apps do, and maybe that would help make navigating big comment sections easier.

      4 votes
    2. [3]
      ThatFanficGuy
      Link Parent
      I'd vote against it. One, it causes UI jumps, something you really don't want to have. Two, you now have interactive functionality that's either programmatic (JS, something Tildes seeks to avoid...

      I'd vote against it. One, it causes UI jumps, something you really don't want to have. Two, you now have interactive functionality that's either programmatic (JS, something Tildes seeks to avoid entirely in the future) or styled (CSS, with hidden toggles), for something that has no need to be programmatic. Three, why hide the date at all? It's not as though the newness of the comment takes priority over its date somehow. We're not in an environment where freshness matters except to show what hasn't been read yet.

      If I were the God Designer of this place, I'd embrace the fact that things flow downwards, including gaze, and make 'em horizontal labels. I don't think it's the best solution, but it would look cool. Functionally, there are certainly better decisions to take in this regard.

      Alternatively, an interactive data-relaying sidebar for every comment, just like there is one for Tildes itself. Streamlines the interfaces, enhances all functions of the sidebar.

      1 vote
      1. [2]
        Eylrid
        Link Parent
        Like on forums?

        Alternatively, an interactive data-relaying sidebar for every comment, just like there is one for Tildes itself. Streamlines the interfaces, enhances all functions of the sidebar.

        Like on forums?

        1. ThatFanficGuy
          Link Parent
          Sure, but include all the buttons there, too.

          Sure, but include all the buttons there, too.

  4. [5]
    moonbathers
    Link
    I don't think there should be any sort of way to tell that a comment has been marked exemplary except by the person who made the comment. I've seen it used in a couple places I think as a...

    I don't think there should be any sort of way to tell that a comment has been marked exemplary except by the person who made the comment. I've seen it used in a couple places I think as a super-vote which isn't what it should be for. It feels similar to me to comments getting gilded on Reddit.

    3 votes
    1. [4]
      Eylrid
      Link Parent
      What do you think it should be for? Is there anything wrong with having a super vote?

      What do you think it should be for?

      Is there anything wrong with having a super vote?

      3 votes
      1. [3]
        moonbathers
        Link Parent
        I think it should be for showing a comment appreciation without needing to make a public comment if you don't want to.

        I think it should be for showing a comment appreciation without needing to make a public comment if you don't want to.

        3 votes
        1. [2]
          viridian
          Link Parent
          Couldn't you use the messaging feature? That's typically how I would go about appreciating comments on reddit.

          Couldn't you use the messaging feature? That's typically how I would go about appreciating comments on reddit.

          1 vote
          1. moonbathers
            Link Parent
            You can do that too. So my idea is a bit redundant and I'm not really opposed to getting rid of exemplaries entirely.

            You can do that too. So my idea is a bit redundant and I'm not really opposed to getting rid of exemplaries entirely.