log in or register to remove this ad

 

EN World Two potential site upgrades

Theo R Cwithin

I cast "Baconstorm!"
I'm neutral on threading. Personally I like it, but not being available for some platforms seems a problem.

Blocking can be a nice feature (though I personally can't imagine needing it here), so I support adding that one.
.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
As for blocking, as long as it is simply a shield then I see no issue with it.
I am not sure what "simply a shield" means, in board function terms.

As noted, it would not mean people would not be able to see or participate in threads, nor would they get kicked out of threads.

With the current Ignore function, if I want to ignore you, I don't see your posts. But you can still see mine, and respond to them.

This full Block, as I understand it, is two-way. If I want to Block you, I don't see your posts, and you don't see mine. So, you cannot directly respond to my posts, as you can't see them.

...and often as a means to get in the final word...
Well, we cannot control when a person will choose to initiate a block. "Argue...argue... argue. Here's my last point and you are a stinky-head. And now I will block you." would still be possible. Of course, now the blocked person wouldn't see the final declaration, which probably removes some of the point of posting like this.

I think we would keep the policy against publicly announcing blocking.
 


Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
So the bear-universal response is generally negative on the threaded posts, and nearly fully positive on the blocks. Thanks for the input guys!
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Wow, I'm the one different view on threading. We, as a forum, tend to ... wander off topic. If a few active posters get involved in a vigorous and interesting debate over one facet of what's going on, it can take over a non-threaded discussion while in a threaded discussion those interested can follow it while the others can skip past it.

Last month I replied directly after reading the start of a thread (something I occasionally do so my thoughts are not swayed by what has been discussed), and a response I got back was along the lines of "I was about to call you out for going off topic, but then I went back to read what the thread was about." Basically the thread had wandered far from it's original source with a couple of people debating it can completely stolen the thread. It was still an interesting thread, just one only tangentially related to what the OP had posted.
 

Wow, I'm the one different view on threading. We, as a forum, tend to ... wander off topic. If a few active posters get involved in a vigorous and interesting debate over one facet of what's going on, it can take over a non-threaded discussion while in a threaded discussion those interested can follow it while the others can skip past it.

Last month I replied directly after reading the start of a thread (something I occasionally do so my thoughts are not swayed by what has been discussed), and a response I got back was along the lines of "I was about to call you out for going off topic, but then I went back to read what the thread was about." Basically the thread had wandered far from it's original source with a couple of people debating it can completely stolen the thread. It was still an interesting thread, just one only tangentially related to what the OP had posted.
IMNSHO, the problem with threading is that it actually encourages the type of off-topic behavior you describe, by making it more socially acceptable to threadjack. That being said, I'm not entirely against threaded discussions. Many message boards I used in the 90s were set up that way, and it worked fine. Threading seemed to die off in popularity around 15 years ago (I guess I'm old), and has been making a bit of a comeback.

At one point in history, there was a feature on ENWorld to "fork" a thread. There was a button that you could click to essentially reply, but do so in a new thread and modify the title. I like that as sort of compromise option; let conversations wander into new threads, but keep the original topic intact. I would really like it if that option were technically feasible.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
IMNSHO, the problem with threading is that it actually encourages the type of off-topic behavior you describe, by making it more socially acceptable to threadjack. That being said, I'm not entirely against threaded discussions. Many message boards I used in the 90s were set up that way, and it worked fine. Threading seemed to die off in popularity around 15 years ago (I guess I'm old), and has been making a bit of a comeback.
We are past that point - we already have a culture where threadjacking happens. Or at least large debates that are only about some facet of the point. Threaded reading would at least minimize the damage.

But it's a moot point - there's a strong anti-threading feel and I won't buck it. Just wanted to get my dissenting opinion in.
 

Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
I have never really been in a community that uses sub-threads. I'd be interested in seeing how it works. Can you enable it on some sub-forums but not others? Maybe there's a way to test into it? Or perhaps your provider can give you some examples of other forums that do use it so we could see how it works?

Blocking, I have no opinion.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
1) Please no. Not doing it like Reddit or Facebook's comments plugin is a strength. Proper forum discussion pretty much dies away when discussions branch away; it becomes too hard to stay on topic.

(While I'm writing this on the app, I can understand that you can't be held back by Tapatalk. I'm just happy you'll find some other feature to break app compatibility for)

2) No opinion. That the first post thing doesn't block the entire thread is good though. It was very strange how on one hand the site tells you you don't own a thread, but on the other hand effectively let you as the OP remove other posters from "your" thread, simply because you were the first to post. You could spite-block people. Which, I guess, could be useful to throw people out when they derailed the topic... But no, giving just one guy that power was... not good.

So go ahead and make blocking stronger; but I'm glad that old behavior isn't getting back, there was nothing good about the way poster A could block poster B from seeing poster C's content.
 
Last edited:

CapnZapp

Legend
We are past that point - we already have a culture where threadjacking happens. Or at least large debates that are only about some facet of the point. Threaded reading would at least minimize the damage.

But it's a moot point - there's a strong anti-threading feel and I won't buck it. Just wanted to get my dissenting opinion in.
About the only constructive way to implement this would be if there was a way to truly fork a thread. As in creating a new second thread.

(Not saying I suggest this or even that it's possible)
 

FrogReaver

As long as i get to be the frog
no opinion on threading.

No to blocking. If I’m a member of the site I can bypass that by simply signing out of my account which is what people actually do. And even though it can’t knock you out of a thread with the new version it can still keep you from reading what someone says while logged in, which is annoying and anything that can annoy others can be used as a bludgeon. Thus, I vote no.

Just to add some perspective, if this were a membership only forum to even view comments I could maybe see blocking but it’s not so that’s kind of a moot point.
 


Mistwell

Legend
This was seen as a hefty negative of the blocking feature. I am not so sure it was that negative. If you want to keep active in a thread, then maybe you should more studiously avoid cheesing folks off.
People can block you for arbitrary and capricious, or even "bad", reasons sometimes. It's not like there is any limitation or even advice on using the feature. It was sometimes used in a vindictive manner. For example, "I don't like your opinion because it might be more popular than my contrary opinion so I am going to block you so you cannot spread your opinion to others any more in this thread" type manner.

And then there was the issue of "get around a block by using the TapaTalk app".

Some gamers play the system (whatever system they're using) in ways we might not expect. That one seemed to attract a lot more unintended results than most add-ons.

The other problem with the old blocking is it broke some functionality of vBulletin which many found useful. You could no longer click on a notification that you were quoted, or the jump-to-first-unread for a thread, because if someone blocked you the counting function used in those features didn't work and it would bring you to the wrong place (sometimes far from where it intended to put you). That, to me, was a serious blow to how I use ENWorld.
 

Snarf Zagyg

Thrall of Coot.
People can block you for arbitrary and capricious, or even "bad", reasons sometimes. It's not like there is any limitation or even advice on using the feature. It was sometimes used in a vindictive manner. For example, "I don't like your opinion because it might be more popular than my contrary opinion so I am going to block you so you cannot spread your opinion to others any more in this thread" type manner.
I don't know what arbitrary or bad reasons even means? Or vindictive blocking?

This is a common feature on the internet. From the description by Morrus, it sounds like it just keeps the two people from communicating or seeing each other (other than the thread starter), but it doesn't stop the other person from spreading their opinions?

I would much prefer that to the system we have now.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
I don't know what arbitrary or bad reasons even means? Or vindictive blocking?

This is a common feature on the internet. From the description by Morrus, it sounds like it just keeps the two people from communicating or seeing each other (other than the thread starter), but it doesn't stop the other person from spreading their opinions?

I would much prefer that to the system we have now.
I believe he's specifically thinking about how a poster could shut out another poster from threads started by the first poster.

The functionality where you can ask the software to hide someone's posts so YOU don't have to read what he or she writes is entirely fine, and necessary even.

But having the power to essentially throw others out of threads is something else, even if it only applies to threads started by you.

Luckily the new forum doesn't work that way.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
I don't know what arbitrary or bad reasons even means? Or vindictive blocking?
There was an issue with the previous blocking function - If I started a thread, thre was discussion, and then I blocked you, you would effectively no longer be able to see the thread listed in the forums at all. You could, effectively, be kicked out of the thread.

This new implementation does not seem to have that result, so it should not be an issue.
 

FrogReaver

As long as i get to be the frog
I believe he's specifically thinking about how a poster could shut out another poster from threads started by the first poster.

The functionality where you can ask the software to hide someone's posts so YOU don't have to read what he or she writes is entirely fine, and necessary even.

But having the power to essentially throw others out of threads is something else, even if it only applies to threads started by you.

Luckily the new forum doesn't work that way.
This forum is open to visitors who can see every post. Kind of is pointless to block someone logged in from seeing your posts when they can just log out and see them.
 

Mistwell

Legend
I don't know what arbitrary or bad reasons even means? Or vindictive blocking?

This is a common feature on the internet. From the description by Morrus, it sounds like it just keeps the two people from communicating or seeing each other (other than the thread starter), but it doesn't stop the other person from spreading their opinions?

I would much prefer that to the system we have now.
Right, I guess some background is lacking.'Sorry about that. [Edit - and I see you already got plenty of answers which I hadn't read when I replied...whoops].

We're not referring to this current proposal for blocking. We're talking about a version which used to exist here which had unexpected technical ramifications which resulted in something more than "keeps the two people from communicating or seeing each other". Umbran was saying (I am paraphrasing) that he didn't know why it was so bad but it was very unpopular. And I was responding it was so unpopular because it did so many weird things other than just keep two people from communicating, and people knew about those unintended things, and were using it to mess with other people's abilities to use the system.

So for example, if someone blocked you under the old blocking system, you could no longer click the "jump to first unread comment in a thread" icon in any thread where the person who blocked you had any posts, or the "view unread threads" icon in any forum here where the blocker had any threads they had started, or the "view post where you were quoted" notification in any thread where the blocker had posted even if they had not started that thread. All of those technical systems broke when someone blocked you. And people knew it had those effects, and could use that knowledge to mess with you. And it was hard for the mods to detect that was being done - it was even difficult to explain the effect sometimes because mods could not be blocked and so had never even seen it in use and how it impacted navigating the message board.

My view on the new proposed blocking is that as long as it does not hamper any other navigational board features, then it's fine. But if it makes navigating the message board more difficult for anyone because it can hamper the use of those tools I mentioned above, then we should not enact that blocking feature because no new feature should hamper old features that people use which have nothing to do with blocking.

Nobody should be "punished" by blocking in a manner which has nothing to do with communicating with that particular blocking person. Whatever underlying system which counts threads and posts to allow you to jump to a point in the system which identifies new threads, new posts, or posts where you are quoted or called out with an @ symbol should still function as intended after the new blocking feature is added. If those counting systems start to function poorly after the blocking feature is added, then I don't want that new blocking feature.
 
Last edited:

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
I’ve been unable to get confirmation that either of these functions will work with Tapatalk, despite my best efforts, so I’ve chosen not to buy them. The developers don’t seem interested, which is a red flag anyway.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
This forum is open to visitors who can see every post. Kind of is pointless to block someone logged in from seeing your posts when they can just log out and see them.
I believe it was by and large a side effect of the chosen implementation of the (now gone) blocking system.

And not intentionally a main feature, I mean.
 

Advertisement2

Advertisement4

Top