Date   

moderated Re: Change "New Topic" to "New Message", or (preferably) revert this change.

 

Jim,

Yes... tho it shouldn't be necessary to have such knowledge when
composing a REPLY.
Agreed.

And generally one doesn't. If posting on site Reply threads into the same topic. And for the benefit of those reading via email, it also inserts the References: [MID] and In-Reply-To: [MID] fields in the header of the reply.

Likewise, when replying by email if one's email interface adds one or both of those fields the Reply threads correctly, unless you edit the Subject text in your reply.

All messages in a given thread should be related by MID (and etc)
headers.
That would be ideal.

The reason Groups.io takes the Subject into account is twofold: one, not all email interfaces insert those header fields to identify a reply; and two, many email users start with a Reply and then modify the Subject rather than bother to compose from scratch. So the rules involving the Subject text are really ad-hoc adaptations to do the right thing "most of the time".

There's a ton of material about topic threading in beta's archive. I really don't want to end up recapitulating all of that here, it veers off-topic. See for example:
https://beta.groups.io/g/main/topic/4015812

In email messages the site must cope with both forms of ambiguity, but in postings on site there needn't be any ambiguity.

About "member intent." If a member's "intent" is that a "New Topic"
will thread with an old topic having the same subject line, ...
Nope. I'm assuming the user understood the name of the function at face value. Otherwise the result is on him/her.

Shal


moderated Re: Change "New Topic" to "New Message", or (preferably) revert this change.

Jim Higgins
 

Received from Shal Farley at 1/5/2019 10:18 PM UTC:

Jim,

Though you were in the original conversation, I should have cited it for the benefit of others reading here:
https://beta.groups.io/g/main/topic/28790857#19260

Perhaps not as bad as originally thought, but worse than before
the change because it's no longer consistent and predictable.
Arguably it is now consistent with how messages are handled by email, but that's a non-issue (I think; members who post on site probably don't notice the threading behavior of messages posted by email).

I post and read exclusively via email and I can't say that I notice it. But then I've never created a new email (not a reply) with the same subject line as a current discussion to see how it's handled.


I don't like the change for two reasons: one, it invalidated the meaning of "New Topic" as the label on the button (now you might be creating a reply instead).

Yes. The change destroyed important old functionality in that it completely removed the ability to create a "New Topic" while also assuring it's really a new topic (new thread).


More importantly two, because to predict the outcome (New Topic or Reply) one must have perfect knowledge of the group's Topic list to determine if there's another topic with the same subject text. And by "perfect" I mean up to date, including any topics created near-simultaneously by other members.

Yes... tho it shouldn't be necessary to have such knowledge when composing a REPLY. A replier should expect a reply to be threaded with the message being replied to... period. Repliers need to accept (and/or be educated to) that reality... after which no other knowledge is needed. Actually, I wouldn't bother with proactive education, I'd just deal with any who complain by saying something that would translate to a polite version of "what else did you expect... and please take as many screens as needed to explain why?" ;-)

Thread hijackers can and will - usually without conscious bad intent - subvert all attempts to create the appearance of threading by message content when the only measure of content possible is the Subject: or the Message-ID:, References: and In-Reply-to: headers.


Granted, members who post by email have had to put up with this unpredictable behavior all along, and it has not been a disaster. But in that case there's really nothing the site can do to rectify the situation - the email standards don't have a required header field to mark a message as created by "Compose", "New Message", or whatever, and not as a Reply (there are fields to mark replies, but their absence isn't a reliable marker, sometimes even within a given email interface).

There are the MID (etc) headers. Thread by those and then leave it up to Group Owners to deal with those who don't like the result and with those who - by their behavior - create a bad result. (I really like the "What else did you expect!" approach.)


Circling back, the original question/complaint was about a member who might create an indefinite number of posts with the same subject text; and whether that behavior ought not result in a single topic.

My answer then and now is "no". The member should instead be taught to create subject texts which match their message content, or use Reply when their speaking to the same topic. Other members, who happened to pick the same subject text for their New Topic, should not be punished by having their message subsumed under a Topic created by someone else.

Exactly! Don't allow those who "misbehave" and then aren't happy with the result dictate how threading should be performed. All messages in a given thread should be related by MID (and etc) headers. It's like a family tree... chromosomally linked only; the next door neighbors and Uncle Tommy's live-in girlfriend aren't included.


That is, we should respect the member's intent in clicking "New Topic". Or else change the name of the function accordingly.

Shal

YES... but that's a YES to your reasons for reverting to the old behavior. The problem with the "or else" alternative - changing the name of the "NEW TOPIC" function to match the new behavior - is that the new behavior shouldn't (IMNSHO) have been implemented in the first place. Instead of doing something to make the name on the function button consistent with the new behavior, we just need to revert to the old behavior. What the heck is an email group without a "New Topic" button that actually creates a new topic (new thread). I'd suggest it be relabeled to "New Thread" in conjunction with reverting to the old behavior, but I'm afraid "New Thread" would confuse too many not familiar with the term - and maybe not even the concept.

About "member intent." If a member's "intent" is that a "New Topic" will thread with an old topic having the same subject line, then I wouldn't agree with respecting that intent. The solution to that form of confusion is education, not a change in the "New Topic" behavior.

Jim H


moderated Re: Change "New Topic" to "New Message", or (preferably) revert this change.

 

Jim,

Though you were in the original conversation, I should have cited it for the benefit of others reading here:
https://beta.groups.io/g/main/topic/28790857#19260

Perhaps not as bad as originally thought, but worse than before the
change because it's no longer consistent and predictable.
Arguably it is now consistent with how messages are handled by email, but that's a non-issue (I think; members who post on site probably don't notice the threading behavior of messages posted by email).

I don't like the change for two reasons: one, it invalidated the meaning of "New Topic" as the label on the button (now you might be creating a reply instead).

More importantly two, because to predict the outcome (New Topic or Reply) one must have perfect knowledge of the group's Topic list to determine if there's another topic with the same subject text. And by "perfect" I mean up to date, including any topics created near-simultaneously by other members.

Granted, members who post by email have had to put up with this unpredictable behavior all along, and it has not been a disaster. But in that case there's really nothing the site can do to rectify the situation - the email standards don't have a required header field to mark a message as created by "Compose", "New Message", or whatever, and not as a Reply (there are fields to mark replies, but their absence isn't a reliable marker, sometimes even within a given email interface).

Circling back, the original question/complaint was about a member who might create an indefinite number of posts with the same subject text; and whether that behavior ought not result in a single topic.

My answer then and now is "no". The member should instead be taught to create subject texts which match their message content, or use Reply when their speaking to the same topic. Other members, who happened to pick the same subject text for their New Topic, should not be punished by having their message subsumed under a Topic created by someone else.

That is, we should respect the member's intent in clicking "New Topic". Or else change the name of the function accordingly.

Shal


moderated Re: Change "New Topic" to "New Message", or (preferably) revert this change.

Jim Higgins
 

Received from Gerald Boutin at 1/5/2019 01:17 PM UTC:

On Sat, Jan 5, 2019 at 04:26 AM, Shal Farley wrote:
The site was clear and internally consistent, producing a predictable result. Now clicking "New Topic" is unpredictable (maybe it is, maybe it isn't).
I strongly agree with Shal. In fact, I started writing a scathing post about how much I don''t like the idea.

However, as I started to check out the functionality, it seems that this change may not be as literal as the "Changelog" shows it. I think it only looks back a limited distance in time / messages. In that case, it may not be as terrible as I thought it was.

Perhaps not as bad as originally thought, but worse than before the change because it's no longer consistent and predictable.

Jim H


moderated "modified file" should now say "updated file"

 

In keeping with the change of language ("update file" instead of "edit file"), the log entry should probably also be changed. It currently reads "xyz modified file."
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


moderated Re: Change "New Topic" to "New Message", or (preferably) revert this change.

Gerald Boutin <groupsio@...>
 

On Sat, Jan 5, 2019 at 01:43 PM, Shal Farley wrote:
Gerald,

> I think it only looks back a limited distance in time / messages.

o If the subject starts with Re:, look for a matching subject within
the last 30 days
o If the subject does not start with Re:, look for a matching subject
within the last 2 days
https://beta.groups.io/g/main/message/12652

Shal
I did a bit more checking and I withdraw my scathing thoughts that were fortunately never posted. 

I did verify that the "memory" only goes back a couple days at most, so I don't see any real issues. I suppose that the label could be changed, but keeping it the same is probably OK too and would mean less documentation to update.

 
--
Gerald


moderated Re: Change "New Topic" to "New Message", or (preferably) revert this change.

Marv Waschke
 

I'm of two minds on this. When I read the change notice, I realized that had I noticed the inconsistency without realizing what it was exactly and was glad it was resolved. But when I read Shal and Gerald's comments, I also agree that a new element of unpredictability has been added. Ah, the pleasures of interface design!
Best, Marv
 


moderated Re: Change "New Topic" to "New Message", or (preferably) revert this change.

 

Gerald,

I think it only looks back a limited distance in time / messages.
o If the subject starts with Re:, look for a matching subject within the last 30 days
o If the subject does not start with Re:, look for a matching subject within the last 2 days
https://beta.groups.io/g/main/message/12652

Shal


moderated Re: Change "New Topic" to "New Message", or (preferably) revert this change.

Gerald Boutin <groupsio@...>
 

On Sat, Jan 5, 2019 at 04:26 AM, Shal Farley wrote:
The site was clear and internally consistent, producing a predictable result. Now clicking "New Topic" is unpredictable (maybe it is, maybe it isn't).
I strongly agree with Shal. In fact, I started writing a scathing post about how much I don''t like the idea.

However, as I started to check out the functionality, it seems that this change may not be as literal as the "Changelog" shows it.  I think it only looks back a limited distance in time / messages. In that case, it may not be as terrible as I thought it was.
 
Even so, I would much prefer that it stay the way it was with clearly defined and consistent functionality without having to know any secret handshakes.
--

Gerald


moderated Change "New Topic" to "New Message", or (preferably) revert this change.

 

Mark,

* CHANGE: Previously we would treat web posts as new topics,
regardless of whether they had the same subject as a previous
topic. This was different from how we treat email messages, where
we combine new messages into existing topics when we can. Now we
do the same for web posts.
If "New Topic" no longer means /new topic/ it ought not say that.

I actually prefer the old behavior but if that is thought to be somehow too confusing then at least make the button say what it does.

While my general preference is for consistency, this is a case where I think the inconsistency was on the side of the email standards, not the site. The site was clear and internally consistent, producing a predictable result. Now clicking "New Topic" is unpredictable (maybe it is, maybe it isn't).

I'd rather live with the email messages being unpredictable as a consequence of the limitations of the email standards than have the site be unnecessarily unpredictable for the sake of slavish imitation.

Shal


moderated Site updates #changelog

 

Changes to the site the past couple of weeks:

  • CHANGE: If you click the Clear button after filtering archives, it will now take you back to /topics or /messages (as appropriate), instead of keeping you in /search.
  • CHANGE: From the activity log, clicking on an added/modified file used to bring you to the enclosing folder. I've added a folder icon next to the file name that does that now, and clicking on the file takes you directly to the file.
  • BUGFIX: When viewing an individual +owner message, the pending messages permission was required, which was inconsistent with other pages.
  • CHANGE: Changed default subject line for message rejection notices from 'Your message was rejected' to 'Your message was not approved'
  • BUGFIX: Fixed screen reader access on the create and edit hashtag pages.
  • CHANGE: Wording improvements to the Send Log In Link page (thanks Shal!)
  • INTERNAL: Upgraded production to use go 1.11 compiler.
  • INTERNAL: Parallelized message generation when viewing /topic or /messages to speed up web response.
  • INTERNAL: Added a database index to speed up deleting of topics.
  • INTERNAL: Change the database code to make it seamless when doing database schema changes.
  • CHANGE: Add group upgrade options for non-profit enterprise pricing, to allow self-service non-profit upgrades.
  • CHANGE: Previously we would treat web posts as new topics, regardless of whether they had the same subject as a previous topic. This was different from how we treat email messages, where we combine new messages into existing topics when we can. Now we do the same for web posts.
  • INTERNAL: Cleanups of various database structures/repaying some technical debt

Have a good weekend everyone.

Mark


moderated Re: Improvements to the /sendloginlink page

 

Aw, c'mon, Shal. Literary license!
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


moderated Re: Improvements to the /sendloginlink page

 

J,

The email said to reply
It does NOT say to reply. Not no where, not no how.

Not sure about the rest of your poem... ;-)

Shal


moderated Re: Improvements to the /sendloginlink page

 

The email said to reply

So I can’t seem to understand why

I still can’t log on

And my home page is gone.

If I’d clicked I’d have been a smart guy. 


On Thu, Jan 3, 2019 at 8:21 PM Bob Bellizzi <cdfexec@...> wrote:
Maybe it should say "Click the link, Dink!"
--

Bob Bellizzi

Founder, Fuchs Friends ®
Founder & Executive Director, The Corneal Dystrophy Foundation


--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.
My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together. - Desmond Tutu


moderated Re: Improvements to the /sendloginlink page

Bob Bellizzi
 

Maybe it should say "Click the link, Dink!"
--

Bob Bellizzi

Founder, Fuchs Friends ®
Founder & Executive Director, The Corneal Dystrophy Foundation


moderated Re: Improvements to the /sendloginlink page

Toby Kraft
 

Hate to nit-pick here but the sentence that reads "... after that, you will need to send another email." - is misleading.  The user never sends an email, the user is clicking on a link on web page to request that a special login link email be sent to them by groups.io.  
Perhaps it should read "The link is valid for 60 minutes, after that, you will need to come back to this page and request that another login link email be sent to you."
Toby


moderated Re: Improvements to the /sendloginlink page

 

Hi Shal,

On Mon, Dec 24, 2018 at 12:00 PM Shal Farley <shals2nd@...> wrote:

In GMF we've been refining a "Quick-start" guide for logging in to Groups.io. In the process we've noticed that the /sendloginlink page is rather bare: 

Thanks for the great suggestions. I've made the changes.

Mark 


moderated Re: Removing members from lists for supposedly marking messages as spam

Chris Jones
 

On Thu, Jan 3, 2019 at 01:50 PM, Ellen Moody wrote:
This is the kind of advice I know I would not be able to follow. I have no idea how to switch my email provider. This takes know-how I don't have.
Ellen; I think you may have missed a major point. As originally reported it is other people, not you, who are being unmembered because of Groups.io messages being marked as spam. As that is the case the identity of your service provider is not relevant; it is their service providers, not yours, that are, or may be, responsible. I say may be, because it might be the individual members themselves who are inadvertently causing the trouble.

Can I refer you again to the Removed for Marking a Message as Spam section of the GMF wiki; if you look at the paragraph starting In the "User Initiated" case, (within the Mechanism section) you will find that it is perfectly possible for a group member to trigger their own removal simply by deleting a message from their spam box. It all depends how their own service provider has this execuitve finction configured.

There is nothing secret about anything in the GMF wiki and it can be freely copied into your own wiki, or a link to the relevant section put into a message to your own members.

Yes; the whole thing is a pain, and no - one here will argue otherwise. Having said that there is nothing we can do to control any Service Provider, or for that matter, control our own members. All we can do is provide guidance about how to minimise the impact of Service Providers' automated processes for keeping spam to a minimum, and that is the purpose of the wiki entry. It is (I hope!) as simple as we can make it (yes; I was a part of its creation) while sufficiently comprehensive to cover what it needs to. Unfortunately simplicity and comprehensiveness do not always easily coexist.

Chris


moderated Re: Removing members from lists for supposedly marking messages as spam

Duane
 

On Thu, Jan 3, 2019 at 06:51 AM, Ellen Moody wrote:
I'm not sure this is the right forum for this query/complaint but I assume if it's not I'll be told where to send my query/complaint.
This group, beta, is intended "to discuss the Groups.io service and how it can be improved" as stated on the home page.  For problems and other discussions, Mark has asked that we use other groups, such as https://groups.io/g/GroupManagersForum or https://groups.io/g/Group_Help

Duane


moderated Re: Removing members from lists for supposedly marking messages as spam

Ellen Moody
 

I have now learned (someone told me this) that my Internet provider is Comcast. Comcast is the only provider in my area unless I was very high tech and could set up my own arrangements and when my husband was alive (he had  Ph.D. In math, and had worked as a software program developer and manager for many years) even he said we were better off just paying Comcast. Huge numbers of US people are in areas where there is this kind of monopoly.

Ellen

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