Topics

locked Preventing Reply to Group/Sender mixups


Maria
 

On Sat, Jul 2, 2016 at 12:01 pm, Shal Farley wrote:
Where the CC to the Sender appears only if group is selected, and the CC to Moderators appears only if Sender is selected.

Can you clarify again/further how this part would work? Why the option to cc? And would that kick in by choice or automatically? 

It's rare in my current Y groups that people cc group and sender, or vice versa in groups setup to reply to sender by default, and they never once have ccd moderators.

Maria 



 

J,

As a side benefit to a UI that has "choose recipient first, compose
second," a private message could automatically start with that header or
something like it.
and later...

Interesting because I was about to suggest that the subject line for an
offlist message be *changed* to add the word "offlist," due to confusion
on the receiving end as well, not just the sending end.
I like this idea. If the "To" is chosen to be the individual sender then prefix "Offlist - " to the outbound subject line.

It would be nice if that could show in the subject line box on the web display, and not just in the outbound message (unlike the [grouptag]).



Shal
https://groups.io/g/GroupManagersForum


 

Shal,

On Sat, Jul 2, 2016 at 12:24 pm, Shal Farley wrote:

It would be nice if that could show in the subject line box on the web display, and not just in the outbound message

Agree, that would be great. This, too, would require choosing the recipient ("group" or "sender") before composing the message. Everything logical, psychological, convenient, intuitive, etc. points to picking the recipient before composing the message.

-J 



Duane
 

On Sat, Jul 2, 2016 at 12:26 pm, J_catlady wrote:


Everything logical, psychological, convenient, intuitive, etc. points to
picking the recipient before composing the message.
But there are others, including me, that have the opposite expectations.

Duane


 

Of course. That is only my opinion.
--
J

It's dumb to buy smart water.


Maria
 

On Sat, Jul 2, 2016 at 12:01 pm, Shal Farley wrote:
But that does not mean I want to follow Y!Groups astonishingly bad example of implementing the concept

 Forgot to mention this before but actually the Y! Desktop version of this is, as we've established awfully confusing, meanwhile though, their mobile version is much simpler. 

You see (without having to expand headers) the TO field and it has a drop down that is set to the default group reply but which you can bypass by using the drop down to scroll to sender and various combos of group+ sender and related variations (I'm on mobile but I can list this later when back at my desk). There is also a FROM field (not sure if only admins see that- would need to check a group I'm not an admin in). 

So the Y! Mobile Version is definitely simpler and I'm surprised they didn't implement that on desktop.... 

That said, I still prefer the way groups.io currently has it and feel that adding the word private to the reply to sender button and perhaps moving the placement would be ideal for me). 

But just wanted to suggest that the Y! Mobile version may actually be a good example if indeed an alternate way of doing this is explored. And by that I mean, it's good if they'd applied it on desktop. It's not great on mobile because drop downs can be tricky with big fingers/small screens... Check it out on an iPhone that's not a plus size one if you haven't tried it before. I'd be curious to know what you all think. 

Maria 



Brian Vogel <britechguy@...>
 

Personally, and this is my opinion, other than separating the actual invocation techniques for a PM versus a forum response, and including a tag on the front of a PM response indicating it is just that, the rest is just grossly overcomplicated.

Any and all forums I've participated on over decades have the clearly established practice of not having the person replying or PM-ing doing the addressing, and that's by intent.  The entire context into which your immersed, if you eliminate the "button problem" we currently have, dictates who you are responding to by how you create that very response.  

I really can't see the point in making a very complicated recreation of the wheel when the majority of people who've ever used any web forum other than this one already have very ingrained expectations about how these systems work.  If I thought the ability to address things just like e-mail was valuable it would be different, but I think it's another of those things that's utterly unnecessary and sure to be confusing to long-term online forums users.  It is not an exaggeration to say it has never, in my extensive experience, worked that way anywhere.  Implicit training and expectations matter, and there's a lot of that out there.
--
Brian

A lot of what appears to be progress is just so much technological rococo.  ~ Bill Gray


 

Brian,

I don't understand 100% what you're trying to say here, but I can't argue with keeping it simple or with separating the mechanism for a PM vs a forum response. I agree: there are general and implicit expectations already out there, despite the adaptations we as an internet "species" have had to make to coexist with monstrosities like Y!G.
--
J

It's dumb to buy smart water.


Brian Vogel <britechguy@...>
 

J,

            I was trying to say that I feel that Shal's proposed "To:" with dropdowns or other hierarchy is just really overcomplicating things.

            Whether we change creating a PM to clicking on a user's name link, add it to the more button, or any of a variety of other techniques that I've not even mentioned or thought of we have eliminated the problem under discussion and, at the same time, used a broad protocol that most web forums users are already familiar with.

            Reply, Reply with Quote, etc. have always been an implicit 'to group/forum' in every other setting I've operated in over several decades now.  Just getting the "Reply to Sender" button removed solves most of the problem.  Then deciding how one invokes "Reply to Sender"/"Private Message" otherwise solves the other half.  Addressing is a non-issue and occurs automatically and as expected based on the action one is taking.

            I think at this point I need to bow out because I've said everything I need to say and will only end up repeating myself.

--
Brian

A lot of what appears to be progress is just so much technological rococo.  ~ Bill Gray


 

Brian,

In that case I completely agree. (Your message was a bit cryptic.:-) As to you, the word 'reply' means to me 'reply to forum.' Which  is why clicking on 'reply' before I compose a message intended for a single individual has always given me a vaguely queasy feeling.  It is just slightly nerve-wracking, and the errors that DO occur bear that out. I'm now repeating myself as well. 

J

Sent from my iPhone

On Jul 2, 2016, at 1:44 PM, Brian Vogel <britechguy@...> wrote:

J,

            I was trying to say that I feel that Shal's proposed "To:" with dropdowns or other hierarchy is just really overcomplicating things.

            Whether we change creating a PM to clicking on a user's name link, add it to the more button, or any of a variety of other techniques that I've not even mentioned or thought of we have eliminated the problem under discussion and, at the same time, used a broad protocol that most web forums users are already familiar with.

            Reply, Reply with Quote, etc. have always been an implicit 'to group/forum' in every other setting I've operated in over several decades now.  Just getting the "Reply to Sender" button removed solves most of the problem.  Then deciding how one invokes "Reply to Sender"/"Private Message" otherwise solves the other half.  Addressing is a non-issue and occurs automatically and as expected based on the action one is taking.

            I think at this point I need to bow out because I've said everything I need to say and will only end up repeating myself.

--
Brian

A lot of what appears to be progress is just so much technological rococo.  ~ Bill Gray


--
J

It's dumb to buy smart water.


Maria
 

On Sat, Jul 2, 2016 at 10:25 am, HR Tech wrote:

Here are some additional ideas for possible wording if this option were to be considered:

Private reply

Private reply to sender

Private reply to sender only

PM to sender
Reply to sender only
Email author

I think the word "private" put before anything else would help on the web interface. 

Another few:

Send as PM

Send as private reply

Send to author

One one email group platform, in their APP version, i see they "resolved" this by having the word "private" with an icon with a face with an x over it's mouth (weird....) greyed out unless you click on it and then it becomes bold and your reply will then be private when you hit send. 

Maria 




 

The ones starting with 'send as' or 'send to' imply a message that has already been composed and I am against that scenario. Any term that implies the user is now stating that they are about to compose s message, I'm find with: 'PM author' or 'PM sender' are the strongest of those among your suggestions (since they are intransitive with respect to a message itself) and would be my first choicesamong your suggestions. The others fall along the spectrum of that. 'PM to sender' or 'PM to author' I would reject because they are terms describing an already existing piece of text.
J

Sent from my iPhone

On Jul 2, 2016, at 2:42 PM, HR Tech via Groups.io <m.conway11@...> wrote:

On Sat, Jul 2, 2016 at 10:25 am, HR Tech wrote:

Here are some additional ideas for possible wording if this option were to be considered:

Private reply

Private reply to sender

Private reply to sender only

PM to sender
Reply to sender only
Email author

I think the word "private" put before anything else would help on the web interface. 

Another few:

Send as PM

Send as private reply

Send to author

One one email group platform, in their APP version, i see they "resolved" this by having the word "private" with an icon with a face with an x over it's mouth (weird....) greyed out unless you click on it and then it becomes bold and your reply will then be private when you hit send. 

Maria 




--
J

It's dumb to buy smart water.


Maria
 

J

Just to clarify, those were meant as additional suggestions in the event the current blue "reply to sender" button were to be revised to say something else. Per prior posts in this thread - to address the need to ensure that users are clear that what they've written in the window will be sent as a private email with that button. 

I am not in favor of a separate PM System via a user's profile like Facebook. Also really not keen on reverting back to something with "to" headers  on the web interface. I'm really enjoying the web interface not feeling "email-y". 

But now I'm repeating myself too! 

Maria 



 

Maria,

Can you clarify again/further how this part would work? Why the option
to cc?
It was a feature often asked for and finally implemented in Y!Groups.

A reply to group with a direct CC to the person you're replying to is useful when you know (or believe) that the person is on digest and would appreciate hearing the reply sooner than the next digest. Or if you are moderated in a group which often experiences lengthy moderator delays.

A reply to the person, with CC to the moderators, was also desired as a way to inquire about a questionable message, without brining up your concerns on-list.

The other choice, not currently available in Groups.io, is to direct your reply solely to moderators. Again a choice used mostly to flag questionable messages.

The CC to moderators or reply to moderators would (hopefully) be seldom used. For this functionality maybe breaking it out ("forum style") with a red flag icon or something to "report this message" would be a better choice than having it be a part of the normal "Reply" function.

And would that kick in by choice or automatically?
By choice.

In all cases I would want the group's Reply To setting to be the default - it should take a separate and deliberate act for the member to direct the reply elsewhere. A think that a single send button, with the "who" selected elsewhere (and defaulted to the group's setting) would aid in reducing member mixups.

It's rare in my current Y groups that people cc group and sender, or
vice versa in groups setup to reply to sender by default, and they never
once have ccd moderators.
In this topic particularly I would suggest that Y!Group's implementation is so atrocious that you can't really compare its usage against what might be the case given a clean and simple UI implementation.


Shal
https://groups.io/g/GroupManagersForum


 

Brian,

I was trying to say that I feel that Shal's proposed "To:" with
dropdowns or other hierarchy is just really overcomplicating things.
A drop-down for it was one of Y!Groups' bad ideas. I'd keep it simple and presented directly.

Reply, Reply with Quote, etc. have always been an implicit 'to
group/forum' in every other setting I've operated in over several
decades now.
It would be also in my proposal (for those groups with Reply-To set to "Group"). That is, it would take a separate action by the user to have the "Send" button send the message elsewhere.

The main difference between us, I think, is that you would have the choice of destination be set by the initial action (choosing to Reply or to PM), where I would have it set by an option (radio button or similar) that one can alter at any time between clicking "Reply", composing your message, and clicking "Send".

I don't necessarily object to adopting good ideas used in all those forums out there, but keep in mind that the name of this place is not "Forums.io". Indeed, if you look at the Groups.io home page when signed out you'll see that the headline is "Groups.io is a modern email groups service."

You should not be surprised then when other people take webmail interfaces rather than forum interfaces as the archetype for Groups.io's user interface. Yes it is a hybrid of two things. But that is intentional, and it strikes to the core of what this product is about. It isn't, and I wouldn't want it to be, just another forum host. If anybody wants that there are plenty of them out there.


Shal
https://groups.io/g/GroupManagersForum


Maria
 

On Sat, Jul 2, 2016 at 04:24 pm, Shal Farley wrote:

In all cases I would want the group's Reply To setting to be the default - it should take a separate and deliberate act for the member to direct the reply elsewhere. A think that a single send button, with the "who" selected elsewhere (and defaulted to the group's setting) would aid in reducing member mixups.

I will say that as much as I like the current reply option buttons, I am concerned, or rather, I wonder (a bit) about how easy it is to bypass the group's default. I wonder how that will affect the culture of our group.

Also, as mentioned, in one of our subgroups we will have to remove the group reply option all together because the way it's presented now gives both replies equal weight, and in that group, group replies are discouraged because it's a free cycle type situation. The instances in which that group would need a reply to group are rare. Although there are a few such as when people reply to their original post to update the status of an item.... 

At the end of them day ( and in my time zone it's almost that) I'm pretty sure that whatever way this goes, it'll be cool. 

Shal, even though I'm emotionally attached at this point to the way the interface is now on groups.io, your version/idea sounds much simpler and better than anything Y! ever came up with.

Also, I wanted to echo what David said, and say that on no other planet but planet groups.io would I be "spending" my long weekend holiday Saturday discussing a UI. So thank you all for making me think ( in all different directions!).

Maria 





Brian Vogel <britechguy@...>
 

On Sat, Jul 2, 2016 at 04:55 pm, Shal Farley wrote:
You should not be surprised then when other people take webmail interfaces rather than forum interfaces as the archetype for Groups.io's user interface.

Yes, I would, because the web interface is, in the vast majority of ways, a web forum style interface and I have to believe that's by design

As I've said in the past, and will say again here, while Groups.io is a hybrid service as a whole each environment can and should be styled on what's most familiar to those who generally use each environment as their usual one.  E-mailifying a web forum strikes me as the exact opposite of what one should want to be doing in that context (and vice-versa, which is why I've complained about having e-mail users thrown in to the web interface for specific reply links - I'd rather have a failed mailto for certain providers than having the "what in the hell is this!!" reaction even I had when this occurred to me during some testing).

Obviously we disagree, and that's fine.
--
Brian

A lot of what appears to be progress is just so much technological rococo.  ~ Bill Gray


 

Maria,

I will say that as much as I like the current reply option buttons, I am
concerned, or rather, I wonder (a bit) about how easy it is to bypass
the group's default. I wonder how that will affect the culture of our
group.
That's also a part of my concern with the two-button approach - it is just too easy to goof, and there's very little guidance as to what the group's default is. It is slightly better in the test version where there is distinctive coloration and the group default is both the leftmost and green.

Also, as mentioned, in one of our subgroups we will have to remove the
group reply option all together because the way it's presented now gives
both replies equal weight, and in that group, group replies are
discouraged because it's a free cycle type situation.
Separating the "who" decision as I propose would give much more weight to the group's default: it would be pre-selected. The member would have to consciously choose to change it. I wouldn't go as far as Y!Groups and hide it under an "Expand Header" button, I think merely having it pre-selected and separate from the "Send" action would be enough to "streamline" the normally desired behavior.

Also, I wanted to echo what David said, and say that on no other planet
but planet groups.io would I be "spending" my long weekend holiday
Saturday discussing a UI.
I hear that. Especially coming off a busy work-week where I had no time to check in here. For me this is another way to decompress a bit from thinking about work and to relax between the household chores that have also stacked up.


Shal
https://groups.io/g/GroupManagersForum


Maria
 

I wanted to share a mock-up I did that's a variation/hybrid on the concept i saw on an APP version of a listserv i mentioned on a post in this thread.

Premise this all with : 1) have no idea if this is even doable 2) I have only had 1/2 cup of coffee 3) this is just an idea. :)

Ok - so image #1 shows a greyed out "private"button (or "group" when default is sender) on the right hand side that would need to be clicked to have the "reply to sender" ( or to group) kick in.

Once that's clicked it goes normal blue and the reply to group button is replaced with the reply to sender button. (vice -versa if reply to sender is the default)

This would resolve the issue of making mistakes as it would:

a) default to the group default  (thus encouraging the group culture)

b) make you do a step in order to activate the option of the non-default option.

c) not "feel" email-y and not show actual email addresses

d) help reassure anyone who feels nervous that their private reply would go public because that "group" button simply wouldn't be there and vice versa if the default were sender and the greyed out button were toggled to "group" instead of "private"

e) add the words "private reply" or "offlist" to the subject automatically

And now for coffee #2.

Maria





Maria
 

Oh and :

F) it would allow you to decide before you start to write who the recipient is BUT you could change that midway or after if you changed your mind.