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locked Preventing Reply to Group/Sender mixups


Maria
 

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 08:38 pm, Shal Farley wrote:
Also, having both choices available at the outset is almost an invitation to go against the group's default.

Agree. For this reason, in both scenarios that i was trying to imagine visually that would not happen. You'd have to work to get to the non default option. This would prioritize group default, encourage the group culture, and  be a really strong mechanism to avoid a mixup.

When there is a group default, both reply choices ought not have equal weight. When you are selecting the non-default option you are somewhat going against group norms. Just think freecycle: if you see a lamp for sale and want it, you should be strongly guided to reply to sender and be fully aware you are doing such (because the sender will then have total disclosure of your email address) - if you are new and don't know this and can select group or sender with no guidance whatsoever, you are creating additional work for mods (if the group is moderated) or a bad experience for the reader. The UI must help with this.

    Shal Wrote:

       On the bigger picture, I think this is an example of where Maria's right: in UI design you often do have to consider "how" along with "what" - because both have a         strong impact on the user experience and user behavior.


Thank you. I was trying to explain why visuals are so important to me and you said it better than I could. The same applies to architectural design, interior, a gallery show, etc. It's useful to do renderings to figure out solutions so one can see if the actual experience within that design is successful at solving the problems and accomplishing the goals (without creating new problems) .

Maria


 

I agree to completely disagree. :-)
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author. 

It's dumb to buy smart water.


 

J,

I should specify which action I want to perform: "reply to group" or "PM
sender" (or whatever language is used). I see these as two distinct
actions, both psychologically and in the resulting effects of the
action.
I disagree with this, and here's the reason: by forcing the user to click one or the other you've diminished or lost the element of guidance and landed us back in a version of the "member mixup" scenario. As Brian says, some won't pay attention and they'll click the "wrong" one.

Also, having both choices available at the outset is almost an invitation to go against the group's default. With an equal choice mechanism I think many group owners would opt to eliminate the alternate choice altogether. I view that as an unfortunate outcome that could be avoided by providing better guidance in the UI.

On the other hand, with a single Reply link that opens up the composition tools, including a "who" option pre-selected according the group's setting, then in the 99% case (the user wants to take the group default action) the user doesn't have to think about or dither over which link to click. It is only in the rarer case that the user might choose to change the To: radio button.

On the bigger picture, I think this is an example of where Maria's right: in UI design you often do have to consider "how" along with "what" - because both have a strong impact on the user experience and user behavior.


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


Maria
 

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 07:20 pm, Shal Farley wrote:
There may be fewer groups with that setting, but I wouldn't want their user experience to be sub-standard.

Agree. There are many groups I participate in on Y! (besides our own free cycle type one) that have reply to sender as a default. The experience in those shouldn't feel different - especially as some may be (as in our case) a subgroup of a main group where the default is the opposite. 

For the above reason, as well as because so many new users can be totally unfamiliar with how a platform such as this (or Y! ) works, I think it's important to have those "....to group" and "...to sender" stated. Those words help educate a newbie and they reduce potential for error and mix ups.  

Separately, after my experience the other day, showing the reply options to someone who has never used an email group, I'd like to see the  word private in there somewhere if at all possible. For those coming here from the world of social media networks and perhaps forums too, it may help.

Maria 



 
Edited

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 07:20 pm, Shal Farley wrote:
There may be fewer groups with that setting, but I wouldn't want their user experience to be sub-standard.

I was not proposing that their experience be any different from any other group's experience. I made that statement to explain why I thought your email analogy was slightly off. 

I started with the proposition that "who" and "send" really need to be separate controls

I agree, but I also strongly feel that "who" is decided by the user before "compose" and certainly before "send". And that therefore, the system should ask for the "who" before the rest of it.

I don't care about placement - my suggestion about putting the "who" at the top instead of the bottom was another bandaid to solve what I perceive of the problem that the system does not really ask for it first. It's a halfway measure.

I don't care if the buttons are purple, how large they are, or what language they use. I ONLY WANT to be asked "whom" I am intending to write to before I am asked to write it. EDIT: I don't mean "be asked." I mean, "specify." I should specify which action I want to perform: "reply to group" or "PM sender" (or whatever language is used).  I see these as two distinct actions, both psychologically and in the resulting effects of the action. And I think the system should treat them as such. Only after specifying what I want to do should the system give me the tools to do it (the compose screen, "send" or "cancel," etc.).

--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author. 

It's dumb to buy smart water.


 

J,

(It's true that if the group's default is "reply to sender," people
would adjust to and expect the default; but that would seem to be the
rarer case.)
There may be fewer groups with that setting, but I wouldn't want their user experience to be sub-standard. In that case I think you still want to have a Reply link in the expected place below the message, and not have them forced to hunt for a PM button or link near the sender's icon & name.

Perhaps for clarity extend the link to say "Reply to [Display-name]" in place of just "Reply".

That leaves you with the conundrum of where to put the Reply to Group option, assuming the group allows that. You could have both links there, except I suspect that puts us back into the mixup situation: too easy to click the wrong one, and little or no guidance as to which is the group's expectation (default). The only saving grace is that you haven't composed your message yet, nor sent it in the same act. And on mobile it might make that line of links a little crowded.

That's part of why I prefer sticking with a simple "Reply" link there, and expanding the "who" choice along with the subject and body composition boxes.

A halfway measure making this more similar to email would be to AT LEAST
have the designated recipient at the top of the screen, instead of the
bottom. Even in email, you don't compose your message and at the bottom,
click on "reply to" whoever.
Absolutely.

I started with the proposition that "who" and "send" really need to be separate controls. I'm less wedded to having the "who" choice above the Subject versus between the message text and the Send buttons, but I'm happier with it above. At least on desktop that is, I haven't given much attention to mobile.


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


 

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 07:06 pm, HR Tech wrote:

Just trying to feel the different ideas visually. I find this helps me understand other POVs sometimes better than words,

I had, and have, absolutely no visuals in mind. Zero at this point. To my way of thinking that's all premature and can be solved later. First decide what. Then how.:-) 
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author. 

It's dumb to buy smart water.


Maria
 

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 06:34 pm, J_catlady wrote:
Perhaps you meant that for only one of your mockup scenarios. 

Yes, I was trying to explain how that scenario might work (in my head). Not necessarily endorsing it ;). Just trying to feel the different ideas visually. I find this helps me understand other POVs sometimes better than words, when discussing design stuff. 

Maria 


 

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 06:40 pm, Shal Farley wrote:
Mark also asked for other ideas on reducing the mixups.

True, but I am conveniently forgetting that. :-) 
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author. 

It's dumb to buy smart water.


 

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 06:25 pm, Shal Farley wrote:
I'm influenced by the email work-flow, where one normally clicks Reply first, then adjusts the To and CC if needed, then composes the message, then clicks "Send"

Ok. I see what you're getting at. But I still feel it's a wrong analogy. In email the assumption is that you're replying to the sender of the message (unless you change it afterwards, as you say, to include "reply all" or "cc" or whatever). In Groups.io, and in forums (yes, I realize Groups.io is not "just" a forum but it is also a forum), the assumption on clicking "reply" is "reply to the group." (It's true that if the group's default is "reply to sender," people would adjust to and expect the default; but that would seem to be the rarer case.) To me, it doesn't really match up.

A halfway measure making this more similar to email would be to AT LEAST have the designated recipient at the top of the screen, instead of the bottom. Even in email, you don't compose your message and at the bottom, click on "reply to" whoever.

--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author. 

It's dumb to buy smart water.


 

J,

Having the user "Reply" before any of this happens is the problem under
consideration; it's what Mark wants to know if we think should change.
Mark also asked for other ideas on reducing the mixups.


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


 

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 06:24 pm, HR Tech wrote:
I was trying to visualize the various ideas and potential ways of solving the mix-up issue, as well as the other concerns, that were shared in this thread. 

You wrote: "Once you've picked WHO your reply is going to then the compose window opens up." So I assumed you were agreeing that this is the best way. Perhaps you meant that for only one of your mockup scenarios. 

J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author. 

It's dumb to buy smart water.


 

J,

The hitting of the single word "reply" FIRST nullifies the whole
solution being presented here.
Obviously I disagree. But I'm influenced by the email work-flow, where one normally clicks Reply first, then adjusts the To and CC if needed, then composes the message, then clicks "Send". That's what seems natural for me, but then I don't hang around on forums.

I could live with it either way, so long as all the functionality is there. Even in email there's the example of choosing between "Reply" or "Reply All" as the first step (but you still can correct it manually during message composition).

The two key functional points for me are:

1) You stay in context (as Brian described) - clicking PM (or Red Flag) doesn't land you somewhere else when you're done.

2) The message composition is fully functional, ideally identical, in all cases. That is, I wouldn't want to lose the ability to include a quote, or use the formatting toolbar, or add attachments, merely because of a different addressee for the reply.

A lesser point would be the ability to change your mind about who you want to send the reply to without having to discard your text and start over. I think that's a less common case, and mostly handled by Ctrl+A Ctrl+C (except on mobile, where it can be a pain).


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


Maria
 

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 06:11 pm, J_catlady wrote:
But Maria has said that her idea now - like mine, unless I've completely misunderstood - is that these choices come up BEFORE the composition window comes up,

I posted 2 mock-ups. No idea if either of them are possible. One was a hybrid re-interpretation based on of how I know another listserv that has an APP handles this issue during the composition/send step. The other was a visual based on the idea of selecting before the composition window even opens. 

I was trying to visualize the various ideas and potential ways of solving the mix-up issue, as well as the other concerns, that were shared in this thread. 

Maria



 

On Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 05:55 pm, Shal Farley wrote:
I don't like "Reply" here, you've already clicked "Reply", the action here is to send your reply).

But Maria has said that her idea now - like mine, unless I've completely misunderstood - is that these choices come up BEFORE the composition window comes up, i.e., BEFORE the user has already hit "Reply." Having the user "Reply" before any of this happens is the problem under consideration; it's what Mark wants to know if we think should change. 
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author. 

It's dumb to buy smart water.


 

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.
The main difference between yours and mine is that I'd use radio buttons for "Group" or "Sender (display name) offlist" rather than a toggle button. I think mine is less mysterious. And I'd place mine on a line of its own rather than off to the right (either between the compose box and the "Send" & "Discard" buttons, or above the Subject line).

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

Not to derail this discussion, but recall that the group Reply To option includes "Moderators".

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

c) not "feel" email-y and not show actual email addresses
Mine would feel a bit more email-y, particularly if the option were put above the subject line, but wouldn't show addresses.

I feel that showing the display name of the "replyee" (why isn't that a word?) would help make the function clearer. I also prefer the term "Offlist" to "Private", as the word "private" carries a lot of baggage.

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"
I wouldn't have a "Group" button at all - just "Send" (I don't like "Reply" here, you've already clicked "Reply", the action here is to send your reply).

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

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.
Ditto.


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


ro-esp
 

On Sat, Jul 2, 2016 at 10:50 am, J_catlady wrote:


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.
Wasn't that already standard netiquette for decades? Or do you mean it should be added automatically at group.io's end (seems logical..)

I mentioned before how I and others are frequently confused by thinking a
message was posted onlist when it was actually offlist, because the title
stays the same and gmail groups the whole thing together.
I've never understood why Gmail is so popular anyway. It mainly stands out in yahoogroups and similar services because it doesn't show you the messages that you sent yourself. IIRC groups.io by-passes that somehow

groetjes, Ronaldo


 

That's not what I see in your visual, but that's better. I'm out the door. Nice day.:-)

Sent from my iPhone

On Jul 3, 2016, at 8:53 AM, HR Tech via Groups.io <m.conway11@...> wrote:

I'm headed out too, but to clarify that 2nd visual:

- The floating bar would say reply to group OR private reply/reply to sender based on the default group preference. Only one choice would be on the floating bar and it would specify if it's group or private (not just "reply") because newbies sometimes are not aware of what the default group setting is. So no ambiguity there.

-The other non default option (group or sender) would be in the more menu (something suggested in one of the posts in this thread and an additional way of lessening mix-ups)

- You'd be forced to pick either the default reply (group or sender) OR the non-default option which you'd find in the "more" menu

- Once you've picked WHO your reply is going to then the compose window opens up

- You write and then click send

If you changed your mind midway, I imagine you'd have to click "discard" and select one of the reply options again.

Have a great day everyone.

Maria


--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author. 

It's dumb to buy smart water.


Maria
 

I'm headed out too, but to clarify that 2nd visual:

- The floating bar would say reply to group OR private reply/reply to sender based on the default group preference. Only one choice would be on the floating bar and it would specify if it's group or private (not just "reply") because newbies sometimes are not aware of what the default group setting is. So no ambiguity there.

-The other non default option (group or sender) would be in the more menu (something suggested in one of the posts in this thread and an additional way of lessening mix-ups)

- You'd be forced to pick either the default reply (group or sender) OR the non-default option which you'd find in the "more" menu

- Once you've picked WHO your reply is going to then the compose window opens up

- You write and then click send

If you changed your mind midway, I imagine you'd have to click "discard" and select one of the reply options again.

Have a great day everyone.

Maria


 

p.s. I need to extricate myself from this and drag myself offline in general. I'm going for a hike now. :-)
--
J

Messages are the sole opinion of the author. 

It's dumb to buy smart water.