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Text disappears in a long thread

I wish I could add an image to my post - I could show you what happens when I view a long thread (anything with more than 20 or so posts).

Basically, some or all the text disappears from a few of the posts (usually short ones, but that could be coincidence). I see a blank spot that's the same length as the post would be if the text were there. Sometimes, half of a line is displayed - usually, the top half of all the letters in the line. Very odd.

This weirdness usually happens "below the fold" - that is, when I scroll down to see past the first screen, one or more posts just under the originally-displayed portion of the page are likely to be blanked out. Scrolling up or down again doesn't fix the problem.

I've discovered that if I mouse over the blank post (as if I were copying the text), I can sometimes see the text as it becomes highlighted. But it kinda blinks in and out, depending on the mouse position. I can't ever view the entire post and the poster's name.

I'm guessing that there's some sort of complicated programmatic stuff going on with indented or long posts, and it's just not working for me and my browser.

FYI, I use an older computer running Windows 2000 (too busy to upgrade) and IE 6.0 (ditto). But it's not *that* old! I'll bet I'm not the only one with an aged setup...


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  1. Happens to me too. Win XP/IE 6, absolutely up to date.

    1 Reply
    1. re: meatme

      Whew! I'm glad I'm not the only one this happens to. I was beginning to wonder if my mind was going...


    2. Happens to me as well ... If I highlight (and copy) the post, then the entire post disappears. If I paste what I've highlighted onto a blank word document, I think I get the whole post.

      Any solutions?

      1. Bump.

        This problem came up in another thread today about a separate topic.


        Have the developers ever acknowledged this one?

        3 Replies
        1. re: meatme

          No acknowledgement yet, as far as I know. But this problem is really annoying!


          1. re: meatme

            Please don't assume that because Chowhound Engineering hasn't responded in a thread that they haven't read it. Bugs like this are hard to track down, especially if they're unable to duplicate that you're describing themselves.

            Can you provide more information on the issue? Is there a threshhold number of posts where the problem starts? Does it happen only if you start scrolling before the page finishes loading?

            1. re: The Chowhound Team

              I've noticed that problem as well - in seems to happen in threads that end up with level four/five posts (I'll check that) - it certainly is not a function of scrolling before the page finishes loading, but I find that I can "make" the blank post come back by scrolling up and down. One thread where it is definitely happening is in the HC board post about keeping track of recipes.

              Here's an example that I just found - http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/... (now that I know that I can link to a post - smile) - shows up blank.

          2. This happens in Firefox 1.0.4 and Windows XP as well.

            1. It happens constantly and randomly on long, nested threads. Here's my browser info:

              IE 6.0.2900.2180.xpsp_sp2_gdr.050301-1519

              It also happens in Firefox's latest version. It just happened to me--here's a blow by blow account of how it happened. I went to this thread:


              As it was loading there were blank posts that eventually filled in. After the page loaded completely, I started scrolling down to my post that lists my browser version. I copied the text with my browser version (at least I thought I did). I made the window with this post active.


              I tried to paste, but it didn't work (the "c" key on my computer is a little tempermental. I clicked back on the other thread's window to cut and paste again:

              and specifically this post

              Nested posts that were showing up previously were now blank or partially blank (missing the last few sentences). I can get this problem to repeat (to some degree) every time that I go back and forth when I am looking at the posts around this one:


              Going back and forth between windows isn't the only way that this problem manifests itself. It is very persistent in long threads with with nesting. The only way to get the posts to show up is to highlight them or scroll back and forth until the problem goes away (but then other posts may disappear).

              Given how much scrolling is necessary to navigate threads now, it is very, very frustrating.

              1. Thanks, The Chowhound Team, for responding to this thread! I know the Chowhound Engineers are really busy, but a response is really helpful - and encouraging.

                I've done some more investigating on when this disappearing-text problem occurs.

                As MMRuth said, it seems to happen with only level 4 or level 5 posts. It usually happens after I've scrolled down at least 3 or 4 screens, which is probably why I haven't seen it on shorter threads. (My browser window is tall and narrow.)

                Here are a few of the threads where I've noticed the problem:

                http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/... (a group of four level-five posts; the first, second, and fourth are missing
                http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/... (lots of missing text in this one

                And here are some that do NOT have the disappearing-text problem, at least for me:


                Some additional information:

                - I know that the page is fully loaded before I start scrolling, because my browser freezes until the page completes loading.

                - It gets worse when I bookmark the URL (using the IE Favorites dialog). After I close the IE Favorites dialog, the browser doesn't redraw the text that was under the dialog window.

                ===>>> However, I have discovered a work-around for this problem. <<<===

                I have learned that I can make the text reappear by changing how I scroll through the page.

                Normally, I scroll a long page by clicking underneath the "active" scroll bar (that is, in the blank space underneath the darker part of the vertical scrolling bar in my browser window - I don't know the official name of this thingie). When I scroll this way, it's almost certain that a long thread with level-5 posts will have text missing.

                If I scroll by clicking-and-dragging the scroll bar, the problem goes away and all the text is visible. (That is, I click-and-hold the dark part of the scroll bar, and drag it down little by little.) This hurts my wrist and makes my finger really sore, so I don't do it very often. But it *is* a work-around for viewing the missing text.

                Thanks for investigating this problem! Here's hoping for a quick and easy fix (oh, if only...