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Photo Story

Introducing New Conversation Types

LOCKED DISCUSSION

(Note: We've started a new Feedback thread for further discussion of the new Conversation types: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/984015 )

Tens of thousands of users visit the CHOW Community every day to talk, debate, and exchange ideas about great food, recipes, and restaurants. We have always offered a spot to start or join a discussion, and today we’re introducing three new post types to help inspire your conversations: Photo Stories, Q&A, and Links.

New: Post directly from the Community homepage

If you’re new to CHOW, we’d recommend you start on the Community homepage. There we’ve added a new module that will let you choose the post type you’d like to create. Simply fill in the required fields, add a photo if you have one, and select a board before you post. Now, for more about each post type...

Photo Stories: A Better Way to Post Photos on Chow

Photo Stories make it much easier to share multiple photos with the Community. With one photo or many, you can share your home cooking tips, a tasting menu, a clever cocktail creation, and more. Your photos are displayed in an easy-to-view list format, and can even be numbered for step-by-step creations.

Q&A: Ask a Question, Get an Answer

Q&A is designed for quick questions, with the best answers voted up by the Community. While many topics are a better fit for in-depth discussion, Q&A is aimed at delivering answers (either fact or opinion) in a timely fashion.

Link: Kick off the Conversation

Kicking off a conversation with a link is very popular on Chowhound. This feature makes it easier to share great recipes, articles, and content from other sources. It will automatically pull in titles and descriptions from the shared link and render them in a beautiful way that will make the reader want to know more about the shared content.

New: Improved Reply Design + Longer Edit Window

As you dive into the replies on any post, you’ll notice some changes. First, we’ve moved the Recommend action to the right side of each reply, simplifying it to a heart icon. Next, you’ll now find the permanent link to any reply by clicking on the post timestamp. Finally, we’ve extended the window for editing the initial post when you have started a new topic. Discussions, Photo Stories, and Links can now be edited for up to 24 hours. Q&A posts can be edited as long as needed to allow you to clarify your question.

  1. The heart is dreadful. Was it drawn using a pen with a fuzzy, pink cap? Maybe copied from some tween girl's ankle tattoo?

    69 Replies
    1. re: MGZ

      +1(I refuse to use the heart)

      1. re: masha

        Too much commitment for me! I like plenty of things but *heart* them? Nope.

        1. re: tcamp

          +1

          lol, well at least I didn't heart it.

      2. re: MGZ

        My problem with the heart is that my cursor didn't change when I hovered over it. I wasn't sure if it was clickable or not until I tried.

        I wanted to "Like" a couple of posts but couldn't figure out how until I just tried clicking randomly on the heart.

        1. re: jbsiegel

          Thanks for the feedback. We're seeing this issue as well and hope to have a fix shortly so that it's clear you can click the heart to recommend any reply.

          1. re: patsully

            We don't want to click on the heart to signify "recommend." The issue is NOT that the purpose of the heart needs clarification but that we object such a juvenile symbol. (At least I do.) What's wrong with words?

            1. re: masha

              I would recommend this if I could!

              All the hearts make me feel as though I've stumbled upon a pre-teen site.

              1. re: meatn3

                I'm using the goddamned silly tween heart just to avoid replying with a "yeah, what masha said!"

                Was "recommend" really that difficult to comprehend?

                1. re: gaffk

                  I would go with "Like" over "Recommend." There are times when I want to "Like" something that's funny when recommend sounds kind of odd. Recommend is great, though, if I want to "ditto what she said."

                  1. re: jbsiegel

                    I always figured that if "Like" works for FB, why couldn't CH use the same. But the heart? I used it during testing but I think I just decided to go back to typing +1.

                          1. re: c oliver

                            +1 i'm just too old to use a heart.....

                                1. re: c oliver

                                  Hahaha! Hardly.... 21 was quite a while back now...

                            1. re: meatn3

                              I'm using +1 until the site returns to a format consistent with adult conversation.

                                1. re: masha

                                  You will probably be forever +1-ing then.

                                  1. re: masha

                                    I can no longer get that to work. So I'll just have to take the time to writ plus one. No problem.

                                  2. re: masha

                                    I am OK with the heart, but I'd also like an icon to register the opposite -- i.e. my dislike of a post. Maybe a club?

                                        1. re: c oliver

                                          How about thumbs up and thumbs down. Oh wait-that makes too much sense.

                                          A broken heart?

                                          1. re: foodieX2

                                            Thumbs up and thumbs down -- that would be perfect!

                                              1. re: drongo

                                                That would offend people and we can't have that. Kinda like the mega retail store I work for no longer does the PA, "We will be closing in 10 minutes, please take your purchases to the registers, (so people can be home with their families, get the hell out and don't linger for an hour.) Sorry for the vent, but we can't run the risk of offending people. I hate the new format, by the way.

                                      1. re: masha

                                        We need the chow version of the little man:

                                        http://austinkleon.com/2008/09/19/the...

                                        What would that be? A big tip? :)

                                        ~TDQ

                                  3. re: MGZ

                                    AND it's a pixelhunt to click it. Make it a button!

                                    1. re: MGZ

                                      This is something that those of us that got to play in this new playground early on said we didn't like, MGZ. As masha said below, it seems very juvenile and unnecessary for this site. OK - they don't want a Looooooooongggggg word like "Recommend" - then use a four-letter word such as "Like".

                                      The dislike of the blue heart was never really addressed by the CHOW Staff. So it was being done regardless of those of us who said the general population would probably think the same as what we initially thought - It's Juvenile.

                                      But obviously, someone at CHOW thought Juvenile was the way to go. :::shrug:::

                                            1. re: MGZ

                                              I'd be willing to live with the heart button IF it also came with an "ignore" button! ♥♥♥♥

                                              1. re: MGZ

                                                Here's all I have to say.

                                                 
                                                1. re: MGZ

                                                  Is it just me or has the heart disappeared?

                                                    1. re: jackiecat

                                                      I see it but you have to have your cursor in the right place.

                                                      1. re: jackiecat

                                                        You have to hover on the right side of a post for it to show up. Last I knew, they were going to have an unfilled in heart always showing with a 0 or a number next to it to show you if anyone had recommended it.

                                                        That now seems to be gone unless someone has recommended it. When YOU recommend it, it fills in solid blue.

                                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                                            I'm not complaining! Now I just see a number instead of a heart. Must be the way I have my browser configured. I wish I could tell you how to do it.

                                                          2. re: jackiecat

                                                            The heart should appear whenever you hover over a person's reply.

                                                            1. re: jtieu

                                                              On an iPad it shows up all the time.

                                                              1. re: jgg13

                                                                I guess you can say I was assuming jackiecat was on desktop. I don't have an iPad personally so didn't check it out there.

                                                                1. re: jtieu

                                                                  I was wondering WTH you all were on about the hearts not showing up until I was on an actual computer later on.

                                                          3. re: MGZ

                                                            How is a macho guy like me going to click on a freakin heart? I mean really, who's idea was this? A heart.....why not a kitten or puppy?

                                                            1. re: genoO

                                                              Can't it at least be food-centric? You know, something we'd eat, like a chicken or cow heart.

                                                              On the upside, at least we all now know that the guy who came up with the idea for New Coke finally found work again.

                                                              1. re: MGZ

                                                                It's especially for strange for a site that is so anti emoticons because they are too juvenile.

                                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                                    +1 to your +1 of the New Coke reference.

                                                                  2. re: MGZ

                                                                    now it begins to make sense!

                                                                1. re: MGZ

                                                                  They should give us a choice. Hearts, Diamonds, Spades or Clubs. ;-).

                                                                  1. re: MGZ

                                                                    It's also near impossible to click the heart on mobile

                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                      yes and now the mobile site is even more cluttered since you can't click on the heart to see who "hearted", it's now an extra blue line under the post. Even so it only shows a few names, not all and I have yet to figure out how to expand it.

                                                                      1. re: foodieX2

                                                                        Yes, that as well. Perhaps it's my fat fingers, but I gave up on clicking that heart on mobile :)

                                                                      2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                        It's not the easiest thing on a PC.

                                                                    2. I find the icons on the right hand side to be a bit distracting. It makes the page look busy and cluttered. The previous set up was streamlined and clean looking.

                                                                      18 Replies
                                                                      1. re: beetlebug

                                                                        Also, do users really care if it's a discussion or a photo story? Can't you also link multiple pics if you click on discussion?

                                                                        On a related note, what's the likelihood of people actually clicking on the correct link for discussion, Q&A etc. Esp. given the other site talk discussion about have you heard of google (or whatever it's called).

                                                                        1. re: beetlebug

                                                                          I figure most posts will just end up being discussions. I definitely don't see myself figuring out the correct type of post before I type it.

                                                                          1. re: jbsiegel

                                                                            And, if you use the ? format there is no opportunity for threaded, internal replies. So, for example, OP posits a ? thread of "What restaurants do you recommend for my anticipated visit to your City?" Reply #3 proposes a restaurant that has closed, has a new chef, or for some other reason may be a poor recommendation. 15 more replies are posted, and then a CH wants to comment on reply #3 but, instead of replying immediately below Reply #3, will have to post a reply that appears at the end (past reply #18, or whatever). Very inconvenient, especially for threads that are long, or that get revived -- e.g., a year later a CH reopens the post and wants specific feedback as to how the new chef is doing at that restaurant. Seems like a real regression to me.

                                                                            1. re: beetlebug

                                                                              Yes, discussions can also include up to 10 pictures within a 10 MB limit.

                                                                              If you stick to Discussions when you create a thread, you're good to go, IMO.

                                                                            2. re: beetlebug

                                                                              I completely agree with this. I refuse to use the badly drawn heart either.

                                                                                1. re: beetlebug

                                                                                  Also, the color gradation between read and unread is a bit too close in shades. Maybe darken the "read" thread again (to whatever you had it set before this change).

                                                                                  Also, the color of the icon is too dark and too close to the thread title. I think that may be my problem in reading the thread title. My eye just blurs right over it. Furthermore, the little blue dot seems too small now. Or it could be that the discussion icon is too close to it.

                                                                                  To summarize my observations:

                                                                                  Darken the grey if you've read the thread.

                                                                                  Lighten the icon.

                                                                                  Either make the blue dot either bigger or darker OR shift the whole title over so it isn't that close to the icon.

                                                                                  Thanks.

                                                                                  1. re: beetlebug

                                                                                    This, need more contrast!

                                                                                    1. re: beetlebug

                                                                                      "Also, the color gradation between read and unread is a bit too close in shades. Maybe darken the "read" thread again (to whatever you had it set before this change)."
                                                                                      ~~~~~~~~~~~~

                                                                                      I had noted this in the previews, beetlebug. Again - never addressed. Nor changed.

                                                                                      1. re: beetlebug

                                                                                        +1 . . .

                                                                                        Adding the ellipses since now, if I just type +1 I get a message saying I have to add text to the message or I can't post. Passive/aggressive way of getting us to stop posting +1?

                                                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                                                            Try adding a period and then a return. That seemsto work now.

                                                                                          2. re: beetlebug

                                                                                            Agreed, the page now looks cluttered.

                                                                                            The discussion icons steal attention from text and actual content. The eye doesn't know where to look.

                                                                                            So few threads are not discussions, so littering the page with them looks messy.

                                                                                            1. re: maria lorraine

                                                                                              Agree. And I'm glad to see one of my favorite "voices of reason" speaking up.

                                                                                          3. It seems like in a Question type post, you are unable to reply to a second level thread? True or am I missing something? If true, that seems problematic.

                                                                                            66 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: tcamp

                                                                                                I was going to link you up to the comments I made on the Q&A type during the Preview state that we had been told would be available for everyone to see once these went live. But it seems to have been deleted today.

                                                                                                  1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                                    Interesting. So any of the convo that has been had is (mostly) gone?

                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                      Hi, Linda, we did remove all of those threads about the preview so that they didn't confuse discussions about the full release. We do still have copies of them though so we can refer to them if needed, and if there's any particular comments of yours you'd like back, I can try to find them and email them to you.

                                                                                                      1. re: Jacquilynne

                                                                                                        Nope. However, why not just lock them, and add "BETA DISCUSSION" in the subject line, so at least people could read them, see the issues discussed, and then link back to them in a new thread if they're still having problems?

                                                                                                        ETA: You've really thrown the baby out with the bath water, Jacquilynne. You pretty much shit all over those of us who were beta testers. Doesn't feel very good being shat upon when we've been really effin' loyal to this site throughout all of the changes.

                                                                                                        1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                          Thanks Linda. Locking vs deleting.

                                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                            But then EVERYONE could see how much criticism was aimed at most of this. That will never do.

                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                Exactly. They'd rather have it be like a friend of mine checking out of a hotel in Falmouth, MA this weekend and discussing with the front desk about the lack of towels, soap, etc., and the person at the front desk saying "Everything's OK!" Ummm.....no. It *wasn't* OK.

                                                                                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                    To say nothing of all us plebians who would then be able to see who TPTB considered the "power users."

                                                                                                                    1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                      Plus one. That's really funny.

                                                                                                                        1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                          I was shocked, I tell ya. hahaha

                                                                                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                            JoanN, you're more than welcome to beta test the next roll out, if they invite you. Believe me, it's kind of frustrating to be seemingly ignored as well as realize after the fact that we were there for only technical testing. Any other "feedback", despite being asked to give it in the Emails sent, doesn't seem to have meant diddly squat about issues like the blue heart change, the lighter grey collapsed thread, etc.

                                                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                              El, that's the frustrating and I guess insulting part. If they'd just said that they were doing this no matter what but would like us to check it out for any technical errors, that would have been just fine. But for these weeks, we foolishly thought our was going to generate results. Glad I opted out of the tee shirt :(

                                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                Seems to me they were pretty smart about the whole thing. Take the loudest critics and treat them to a "preview." Give them a few weeks to shout about the changes, until the complaining dwindles to a trickle. Then unleash the beast to everyone else. Those who participated in the preview are made to feel as if they were a tiny bit complicit in the changes, though that is far from the truth. This brings the loudmouth contingent's whining down to a manageable level. Of course, if I actually believed this I'd be a paranoid lunatic... or would I?

                                                                                                                                  1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                    No, I don't feel as if I was complicit in the changes. I feel duped.

                                                                                                                                    AND I'm still a loudmouth contingent, even if just a contingent of one. :-)

                                                                                                                                        1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                          Awwww, geez you two! ::::scuffing my toe in the sand::::

                                                                                                                                          1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                            I'll see your +1000 and raise you a +100,000.

                                                                                                                                          2. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                            I'm actually surprised I haven't garnered a suspension during this process and especially yesterday.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                              Maybe there is the chow equivalent of Rumspringa in place for the new few days.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                                If it's got rum, I'm SO there, tcamp.

                                                                                                                                                Just not with the New Coke (a.k.a. blue heart) guy.

                                                                                                                              2. re: Jacquilynne

                                                                                                                                Thanks, J. Clearly I misunderstood during the Preview stage. I would have been much more pointed in my comments if I'd known that they would not see the light of day to a larger audience.

                                                                                                                                I think that the locking idea is a good one. Probably saves you the time of having to retrieve posts piecemeal too.

                                                                                                                                1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                                                                  +1

                                                                                                                                  J- if not restored/locked I would like a copy of all my replies, thanks

                                                                                                                                  Oops just saw the other post, thank you

                                                                                                                            2. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                                                              I can not believe how really, truly angry I am that the preview threads have been deleted. Those threads show how hard we preview users fought to be heard on the non-threaded Q&A format as well as the damned heart replacing "recommend."

                                                                                                                              I feel like my hands have been tied behind my back and I've been slapped. Hard.

                                                                                                                              1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                So I guess you'll be very motivated to put in that hard work to beta test the next CH update?

                                                                                                                                Unless, of course, you were phenomenally compensated for that work.

                                                                                                                                1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                  I feel the exact same way. Sorry I ever participated and I don't even want a damn tee shirt!

                                                                                                                                  1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                    Yes, I've been saying that very same thing. I don't like to admit that I hate what's being done now, but I feel They've been deceitful.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                      Hi, Mary (and others who've posted about this issue)

                                                                                                                                      I'm really sorry for upsetting you. Our intention in removing the Preview threads was to keep things as simple as possible for people who were coming to Site Talk to talk about these things for the first time after the general launch. We didn't want them to be confused by dozens of threads about the changes, even if they were locked.

                                                                                                                                      But it's obvious from the responses here that I didn't think hard enough about how the users who participated in the Preview would feel about that.

                                                                                                                                      There were two long threads discussing the Preview, and I've put those back in a locked state.

                                                                                                                                      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/980179
                                                                                                                                      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/981312

                                                                                                                                      There were some smaller test posts and side discussions, that I'd still prefer not to put back to keep from overwhelming people who are coming to give feedback on the new types for the first time. I think the two main threads do cover the same issues that were talked about in those other threads.

                                                                                                                                      I hope that helps, and again, I'm really sorry to have upset people by removing those discussions.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: Jacquilynne

                                                                                                                                          But… the articles for which I used the LINK format -
                                                                                                                                          I wanted Full Hound Discussion!!!!!

                                                                                                                                            1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                                                              The food-related stuff should still be there, it was just the Site Talk stuff about the preview that we took down.

                                                                                                                                              There was one post that you made that was a link to an Atlantic story about Doritos Locos Tacos, but that looked it was just you making a test post, so we did remove that. This was the link: http://m.theatlantic.com/technology/a... If you wanted to post that again on Food Media and News, that would be great!

                                                                                                                                              Was that the one you're asking about or was it something else?

                                                                                                                                        2. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                          I agree, that's a problem.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                            This is correct. It's a new format allowing you to ask a question and see answers from the Community. Those answers can voted up by others to determine the best response.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: patsully

                                                                                                                                              I sincerely hope posters select discussion rather than question. I visited a thread asking cone or cup for ice cream and wanted to respond to a response and could not.

                                                                                                                                              I could understand a discussion of cup vs cone (and types of cones, etc). But what is the purpose of voting for a cone or a cup in a binary style?

                                                                                                                                                1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                                                  That was me, trying to see if that sort of application might be a good use of Q&A. It's silly and fluffy and not a real in-depth discussion. Worlds and minds will not be changed with that sort of thread, but I was curious to find out if there was a bias one way or another, and this seemed like a fun way to find out. As the thread stands right now, it's a pretty good example of how people will need to get used to this "upvote instead of post your answer" concept.

                                                                                                                                                2. re: patsully

                                                                                                                                                  Why is there such a fixation on the voting up/down ability?

                                                                                                                                                  IMO it just dumbs down the site. This insistence on trying to turn information into a popularity contest is just juvenile and does nothing to improve the site.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                    Juvenile. That can also explain the heart we were discussing upthread. Perhaps Chow has some highschoolers in as interns for the summer?

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                      Those of us who participated in the best made the same point regarding juvenile. We were never replied to.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                        THIS!

                                                                                                                                                        Why is this now middle school? Hearts and clickvotes? Really? I wasn't into hearts and popularity contests when I WAS in middle school. I have zero tolerance for it now!

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: JMF

                                                                                                                                                              you beat me to it -- I was going to start using that, too!

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                                            +1. My point above. Had not read far enough down.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                                              Q&A won't work for me the way it is set up. You can't tell who up voted a reply and I place a greater value on responses from Hounds I've grown to trust or who have tastes that match mine.

                                                                                                                                                              Also, are non-members allowed to up vote the way non-members were able to down vote on the Quests board?

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: jackiecat

                                                                                                                                                                jackiecat - in reply to your second question, yes - non-Chowhound members can upvote.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks Linda,
                                                                                                                                                                  That tells me all I needed to know about trusting the votes.

                                                                                                                                                                2. re: jackiecat

                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks for the feedback. We are are keeping track of votes coming from logged in users, so if you'd like us to make this visible, it's something we can work on in short order.

                                                                                                                                                                  We do allow logged out users to vote on Q&A posts, but we hope we'll be able to use this to entice more users to sign up in order to add their own answers, remove their vote, etc.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: patsully

                                                                                                                                                                    I appreciate what you're trying to accomplish here, but there must be some way you can do it without alienating your core users. Making voters names visible, even if some had to be labeled something akin to anonymous, would go a long way toward making this feature acceptable to those of us who care about who voted and how.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: patsully

                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks Pat,
                                                                                                                                                                          I understand what you are trying to accomplish. I've also seen what mischief is caused by anonymous internet users. See what happened with your Quest board where it seems that people down voted responses "just for fun".

                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: jackiecat

                                                                                                                                                                          urg.

                                                                                                                                                                          Do. Not. Like.

                                                                                                                                                                          I agree -- I want to know who cast the vote, and having the intarwebs at large means it's just intarweb polls.

                                                                                                                                                                        3. The Q&A teaser in the upper right hand corner inviting to answer the question does not work. Goes to error page.

                                                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks, we'll have a fix for this up shortly!

                                                                                                                                                                          2. The beta version layout is bulky and the icons don't really add much, to my mind--I don't really care about how a topic is categorized; I will read any with a subject line that intrigues. I agree with poster above that the more streamlined prior version is preferable.

                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply