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Read threads vs. unread threads

The lack of visual contrast between read and unread threads (in desktop view) is still an issue. I know that folks have brought this up in the larger "feedback" threads about the redesign, but I don't think there's an independent thread about it. After a week of reading CH on my tablet and phone, I'm back on the desktop and having a terrible time distinguishing threads I've read from those with new posts. PLEASE make sure that this is on the list to correct. Thanks!

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  1. Agreed. It would make a big difference.

    1. What Allstonian said. I think the read threads are a hair darker since the change has happened but it's still extremely difficult to discern the difference on a desktop.

      Is there a reason why the powers that be choose to not use the color gradations before this latest update? That was so much easier to differentiate between the read and unread threads. Some clarification would be helpful and appreciated.

      1. Registering my disappointment with the "lack of visual contrast".

        1. Thanks for the feedback guys.

          With the bold font for unread posts, as well as the color change for the name of the poster, we feel like there's a lot of contrast between read and unread posts aside from the background color, but we'll keep this in mind for the future.

          7 Replies
          1. re: patsully

            In other words, "Who are you going to believe? Me or your lying eyes?" :-)

            I know you folks have a lot of stuff on your plate but when you get a change please restore the old color scheme to distinguish read from unread threads. It worked fine - no one ever complained about it.

            1. re: patsully

              "we feel like there's a lot of contrast...."

              So yet again, it's a case of "we're going to do what we want and whatever the users say doesn't matter." :-/

              patsully, I'm not sure if you were around the last time the site went through a major overhaul, but the contrast (or should I say the lack thereof) was a HUGE issue back then....not everyone has 20/20 vision. Your users' age range varies a LOT - and with that age range comes varying degrees of ability to see. Sharpening up and making more distinctive the gradient range in the grays helps everyone - including those young'uns who will start to strain their eyes.

              1. re: LindaWhit

                Thanks for chiming in, LindaWhit. I've been trying to formulate a response to patsully's comment, but "we feel like there's a lot of contrast...." feels like a slap in the face and I've been too upset by that to be able to argue the point coherently.

                For the record, the "bold font" for unread posts is NOT as distinct from the read-posts font (which, to me, also appears to be bold) as the designers seem to believe it is.

                1. re: Allstonian

                  I so glad Both of you responded because the only reply I came up with was "once again we get stuffed."

                  1. re: Gio

                    And not in a tasty Chowhoundish way, Gio.

                    1. re: LindaWhit

                      No, not in the Chowhound way, in the British way.

                  2. re: Allstonian

                    Part of the issue is the tendency of so many websites (including CH) to now use a medium gray font text vs. black, or at least a DARK charcoal grey-black to allow for greater contrast.

                    So we're left with a pale whitish-grey background upon which a medium-gray text is overlaid, with pale gray "side bars" when viewing your own profile or within a thread, making everything more difficult to read. Pale-on-pale just fades away and eye strain (and frustration) becomes more prevalent.

              2. +1. It was something I frequently asked about as a beta tester. No reply was ever given, that I can recall.

                1. Where are y'all having this problem? I find the color difference fine and then there's the bold vs. not. I'm on my Samsung Chromebook which is pretty small.

                  14 Replies
                  1. re: c oliver

                    See my original post. Things look fine on Android phone and tablet. On my desktop it's very difficult to see the difference between read and unread threads.

                    1. re: Allstonian

                      Well, I just went to CH on my husband's HUGE laptop and don't see a problem. Does that count as a desktop?

                      1. re: Allstonian

                        Could you add a screenshot of a Board page displaying both read and unread items so that I can see how your view differs from what I've added here?

                        If there are any viewability issues specific to a particular operating system, browser, or device, we definitely want to improve on it.

                        1. re: patsully

                          pat, that's exactly how mine looks.

                          1. re: patsully

                            Here's what I'm seeing. Weirdly enough, in the screenshot there is more contrast than my tired old eyes are actually seeing on the screen. Unfortunately, I don't know of any way to provide a screenshot of my visual perception, but please take my word that the distinction is hard for me to see, and that the "non-bold" font doesn't look significantly less bold than the bold font.

                            1. re: Allstonian

                              On my laptop screen I find the amount of contrast changes depending on the viewing angle. From straight on the previously viewed threads are greyed out and easy to identify. But if I view the screen from a higher angle (think sitting up straighter in a chair) the background changes from gray to white like the unread threads. The thread title, however, still isn't in bold print like the unread threads which is a good thing.

                              In the past there were two things that identified previously read threads - the gray background and the un-bolded title. Now one of them has been compromised.

                              This isn't the biggest issue in the world but the previous settings worked fine - no one ever complained about them. The new design works less well.

                              1. re: Bob Martinez

                                Wait - you're seeing a difference in *background* color between read and unread threads on a board page? I am DEFINITELY not seeing that at all, and I don't seen any such in either of the screenshots. I am only seeing subtle differences in the type.

                                1. re: Allstonian

                                  Thanks guys, to wrap this up, the screenshot you added looks correct. If there's no perceptible difference in background color, your monitor settings may need some adjustment. You should see a grayed out background, post type icon, and fonts for all read threads.

                                  We'll continue to keep an eye on feedback here, but don't plan to make any changes in the short term.

                                  1. re: Allstonian

                                    Yep. The grey background morphs to near white white when I tilt my screen back.

                                    You wouldn't see this in the screenshots since, by definition, they reflect a viewing straight on viewing angle.

                                    I'm giving up now and will let some other people weigh in.

                                    1. re: Bob Martinez

                                      I recently fell and hit my head really, really hard. After a short 'recuperation' it only hurt when I toughed the spot. So I didn't touch that spot :) I'd say if you get in certain not straight on positions and that's when it causes the problem...then don't do that :)

                                      1. re: c oliver

                                        You know what's really funny?

                                        You could say the same thing about the blue hearts and the Q&A thread format.

                                      2. re: Bob Martinez

                                        I thought about weighing in (again), but what's the point? I, and other hounds have made the point, numerous times and on numerous threads. The powers that be aren't going to make the change. The thing that really bothers me about it is that there were no complaints about the last color scheme whereas there are numerous complaints, especially about visibility, about this one. It would bring back a modicum of good will and really, costs Chow absolutely nothing.

                                        1. re: beetlebug

                                          We're looking like FB more and more.

                          2. I actually see the difference more on my laptop than on my iPad, where it's very difficult to distinguish. I really wish there was more contrast.