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Tidying up 'reply' and viewing reply thread

by jonnyfolk (Vicar)
on Sep 10, 2003 at 08:04 UTC ( #290335=monkdiscuss: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??

I wonder why there are two distinct 'reply' areas which apparently do the same thing.

I'm referring to 'Offer your reply' and 'Comment on'. Presumably there is/was a different purpose for the two areas but it's difficult for a lay person to see what that might be. The result I believe is confusing for people new to the site as the phrase 'Comment on' seems to imply (to me) that you wish to bring something to the attention of the 'powers that be' rather than 'reply' which, of course is self explanatory.

I wondered if there were other views/explanations on this and whether it might be worth changing 'Comment on' to 'Reply to' to clarify the issue. (This could be done at the same time as changing 'd/l code' to 'view code' to clarify that issue also (:)

While on the subject of 'reply', when I click 'reply' I would prefer to view the whole thread that has gone before rather than just the message that I am replying to. By this I mean that If I am replying to 'Re:Re:Blah Blooh' then above the reply box the Root Node and the reply 'Re:Blah Blooh' would both appear so that I can easily refer to them both in my reply. Currently if I need to do this I have to locate the root in a new window, which is quite time consuming.

Comment on Tidying up 'reply' and viewing reply thread
Re: Tidying up 'reply' and viewing reply thread
by Preceptor (Chaplain) on Sep 10, 2003 at 08:40 UTC
    Actually, when replying to a thread, where I want to read the whole thread, I've got in the habit of opening the 'reply' in a new window. (in IE, right click -> open in new window). Not perfect, but it works well enough.
    I've also been a little confused by the "Comment on" link. It seems that each time I'm away from PM for a while, I forget that it's a link, and so forget how to respond to a top level post.
Re: Tidying up 'reply' and viewing reply thread
by Anonymous Monk on Sep 10, 2003 at 09:07 UTC
    The only time you would see the phrase 'Offer your reply' is when you go directly to that superdoc, which is something you shouldn't do, so that's that. Same goes for 'Comment on'.

    The result I believe is confusing for people new to the site as the phrase 'Comment on' seems to imply (to me) that you wish to bring something to the attention of the 'powers that be' rather than 'reply' which, of course is self explanatory.
    WOW! That is just incorrect (there are no such implications).
    Presumably there is/was a different purpose for the two areas but it's difficult for a lay person to see what that might be.
    Huh? You click on the correct link to respond to what you wish to respond to, and that's that. All the other details are of no consequence.

    While on the subject of 'reply', when I click 'reply' I would prefer to view the whole thread that has gone before rather than just the message that I am replying to.
    When you wish to respond to a node, simply open the "comment on" (or "reply") link in a new window, while retaining your old one with the entire thread in it (low tech rules).
Re: Tidying up 'reply' and viewing reply thread
by rinceWind (Monsignor) on Sep 10, 2003 at 10:10 UTC
    jonnyfolk, It's interesting that you interpret "Comment on" to mean that you wish to bring something to the attention of the 'powers that be'.

    As far as I am aware, the wording was picked because PM is not just a discussion board. It includes other types of node, such as code, polls, etc. You can't really reply to a piece of code (well, I suppose you can if it's a CGI script ;). The wording "Comment on" is generic enough to cater for all node types - if you can think of something better, please suggest it.

    When it comes to the reply links, these only appear on notes, i.e. nodes which are themselves replies, for which replying always makes sense. If you go to one of these nodes (by clicking on the node title), you will find that the link you need to reply to this node is "Comment on ...".

    Hope this helps

    rinceWind]

    --
    I'm Not Just Another Perl Hacker

Re: Tidying up 'reply' and viewing reply thread
by dmitri (Curate) on Sep 10, 2003 at 22:46 UTC
    I agree with jonnyfolk's argument about Comment on vs. Reply. A node is a node is a node, but some are at the top of a discussion thread. Both 'comment on' and 'reply' do the same thing -- they create a node whose parent is the node user replied to.

    I say these links should have identical wording.

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