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Apprehension!

I realise you (EP) are doing your best to stay abreast of the requests of some members and perhaps of some other sites by introducing these changes. But it has reached the point where I turn on EP with a certain amount of apprehension.   What won't work this time?  What will have disappeared or been replaced this time?  If something has disappeared, is that an "error", or an editorial decision????

It seems to me that EP has "beta" status.  I realise it is a HUGE undertaking and it may not be possible to trial your changes off site - I do not know enough about IT to be sure.  But if it is at ALL possible, could you trial changes elsewhere and iron out the bugs before introducing said changes to the site?

EP is a favourite site for me and I will continue to use it despite my discomfort or disappointment.  I hope this is not taken by EP as "carte blanche" to continue to disregard the comments of those of us who are less than happy with the outcomes. 

I do recognise that you cannot please all of the people all of the time.   And I also realise that some features may well need to be limited by the sheer compexity of your undertaking.   But it does seem to me that ad hoc changes usually without notice or explanation are seriously downgrading your product.

Have you considered surveying the users about the many issues that are raised here?  It may take a little while to compile such a survey - and equally it may take time for people to respond - but it might give you (and us!) a more equitable and objective overview of your site changes.

If (for example) 80% of respondents are unhapppy with certain issues, surely that warrants serious consideration?  Equally, if we see that we are one of just 3% who are concerned about something, we can see that we are in the minority and thus will need to accept the situation.

There will ALWAYS be those who complain!  And I for one do not wish to be a "complainer" about a site which is both a wonderful concept and an agent of good things in my life.  But I too join with those who are frustrated by the arbitary and often hard to understand changes that occur - usually with no notification.

Arsineh deserves a medal IMO!  But it should not be down to one person to personally respond to all the complaints!!  If I was in your management team I would be wondering just how much more she can take before having her own psychological melt down!!! 

The friendly and personal approach to problems (having one person respond) is both a strength and a weakness of your site.  It is a strength in that Arsineh is exactly theright person for the job - and gives a great deal of compassion and support to the complaints and comments.  But it is a weakness in that a single person's comments are no longer sufficient, IMO, for addressing these situations.

I believe you need an adjunct which is impersonal and objective.  It could list the complaints and what you are doing - or not doing - about it.   It would be ideal if it was searchable - then you might not have to respond to every single complaint or comment.

For example:  I and many others have noted the absence of "like" comments on our own posts.  I suspect Arsineh has responded to this somewhere, but unless I trawl through dozens of stories and posts I cannot know what you are doing about it.   If you included a "complaints Register" such as I have suggested above, I could simply check that and see what is happening.
Is it an editorial decision?  Is it a malfunction?  What is happening??

EP, you do a GREAT job.  And I am a very ardent supporter.  But please don't forget that you are succssful because of all of us.   And we REALLY want some clear and objective action AND notification about the issues raised.

Please give Arsineh the holiday she deserves and addressthese issues in a more objective and organised way.  Then, when she s duly rested and restored, please let us have Arsineh's supportive and helpful comments AS WELL!!   Thanks for considering my suggestions.
enna30 enna30 56-60, F 7 Responses Jun 23, 2012

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I fourth the problems with the hoovering/hovering for the likes feature. Please just put that back the way it was. I can't see how many people have liked a comment or who they were. I can see how many people liked someone else's comment but not my own. That seems backwards.

Exactly! And hovering / hoovering (whatever!!) produces NO results.

Ah, you didn't read it closely enough. You're supposed to be hoovering over the comment.

ROFL!! Where did I put my vacuum cleaner . . . ???

I've tried that hovering the mouse over the comment.

It doesn't do anything.

Yep. Nothing for me either.

yea it doesnt work that hovering thing

Thanks Enna for sharing this post and expressing your concern. It means a lot!



I didn't have a chance to reply to your post until now and that's because I could see the time you spent to craft this thoughtful post and I wanted to take the same time to think through your suggestions.



I can assure you that our members and their best interests are at the heart of all the changes we make. We are trying to make this place more enjoyable and easier to use and navigate. Now, we're only human, and though we may have the best of intentions we do make mistakes. That's why we rely on the community to share their feedback, so we can make things right.



We understand how much EP means to our members and do our best to communicating upcoming changes and collect feedback at various stages before changes are rolled out across the site. A couple months ago, we introduced a beta testing feature. Any member can now visit their account settings to see a list of existing beta tests and opt in to these tests as they choose. It gives members a way to get a sneak peek at features/changes during their very early stages of development. These members can then provide meaningful feedback that will significantly impact how these features/changes are shaped. I encourage you to take on this influential role by beta testing new features in the future.



Once we've tested and decide to roll out a feature for testing on EP, we do our best to communicate the changes that are coming so that our members are prepared and ready to offer their feedback so we can refine the feature further and fix any outstanding bugs that may have slipped through.



What's clear to me from your post is that, we're not doing a great job communicating with our members. Though we'll post stories, profile announcements, place banners on the header and more--we're not reaching all our members. This is a challenge that I've been working hard to address. I'm working with our developers to consolidated the sections of the site where we place announcements so that all our members are better informed of announcements and site-wide changes, and have one central place to visit for the most up-to-date info. In addition, we want to be sure that the feedback our members are providing, which often gets posted across the site in various sections, reaches us. So we'll be working on making the appropriate channels for offering feedback more clear.



As for the comment likes you've seen dropped you should be able to view those likes and all the old options that appeared by hoovering over a comment, on a story page. A number of members have also had trouble finding this and that tells me it's not intuitive the way we have it, so we are going to sit down with our developers to fix this and make sure the likes on your comments are easily accessible.



I hope this addresses some of your concerns. I know we have a long way to go, but I can assure you we're working hard to make sure that EP moves in the right direction and remains a positive space for our members and a BIG part of making that happen is listening to our members, every step along the way. In the next couple months you'll see the communication channels between staff and members improve!

I went and did the hoovering thing too, and hovered... lol... still nothing. I did get my comment, which has a pink background on my screen to highlight itself in bright yellow... a rather nauseating experience, but still no sign of likes or a reply button or anything else.

I know that EP is not the only site or program that does this hiding til you happen to glide over the spot where it exists, but just what is the point in this whole "stealth" thing, and stuff wearing a cloak of invisibility? Why on earth would you want to make stuff invisible until one just happens to be waving the mouse around in frustration and thereby have it reluctantly show itself?

I hate to complain, and appreciate that EP is free... EP saved my life... but I do like to be able to see who liked my comment without having to parse through the list...

...and many, many thanks for a wonderful site...

Thanks Enna...well said as always. I am also mourning the loss of being able to see who "liked" a comment of mine. I always considered it a great way to notice people who share your opinions, and therefore might be of value as friends.

Good story.

I think ep has changed many lives for the better and has profoundly impacted the path some of us have taken. I would guess....it has created a forum which has literally saved lives. I am all for site improvements and I want all ep supporters and those who work behind the scenes to know....you are doing something that is changing the world. :-)