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User should be able to edit posts #1762

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Yajo opened this issue Aug 12, 2011 · 128 comments
Open

User should be able to edit posts #1762

Yajo opened this issue Aug 12, 2011 · 128 comments

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@Yajo
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@Yajo Yajo commented Aug 12, 2011

Sometimes you write a post and after posting you realize that it has some error, or that you posted it into the wrong aspects.

I think there should be an 'edit' option for both cases, so you don't have to delete and rewrite or reshare it to another aspect.

@ghost
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@ghost ghost commented Sep 1, 2011

+1

@Nygu
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@Nygu Nygu commented Sep 3, 2011

This is a very common request among new users and should be implemented. Freedom and user rights!

Also, the ability to edit your comments.

@heavyboots
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@heavyboots heavyboots commented Sep 5, 2011

+1 Indeed.

A major reason for this is that a post with a lot of formatting can currently require a huge amount of work to delete and repost just to fix one small punctuation or spelling error. Very frustrating for the user.

@bdjnk
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@bdjnk bdjnk commented Sep 25, 2011

My two cents on how to implement post and comment editing sanely.

Obviously editing is desirable, but what about people breaking the conversation by changing something others have responded to in some way? Perhaps people who've commented, liked, or reshared should be notified and those who've reshared should have the option to update their reshare. In such a system notifications should only go out for significant changes, meaning more then just typo corrections. This could be defined as an amount of differences when compared but that would leave the system open to certain critical keyword changes though, like the word "not" or the prefix "un". If these keywords or prefixes are added or removed that could be monitored and also cause a major change notification. And if anyone felt like the notifications were too much there could always be an option to disable them.

I really would work on this myself but I'm starting school again shortly. No rest for the erudite.

@maxwell
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@maxwell maxwell commented Oct 7, 2011

I think for the current set of things (status messages) we will not support editing of posts. maybe if will pull in some "notes" functionality, but not for right now.

@maxwell maxwell closed this Oct 7, 2011
@danielgrippi danielgrippi reopened this Oct 12, 2011
@pravi
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@pravi pravi commented Oct 12, 2011

bdjnk, like in digg.com we can have a counter of say 60 seconds for editing, which covers the common use case of typos or wanting to change aspects.

@tanghus
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@tanghus tanghus commented Oct 12, 2011

Maybe just a preview perhaps reusing code from http://daringfireball.net/projects/markdown/dingus

@pravi
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@pravi pravi commented Oct 12, 2011

@Pistos
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@Pistos Pistos commented Oct 13, 2011

Here's an idea I discussed with sarahmei and others in IRC:

Have some delay before a message is actually posted. The amount of delay can be a setting someplace, either in the user settings, or server-side config. Instead of posting right away, enter the post in a queue. During this window of time, the user can edit his/her post to his/her heart's content. Once the delay is finished, actually do the posting. This way, the fears of the core devs are pretty much allayed (correct me if I'm wrong on that), and the users get an edit facility.

Implementation details are up in the air, and open for discussion. Say, a timestamp column on the posts table. post_by or whatever. Something to indicate that this post has or has not gone out yet. So, a not-yet-posted post is visible only to the author, and otherwise appears indistinguishable from a normal post, other than having an Edit button or link.

If the delay amount is put in the user settings, then users can choose how much delay they want, so people can choose to have their posts go out straight away, while others can elect to have a window of editability, at the cost of delayed posting.

You don't necessarily have to explain the mechanics of all this to non-techie users. For most intents and purposes, everything will feel the same, except they get a brilliant new Edit facility that they've been clamouring for since forever.

@KaiMartin
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@KaiMartin KaiMartin commented Oct 13, 2011

+1 to the idea of a limited time for editing.
How about a little more sophistication: Let the post appear to other users in the interim time but clearly mark it as "preliminary". That way, communication is not artificially delayed. But Bob knows that Alice may still apply some changes. Bonus points to let the user choose the length of this interval (within a reasonable range).

This would make me feel much more in control, both as an author and as a reader.

---<)kaimartin(>---

@Pistos
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@Pistos Pistos commented Oct 13, 2011

If it's already "somewhat out", then all the coding troubles are let into the bag. There needs to be only two states: "not out at all yet", and "fully out, no turning back".

Anyway, it could be a moot point. I've been talking with Daniel Grippi, and I have reason to believe full on editing may be coming sooner rather than later, and that the technical issues are not that big a deal because a lot of code is already in place.

@Libreman
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@Libreman Libreman commented Oct 13, 2011

The ability to edit posts/comments needs careful considerations - a lot of issues need to be considered.

For example I do not want posts that I already commented on to change, that opens the possibility that the thing I was commenting on is modified, put into different context etc. and then my comment would look out of place at best and completely ridiculous and/or silly at worst.

The solution to that issue would be to allow edits only if there are no comments on that post yet for example but that would defeat the purpose people are demanding it for to a large degree.

I found that I wanted to edit posts predominantly when I screwed up markdown syntax (very easy to do btw) so I would suggest implementing a different feature that could solve the source problem that keeps people requesting an edit feature - make Diaspora preview the post with markdown rendered for review before posting, that way people could catch most typos and markdown mistakes before they actually post them and the need for edit would largely diminish. Also it would allow those who do not want such an assistance to simply turn it off. So this is what I would propose as a relatively quick fix and we'll see whether edit will be still necessary after this ...

@Libreman
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@Libreman Libreman commented Oct 14, 2011

An issue dealing with preview function has been created here: #2108

@h6w
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@h6w h6w commented Oct 14, 2011

As a workaround in the meantime, just delete and create a new one. Copy and paste, people! :-D

One day D* will have all the good features of Google Wave, but not today.

@Libreman
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@Libreman Libreman commented Oct 14, 2011

yeah, that's the easiest solution ... I personally do not miss an edit feature, there is a reason it's not on FB and G+

but the problem with deleting it and posting again fixed right now is that you do not get to copy the markdown syntax so you need to actually replicate it again manually if you want it to look the same which is just a pain in the a$$, hard to say what the solution for that could be ... I'm for the preview feature and if people can not get the post right then - I think they need look for failure somewhere else than Diaspora itself instead of demanding an edit function ... like the cough_mirror_cough ;)

Just see how it is implemented here on github, you have "write" tab and a "preview" tab ... why not do the same for Diaspora with the ability to automatically switch to preview for review before posting? It sounds reasonable enough ...

@jacius
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@jacius jacius commented Oct 14, 2011

For the people that are concerned that a post could be edited later to make your comment look bad... consider that almost every blog, most forums, and many other kinds of web services allow the author to edit posts after they are published. It is almost never abused; mostly it is just used to correct errors or provide updates. For example, an article on CNN.com covering a protest might be updated several times a day with new info. It would be incredibly restrictive if they weren't allowed to do that once someone had posted a comment!

Even GitHub allows editing posts later. Someone on the Diaspora project could change this issue to say "Please add a button that murders kittens", and thus make @jeffkloy and @Nygu and @heavyboots seem to be in favor of kitten murder. But that would be a ridiculous and juvenile thing to do, and the person who changed the issue would lose credibility.

In other words, I think people are much too concerned about the possibility of posts being changed to make commentors look bad. That's a hypothetical problem that happens very rarely with existing, similar web services. But, being unable to fix or update your own post is a very real problem that many Diaspora users face every day. It causes a lot of frustration, and makes Diaspora a much less useful platform.

@heavyboots
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@heavyboots heavyboots commented Oct 15, 2011

Yep, this sums it up perfectly. Thanks @jacius for taking the time to write it up!

Some forum software posts a note that "This message has been edited on [timestamp]." if someone else has already commented after you try and edit your post, but I think that's the maximum extent that the devs might optionally go to in order to fix the post-comment editing issue.

@Libreman
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@Libreman Libreman commented Oct 16, 2011

The CNN example is not very good one because that's exactly why I'm wary of any edit feature in a first place, I'm aware of several instances that news organizations edited their article, sometimes without any notice, after a part of it was discovered to be controversial and going viral.

But Diaspora is a very different context too, someone being silly on Diaspora doesn't compare to a news organization doing the same, both in the impact or gravity. The problem comes when diaspora becomes a news source like Twitter, does Twitter allow for posts being edited?

I'm not categorically opposing an edit feature, just wondering whether it is really worth it. And if it should be implemented then at least some basic safeguards should be in place for it - be it in a form of time limit on edits, no edit after comment or even a versioning for posts (the ability to see the history of changes)

@Pistos
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@Pistos Pistos commented Oct 16, 2011

Versioning would be best as far as social safety is concerned, but that could get resource intensive.

@heavyboots
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@heavyboots heavyboots commented Oct 17, 2011

A simple Quote feature would probably serve the same functionality if it's not already there.

You think someone is likely to "take back" what they said, quote it in your comment. (Assuming comments aren't delete-able by OP, which I don't know about either.)

At the very least, I would say there needs to be the ability to preview what you are about to post with the markdown rendered and in the exact same width & colors that it will appear in the final version. For reasons unknown to me, I simply can't see some errors in a comment box that are immediately evident as soon as I hit Post and see it in "on the page", as it were.

@Yajo
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@Yajo Yajo commented Oct 17, 2011

Maybe with preview + quick syntax guide + delayed post, edition will not be needed. You can always un-say something using the comments...

@aestetix
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@aestetix aestetix commented Oct 19, 2011

I strongly support editing of posts. As someone who often writes rather long or controversial articles, I need the agency to be able to put in corrections, fix typos, and update news. It's much easier to be able to point people at a single article than at an initial attempt and a long string of corrections.

One way I'd suggest to work around very valid issues brought up (such as someone editing a post in response to a comment): allow any kind of editing for either a time period (maybe five minutes?) or until someone makes a comment. Once this has happened, after editing, place a note at the bottom of the post showing that it has been edited, and the time of the edit per timezone. That way if someone tries to edit a post to reflect a comment, the timestamp will reflect that.

(For the record, I had to come back to this entry and fix two typos. If I have to do this for an issue comment, I certainly need it to make public posts)

@Libreman
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@Libreman Libreman commented Oct 21, 2011

@aestetix

As someone who often writes rather long or controversial articles

status updates are not intended for "long or controversial articles", just start a blog for that - problem solved! Diaspora should be used only for announcing a new blog post (title + link), not actually posting the blog post as a status update, duh :)

Just thought I point that out - I think the most demand for an edit feature comes from people who are misusing the status update for something it's not intended for, e.g. blog posts :) that's why a character limit would be a good idea IMO, it would remind people that the status update field is actually for, well ... status updates ;)

Then maybe integrate a blog posting into Diaspora in the future but there are specialized solutions for that like Wordpress so it's not high priority really, no need to bastardize Disapora into something it's not supposed to be IMO - keep focus!

@tanghus
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@tanghus tanghus commented Oct 21, 2011

Status update? Misuse? I see a field saying: "What's on your mind". Not everything on ones mind can be expressed in a tweet or a dent. Diaspora (and G+) gives you the chance to express something meaningful, and it's annoying when that get's messed up by a typo or a MarkDown error.

@Pistos
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@Pistos Pistos commented Oct 21, 2011

@Libreman: Your opinion is noted. At the same time, if we can satisfy both sides (long posters and short posters) at the same time, I don't see why we shouldn't.

Anyway, this particular issue (1762) is about editing -- and that includes editing short posts. It should be there, and I do believe it will be -- eventually. In the mean time, post preview is already coded up, the core team just has to take the time to merge (or reject) it.

@aestetix
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@aestetix aestetix commented Oct 21, 2011

@Libreman I think it is a grave mistake on the developers part to attempt to control what features should and should not be used for. Rather, watch what people do, both on Diaspora and other places, and figure out good ways to adapt the software protocols to make things easier for them. Listen, and grow the system in tune with your community, or you won't have one for long. Case in point: when Twitter noticed people were using @ replies (as we are in this thread) and writing RT for retweets, they incorporated both into their system to much praise.

Creating a character limit on status updates seems like it would remove one of Diaspora's few strengths, and for no apparent good reason. I've already given a suggestion on how to handle editing (the timestamp). Is there a reason you disagree with that remedy?

@h6w
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@h6w h6w commented Oct 21, 2011

I can see a reason not to have long posts. My diaspora stream is already around 2000-3000 words a day. I haven't had to read that much over breakfast since I was doing my postgraduate degree, and I don't enjoy it as much as a result.

I think the issue of length in posts should be addressed somewhere, but not here. I believe it should be in a separate issue. This issue is to do with whether to allow/implement edits or not. We have put forward previews as a temporary-solution-that-works*.

Please be mindful of scope-creep in issues. If you wish to discuss word length in posts, please open a separate issue.

@ghost
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@ghost ghost commented Apr 6, 2017

Sounds like a good idea

@8spinach
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@8spinach 8spinach commented Apr 6, 2017

@denschub
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@denschub denschub commented Apr 6, 2017

Maybe not use this issue for "I want it, too"-comments

@8spinach

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@Flaburgan

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@8spinach

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@goobertron
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@goobertron goobertron commented Apr 7, 2017

this whole thread has been about funded companies hiring devs to do the work and then, for months, nothing, repeatedly.

Well, not quite. The first time a company entered the fray as far as I'm aware was ITPedia in May 2015, and that company repeatedly said it was working on it, then wasn't, then was, then wasn't.

The rest of it has been a mixture of people trying to work out how to implement such a feature and people saying 'I want to be able to edit my posts!'

Without the developer from ITPedia telling us what work they have completed, there is no way of knowing, because they don't seem to have worked in a very open way. I think we can assume that nothing useful to this project has been completed.

If someone wants to start developing this and believes they have the skills to tackle at least one part of the implementation (because this is bound to be a large and complex task), I'm sure they will get a lot of support from core devs. If people want this feature, they can contribute to the bounty on it to encourage skilled developers to take it on.

@frnco
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@frnco frnco commented Jun 21, 2017

Versioning seems plausible, as limited time editing.

The issue seems to be fixing a typo versus meaningful changes.

As both freedom and privacy are core values for Diaspora, it gets harder to decide, especially if they pull in different directions.

My suggestion would be to not have versioning (Freedom and Privacy, you control your data), but notify any person who commented when a post is edited, allowing the commenter to see what changed from the version he commented on and the current version. Everyone is in control.

Con is the risk of having a bazillion edit notifications...

@grahamperrin
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@grahamperrin grahamperrin commented Jun 28, 2017

… bazillion edit notifications

Instead:

  1. have just one
  2. if that one notification is read and if reading of the first notification is followed by another edition of the post, then another notification …
@SuperTux88
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@SuperTux88 SuperTux88 commented Jan 23, 2018

I created a pull request for adding edit functionality to the diaspora protocol here: diaspora/diaspora_federation#94

This doesn't add this functionality to diaspora yet, but it is needed to make it possible to add it to diaspora in the future. So feedback related to the protocol part of this feature is welcome there.

@Siedlerchr

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@Flaburgan

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@tehthom
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@tehthom tehthom commented Oct 24, 2018

I want to contribute to the bountysource but I am unclear as to what form the edit feature will take. I have a few hundred dollars I'd like to add to this bounty and I'd like to encourage my friends and followers to contribute as they can. I'd like to raise the total to over $1000 but I need to know what it is that is being proposed.

Maybe I'm being unfair, but reading over the conversations dating back to 7 yrs ago (in a few different places) - I think all the fretting about people going back and changing a comment or post in bad faith amounts to a user hostile attitude.

Most people will use the edit feature in good faith. The few that don't will lose engagement and trust. For the most part, we are adults. I think we can handle the incredible responsibility of editing our own words and managing our own credibility.

Maybe that is no longer an issue and that fear of users abusing the edit feature has been put to bed. From what I've read, it is not clear to me.

In fact, there doesn't seem to be an easy to understand overview of how the edit feature is envisioned from a UX point of view.

Questions a user wanting the edit feature might have:

  1. As a diaspora user, will I be able to publish a post, re-read it 3 days later and edit an autocorrect mistake (change 'poop' to 'park')?
  2. Ten hours later, I get comments asking for clarification - will I be able to edit the post again to add an addendum to the bottom of the post clarifying the details of my narrative?
  3. Will there be a time limit of minutes, days, weeks, months for editing?
  4. Will I be able to make similar edits to my comments on my or someone else's post?
  5. Will there be the typical notation on the post/comment that the post/comment was edited 20 minutes ago (for example)
  6. Will we be notified of every edit made on posts or comments we've interacted with?
  7. If I make a bunch of changes experimenting with the markdown to get the best presentation I can, will I irritate the people with a bunch of notifications?

If anyone herding this effort along thinks it would help, I am more than happy to jump into the IRC channel or participate here or in whatever comms channel best suits the project to help specify what the feature will look like from a user perspective - both in detail and in a tl;dr format.

I used to work as a technical writer so I'm equipped to interface with technical people and translate it into end user.

@diewald

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@randulo

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@TitanThinktank

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@goobertron

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@goobertron
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@goobertron goobertron commented Mar 20, 2019

I appreciate your enthusiasm, but please don't post on GitHub issues other than to add to the discussion about technical aspects of implementation. Two comments have already had to be marked as off-topic today, and these last three comments will probably also have to be. (I realise that this post is also therefore off-topic, but I'm hoping to help to get things back on topic.)

@JazzTp

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@goobertron
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@goobertron goobertron commented Mar 29, 2019

there is no other parallel forum where we can discuss

There absolutely is: discussion should take place in the project's Discourse forum. Here is a link (again) to the discussion about editing of posts, where you can see the decisions taken about how to implement it: Feature proposal: Editing of posts.

As you can see, it has been temporarily locked, because there has already been endless discussion about how to implement it, which resulted in decisions taken about how it should be implemented. There is also a draft spec.

There is therefore no point in further discussions going over the same ground. The only reason to reopen discussions about this issue is when someone decides to work on the feature and has questions. See what Dennis Schubert wrote when closing the Discourse discussion:

I am locking this post for now, as people apparently are unwilling to read. If you plan on working on this, and have some questions that you deem fit for this thread, please reach out to any team member, either here on Discourse via a private message, or on IRC. We will happily unlock this thread in that case.

There are 70 replies worth of disucssions and decisions on how this feature should look like, how it should feel like, and what the technical implementation needs to be. So far, noone has completed that work, and that’s the state of the issue. There is no need for further comments here, besides future discussions on technical issues.

If you really want to spend your time going over ground that has already been covered, and in spite of the fact that the community has already decided how to implement this feature, please do that in a post/comments in Diaspora itself; posting here just creates unnecessary noise for repo admins and others who are subscribed to this issue.

@denschub, is it perhaps time to temporarily close this issue again, with a note like the one you wrote on the Discourse discussion?

@denschub
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@denschub denschub commented Mar 29, 2019

Locking, see last comment.

@diaspora diaspora locked and limited conversation to collaborators Mar 29, 2019
@jhass jhass removed the bounty label Jun 19, 2020
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