1. 12

Recently, I seem to notice an inflow of new stories with an editorialized comment attached in the “extra context” textbox, a la reddit etc. E.g.:

This is often by oversight (see “Oh, sorry :(” replies), but adds boring busywork for mods.

My proposal, based on the “poka-yoke” ideas, is to try and give the submitters a helpful chance to do the right thing themselves. In particular, I propose to add an extra “choice” page, that would show up for a submitter iff they filled both the URL and the textbox on story submission page. They would be given an equal-weight-looking choice of 2 buttons, one of which would automatically convert the textbox contents to a comment. My initial suggestion for the layout of the page is along the lines of:

      The extra commentary I added
        besides URL and Title is:

[...a summary or opinion]   [...wider context]
   will be converted           will remain
    to a comment                attached

                per /site guidelines/

I suggest that “experienced lobsters” would learn the right button as muscle memory, yet it still would trigger at least a thought in their mind if they did the right choice. If they realized too late (a.k.a. post “are you sure you want to delete?” remorse…), they could still fix it by hand while the submission is still editable.

What are tour thoughts?


  2. 8

    Maybe remove the feature entirely? Wider context can be added in a comment too, and if it’s helpful, it’ll be upvoted to the top.

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      Comments aren’t a perfect replacement for story text. The story text, I would guess, is more likely than the top comment to be read before the link is visited. If the story text contains critical context that is missing from the link, moving the text to a comment would make each reader have to jump back and forth more between the link and the Lobsters story before they understand what is being presented.

      As a submitter who used the submission text feature as intended in one of my past submissions, I would be saddened by the removal of submission text. It would be the removal of a useful feature to combat the misuse of that feature. I would rather that not be done without data on how often it is used correctly vs. incorrectly.