denise: Image: Me, facing away from camera, on top of the Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome (Default)
Denise ([staff profile] denise) wrote in [site community profile] dw_biz2010-06-19 12:36 pm

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I'm cleaning out the widgets/modules directory in the code, and I have a question for everybody! The Writer's Block/Question of the Day module on LJ is something that we have in the code, but have never set up over here on DW. Is this something that people would be interested in having? Should we add it to the homepage/set up a list of questions, or should we just get rid of it entirely?

A poll, for those who like to ticky their answers:

Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 432


Question of the Day/Writer's Block:

View Answers

Is neat, and I'd answer them regularly on DW
8 (1.9%)

Is interesting sometimes, and I might answer sometimes on DW
107 (24.8%)

Is uninteresting, and I would never answer them on DW
246 (56.9%)

Is something I've never thought about one way or another
71 (16.4%)

abyssinia: Sam Carter's first view of Earth from space and the words "all my dreams" (Default)

[personal profile] abyssinia 2010-06-19 04:43 pm (UTC)(link)
Personally, I've always found them kinda stupid and too often the subject of wank...but they're also something that's easy enough to ignore if you aren't interested and enjoy if you are.
damned_colonial: Convicts in Sydney, being spoken to by a guard/soldier (Default)

[personal profile] damned_colonial 2010-06-19 05:09 pm (UTC)(link)
+1

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twincy: Danny Briere of the Philadelphia Flyers, wearing a hat at the Winter Classic. (stock | mrs dalloway)

[personal profile] twincy 2010-06-19 04:45 pm (UTC)(link)
I like the concept, but I think it's better left to a community. You know, like the Friday Five? (Is that even still around? God, I feel old.) It's neat, but it's very much content, and not something that I'd need Dreamwidth (the platform) to provide.
scrollgirl: naked!tony + steve in avengers prime; text: boy, am i happy to see you, steve (Default)

[personal profile] scrollgirl 2010-06-19 06:55 pm (UTC)(link)
There's [community profile] fannish5, but I don't know about Friday Five.

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ar: Sam and Joon from the movie Benny and Joon facing away from the camera. (benny&joon - about face)

[personal profile] ar 2010-06-19 04:47 pm (UTC)(link)
As long as they were better screened than LJ's have been (the recent writer's-block-question fiasco on LJ was what got me to stop crossposting entirely), I wouldn't mind them being put up on DW.

I never really answered any on LJ, but if there was one caught my eye, I suppose I might.
Edited (forgot a word!) 2010-06-19 17:00 (UTC)
youngsoulrebel: The Andy Warhol album cover for The Velvet Underground's first album (Art)

[personal profile] youngsoulrebel 2010-06-24 04:58 am (UTC)(link)
I missed this, but I'm still ill enough to be up for reading a total train-wreck. Link?

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copracat: Maxwell Smart with the text 'My fandom talks to shoes' (shoes)

[personal profile] copracat 2010-06-19 04:51 pm (UTC)(link)
I enjoy the communities fannish_five and follow_friday but didn't care for LJ's global thing. It never seemed relevant to my interests. Very few people on my flist did it so it was never part of my LJ culture.

I wouldn't object to it if others wanted it. The LJ implementation was pretty unobtrusive.
xochiquetzl: Xochiquetzl (Default)

[personal profile] xochiquetzl 2010-06-19 04:52 pm (UTC)(link)
I used to Friday Five a lot when I first got my LJ, but haven't done it in years. (Does it still exist?) I've never done Writer's Block.
ariestess: (Default)

[personal profile] ariestess 2010-06-19 10:24 pm (UTC)(link)
I'm one of the mods/maintainers of [livejournal.com profile] thefridayfive over on LJ. I can talk to my fellow mods about doing the same comm over here on DW if there's interest...

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yvi: Kaylee half-smiling, looking very pretty (Default)

[personal profile] yvi 2010-06-19 04:56 pm (UTC)(link)
If so, I'd rather have something every second day or once weekly than every day. I think that way, quality could remain higher than on LJ right now.
greenwitch: (Default)

[personal profile] greenwitch 2010-06-19 05:00 pm (UTC)(link)
Seconded. It doesn't need to be on the main page either, but it would be cool if there was a random prompt generator or something. I only used LJ's once, but back when I used Vox I used it quite often.

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lapillus: (Default)

[personal profile] lapillus 2010-06-19 04:56 pm (UTC)(link)
While they have never prompted me to write (for one thing I don't usually interact via the main page so seldom see them and then usually when I'm in the middle of dealing with an ISSUE that has driven me to the main page and so don't want to be distracted), I often enjoy other's responses to them.
matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Default)

[personal profile] matgb 2010-06-19 05:01 pm (UTC)(link)
I like the idea. I hate the implementation, and have the block itself blocked in my CSS file. I sometimes find the answers fairly interesting, but the way the question is displayed, and the intrusive way the block defaults itself into the post, is something I strongly dislike.

QOTD as a principle is fine, and a page for collecting answers to the same question is fine (and could be implemented into Latest?), but that implementation, which assumes stupidity and conformity, is something I really don't like.

Having a set of questions, and giving posts answering a default tag of say QOTD:whatever is fine, but not the way LJ did it.
john: Various candles, in multicoloured jars, under trees in the evening (Default)

[personal profile] john 2010-06-20 06:05 pm (UTC)(link)
+1.
vass: A sepia-toned line-drawing of a man in naval uniform dancing a hornpipe, his crotch prominent (Default)

[personal profile] vass 2010-06-19 05:13 pm (UTC)(link)
I find it annoying and (the questions on LJ itself) sometimes offensive.
pauamma: Cartooney crab holding drink (Default)

[personal profile] pauamma 2010-06-19 05:19 pm (UTC)(link)
My main beef with the way it's been implemented on LJ is that thee questions are often very difficult to translate (because of pop culture references, references to recent events, or injokes), which makes me suspect that they also work poorly for a global audience.
naraht: (Default)

[personal profile] naraht 2010-06-19 05:55 pm (UTC)(link)
This is a very good point.

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kindkit: The Second Doctor and Jamie clutch each other in panic; captioned "oh noes" (Doctor Who: Two/Jamie oh noes)

[personal profile] kindkit 2010-06-19 05:23 pm (UTC)(link)
Please don't set it up as something on the homepage that everyone has to see. I hate Writer's Block on LJ. If it's a community, or some kind of opt-in thing, fine, but I don't want to be confronted with those annoying questions every time I log in.
eagle: Me at the Adobe in Yachats, Oregon (Default)

[personal profile] eagle 2010-06-19 06:14 pm (UTC)(link)
I've seen *lots* of people on LJ with this same complaint, so I'd definitely second this. If something like this is implemented, I think you'll want to make it opt-in or otherwise really easy to suppress for people who don't want to see it on their front page.

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inalasahl: a firefly (firefly)

[personal profile] inalasahl 2010-06-19 05:40 pm (UTC)(link)
I've always found that thing incredibly annoying.
epershand: (lemele)

[personal profile] epershand 2010-06-19 05:43 pm (UTC)(link)
The question prompts always seemed like they were designed for a fundamentally different online journaling experience than I've ever had with either LJ or DW. They make a lot of sense on a site where the focus is on individual journaling, and a lot less sense on a site where the focus is on community conversations, facilitated through a journaling context.

The prompts on LJ are often bland and personal. Writing responses to them always seemed more like an act of interacting with LiveJournal than it seemed like interacting with my flist--they didn't really spark discussion.
roadrunnertwice: Vesta Tilley, Victorian drag king (Default)

[personal profile] roadrunnertwice 2010-06-19 05:52 pm (UTC)(link)
That's how I feel about it too. I have never seen anything on there that I thought my friends would be interested in the answer to.

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naraht: (Default)

[personal profile] naraht 2010-06-19 05:56 pm (UTC)(link)
I find them very annoying, honestly, when they pop up on my reading list. And my feelings about them are hard to detach from the generally high level of failsomeness in the actual questions offered by LJ.
ratcreature: RatCreature as Rodney recoiling from a Lemon: Gaah! (gaah)

[personal profile] ratcreature 2010-06-19 05:59 pm (UTC)(link)
I wouldn't mind if I could choose whether to see that kind of module or not, like if you could pick in general what modules you see on the logged-in homepage. I'm always annoyed at seeing it on LJ, because I never answer it and the questions are sometimes stupid or even offensive. I set up some user CSS thing so I wouldn't see these various LJ annoyances on my LJ homepage (there were some other boxes too).
dragonfly: (write)

[personal profile] dragonfly 2010-06-19 06:01 pm (UTC)(link)
I write, but I write in fandom and never found their prompts relevant to my interests. Also, sometimes all about the wank.
tim: Tim with short hair, smiling, wearing a black jacket over a white T-shirt (Default)

[personal profile] tim 2010-06-19 06:06 pm (UTC)(link)
I don't think it adds value. Most people presumably have DW accounts because they have something they already know they want to write about... and for people who want prompts, it's not like there are any shortage of those on the Internet :-)
ninetydegrees: Drawing: a girl's pale face, with a yellow and green stripe over her right eye (Default)

[personal profile] ninetydegrees 2010-06-19 06:06 pm (UTC)(link)
As a module on the front page, no thanks but Weekly/bi-weekly questions someone could find should they chose to (as in Explore) and a page collating answers if people wanted their answers publicized (as in tagging for Latest page) would possibly be something I would use or read.
finch: "And everything changes and nothing is truly lost" (Default)

[personal profile] finch 2010-06-19 07:51 pm (UTC)(link)
+1

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charmian: a snowy owl (Default)

[personal profile] charmian 2010-06-19 06:17 pm (UTC)(link)
For another site running on the DW code, these questions might prove useful (say, a journaling site dedicated to a specific topic), but I don't think they're a good fit for DW itself, because a) everything is too decentralized, thus it's difficult to find topics that appeal to everyone, and b) you'd need to have someone in charge of collecting the questions/making them up, editing them, putting them up in a timely fashion, and (if responses can be seen as on LJ) potentially moderating offensive answers. It seems like a lot of hard work for little payoff.

Also, I think shared prompts/ideas for posts are something that people on the site are capable of creating for themselves through comms.

If anything, maybe DW could create a way to make this easier on people who make comms like that by creating maybe something where people could submit links (to their answers to a prompt) to an input box in a post, and after moderation, they'd appear as a sortable list (sortable by time/alpha order of submitters etc) in the body of the post, or something.
green_knight: (Archer)

[personal profile] green_knight 2010-06-19 06:58 pm (UTC)(link)
I think you have the seeds of a good paid community feature here - a community prompt that users can publish in their own entries, with the answers both published as a post in the user's own journal and aggregated on the community page.

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gchick: Small furry animal wearing a tin-foil hat (Default)

[personal profile] gchick 2010-06-19 06:31 pm (UTC)(link)
I'm sure a good implementation is possible, but I'm having trouble separating that abstraction from my deep, deep loathing of LJ's version -- which is not only wanky and unthoughtful and always seems to be full of questions that assume one is straight, cis, middle class, able, and probably still in high school, but, MUCH more important in my dislike of the thing, always looks to me like it's there just to draw ad impressions.

(And, again, it's not that I think DW would do it the same way as LJ -- it's that I can't even think of the thing without thinking of LJ's version, which is already several strikes against.)
opusculus: Black hole (Default)

[personal profile] opusculus 2010-06-19 07:00 pm (UTC)(link)
I don't have a problem with it in the abstract, and might find it interesting. My only problem with it is that LJ makes an ass of itself on occasion with the questions, and honestly I think that going through and analyzing the suggested questions to avoid that kind of offense and unintentional exclusion is probably going to be a lot more work than the thing's really worth.
vlion: cut of the flammarion woodcut, colored (Default)

[personal profile] vlion 2010-06-19 10:53 pm (UTC)(link)
<3 the icon.
branchandroot: oak against sky (Default)

[personal profile] branchandroot 2010-06-19 07:27 pm (UTC)(link)
Another vote for the "probably more trouble than it's worth to make it useful/interesting without being hideously offensive and annoyingly obtrusive". Any content drawn from the whole userbase is going to have to be screened, and especially so if it's something that pops up on the homepage. (Which, incidentally, I also really hate.) IJ has the same issue with Tweak's sayings. *pauses to shudder in memory*
rydra_wong: dreamsheep with spork and "SheepSpork" logo; no, it wouldn't make any more sense if you saw it  (dreamwidth -- sheepspork)

Belated thought

[personal profile] rydra_wong 2010-06-19 07:36 pm (UTC)(link)
Adding to what people have already said: IMHO, something like this would put a quasi-official emphasis on DW as a website for people interested in writing (or at least filling out answers to questions).

Which is true for many people, but it displaces people whose interests are in photography, crafts, visual arts, or just reading. Or who are here for the conversation and interactions.

It's also very, um ... how shall I put this ... teenage magazine quiz or school essay in feel. The questions have to be so bland (when they're not trying to be bland and ending up appallingly offensive) that I keep expecting "Write about something you did in the summer holidays."
azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)

Re: Belated thought

[personal profile] azurelunatic 2010-06-19 08:23 pm (UTC)(link)
...I just had a mental image of a writer's block question on DW with a picture of some Silk Garden and a question about what one would do with it.

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azurelunatic: Azz and best friend grabbing each other's noses.  (Default)

[personal profile] azurelunatic 2010-06-19 08:33 pm (UTC)(link)
I could actually see the technical feature as being applicable to something like Follow Friday, or some other possible global-interest thing, where aggregating people's responses from across the site would be important.

Follow Friday, a prompt for poem of the day during US National Poetry Week, prompt for daily word count during (inter)NaNoWriMo, and other things celebrated by enough of the site that it winds up with formal tags in the Latest Things.


Though I think I might rather have the new LJ-is-imitating-Tumblr feature, which looks designed for enthusiastic spreading of memery (but tweaked so that attempting to include it in a locked post sends up a confirmation box upon posting), unless Writer's Block could be adapted so that instead of the separate English and Russian versions of the questions, it dwells in the user subdomain and can be put to use by any given user and/or community with the appropriate account level.
sophie: A cartoon-like representation of a girl standing on a hill, with brown hair, blue eyes, a flowery top, and blue skirt. ☀ (Default)

[personal profile] sophie 2010-06-19 09:29 pm (UTC)(link)
I think the potential for confusion is too great, as we've seen on LJ.
boundbooks: Zhang Ziyi (avatar: piandao thinks this is a disaste)

[personal profile] boundbooks 2010-06-19 08:43 pm (UTC)(link)
I really, truly dislike that feature on LJ. Not only are they rarely questions worth pondering, they are usually poorly written landmines that do not prompt interesting or thoughtful answers. I don't believe that creating controls to prevent poorly written landmines would be worth it for a feature that I think was more useful back when people were more along the lines of 'what do I put in this online journal thing.'

I also think that it would bring back the impression (which Dreamwidth has only recently managed to shake-off with some very visible user-interface changes and options) that Dreamwidth is just a LJ knock-off.

In short, I'd rather see someone's time and effort spent on pretty much anything else at Dreamwidth.

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