I had a user on chat go

O_O SO's topbar is all funky now

@JourneymanGeek would've been nice if, y'know, they asked for opinions on SE meta

Bob's one of my core users. Unlike me, Bob codes. Bob vaguely got caught by surprise by these changes. Bob even uses SO, and didn't know about it. I'm tempted to call it a bug. I hardly knew about it and as a mod, I ought to.

This feels like a breakdown in communication between the folks who run the site and the wider communities. Mods are one element but we need to keep in mind that we also have a little more than a hundred other sites, including a few reasonably large communities outside SO.

While SO in most cases is the site that gets the most attention, and love, some of the changes that are being tested on SO - such as the top bar will filter down elsewhere. I know of these changes primarily through complaining and complaints about complaints on the tavern on the meta and elsewhere, rather than directly, and other sites have no input on the changes.

This isn't just about the site bar though, but any change to the 'core' of site functionality.

While the current 'crop' of changes to the top bar are finally acknowledged on MSE - quite a bit of it purely happened and is happening on MSO. In a sense, the rest of the network's kinda in the dark about it. I'm not saying we're getting treated like mushrooms, but it would be very nice if changes that affect the entire site at least got an announcement or discussion meta post.

As a moderator - chances are I'm the first point of contact for the user who wakes up one morning, and finds that someone moved his cheese, and that his workflow has been disrupted.

Could we have better visibility and communication about changes that eventually affect the whole network (Since there's plans to roll out the new top bar elsewhere, eventually)? It might mean one extra meta post (or better yet, that and a moderator newsletter or other notification!) but it would help us help get the word out.

  • the new top bar, as you can tell, affects Stack Overflow only. there's been plenty of Meta Posts about in SO's Meta like this one and there's this blog post
    – Memor-X
    Commented Feb 15, 2017 at 3:09
  • 4
    After the fact. And it'll be affecting other sites as well, and the decisions made with SO will affect the rest of the network eventually too. Feedback towards the changes is significantly skewed towards SO. The whole issue for me is these changes are entirely handled in SO's meta when there's clearly plans to do the new top bar elsewhere. Commented Feb 15, 2017 at 3:13
  • 2
    @Memor-X My original chat comment was under the assumption that this will not permanently be SO-only. At some point, I fully expect the new topbar to be rolled out to other sites. I'm not sure how much they will be willing to change the bar for other sites once SO's one is fairly locked down - so we might end up getting what SO has, with little to no input during the original design phase. Yes, it's currently SO-only. But, no, I do not believe this has zero effect on other SE sites.
    – Bob
    Commented Feb 15, 2017 at 3:13
  • I disagree on the closure - its less moderators and more the community as a whole. We're one part of the solution, but the general lack of input from the community feels like a bigger issue. Commented Feb 15, 2017 at 5:35
  • Though luck I guess. What ever change is made, it needs to work on the flagship SO. It already takes 6 to 8 to get something out, if this needs to be discussed networkwide, it will take many 6 to 8's ...
    – rene
    Commented Feb 15, 2017 at 6:35
  • 6
    And this is why this question is important. (and I'm a little annoyed it got closehammered). Meta.SE is the place for things to be discussed network wide. I'm not saying we need to ask every single site, but things like that need to be here and not just MSO Commented Feb 15, 2017 at 6:36
  • 1
    @random the OP asks this in their capacity as user not in their capacity as moderator. The chosen dupe is wrong. Please find a better one or re-open if none exist.
    – rene
    Commented Feb 15, 2017 at 7:10
  • As a user you talk a lot about how it affects you from a moderator standpoint and how as a moderator you are the point person for disseminating that information
    – random
    Commented Feb 15, 2017 at 17:40
  • 1
    If a mod/power user of the site dosen't know, most regulars will not. And there's a reasonable chance of being asked on meta or chat Commented Feb 15, 2017 at 22:55


You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .