There's a lot going on in the UI right now that I can't find announcement or discussion posts for.

  • An edit button is now prominently displayed in the close banner (for all users, for some reason, instead of only for OP). To me, it only makes sense to show an edit button here for the OP, since overwhelmingly they would be required to edit the post to make it reopen-worthy (this one does have a few posts on MSE and MSO already, since it's such a prominent, visible change).

  • The summary tab on user profiles has recently changed; sections on followed and bookmarked questions have been inserted above the badges and accounts sections.

  • The "improve this post" link under questions and answers has been removed (is this A/B testing?). Now it seems guests can't offer improvements to an answer at all, and can't offer improvements to questions unless it's closed. this appears to be fixed/present again

Finally, there's also a new set of weird, tooltip-like banners replacing the existing tooltips on votes and scores. The first annoying experience I had with theses is that they show up instantly instead of after ~1 second (like a proper tooltip should, in my opinion).

More importantly, the content of the tooltips has changed. No longer does "lack of research effort" appear in the downvote tooltip on questions.

new downvote tooltip on questions...sans advice on lack of research effort

Maybe the folks pushing the change weren't aware? There has been a lot of strife over that requirement for questions in the Meta community. Folks involved with curation (those 'gardeners' being talked about recently) overwhelmingly support the requirement of research effort for questions, and this feels like yet another silent attempt to undermine/reverse that.

Can we get some posts about these changes somewhere? Or better yet, some discussion opportunities asking us for input on this?

  • 1
    You can also "hide preview" while editing now.
    – Catija
    Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 18:48
  • 1
    @Catija That's interesting; I also see now that clicking on the preview anywhere no longer hijacks my scroll position back to the edit window... not sure if that was intentional or inadvertent, but it's appreciated nonetheless.
    – TylerH
    Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 18:50
  • 1
    I can still see "improve this [question/answer]" when browsing anonymously. (Note that posts must be at least 10 minutes old before anonymous edits are allowed.) Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 18:54
  • 13
    @user289905 Nope, not a duplicate. This is a broader question that asks about the overall trend; that one just asks about that one specific thing. Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 18:55
  • 2
    Also, the sections in the summary tab appear in different orders for different users. For me, the Bookmarks section appears below Tags. Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 19:02
  • 2
    Those new popup tooltips are among the worst UI changes SO has made and they've made a lot of bad UI changes lately
    – j08691
    Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 19:33
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    What does the cheesy "say thanks for this answer" do (StackOverflow)? We've got voting. Previously we were told "don't say thanks: vote." Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 19:41
  • 4
    I have the distinct feeling that "reactions" are creeping in.
    – Braiam
    Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 19:49
  • 3
    Apparently we all hate this useless update. So do I. In fact, some of these special tooltips are missing and the comment button is one of them too. I hope this feature gets reverted ASAP. Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 20:07
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    @Catija In the case of the tooltips, it causes a frequent micro-annoyance every time my mouse passes by a vote button (due to the insta-tooltip), and it fundamentally changes the prescribed purpose of our most valuable curation tool (in a bad way). I think such a change is worth mentioning at least, if not seeking input about it first.
    – TylerH
    Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 20:55
  • 20
    @Catija I don't agree that the phrase "this post does not show any research effort" can be construed as being about the person; it says it right there in the sentence that it is about the post. I think removing it as a prescribed reason to downvote is too high a price to pay to accommodate a person who can't extricate their "self" from a question they ask on a programming Q&A website. The frequency of need for the former is far, far higher than the frequency of occurrence of the latter, from my observations over the years.
    – TylerH
    Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 21:32
  • 7
    Regardless, if the phrasing is of concern, this is the perfect thing to solicit feedback from the community on. "How can we adjust the "research effort" fragments in the voting tooltips to help prevent users from thinking a downvote for that reason might be personal". I'm sure you'd get some good responses there.
    – TylerH
    Commented Jun 17, 2020 at 21:34
  • 1
    @TylerH Well... the post didn't do the research, so it's definitely not about the post - it's the equivalent of calling it a "lazy answer" but in a socially acceptable way because it relates to quality expectations on this network. I... do understand... I think research - and showing it in a post - is really important. I was talking about it just this morning in relation to mentoring someone for the Community-a-thon we're running... but let's be honest with ourselves about who's being put down when we say the post lacks research. I'd be really happy to see such suggestions for wording, too!
    – Catija
    Commented Jun 18, 2020 at 1:54
  • 7
    @Catija, the exact same reasoning can be applied to the word "unclear" in the tooltip, so that should then be removed as well. Commented Jun 18, 2020 at 10:57
  • 3
    @Catija while the person behind the post is ultimately always responsible for their actions, it is actually recommended to separate out actions from personal qualities in order to get through to an intended audience, based on the field of psychology (e.g. focus on the behavior, not the person). I'm not sure how you otherwise expect us to convey that the post shows a lack of research effort without saying so. It is difficult to convey the message in an effective, accurate way that is succinct enough to show on a tooltip. How about "This post is X, Y, or needs to show more research"?
    – TylerH
    Commented Jun 18, 2020 at 13:22

1 Answer 1


These were a series of small follow up tasks related to larger projects that recently shipped:

  • Edit button update was tied to the close flow changes. Brian explains more here.
  • The summary tab update is a follow-up task to Question & Answer Follow. Adam included an update about the profile changes to the original post.
  • The voting tooltip was updated as part of the reactions project. The language has been rolled back as detailed here.

These changes were considered minor and each part of a larger project so we felt they didn’t warrant a dedicated post. Having said that, we are iterating on what features require larger community feedback and/or updates so this is helpful feedback for us. We want to strike the right balance between getting feedback on the right things and continuously making general improvements. I appreciate you raising this here.

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