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A recent change made ignored posts way more visible than it used to be, up to the point that my brain just can't filter them out anymore.

The reason I don't want to hide them is two-fold.

  1. Posts are not always tagged correctly by new users, so sometimes an incorrectly tagged post is one I do have the answer to. In that case, I happily change the tag.
  2. I do check them when I have a bit more time on my hands, to learn from them myself and grow as a human being.

So yes, I really don't want to completely hide them.

Here's what the situation is now on Super User, the ignored tag stands out too much for me.: current ignored question appearance; grayscale question between two normal ones

This is what I prefer it to be:

old ignored question appearance; faded-out question between two normal ones

If you really must preserve the new one, then please give us the choice here: mocked up ignored-tag behavior-selection interface with three options: hide, gray out, or gray and dim

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  • 3
    I had to look really really hard to notice there's any change at all, which is some gray font color, hardly different from the ordinary color. Sep 14 at 12:13
  • 1
    @ShadowTheKidWizard yes. The monitor at work is less good as my monitor at home. Here I can see it better, but at work, they're even harder to distinquish
    – LPChip
    Sep 14 at 12:14
  • The darker gray is required to be compliant to accessibility guidelines for contrast, and I don't think SE is interested in maintaining both a compliant and opt-in non-compliant design. So a userscript as in the answer is probably your only option.
    – Marijn
    Sep 14 at 15:03
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    @Marijn that may be so but if a user has specifically said they do not need to see something does it have to adhere to accessibility guidelines for them? I am all in favour of accessibility of course.
    – mdewey
    Sep 14 at 15:14
  • @mdewey maybe you don't get your "WCAG 2.1 compliant" sticker if you offer two versions of which one is non-compliant, I don't know. Anyway, the main issue is maintainability I guess, I do understand that SE wants to stick to a single design and that they choose the accessible version to be that design. If you have two then you need to spend more time in testing, fixing bugs, implementing further design updates etc. Also database use and loading times may be impacted by implementing a preference setting, which is a big concern for a site at the scale of SE.
    – Marijn
    Sep 14 at 16:35
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    I actually posted a question about this back in January but it was closed as a duplicate of a post that is (in my opinion) unrelated. I don't mind using this one as a dupe target instead, if a gold-badge user or a mod would be willing to change it. Sep 15 at 19:49

2 Answers 2

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+50

The fact is, they made a change that may improve the user experience for one group while ignoring the user experience for others. This new design is not accessible!

Because the current design relies almost exclusively on color, people with certain types of colorblindness will find it especially hard to tell that a question is ignored. (The exact type of colorblindness affected may depend on what site, though those with monochromatic vision will likely struggle no matter what).

Additionally, screen reader users are given no indication at all that a question should be ignored. Literally nothing changes between ignored and non-ignored questions (as far as the screen reader can see), so the content is just read out loud no matter what.

Consider instead a design where ignored questions are collapsed in place (so you will see non ignored questions between collapsed ignored questions), and shown on click/tap, similar to Discord:

Discord showing x blocked messages

This makes it not matter what color ignored questions are. It also fixes some more obscure issues like how to keep ignored question titles from being indiscriminately revealed by screen readers when they are only reading the links on a page. As a bonus, it fixes things for people with wandering eyes who can't help but read everything that's visible no matter what color it is (yes that's me, even with the old design).

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    That's not really to collapse, as they will appear in random locations, based on the sort you choose, and you still won't be able to tell which are ignored after clicking "Show ignored questions" Sep 14 at 15:38
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    @ShadowTheKidWizard Sounds like the mock-up I created isn't clear enough. You would see several "x questions ignored" on a page (where they are in the sort), and the design I'm now imagining for how ignored questions would look when revealed on the page wouldn't be the same as it is now, making it more obvious at a glance which questions are from ignored tags (including something for screen readers that shows up before the question title).
    – Laurel
    Sep 14 at 15:46
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    "they made a change that may improve the user experience for one group while ignoring the user experience for others". I'm not even sure it improves the experience for any group. The contrast between the text color for ignored and non-ignored questions is negligible, and isn't that the point of accessibility updates? They should provide a way to adjust the color and/or opacity of text for ignored questions according to your preference. Sep 14 at 17:01
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    @CaveJohnson That's why there's a "may" in the sentence. For all I know, the user experience may have been worsened even for some or most of its target audience (because, after all, anyone who wanted to read the question with higher contrast need only click on the question title).
    – Laurel
    Sep 14 at 17:09
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    Upvoted for the "screen reader users are given no indication at all that a question should be ignored". I don't think the collapsing makes much sense when there's already an option to hide them entirely, but I absolutely agree that some indication should be given to screen readers that a given visible question is ignored. Lacking that feature sounds pretty bad for accessibility, maybe even to the point of warranting its own post or adding it as an answer to the project announcement.
    – zcoop98
    Sep 14 at 17:37
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    @zcoop98 Or, with collapsed questions they could probably get rid of the option to completely remove ignored questions. It feels like a good middle ground between the two old options, depending on how people used them in practice.
    – Laurel
    Sep 14 at 18:20
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    "It feels like a good middle ground between the two old options" it's very important for me to see the ignored question. And for that to be easily visually distinguishable - I mostly use it to watch out for tags that should not be used and correct them ASAP if needed (not all tag usages might be wrong). I'd scroll through a list of questions quickly and pick out just the ones marked as ignored. Collapsing the question will at minimum require clicking on each before I can review it. And maybe even blend into the list and not be immediately identifiable with a quick scroll.
    – VLAZ
    Sep 15 at 8:04
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    Like VLAZ, as a mod, I always want to see all questions (even those I'm not interested in) to monitor any new activity, so I don't really prefer to collapse them. Also, I think there's a difference between chat messages and posts: chat messages cannot be bumped, but posts can be bumped at any time, so seeing "1 post with new activity" and then "this post is collapsed" will be annoying, at least for me. Sep 16 at 2:07
  • @MetaAndrewT. about chat messages, you can kind of "bump" it by just oneboxing it again. Sep 18 at 6:44
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This can be done with a userstyle:

.s-post-summary__ignored {
  opacity: .5;
}

In uBO filter form (especially for mobile Firefox; change the domain name as preferred):

superuser.com##.s-post-summary__ignored:style(opacity: .5)
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  • Honestly, I prefer the change to be reverted. But if there's no choice, how can I do this in a chromium based browser? I use Vivaldi.
    – LPChip
    Sep 14 at 14:54
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    @LPChip For user styles, I use Stylus.
    – Tsundoku
    Sep 14 at 16:15

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