60

The feedback up until January 3rd, 2023 has been catalogued and handed over to the product team. Any further feedback or bug reports should be posted as a new question.


TL;DR: The inbox improvements we previously announced are now live (as of November 29th, 2022 13:30 UTC).


Thank you to our beta testers!

A huge thank you to moderators who helped us beta-test these inbox changes! Your feedback was invaluable, and we could not be here without you.

New features

This post will provide a short overview of the new features, focusing especially on a few special cases not covered in the previous post. The changes will be rolled out to all sites, unless mentioned otherwise in the feature list below.

We will post an update here when the changes will be released.

  • Marking notifications as read/unread:

    • On all Stack Exchange top bars, except for the ones on Area 51 and the chat sites, the inbox dropdown will support individually marking messages as read/unread (or marking them all read at once), without needing to open the notification in a new tab/window.
    • Opening up the inbox will no longer automatically mark all messages as being read.
    • Note: opening the inbox in chat will automatically mark all messages as being read until the changes will be applied there.
  • Filtering to only show unread messages: All Stack Exchange pages, except for the inbox that is on the chat rooms listing, Area 51 pages, and stackexchange.com, will support filtering to only show unread messages in the inbox.

  • New design: On all Stack Exchange pages, except for the inbox that is on the chat rooms listing and Area 51 pages, the inbox will have a new design, updated to accommodate new buttons and improve readability.

  • Real-time inbox refreshing:

    • All Stack Exchange pages, except for the inbox that is on the chat rooms listing, Area 51 pages, and stackexchange.com, will support real time refreshing of the inbox content.
    • If a new notification arrived while the inbox was opened, the user will have an option to refresh its content manually with a refresh button.
    • We avoid an immediate refresh not to disturb the users while they work on their notifications. This option is also available while working with multiple tabs open at the same time.
  • Unread messages in the global inbox: The global inbox page will now highlight the unread items. It is also possible to mark the notifications as read by opening them in the global inbox.

Inbox popup overview

FAQ

Are you planning to bring these inbox improvements to chat as well?

Yes, we plan to update the inbox on all Stack Exchange pages (including chat) to the new style. While 100% compatibility on all sites will be hard to achieve, disabling the new functionality on chat pages is just a temporary solution.

Can I keep the current inbox functionality?

No. However, depending on the feedback, we may introduce the option to keep the current behavior of marking all notifications as read when the inbox is opened. If you want us to implement this as an option, please let us know!

Is this the final version of the inbox?

No, this is our first inbox-related release. We have a backlog of inbox-related issues that we gathered during both internal and beta testing. We plan to incrementally improve the MVP after the public release of the feature, based on the community feedback and product needs.

How should we share feedback on these changes?

If you have any questions, suggestions, or other feedback regarding the inbox improvements we've described here, please post it in an answer below. We'll be gathering feedback until the end of December 2022, after which we ask you to share any bug reports/feature requests by posting a separate question.

9
  • 14
    I'd like to remind folks of our request to post your feedback and questions in answers below. In order to keep things organized, comments that should be answers will be removed from time to time. Commented Nov 28, 2022 at 13:54
  • 1
    In case anyone's wondering why all but two answers have not been responded to by staff since early December, the team is currently focusing on the Staging Ground release. Commented Dec 29, 2022 at 10:25
  • 2
    Since this is a large thread, if you are thinking of posting something and have not read existing posts to see if a similar post has already been made, you can try searching them using the search bar with "inquestion:384148 is:answer ...".
    – starball
    Commented Dec 30, 2022 at 19:03
  • 2
    I've gone through and catalogued all the feedback on this post already for the product team; we'll be going through it and prioritizing it to address in the next week or two. Any additional feedback on the inbox (bug reports/feature requests) should be posted as a separate post instead.
    – V2Blast
    Commented Jan 3, 2023 at 5:57
  • @V2Blast have this been forgotten? There is no activity for two months. (usually the devs put status tags as edits to the bug reports or features in the answers.) Commented Mar 5, 2023 at 8:28
  • 1
    @ShadowWizardChasingStars: Not forgotten, just sort of put on hold for a bit. The devs working on this have been busy lately kicking off Staging Ground beta 2. Once the dust has settled a bit, they should have more time to dedicate to going through the bugs and feature requests from this thread (which we're already tracking internally).
    – V2Blast
    Commented Mar 8, 2023 at 20:27
  • @V2Blast thanks, I'll ask again in three months. Commented Mar 9, 2023 at 7:14
  • @V2Blast maybe lock the question, if additional feedback should be posted elsewhere?
    – M--
    Commented Jun 29, 2023 at 15:31
  • You might want to upvote the post that proposed 12 years ago the possibility to mark notifications as unread: Enable marking a response as "unread"
    – root
    Commented Jul 5, 2023 at 23:19

51 Answers 51

1
2
5

Marking notifications as read/unread

This requirement, and the stickiness of the notification badge unless the user engages in extra steps - compared to the previous behavior, merely viewing the comment dropdown - generates unnecessary extra noise for the average user.

That may not be apparent from committed beta testers.

But as a regular user - SE is a Q&A feed - not a critical app.

Please keep the cognitive noise level down.

Searching for "mental health research notifications" brings back plenty of hits, although many of them relate to smartphones (probably because the majority of online interactions are now through them - including potentially many SE users).

Here's one:

. In addition, the risk group featured a higher rate of error in the Go-Nogo task, due to the negative influence of smartphone push notifications on performance in both risk and nonrisk groups. Furthermore, push notifications affected subsequent performance in the risk group.

p.s. we can always look at the dropdown to see what we might have missed, so this is not fixing anything.

4

As I see, there are only some numbers of notifications displayed in the inbox out of all possible notifications.

I can see 53 notifications till Jul 02, 2022, displayed when seeing the inbox from https://meta.stackexchange.com

I can see 23 notifications till Sep 14, 2022, displayed when seeing the inbox from https://stackexchange.com

So what are the criteria for displaying the top X number of notifications in the inbox UI?
Is it based on a particular period of time or a particular number of notifications count or the size of the notification message length?

0
4

Clicking "refresh" to receive new entries while the "unread" filter is active causes all entries to be shown- including previous entries that have already been marked as read.

4

(/ maybe since it's explicitly out of scope?)

I know the announcement specifically states that the chat inbox was not updated during this iteration, but... I didn't realise that that meant that if I ever open the notification panel in chat all of my notifications will be marked as read.

Simple steps to reproduce.

  1. Mark 1 or more messages unread (in this case I marked 2 as unread).
  2. Go to a chat server (it doesn't matter which one). There will be a notification of unread items in the inbox (this may take a little bit of time to be picked up if you're doing this in real time). Now, simply click on the inbox to check the notification.
  3. Return to any location where the new inbox is accessible. There will be no unread notifications in the inbox.

I had (prior to creating this simple example) gone through and marked several messages unread that I needed to follow up on. With a single click in chat, I ended up undoing the effort I spent to mark the messages I was trying to keep as unread. Is there any way that this behaviour can be prevented during the transition?

Again, I know that chat is specifically out of scope for this first iteration, however, this issue is greatly impacting my ability to use the benefits of this new feature.

2
  • 1
    Well, they will get to it at some point, but doubt they can just push a "patch" to do what you ask for. :( Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 8:52
  • This doesn't happen if you don't open the inbox in chat
    – Kevin B
    Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 16:02
3

Are you planning to bring these inbox improvements to chat as well?

Does only mentioning chat here vs chat and area 51 elsewhere mean that there currently aren't plan to update A51's inbox?

4
  • 1
    Area51 does not even have any top bar, so yeah it's more than obvious they're not going to touch it, even with a very long stick. :/ Commented Nov 28, 2022 at 19:01
  • 3
    Area51 has issues right now with its topbar and inbox that predate any changes being made here. When these get addressed, we'll try to bring it in sync with the changes here as well. Commented Nov 28, 2022 at 21:05
  • @YaakovEllis other devs said, many times, that SE does not and will not make any changes or non critical bug fixes in Area51. Has this policy been changed? Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 8:11
  • 2
    There are no plans right now for big changes to Area51, but the topbar there is so broken that fixing it might be something that could happen. No promises. Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 9:08
3

Here's a hole under the "Go to full inbox":

transparent

So you can see the text while scrolling the list.

3

/

  • Real-time inbox refreshing:

    • All Stack Exchange pages, except for the inbox that is on the chat rooms listing, Area 51 pages, and stackexchange.com, will support real time refreshing of the inbox content.
    • If a new notification arrived while the inbox was opened, the user will have an option to refresh its content manually with a refresh button.
    • We avoid an immediate refresh not to disturb the users while they work on their notifications. This option is also available while working with multiple tabs open at the same time.

Is this a feature that is currently released? Or something that will be released in the future?

If this is to be released in the future, then you can stop reading.


However, if currently released, then it does not work as described. There is no "real-time inbox refreshing". The behaviour I observe is that after the notification inbox is opened once on the page and closed, then any further opening will not refresh the inbox items. Even if you get the indicator that there are new items in the inbox.

This is only valid if you stay on the same page. Basically, it is this behaviour:

Notifications are not reloaded until a page is reloaded

However, there is now a button "Refresh" to click. This will load the new items.

This behaviour leads to, quite frankly, ridiculous user experience:

  1. You get 1 new notification.
  2. You open the inbox and see it. Then close the inbox.
  3. You get 1 new notification.
  4. You open the inbox and have to click Refresh to see it.

Repeat 3-4 ad infinitum if you are staying on the same page. If you are to a different page/tab you start from 1. again. Refreshing the page also brings you up to 1.

Also, if you just load a page and start from 2. (so, simply open and close, even if you had no notifications) the next notification you get will not be shown after opening the inbox.

6
  • The quote in your answer does say If a new notification arrived while the inbox was opened, which can indeed be read as the behavior you describe, i.e., opened means opened at some moment while on the page, and either closed again or still open. However, more sensible behavior would indeed be to check if the inbox is currently open and then show the refresh button, otherwise auto-refresh always.
    – Marijn
    Commented Dec 2, 2022 at 14:39
  • @Marijn with that reading there is basically no real-time refreshing. It only "refreshes in real-time" (and that's a stretch) until you open the notifications. TBH, I'm kind of baffled by the boast it's real-time given than it's just loading the items when you open. Which is how the old notifications worked, as well. The new ones just stop loading new data on the second open. Which used to be a bug the old notifications had.
    – VLAZ
    Commented Dec 2, 2022 at 14:43
  • I guess until you open the inbox there is real-time refreshing, in the sense that you open a page, there are no new messages (so you don't click the inbox), you read for a few minutes, then a message is sent to you, and the top bar auto-refreshes to show the new message indicator.
    – Marijn
    Commented Dec 2, 2022 at 14:47
  • Which is a feature of the old inbox. You don't think it's a stretch to list it as a new feature?
    – VLAZ
    Commented Dec 2, 2022 at 14:52
  • I'm not sure that was a feature in the old inbox, as far as I remember sometimes I would open a couple of tabs (for example some linked questions or a few HNQ) while there was a notification, the number would show in all of them, and when I read the notification in one of the tabs it did not disappear in the others. I have not tested it fully but I think the change is that now the other tabs would sync as long as you don't open the inbox on that tab. If it worked the other way around (new notifications added on an already opened page) I don't remember but I think they did not refresh either.
    – Marijn
    Commented Dec 2, 2022 at 15:11
  • The notifications did sync. I usually have many tabs open on SE. I've not had to go through and clear notifications on each of them. Although if the websocket connection dies, then you might experience problems. Also this acted slightly odd when you had, say, three notifications and opened them all in tabs immediately one after another. The first tab would show two notifications, the second one notification, the last no notifications. Opening the inbox on either would not show any unread items. BTW, this behaviour is still present with the new inbox.
    – VLAZ
    Commented Dec 2, 2022 at 15:18
3

This is a yucky glitch:

enter image description here

  1. Click the inbox
  2. Scroll all the way to the bottom
  3. (Box is blank as shown)
  4. Click away
  5. Click the inbox button again
  6. (Same state as in 3 is shown)

IMHO there are two issues here:

  1. You shouldn't be able to scroll past the end of the feed
  2. The scroll position shouldn't be sticky
6
  • The scrolling past end was reported here: meta.stackexchange.com/a/384205 However, I didn't know about the sticky scroll.
    – VLAZ
    Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 8:04
  • 1
    I can repro sticky scroll in FF, not in Chrome Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 8:06
  • 1
    @YaakovEllis still, the first issue is annoying enough on its own, would be nice to have it fixed. (It's the first bug reported, and not even in review) Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 8:07
  • 2
    @ShadowTheKidWizard agreed, it is on our list of things to address. Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 8:07
  • @YaakovEllis in the past developers used to add status-review to bug reports, so now when there isn't any, I take it as "this isn't on our radar at all at the moment". :( Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 8:08
  • 3
    Everything is on our radar. We add status-review when we have done our internal triage and have added it to our list of stuff to evaluate. We have a slight delay on that for these items here, as we are concentrating on the Staging Ground release at the moment. So triage (and status labels) will be coming soon. Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 8:23
3

There's a possibility to get wrong location for notification time point in case of localized sites. Time is shifted down form the envelope icon. E.g. on Stack Overflow in Russian:

notification time

3

My inbox notification count seems to be whacky. I'm seeing this:

  1. Notification count shows 5.
  2. Open inbox, the only unread notification is a comment to another answer I gave to this question (which had several other comments).
  3. I mark it as read.
  4. Notification count shows 4.
  5. Repeat step 2 (same notification, but maybe it's a different comment being shown?)
  6. Repeat step 3.
  7. Notification count shows 3.
  8. Now there are no unread messages that I can see.

enter image description here

  1. Refresh the page. Now I can see an unread notification (another comment on the same thread):

enter image description here

Repeat, repeat, repeat...

1
  • At the moment there is an issue with the notification count not always matching the number of shown notifications. This is an old problem with merging mulitple notifications for one post. Unfortunately it is much more visible with the new functionality in place.
    – marrados StaffMod
    Commented Dec 9, 2022 at 9:43
3

Sufficiently old answers show up in the count but not in the unread listing at all.

After letting a number of old answers pile up, even after trying to go back through them and catch up, the counter is not at zero... yet listing the inbox shows nothing at all.

Refreshing/reloading has no effect on this behavior, distinguishing it from some other reports here (similarly, it can be distinguished from some other preexisting reports because the scroll bar shows that there's no content in the window that could be reached by scrolling up or down). I have no way that I know of to discover what these phantom messages are and read them (they're far enough back in the full inbox that I've given up before reaching them every time I've tried)

Notification showing 45 unread messages, but an inbox in "unread" mode not listing any contents at all.

6
  • 1
    Thank you for reporting it! The first implementation only filters the top 50 messages and does not call the backend. We're aware of it and it is something we have scheduled in our backlog.
    – marrados StaffMod
    Commented Feb 3, 2023 at 10:28
  • Ah. Is there any alternate way to get this list (including via API call) unrelated to the recent UI changes? Commented Feb 3, 2023 at 12:58
  • 1
    Yes - the notifications are visible in the global inbox ("Go to full inbox" button).
    – marrados StaffMod
    Commented Feb 3, 2023 at 14:01
  • Sorry -- that's not what I meant to ask. I know they're there in the full inbox, but I've been here well over a decade, my inbox is over a thousand pages long, and I have no idea how deep the messages in question are. Having given up on trying to reach them several times, I'm trying to list only unread messages; if the main inbox has a way to do that, I haven't seen it. Commented Feb 3, 2023 at 14:22
  • 1
    Ok, I got it! ATM it's not possible, but we'll add this feature.
    – marrados StaffMod
    Commented Feb 4, 2023 at 20:19
  • @CharlesDuffy that's not relevant. Before this change, all messages became "read" once you opened the inbox without a way to mark any as unread. So no matter how deep you dig, you'll never find old unread items because it does not exist. And since we can't mark items as unread from the full inbox, you also can't even do it manually. Commented Feb 5, 2023 at 15:39
2

The possibility to (auto) delete messages. Looking at my inbox there is 1184 pages à 20 messages each, sorted in chronological order.

I can't find a reasonable way to search or browse old messages, nor do I quite understand why I would ever want to do that. I've been a member for 12 years and never had the need for such. The messages are sorted by date but only displays month and day, not year. Worse yet it's just one big goo of all messages from every site in the network that I'm a member of.

What am I supposed to do with this? Save for checking messages received during the past week or so, there's no way nor need for me to meaningfully interact with old messages the inbox.

So it would seem that the archived old messages are just useless bloat taking up massive amounts of space on some SE server. The vast majority of it all is just hard-copies of comments archived on the sites anyway. At least delete everything older than 1 year?

12
  • 1
    You can access your own inbox replies via API, at least: api.stackexchange.com/docs/inbox
    – TylerH
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 15:51
  • 1
    @TylerH Why not just deliver a raw database and the "community" can do all the work implementing the site from there. But another point is that this is just a lot of useless info. Yeah someone will say that HD space is cheap... and then the next thing we hear is that some big tech corp needs to buy a new server hall that consumes half a nuclear plant in power consumption. And in the end its common folks who have to pay a steep power bill just so that tech companies can store astronomical amounts of useless garbage. There's no such thing as a free lunch/free social media/free HD space.
    – Lundin
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 16:01
  • 2
    The 'massive amounts of space' is likely not such a big issue, I just tried putting 23680 comment in a text file and that is 3mb, with current storage prices per MB that is around 0.0000486 US dollar.
    – Marijn
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 16:04
  • @Marijn SE doesn't just have 1 single user.
    – Lundin
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 16:06
  • That is true, but most of them will not have thousands of comments.
    – Marijn
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 16:06
  • 3
    Also, let's assume that all ~30 million SE users have a 3mb inbox (which they don't), then that would cost around $1500. Stack Exchange, Inc. was bought by Prosus for $1.8 billion, so the storage cost for the inbox is approximately 0% of the company's value.
    – Marijn
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 16:20
  • 2
    @Lundin I agree it would be better if they were searchable because then there'd be immediate use for users. Just wanted to point out that there was at least some way to make use of them.
    – TylerH
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 18:33
  • 1
    Even if ~30 million SE users have a 3MB inbox, that being a total of 90 TB of data... That's nothing compared to the amount of data sites like YouTube need to store. A drop in a bucket. I'm strongly opposed to just deleting older notifications. I've searched through my notifications a few times over the past year. I don't see a very strong reason to remove it.
    – Cerbrus
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 9:28
  • "it all is just hard-copies of comments" Are you sure? It likely is just links to them. When a comment is deleted, so is the notification. Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 16:41
  • @CrisLuengo Pretty sure, since when you write a comment then edit it, I don't think the edited part appears in the notification. (This text in parenthesis here was added as and edit after I notified you.)
    – Lundin
    Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 7:51
  • @Lundin The notification doesn't show the full comment, it only shows "@CrisLuengo Pretty sure, since when you write a comment then edit it, I don't think the edite..." But I believe you. I guess I would have implemented it differently. :) Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 20:35
  • @CrisLuengo Yet another reason why saving these messages doesn't make any sense then.
    – Lundin
    Commented Dec 2, 2022 at 7:01
2

Items are still marked as read if you choose not to navigate away from an unfinished post

To reproduce:

  1. have at least one unread notification in your inbox

  2. start writing a new question

  3. click to the notification to navigate to it

  4. decline navigating away from the unfinished post when prompted

  5. notification is marked as read even though you never navigated to it

4
  • The code handling marking the item as read can't know that you changed your mind and didn't actually navigate to the link. Maybe with some complex hax it's possible to know, but I don't think the devs should spend their time on it. Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 17:28
  • 1
    @ShadowTheKidWizard how could you know that without knowing the code? I'll leave it up to the Devs to decide if it's worth fixing. Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 18:34
  • 4
    When you click on the notification, it will always be marked as read. This is how it is supposed to work. And changing it so that it will only retroactively mark it as read once the user view the page is not something practical in this scenario (there are a lot more ways in which that can break down, and for almost every case it is over-engineering). Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 20:17
  • @YaakovEllis thanks for clarifying that! There should be mechanism, the same one for the prompt, that could make this simple... But it is an extra thing to break like you said. Commented Dec 2, 2022 at 3:30
2

The Filter "INBOX (UNREAD)" and the "INBOX (ALL)" is all caps, the dropdown uses titlecase so the selection would be consistent if it was the same.

enter image description here

2

iOS 16.1.2 on iPhone 14 Pro Max

Marking or unmarking as read has a small area in which it works. I have large fingers, so I need to zoom (pinch) into the page to click the button.

The yellow area in the photo below always works, but clicking the larger blue area often takes you to the post.

Could we extend the area considered to be part of the mark/unmark action? There is plenty of space to go to the post by clicking more to the left.

area

1

When scrolling with the mouse wheel while pointing within the inbox window, I expect the inbox window to scroll, not the main page.

I'm on macOS+Safari. Sometimes the main window scrolls, sometimes the inbox window scrolls. It is rather unpredictable. Move the mouse a bit and try again usually works. — This is not about the main page scrolling when you get to the end of the window scroll range, it is the window not scrolling when it should.

I had never before tried to scroll the achievements window, but I notice now that it has the same unpredictable behavior. The community window (rightmost button on the top bar) does too.

9
  • 1
    I'm not experiencing this problem in Chrome (Version 107) on Mac OS 13.0 (Ventura) – and I've never encountered problems with it in Firefox on Windows either... If anyone else is able to reproduce this behavior, then I would guess that it's a Safari-specific issue.
    – V2Blast
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 21:32
  • In any case, I doubt this would be related to the inbox improvements, especially since I don't think the other top-bar dropdowns were affected by the changes to the inbox... so I suspect this should be reported as a separate bug, if anything.
    – V2Blast
    Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 21:33
  • @V2Blast It has never been an issue before because we used to see many more inbox items in the menu without scrolling. I don't remember ever trying to scroll any of those windows before, it has become necessary because of the much larger vertical dimension of each inbox item in the new inbox. Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 21:38
  • @V2Blast try to scroll to the end, then scroll more, and the main page will scroll instead. That's what I get with Chrome under Win10. Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 7:53
  • 2
    @ShadowTheKidWizard: True, but I figure that's the expected behavior, so I assumed that's not the issue Cris Luengo was reporting. I could be wrong there.
    – V2Blast
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 9:04
  • 1
    If you hit either the top or bottom of the drop menu scroll, the main page will then move instead, if possible, in the same direction. This, as far as I can recall, has always been Mac/Safari behaviour on all sites, not just SE, even if it isn't universal across browsers [I've never really used anything else so not noticed.] I've always considered it OK most times, but if you rapid-scroll, it's irritating as you lose your place on the main window.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 13:14
  • @Tetsujin What I observe is not that. It is the window not scrolling when it should, and the main window scrolling instead. Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 14:25
  • @CrisLuengo can't reproduce, you better create a gif or a video and show it. Might be something on your side, e.g. userscript going rogue. Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 14:25
  • 2
    @ShadowTheKidWizard Ok, I’ll try to do that later today then. Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 14:28
1

  1. (thanks, let me mark this for you)
    I use a custom page scale in a browser because most of the modern sites are too huge and it results in the filter drop­down being misaligned with the arrow:

    Inbox filter drop­down is horizontally in the middle

  2. Also if you take a closer look at the filter drop­down, the triangle at the top-left is misaligned as well and creates a hole in a left border (at any scale):

    Inbox filter drop­down, 10x zoom of top-left corner
    (I doubt this worth a separate post)

    Edit:
    Seems like it's an actual bug, here's how it looked like in the announcement post:

    Inbox filter drop­down from the announcement post

4
  • SE never supported zooming/scaling of that sort, and I can't see how it's possible to support such thing. The design is based on specific size, and breaking that with external tools will break the design. Commented Dec 14, 2022 at 14:56
  • 1
    @ShadowWizard Well, since I'm not seeing the whole site turning apart I think it's pretty much supported. It's not an external tool, it's a standard browser feature. And the design is not based on specific size either, it's responsive. This could be fixed as easy as making the dropdown position relative to the arrow.
    – EvgenKo423
    Commented Dec 14, 2022 at 15:11
  • 1
    What browser and OS (and what versions of them) are you encountering this issue in?
    – V2Blast
    Commented Dec 15, 2022 at 5:30
  • @V2Blast I'm on Vivaldi 3.3 (Chrome 85) now, there are no errors in a Console after opening the dropdown (and at all). Not sure the OS is relevant here, but it's Windows 7 SP1.
    – EvgenKo423
    Commented Dec 15, 2022 at 7:56
1

I'm getting way too many messages now. The problem is that before all comments or answers on a single question were lumped together in a 'you have something on this question' message. Now I get a message for every single comment. If people are being being very talkative on a question I post it quickly builds up to an excessive number of notifications.

I know I can mark everything as read, but that risks my missing something I care about, such as a useful answer to a different question, in the flood of comments I mostly don't care about, and which I'm going to read all at once if I do.

Id like to see one notification if there is a comment on a question or answer of mine, and only one per question/answer no matter how many comments are made. If not by default then at least as an option I can select.

I'd sort of like the same option to combine all answers to a single question into one notification, but I don't feel nearly as strongly about that as I do getting rid of clutter from excessive comments where I need to click each comment one after another despite reading all the comments at once.

2
  • 2
    "The problem is that before all comments or answers on a single question were lumped together in a 'you have something on this question' message. Now I get a message for every single comment. If people are being being very talkative on a question I post it quickly builds up to an excessive number of notifications." – I'm pretty sure the same number of notifications is displayed now as were displayed before – and the notifications for multiple comments on the same post are merged together, as before. The one thing that's changed is that they're not all marked as read when you open the inbox...
    – V2Blast
    Commented Jan 5, 2023 at 19:59
  • 2
    ...Because of that, there's currently a suboptimal experience where you only see one of those notifications at a time in the inbox dropdown, and can only mark them as read one by one (unless you click "Mark all read", of course) – marking one notification as read unmerges it from the remaining unread notifications, but the notifications you can actually see don't update until you refresh the inbox. Other answers to this post already cover that issue – but at this point, if you have new feedback that's not already covered by one of the existing answers, please post it as a new question instead.
    – V2Blast
    Commented Jan 5, 2023 at 20:04
0

Some of the notifications are missing in the new Inbox.

In the below image, all the possible notifications from my Network Profile (by clicking on the "Go to full inbox" link at the bottom of the inbox) are displayed on the left-hand side. Compared to that some of the notifications are missing in the new Inbox.

I didn't remember the same approach was exists in the previous inbox UI.
So, is this a bug or the existing functionality?

Screenshot from stackexchange.com:

notifications are missing in the new inbox

3
  • 4
    As far as I can tell, it was always like that, the inbox "collapse" several comments on same post into one notification to avoid cluttering it. Commented Nov 29, 2022 at 17:50
  • Yep, what Shadow said. This confused me at first as well, since I didn't realize the inbox was doing this before... It's just that it's more confusing behavior when notifications are individually marked read/unread, since only the visible (most recent) notification is currently marked read when you click on it.
    – V2Blast
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 4:18
  • 4
    As Yaakov's comment on Stu's answer states: "We definitely have "figure out a better way to handle merged notifications" on our list of things to address".
    – V2Blast
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 4:19
0

Weird dropdown icon position in case of long translated strings:

enter image description here

Screenshot was taken from StackOverflow in Russian

Stretching the top element on the whole line will also combine the drop-down and close buttons, on mobile, making it harder to tap the right one. However, even with narrow size tapping the drop-down icon may accidentally affect the "Mark all as read" link.

Android inbox

3
  • 1
    You can repro on any site if you edit the text in the browser's Developer Tools (example). Apparently, when the width of the menu cannot fit both elements, the dropdown gets stretched to fill the entire width (since the link is moved to the second line anyway). I'm not sure this is considered a bug though. Do you think it would look better like this?
    – 41686d6564
    Commented Nov 30, 2022 at 23:12
  • 1
    @41686d6564standsw.Palestine narrowed items are better, explanation added to the post body. Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 10:48
  • 2
    That's fair. Perhaps making the whole dropdown (not just the button) clickable would be a decent solution.
    – 41686d6564
    Commented Dec 1, 2022 at 11:08
-2

Can I keep the current inbox functionality?

No. [...]

This may seem petty, but please: when you are communicating design changes, don't tell us they are "improvements" unless they are objectively improvements for everyone. If you can foresee that some people will want to keep the old behaviour, then you already know that there are users who will not consider the change to be an improvement.

If you think those people are few enough that it's not worth giving us an option to keep the old behaviour (unless, apparently, enough of us whinge about it), then OK, it sounds like you have justified to yourself that the change is worth making on balance. But for those of us who consider the change to be a degradation (see some of the other answers here for why we think that), you telling us it's an improvement is not going to make us think otherwise. But it might make us think that you don't care what we think.

So please, don't toot your own horn. If something is really an improvement, trust your users to recognise it as one.

9
  • 4
    By this criteria, we can never call anything an improvement. Someone will always want to keep things as-is. Not intending to insult anyone, and we do care. Sorry that it was taken that way. Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 7:02
  • 1
    Yeah, this seems pedantic. It's fair enough to call something an improvement if it is being done in good faith with the goal of improving something, and most people would see it that way. Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 7:54
  • 1
    I agree with @Yaakov here. The fact we can now mark inbox items as read/unread alone is a big leap forward. The way it's done, the bugs, the things that can still be improved are a different story, but overall, it's moving forward. Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 8:11
  • 1
    @ShadowTheKidWizard I already could mark inbox items as read, with two clicks; now it takes three and one of them is a tiny icon. That is not forwards.
    – kaya3
    Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 12:11
  • 1
    @YaakovEllis I don't agree. If you add a new option and some people want to use it while others don't have to, that objectively doesn't make anyone worse off. In that case you can objectively call it an improvement. If you change the behaviour to make it worse for some people, but you tell us it is an improvement, that makes it sound like you didn't consider those people when making the change.
    – kaya3
    Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 12:16
  • It's impossible to make everyone happy, in anything, in any aspect. Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 12:18
  • 1
    Case in point, I have already opened my inbox, navigated to this comment thread, and responded to your comment, yet the site tells me I still have two unread items in my inbox, and shows one unread item when I click on it, and it's this comment thread. That is not an improvement, it is a degradation; being told it is an improvement just makes me think you don't know what the change means or you don't care.
    – kaya3
    Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 12:19
  • 1
    After posting another comment now it says I have three, while still only showing one. "You can't make everyone happy" is a vacuous truism, not a sensible response to negative feedback.
    – kaya3
    Commented Dec 6, 2022 at 12:20
  • 1
    @kaya3 that one is actually under review, you can skim through the answers here, and you'll find it. Commented Dec 7, 2022 at 15:13
1
2

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .