Changing the slug of the "Clearing the path" category

I’d like to change the slug from #clear-the-path to #shoveling, which would make the canonical url https://community.snowdrift.coop/c/shoveling/7 and would affect the #tags, like I just used.

It’s not a big change; mainly this is @Salt, are you okay with that?

4 Appreciations

One word. I like it

Go ahead, thanks for checking.

I noticed that we can set URL slugs separate from the category titles.

I went and made “Clearing the Path” into “Snow shoveling” (which I really prefer in that context to just “shoveling”) but the slug is the short “shoveling” one.

I also shortened other slugs. So “General Discussion” is still the title, but the slug is shortened to “general”.

1 Appreciation

Yes, I changed the slug but left the title intact.

I’m not sure why you did this. I never proposed to change the title of the category, only the slug. I prefer “Clearing the Path” over “Snow Shoveling”. I changed it back.

1 Appreciation

I actually prefer “Snow Shoveling” because it makes the metaphor and the name more clear. The slug and name being so different is awkward too. Please let’s switch to “Snow shoveling”.

When you proposed the change, I didn’t think specifically about changing only the slug and thus having the disconnect between slug and name. I supported the change because I realized that “Snow shoveling” is plainer and clearer and liked the suggestion overall.

I’d rather think and say “I’m shoveling snow” than “I’m clearing the path” because the former is more about the activity with the goal being implicit whereas the clear-the-path language is goal-explicit and activity-implicit. I feel closer to the immediate work and experience with the “snow shoveling” language.

It also reinforces the “Snowdrift.coop” name more clearly with the metaphor of snowdrift as the problem we’re addressing by shoveling the snow (or funding people to shovel the snow).

The reliance on metaphor is why I don’t like it. “Clearing the Path” also relies on metaphor, but it’s much more universal (consider: some people don’t live in snowy areas of the world, and may not grok the concept of shoveling snow). I like “shoveling” because it is more fun, but I don’t think it works unless we’re going to really embrace that kind of messaging across the entire site, so the metaphor has already been explained by the time someone gets to the forum. But I don’t like that direction; I’d rather spend the effort explaining, say, crowdmatching :stuck_out_tongue:

This is basically why I wrote this topic to begin with, but I think it is a non-issue. There are only two places that the slug is actually visible at all (mentioned in the first post). When you type #clear, “Clearing the Path” pops up as an autocompletion option, so nobody has to remember “shoveling”.

Shoveling is the (well, one) way to clear a snow-covered path. I like it as the slug because it hints towards the metaphor — and I do like the metaphor; it’s fun! — without requiring us to put the explanation front-and-center. If it’s a little confusing and leads to questions like “why is the category #shoveling?”, that’s a great opportunity to explain the metaphor to folks who are already engaged.

1 Appreciation

Too late for that, the name of the whole org is “Snowdrift.coop”. We’re asking people to accept this one story about snow already. This is not extra to put it here, it’s reinforcing the single story we want to be able to use. Every time we shy away from it, we harm the ability to use it as a quick reference.

We should be saying “snow shoveling” all the time, and everyone will get it. It’s a fine story. It works even if you aren’t personally familiar with snow. We do not want some “oh, you should stop thinking of snow and instead think about flooding or about potholes”, that’s much worse and not aligned with our branding.

In short: don’t apologize for our branding and try to shy away from it!

Well, yeah. That’s our brand. We should be embracing this snow-shoveling message across the whole site. We aren’t currently “crowdmatching.coop” which we could be, but that’s a whole other discussion, and there’s something nice and concrete about a single metaphor we use for all of this. Snowdrift already has real brand awareness in many places.

1 Appreciation

Okay, that’s fair, and I’m a little more receptive.

I still think I prefer “Clearing the Path”. It’s reminiscent of our old placeholder-slogan, “Clearing the path to a free & open future”. But, let me sit on this for a bit and see if I warm up to Snow Shoveling (kinda-pun intended).

In any case, even if I agreed with the change, I also don’t think it was a decision to be made unilaterally (same goes for the other changes). In terms of decision rights, I think “subgroup”[1] (you/me/Salt) or at least “leader with input” would have been appropriate.[2]


  1. as I did for changing the slug, although apparently there was misunderstanding ↩︎

  2. I also think there's a missing distinction in their groups regarding the level of detail that the decision-maker shares — there's a difference between "I changed some categories" and "I made these specific changes"; the latter invites retroactive feedback and is somewhere between "leader" and "leader with input" ↩︎

2 Appreciations

While this has become a topic that touches on many small forum changes… I went ahead and re-ordered the #shoveling subcategories to be in alphabetical order. Before, they were (confusingly) close to it; I just needed to swap Outreach and Project Management, and move Infrastructure before them (all on the same line).

edit: err, actually legal is still out of order.

1 Appreciation