Intentionally threading replies versus large combined replies

EDIT: per discussion below, especially Stephen’s screenshot, it’s clear that my thoughts do NOT work here. I was wishing this could actually be effectively a threaded system, and it just isn’t. So, I retract my suggestion, though here it is for reference:

Continuing the discussion from Feedback wanted re pledge suspension, auto-drop, etc:

Not strongly held conclusion, but I’m a big fan of threading used well (and Discourse is fake-threaded by making it possible to at least track what’s a reply to what).

So, given the example I’m replying to (linked above), I think it would be far better to reply to each comment and post one at a time. That way, each reply is clearly linked to the parent and can be tracked in a sort of threaded way instead of a big all-at-once reply comment.

So, stating my opinion, just trying to develop good collective habits about how to use this forum well.

In contrast, @msiep wrote:

(BTW this is my first time responding in Discourse, and I love how I can go through the thread and mark things to quote and then reply to it all in one go like this. Huge improvement over email threads!)

This ironically reinforces my view because ideally (in my view) he should have posted that comment here in Forum: Meta instead of making his reply longer.

Thankfully, even my suggestion allows some amount of replying while reading on the topic that is all at one page, but it very well might not be as nice a reply experience. I think my way is less convenient for replying (but easy enough with habit) yet preferable for keeping effective discussion going well and not having ever-growing long enormous single replies.

I’ll try that next time. I’m new to using Discourse and just starting to learn what the options are for how to reply etc. I think if I do it the way you’re suggesting, it will still have the main advantage I appreciated compared to email, which is that the whole discussion appears in one sequence you can read as a block. Even if that block contains multiple sub-discussions, it’s still a lot easier to understand and work with than a bunch of separate emails.

Another good thing I now know about. :slight_smile:

Yeah, trial and error. We’ll see.

Another point on this: in principle, if we make a bunch of separate replies, then our replies themselves will be short enough that a reply to the reply could skip the quoting (because it’s obvious what you’re replying to.

Or wait, no it isn’t, damnit. So, even though this is one long page, Discourse does mark what’s a reply to what, so you can see a much later reply to a much earlier post (skipping what’s in the middle) with the little “# replies” indicator on a post… but there doesn’t seem to be a “parent” button to quickly see what a post was replying to (unlike better-threaded boards like Hacker News / Reddit style, which I happen to prefer). Maybe there’s a way to get a “parent” link here as an option? If so, that would allow the clean omission of so much quoting…

As a potential point against my suggestion for lots of smaller reply posts: I could imagine that someone visiting finds it harder to mentally track a conversation that way and may even miss one or two of such small posts within a long topic.

I think my view can be summarized as: I really want a true threaded view, if just as an option, a la Reddit full-threading, and my suggestion here was about trying to get closer to that, but since we probably can’t have it, maybe acting as though we have it when we don’t actually isn’t going to work well.

So, I encourage some experimentation. I’m really not sure what’s going to work best. There are many ways to go.

Discourse apparently recommends larger posts. I got the following while composing a reply:

Thanks for that note!

Yeah, it certainly seems that even if I disagree, trying to behave otherwise will be fighting against the system. Several smaller replies are easier to read with true threading, and far far easier to have threaded exchanges on. Discourse is simple not threaded, it’s flat but with a bunch of extra pseudo-thread functions to help overcome the problems with being flat. I have to accept this.

@msiep please note that my suggestion above is not appropriate to how Discourse works, so continue with how you used it initially.

@wolftune noted. Thanks.

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