Sunday, October 21, 2007

Suggestions sent to Yahoo re: 360 Profiles

This article was originally posted to my Yahoo 360 blog Wednesday April 4, 2007 - 11:17pm (CDT)

I sent a few into Yahoo Support. The letter I sent can be found here.

Yes, I have my own Googlegroup, with one whole member in it. I rock. I guess. One particular suggestion probably should stand out, should you be looking at the left hand side of your screen, now:

"1. Looking at my blogroll, I noticed that instead of being set against the white background the text was set against, it was set against the page background. This is a mistake, because it just about guarantees that the links on the blogroll will be almost unreadable.

In order to make the profile page look nice, one has to have some kind of tonal contrast - light against dark, dark against light. Light against light is just going to look washed out. But we only get to choose one set of link colors, which will be chosen to make the links stand out well against the light background of the boxes the text is in. What stands out well against a light background, does poorly

against a dark one. "

Take a look at the blogroll to your left. See what I mean? I can get away with having that link as faint as it does, because the guy who owns that other blog is me. Were it somebody else, I don't think he'd be amused, and there really is no clear reason to create this problem. Yes, to have the light tag cloud and Message boxes above the dark calendar makes a nice visual statement, which having a light blogroll box beneath the calendar might detract from, but at least two options for dealing with that problem come to mind.

  1. Move the blog roll up into the white box above the calendar.

  2. Notice that the profile is put together with style sheets, meaning that the usual limitations of an HTML page don't apply. Having not written a style sheet, I'm not sure if this is possible, but couldn't one have the user specify one set of link colors for the white text boxes and another for links appearing outside of those boxes, set against the background graphic?

While we're at it, having the option to moderate comments would be nice, as well. Right now, it's all or nothing - either somebody can post whatever he wants in your comment section and it will appear without your prior approval, or he can't post at all. This means that in order to keep the trolls from spreading their virtual excrement over one's site, one has to turn nice, reasonable people away, telling them that one doesn't want to hear what they have to say. Given the subject matter of much of my own site, not a problem for me, but certain to be an unnecessary problem for many other users, who probably would have enjoyed much of a dialogue that they might no longer feel free to engage in. Comment moderation is hardly unknown on other services, and one wonders why it would be unknown on this one. Certainly, this doesn't help to build community, which Yahoo seems to want to do, very, very badly.

But what are the odds that anybody's going to be listening? This was probably a vain effort on my part, but then I suppose that one could say that about most of blogging, in general.