Rant: WYSIWYG editor is encouraging bad behaviors

Jawsh

Active member
Since 2.2, I have noticed an incredible drop in post legibility as a result of user formatting choices. I believe this is caused by changes in the WYSIWYG editor.

Complaint 1
Users, when replying to a post, often place a blank line between the quote box they are replying to and their message. This is a non-obvious legibility issue, but I believe that the blank line disassociates the reply from the quote.

Complaint 2
Users are no longer putting spaces before and after quotes they are inserting into their post. This is probably because, when you insert a quote, it does not space out automatically.

Complaint 3
Users, when replying to multiple posts, are placing spaces between each quote. It's incredibly awkward to figure out what they're trying to say and who they're saying it to at a glance.

Complaint 4
Image attachments are inserted inline. This causes an issue where a single line's line height is blown out due to the inline thumbnail. Image thumbnails should space out to their own row.

Complaint 5
Image embeds are full sized. Phone posters in particular love to insert phone screenshots at 4K resolution one on top of the other in the middle of their post.


And a request: Please have a way to disable quoting the first post in a thread. There is a problem with people replying to very large posts to say absolutely nothing. I cannot think of a single use case where it is important for someone to be able to one-click reply to a huge post and have it re-embedded in their post verbatim.
 
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Jawsh

Active member
Complaint 1

An example of what I mean. I personally find this extremely annoying and I try to encourage users to delete this line. I've been told that the blank line is automatically inserted by the WYSIWYG editor on mobile. I cannot reproduce it, but it only started once the editor would HTML-ify the quote box.

Complaint 1
Without the space, it's more immediately obvious what I'm replying to.




Complaint 2
Similar to complaint 1, when someone does not properly space out their quote blocks, it's hard to tell if someone is replying to something or just incorporating it into their post.
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Nunc vitae erat vitae orci lacinia tempor at eu erat. Nulla sed ipsum laoreet, vulputate dui in, commodo justo.
This looks like I'm replying to the quote.

It's better when a quote is integrated with margins.

Nam vitae hendrerit mauris. Phasellus euismod tincidunt orci eget porttitor. Ut sit amet quam pretium, dapibus orci id, pulvinar nisi.

Now you understand the above is a feature of this post, not a post I am responding to.




Complaint 3

Complaint 3.1
Replying like this makes it look like a mistake was made and I forgot to fill in the space above. I'm not sure what's causing this but I see it a lot. It's also not obvious how to fix it in the WYSIWYG editor.

Complaint 3
Complaint 3.1
Now it's obvious I'm replying to two quotes.




Complaint 4
This is the worst.

Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Phasellus malesuada ultrices sem ac vulputate. Proin dignissim, augue vitae semper condimentum, tellus nunc sagittis nisl, quis mattis ex mi ac justo. Vivamus ante nibh, luctus et sem nec, ullamcorper pellentesque velit. Pellentesque tempor ultrices lacus vitae cursus. Maecenas sit amet congue ex, quis dignissim ipsum. 1615983715230.png

It'd be ideal if inserting attachment thumbnails spaced out to its own line, and continued to place attachments on the same line. When typing was engaged again, it'd create a new line properly spaced under it.

1615983715230.png1615983715230.png

Like this.




Complaint 5
Much like how the editor used to insert videos float aligned left and this caused huge problems with WYSIWYG users, people tend to copy+paste their phone screenshots and those are full 4K resolution. If pasting an image caused spacing practices from 4, and auto-thumbing if the image is over the size of a thumbnail, that'd be great.
 
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Lee

Well-known member
You can format messages as you see fit, so I dont see how this is an issue with the editor.


Much like how the editor used to insert videos float aligned left and this caused huge problems with WYSIWYG users, people tend to copy+paste their phone screenshots and those are full 4K resolution. If pasting an image caused spacing practices from 4, and auto-thumbing if the image is over the size of a thumbnail, that'd be great.
No line break between quote and message on my android mobile device.
 

Jawsh

Active member
You can format messages as you see fit, so I dont see how this is an issue with the editor.
My forum has about 23,000 people making a post every month. When there is no clear system for formatting, the site becomes hard to read. I can scroll down a single page in a single thread and see four different ideas of how to compose a post from the users in just that vertical slice. If it's jarring for me, it's jarring for a casual reader.

My belief is that the changes to the editor have caused this. I don't care if that belief is correct. I'm just trying to think of how to fix it. I don't have to moderator manpower to review every post. Trying to force people to format a certain way is just going to piss people off. I believe it's possible to use the editor to take advantage of people's laziness to achieve a consistent formatting.
 

Lee

Well-known member
This issue exists on every single large forum. You are essentially trying to engineer out peoples posting habits. I think no matter what you try, people will post in a way that isn't suitable.

That being said, I wish you the best of luck because the struggle for legible posts is a real one.
 

Jawsh

Active member
I'd like to reiterate my frustration with thumbnailing in particular. I can try to soft-enforce formatting guidelines, but the thumbnailing issue is ubiquitous and that is definitely the WYSWYG editor's fault.

When you paste an image (how 90% of all images are uploaded), they auto-embed at full size.
When you click the image in the editor, there is no button to change it to thumbnail.

I've noticed that some users will actually take the full size image and manually resize it to something looking like a thumbnail, which just wastes user resources. This is probably because, for the WYSIWYG user, there's actually no button to thumbnail an image. Only manually resize. Others choose to spoiler images, which is also not good because people shouldn't need to click to see an image twice the size of their screen.

Even just adding a thumbnailing button to that click menu would help, but images have no place being full res when inserted by default.
 

imno007

Well-known member
Well, there is an insert option on a pasted image: if that's clicked, there's then an option to insert as full or thumbnail. It's janky, for sure, because a user then has to backspace/delete the full image in order to show only the thumbnail, but it's certainly quicker and easier than resizing every image. Ozzy has an addon (Insert Image Enhancement) that simply does away with "insert" and just shows the full and thumbnail options, making it a little more obvious.
 
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gldtn

Well-known member
Complaint #1-3 I can't relate, is just a matter of educating you users, but as we know that is easier said than done. I've been struggling for years and even had a reaction that took away points from post with the help of add-on to try keeps things in check. But like @Lee said, the struggle is real.

Complaint 4-5 can be annoying as hell. I need to rely on add-ons or simply use CSS to hide full image button, hopefully XF will put a permission based on full images/Thumbnails and make inline images a little more difficult to add. The way I see is, images should be added to a new line and the cursor should go right below it by default, so you can type a description or continue your post. If they really need an inline, than they should either have an option when you click on the image or just by manually deleting the line-brake and spaces before the image.
 

kelle67

Active member
Why don't you specify a fixed size for the images with height and weight in the css?
Then the images are displayed only so large.

Have you two ever asked your users what they think about it?
 

Jawsh

Active member
Why don't you specify a fixed size for the images with height and weight in the css?
Then the images are displayed only so large.

Have you two ever asked your users what they think about it?
If someone is embedding a massive image and the stylesheets shrink it down, it's still a massive image. It uses the bandwidth from the server, it consumes mobile data, it sits in the cache, etc. This compounds for multiple images.

Stylesheets also aren't a great solution. Sometimes you want a big image. Sometimes it's an important screencap, or an image that is very long but not very tall. Trying to guess what size an image should be is a lost cause. Twitter can't even get it right with their image preview system and they have millions of dollars to figure something out. It should be user choice how it displays, but the choice to have a full size embed should be one opted into, not the default.
 

Mendalla

Well-known member
someone is embedding a massive image and the stylesheets shrink it down, it's still a massive image. It uses the bandwidth from the server, it consumes mobile data, it sits in the cache, etc. This compounds for multiple images.
There is a setting in ACP - Setup - Options - Attachments called Maximum Attachment File Size. Mine is set to 1024KB. It works. I have been tripped up by it myself. Solves the problem nicely.
 
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Mendalla

Well-known member
Actually, my server is limiting it to 2MB. The 1024 doesn't seem to be applying to images. However, you also have the option of limiting image dimensions. So if you make use of options like these, I'm not sure I see the problem you are describing. If you cap attachment size and image dimensions, how can they upload huge images like you are describing?

And the spacing issues are meh to me. I have never found any issues with how posts look on my forum. The above was done on my Droid and no space. I didn't delete anything.
 

Jawsh

Active member
There is a setting in ACP - Setup - Options - Attachments called Maximum Attachment File Size. Mine is set to 1024KB. It works. I have been tripped up by it myself. Solves the problem nicely.
That's not a solution. That just reduces the maximum upload size. My maximum upload size is 200MB because we archive a lot of videos and other documents. I need thumbnailing to work correctly and by default.
 

kelle67

Active member
It should be user choice how it displays, but the choice to have a full size embed should be one opted into, not the default.
The user have the choice.
And i hope xf never choice thumbnail us default. But you can speak with @AndyB ,he have a Addon maybe him can fix your problem.
 
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