Rich media descriptions


Well-known member
I'm wondering what the point of descriptions on media actually is? Are they used in any interesting ways other than simply being displayed below the media item itself?

Many of our members have commented on the fact that descriptions are a bit useless - we can't add rich content, and we can't quote them without copy and pasting them into a comment.

If anything, it would be better to have the description inserted as the first comment so that it can be quoted - even if it is plain text rather than rich, at least it forms part of the conversation about the photo.

Even better would be to present a rich text box when adding descriptions to photos.

This all goes back to previous suggestions pointing out that the discussion about photos is often as important as the photos themselves - so we need to find ways to make them more usable.

At the moment media is very much based around "hey - here's a pretty photo to look at" (passive consumption) ... whereas for us, it's much more about being interactive "hey - here's a pretty photo ... did you notice X? what do you think about Y? wouldn't it be amazing if Z?" ... at which point the discussion takes off and becomes less about the photo itself - that was just the trigger for the discussion.


Well-known member
To answer my own question, I can see a justification for a plain text description for images when it comes to embedding photos in posts:

... you don't really want that description to be overly long, or formatted with other content using rich text.

If it were rich text, then you'd get people trying to do stuff like embed photos into the description of another photo.

I think the main issue was the way in which it was displayed in MG 1.x, which was almost hidden it was so subtle - but I think that has largely been addressed in MG 2.x, and really comes into its own for embedded media.

What might be useful is to allow people to quote the description in their comments. I'll add that as a separate, more specific suggestion.