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Updates to your file uploading experiences

Hi everyone, I’m the PM on the Media team. The Media team looks after file uploading and previewing files on a Confluence page or Jira ticket.

In September last year we wrote on Community to let you know that features in the Media picker popup were being removed. A reminder of those features:

Cloud picking:

Screenshot 2021-01-25 at 4.03.20 pm.png

Not many of you used this feature, fewer than 0.3% of files are added this way. We heard loud and clear from customers, that this feature wasn’t working as expected. This was because it copies files over rather than linking to them.

Confluence already has a good alternative, you can use Slash commands to insert Google and Dropbox files.

And there is an even faster alternative available using Smartlinks. In Jira and Confluence you can copy a link to a file from Google (even from a Shared Team Drive) or Dropbox and paste it into your page or ticket. This creates a handy Smartlink reference to the file.

And of course you can still get Giphy files into Confluence by copying and pasting them in.

Recent files

Screenshot 2021-01-25 at 4.04.09 pm.png

We see a very small % of customers who use the Recents feature weekly. Furthermore without the ability to filter or search Recents, customers we have spoken to often end up just re-uploading their files.

It is important to note that when we remove Recents all files you have already added to your Confluence pages or Jira issues will remain there.

As mentioned above copying links to files from Google and Dropbox can be achieved with Smartlinks. We do think this is a better solution than copying files. As operating systems contain a reference of Recent files you can continue to upload or drag and drop files into Products from your local machine.

Next steps

We realised that without Cloud picking and Recent files, there is not a big need for the Media picker popup at all. We’ve seen that the majority of you are uploading a single file. So the extra steps to upload and add files into a page seemed unnecessary. Therefore we’ll be removing the Media picker popup, you’ll be able to use native file uploads provided by your browser instead. This will still let you select multiple files.

Many of you are dragging and dropping files straight onto Confluence pages or Jira tickets, or are using Copy and paste to get your files into Atlassian. You’ll still be able to do this, so no change there.

These change to Cloud picking, Recents and the Media picker popup will be starting to rollout to Jira, JSM, Confluence and Bitbucket in the next month.

While we think these workarounds are suitable we are aware some of you may have some more niche use cases. We are thinking about different ways for you to get files and links into our products. If you’d like to be part of this conversation please let me know in the comments below.

19 comments

Hi there,

Good to know that you are working on the file uploading experience.

However the former "Attachment" feature was not just about uploading, but also referring or embedding files in comments. It quite nicely used to provide you with a dropdown of files and images attached on the ticket that you could embed or link to.

Moving to the new Jira issue view, this has become "File and images" and the drop down is gone. With no way to embed already uploaded images in comments.

How about "Files on this issue" instead of "Recent files"? Unless I'm missing something..

Happy to chat about that if you want more feedback.

Cheers,
JG

Like # people like this
Owen Wallis Atlassian Team Feb 03, 2021

Hi @JG MEILLAUD

Thanks for the comment. Yes this is something we are thinking about. Essentially it would be the ability to insert files which are already in your Confluence or Jira space. So in Confluence it might be inserting from a central repository of marketing logos. In Jira it could be inserting files already on the ticket for reference, as you mention above.

I'm always happy to chat about attachments so feel free to find a time with me https://calendly.com/owallis

Hi all,

 

Just to add my two cents. I am highly in favor of JG's suggestion, because we use the "embed" feature very often and the new issue view is driving me insane, because there is no way to display the attachments that are already in the issue - extremely aggravating when creating linked issues from Service Management.

So please give us some way to do that again.

 

Thanks and regards,

Saskia

Like # people like this
Owen Wallis Atlassian Team Feb 28, 2021

Thanks @Saskia Carolan - actually I just started talking about linking to existing attachments with the Jira team last week. Happy to chat with you more about this: https://calendly.com/owallis

This feature seems to be a dependent of the current workaround to annotate images. Removing it without restoring image annotation or supplying another workaround is not ideal.
https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONFCLOUD-67122

Like # people like this

It appears this change has also affected the new editor in Confluence, leaving one unable to display an image file that was already attached to an existing page, whether that is the page being edited or another page in the same or other space.   

It seems pretty evident that you might want to display the same image on the same page twice, even, without having to attach two copies.   If the /image only open a file dialog, you are pretty much stuck in your choice of workflow. 

The breaks some very basic functionality that has been with Confluence from version 2.X or earlier, and switching to the old editor isn't an option in many cases.

See here for details: https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONFCLOUD-71688

 

Owen Wallis Atlassian Team Mar 10, 2021

Hi @Guy Cardwell that's correct, this change also affects Confluence. Recent files were actually a complete copy of the files already attached to a page, rather than a reference to files already existing on other pages.

The relevant ticket to add files from an existing page or space is https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONFCLOUD-65344

@Owen Wallis , as a software developer myself, I can respect the intent behind trying to unify the editing experience across the product lines as well as consolidate the code base behind them.   With that said, I feel the need to point out the somewhat obvious fact that shuffling features around on the user base without maintaining feature parity or at least viable alternatives to the prior methods only serves to increase frustration.    When I ask the simple question, why can I no longer display an image on a Confluence page that's already attached to the page, the answer shouldn't be, "because we decided you didn't need that feature any more".

For another example of this, please see Breathe-O-Smart as mentioned in the Hitchhiker's Guide.

Like # people like this
Owen Wallis Atlassian Team Mar 10, 2021

@Guy Cardwell thanks for this discussion. Apologies if my point didn't come across well. What I was hoping to explain was that the previous Recents feature didn't actually solve the job of letting you reference files already attached to a page or space.

Recents weren't really Recents - they were a whole other fileset. So if customers were hoping to reference a 'source of truth' file then Recents wasn't solving that. Recens would essentially fork the file onto the new page it was added to.

The ticket I linked to above would be the accurate resolution for this.

@Owen Wallis , thanks for the reference to the ticket and clarification on the recent files behavior.  I apologize if I'm being overly strident here, but please be mindful: 

Whatever the eventual solution may be,  your customer base (including me) is essentially locked into the new editor in Confluence that can't do simple things that the previous editor did, and for which there are no apparent workarounds.   We are actively being encouraged to "try the new editor" experience, but there's no easy way to revert and use the old one with the necessary features to get our daily work done. 

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Guy Cardwell - I am using "Masters" in order to keep the consistency and usefulness of my pages in Confluence; however, from what I understand, ALL pages will eventually revert to the "new editor" which will cause problems and confusion with my users. NOT looking forward to that day.

Owen Wallis Atlassian Team Mar 11, 2021

Hi @Guy Cardwell no need to apologise. I understand your perspective. Very happy to chat more if timezones allow https://calendly.com/owallis (I'm based in Sydney).

My calendar is always open to anyone wanting to talk about files, attachments and video.

Dumb question here - how do I get notified of these changes before they happen?  Jira and Confluence both are making me crazy right now.  

Like # people like this
Owen Wallis Atlassian Team Apr 05, 2021

Hi @Renee Aper you can get notified via following https://confluence.atlassian.com/cloud/blog/2021 and see all upcoming changes.

Like Renee Aper likes this

@Renee Aper IMO - Atlassian needs to put "Oh, Oh - I've got an new idea..." on the back burner and concentrate on "Hmmmm, this needs to be fixed!" in all products - js

Like Kevin likes this

This is an awful development. AFAIK there is no way to refer to already existing files, especially images in Confluence.

It may be true that the majority of users just throw images from their local disk into the page they are working on and this is also OK for me.

But I am in the business of customising Atlassian products so that our customers can better use them, which provides a framework for many users.. For my work it's very important that I can refer to images or documents already existing in the system (or elsewhere using an image link). think about the current version of the project management handbook.

Also, there seems to be no way to bring images into a page template. So page templates are less appealing to users which will harm acceptance.

The statistics used for this decision are guiding you in the wrong direction.

Like # people like this
Owen Wallis Atlassian Team Apr 26, 2021

Hi @Arnd Layer thanks for your message. The Recent files were not actually referring to images or documents already in the system. They were a duplicate of files attached - a complete other copy.

I agree the ability to reference images or documents already in the system would be useful, Jira and Confluence are working out how to add this feature back in via https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/JRACLOUD-72208 and https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONFCLOUD-65344

Brining images back in via page templates is another issue that is being looked at https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONFCLOUD-66471

Sorry to swamp you with tickets! Happy to chat more https://calendly.com/owallis

All the best

Owen

Hi
Just migrated from CONF server to Cloud. "Image from web" feature doesn't exists anymore. Bad surprise.
On CONF we have a space for our end users docs and have many images. These images are centralized on our web server. We need to centralize all images to avoid our staff to duplicate images between pages and allowing us to update images on our web server instead of finding all pages where image is and update them.
Is this feature will be on CONF Cloud or do you have a work around ?

Like Bryan likes this
Owen Wallis Atlassian Team May 05, 2021

Hi @Pierre-Eric Pignon this feature is planned for Cloud: https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONFCLOUD-65749. Although no ETA yet sorry.

This ticket is being looked at which may help sooner: https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONFCLOUD-65344 - although this would require a change to your workflow (i.e. using Confluence as the source of truth rather than your centralized web server).

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