Do you think UI around comments vs answers is broken?

I constantly see answers that should be comments actually. Again and again and again. Is it just a bad luck of me?

2 answers

1 accepted

2 votes
Accepted answer

Yes, the UI is broken and there are various issues reported on it such as space for entering comments, minimal formatting is not possible when entering comments, converting between answers and comments interface is broken and no voting for comments.   The broken UI leads to comments like  "I would have voted for your comment, but I cannot.".  The current broken UI leads to the misuse of answers input areas for comment input areas.

I remember on some reported CQ issue they tried to claim they were trying to be mimic the old style stackoverflow instead of what Answers actually had previously.   The designers missed the point all those +! in statckoverflow comments means people want to vote for comments.  

Answers and comments should have the same UI power, so users can actually concentrate on the correct usage instead of being frustrated using CQ comments.  I know I use comments less after the conversion to use the CQ framework.

Thanks, Norman! So it's not just me. ) It would be nice to know if Atlassian plans to do something about it. There's great answer https://answers.atlassian.com/questions/9394138/answers/9878126 by @Joe Clark [Atlassian] on "Are you happy with Confluence Qs as a replacement for Answers?". But I don't see this issue there.

I would fix more of these if I could just drag and drop the new answer onto another answer to mark it as a comment, or to the bottom of the existing thread if that's where it belonged. Then maybe if the author of that answer got a mail saying "your answer was turned into a comment", they might be suitably chastised and not do it again.

Rip, The comments UI issues was not deemed high enough to make the cut. As you might be able to tell from these responses and the responses in the answer you noted, that changes to CQ are moving too slowly for everyone. Jamie, I like your UI idea a great deal.

So perhaps the question should be: why not just use stackoverflow --> http://stackoverflow.com/questions/tagged/confluence

Because it only has 366 Confluence questions, and the quality of response is low? Or, if you mean just using the software behind it, then the obvious answer is "dogfooding"

Your point is highly valid. We should put forward a proposal to create a Confluence Q&A site in http://area51.stackexchange.com/ so that the questions can topic focused. Most likely the answer is that Atlassian would prefer that questions get asked here in these forums then promoted to tickets if warranted as it cuts down on support costs.

Why? There's a wealth of good answers here. Why waste time with Stackexchange when there's a much better, richer, focussed and dedicated resource here? Adding one Confluence Q&A site is a utter waste of time - what about the diversity and usefulness of the accurate and focussed tags here (which would leak off-topic in Stackexchange) I'd support a lot of the changes suggested to the Answers Confluence addon, but suggesting we move a huge resource to a place which would massively degrade its usefulness is just silly.

Joe Clark Atlassian Team Dec 03, 2014

@OutOfTheBox - we did considering using StackExhange back in 2011, but decided against it because of the lack of customizability, which prevented us from doing things like: a) Integrating with your my.atlassian.com login b) Theming the site to look like the rest of *.atlassian.com c) Hosting it on a custom domain d) Not be able to automatically grant moderation privileges to Atlassian staff It's true that one of the big benefits of Answers is that it can cut down on our support costs, but that would also be true if we decided to just funnel all Q&A to StackExchange instead.

Joe Clark Atlassian Team Dec 03, 2014

@Norman Abramovitz & @Jamie Echlin [Adaptavist] - do you think the incidence of "incorrectly filed answers vs. comments" is worse now than it was in the old OSQA system? I know this is a problem we've had for a long time, even before we moved to Confluence, so I don't think it's fair to blame this issue entirely on the design of Confluence Questions. We did implement the ability to convert comments to answers and vice-versa, but I've just noticed that I can't see any of the UI for it at the moment - weird. I'll need to dig in to that - https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CQ-1680

That's weird, I know the UI for it was there just a day or two ago, because I used it. But I don't see it either now. On an empirical basis I would say the frequency of occurrence is slightly worse. The UI for converting questions to comments is no better or worse than the OSQA system. I think in the case when there is a single answer with no comments, the "Your answer" box looks big and inviting, and the "Add your comment" looks small and not even like a text box. The smallest of CSS tweaks would probably fix this. Or when they put focus on the Answer box, it could say "do you really want to answer your own question, or did you maybe mean to comment on an existing answer?"

On a subjective basis, I also agree it is worse because it never bothered me before. I believe I said previously I am using less comments because it is too painful to use them when you need to write more than a few of lines and people cannot vote/like comments anymore.

Part of the reason why I said conversion of comments/answers is broken is because the link disappears.

1 vote

It's because people don't understand the difference.  I tend to agree, I keep seeing answers that really should be comments.

Sorry I messed up with accepting answers. There's no way to accept more than one answer. (

Yes, another brokern feature that was in Answers and not in the new Answers. Another case of trying to mimic stackoverflow instead of what they had before. I think this issue was brought to like on a previous Answer related to the broken features in the CQ Answers.

Actually, I think you got the right answer marked, Norman's answer was much better.

Joe Clark Atlassian Team Dec 03, 2014

@Rp Subhub - you can un-accept one answer in order to accept another - it's not a permanent action. The related issue for implementing multiple accepted answers is https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CQ-1353

Suggest an answer

Log in or Sign up to answer
Community showcase
Asked Dec 06, 2018 in Jira Ops

I'm John Allspaw, Ask Me Anything about incident analysis and postmortems

I'm John Allspaw, co-founder of   Adaptive Capacity Labs, where we help teams use their incidents to learn and improve. We bring research-driven methods and approaches to drive effective inciden...

5,597 views 22 17
View question

Atlassian User Groups

Connect with like-minded Atlassian users at free events near you!

Find a group

Connect with like-minded Atlassian users at free events near you!

Find my local user group

Unfortunately there are no AUG chapters near you at the moment.

Start an AUG

You're one step closer to meeting fellow Atlassian users at your local meet up. Learn more about AUGs

Groups near you