style_tester ([personal profile] style_tester) wrote in [site community profile] dw_suggestions2016-02-01 08:01 pm

Add time/date stamp to Inbox messages

Title:
Add time/date stamp to Inbox messages

Area:
Inbox, messages

Summary:
The Dreamwidth Inbox is set up to stamp any incoming messages, be they comments or PMs, as having arrived nth seconds/minutes/days/weeks/months/years ago. I'd like to see those stamps added to or replaced by an actual time/date stamp.

Description:
The Dreamwidth Inbox is set up to stamp any incoming messages, be they comments or PMs, as having arrived nth seconds/minutes/days/weeks/months/years ago.

(And I have to speak to semantics here; "34 seconds ago" is admittedly a pretty precise date/time/stamp, but "two weeks ago", IMO, very much isn't.)

My suggestion is since we already have an Inbox function for date/time stamps (it's just not a date/time stamp) to either change it from [posted, received] 'nth seconds/minutes/days/weeks/moths ago' to putting an actual date/time stamp on it, like the UTC date/time stamps we have in DW's comment sections, or else to simply add the date/time stamp to the [posted, received] 'nth seconds/minutes/days/weeks/moths ago' stamp we already have.

I discovered this was A Thing after returning to a neglected PM in my DW Inbox today and realizing I'd have to check my email to figure out exactly when it was sent. I can't stay on site to do that. And it made me feel bad that I'd have to hold up my reply a bit longer as I searched for the email notification so I could reply by saying: "...about the message you sent last Wednesday".

(Again, there are some semantics at work: I could get a calendar and count backward from today to determine what day/possibly month/possibly year "six days ago" was, but like checking my email for the date/time, it's another step I'd have to go offsite or into an OS or phone app to take.)

The system is not too difficult to use to learn when comments were posted (just check the entries comments were posted on) but it's also true no account holder on Dreamwidth can determine, merely by viewing their Inbox notifications, exactly when that was.

Poll #18016 Add time/date stamp to Inbox messages
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 42


This suggestion:

View Answers

Should be implemented as-is.
31 (73.8%)

Should be implemented with changes. (please comment)
6 (14.3%)

Shouldn't be implemented.
0 (0.0%)

(I have no opinion)
5 (11.9%)

(Other: please comment)
0 (0.0%)

kerravonsen: 9th Doctor wearing his headlamp: Technical wizard (technical-wiz)

[personal profile] kerravonsen 2017-02-20 11:16 pm (UTC)(link)
I agree, it's confusing when it's "6 days ago" but I do think it's helpful when it's "34 seconds ago". So I have two options to suggest as "with changes".

1. Have both the exact date/time (Tuesday the 21st of February at 10:14AM), and the relative date/time (34 seconds ago).

OR

2. For things which are less than a day ago, use the relative date/time, and for everything else, use the exact date/time.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)

[personal profile] azurelunatic 2017-02-21 12:00 am (UTC)(link)
I'd have the exact date/time on everything, and (if reasonably easy to do) the relative time on things within the past day-ish. Maybe not elsewhere.
marahmarie: Sheep go to heaven, goats go to hell (Default)

[personal profile] marahmarie 2017-02-22 08:07 am (UTC)(link)
+1
matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Default)

[personal profile] matgb 2017-02-20 11:45 pm (UTC)(link)
I loath the "x time ago" timestamp approach, it really annoys me, my Twitter client lets me change it to proper timestamps but I have to do so after every login, going through my inbox every so often it always frustrates me, my mental arithmetic/date parsing is terrible, just give me the time/date and I'm fine.
anaraine: Cogsworth peeking around the edge of the icon, with the text "hi". ([disney] hi)

[personal profile] anaraine 2017-02-21 02:02 am (UTC)(link)
I really like the 'x days ago' up to 6 days - it gives me a better sense of how long it's been, since I'm awful at remembering what the current day is. (I'm one of those people that pulls out her phone to be absolutely sure that yes, it's Feb 20th and not the 19th.) Past that first week, though, the exact date/time is more useful. (If only because it tells me it's been 1 week, when in reality it's been 11 days.)

So. That's my with changes. Once it hits that "one week ago" mark, switch over to the exact date/time.

[personal profile] jazzyjj 2017-02-21 02:20 pm (UTC)(link)
Hello everyone. So, I just cast my vote in this poll and wish to comment a bit. As somebody who has always been a natural with calculating dates and this kind of thing, I'm cool with whatever happens. Well maybe I haven't *always* been good at this type of thing, but ever since I learned to count and got really good at it. The Dreamwidth email system has been super easy for me to use since I first registered on here. Perhaps we could have a ticky box or something that would allow users to toggle on/off these new time stamps?
phidari: (Default)

[personal profile] phidari 2017-02-24 01:52 am (UTC)(link)
Hey! I'm not staff, just someone who's been around for a few years, so don't take my word as Dreamwidth Law or anything, but: I think that a ticky box is not likely to happen. [staff profile] denise wrote this post a while ago on why more options aren't always great.

(And as for my opinion: I'd be all right either way, myself, but I'm leaning slightly toward including both: Say, "02/22/2017 (1 day ago)".)
Edited (add more information) 2017-02-24 01:54 (UTC)

[personal profile] jazzyjj 2017-03-01 11:21 pm (UTC)(link)
Point well taken. There are in fact a number of instances--which I don't have time to discuss right now--where too many options can mess with the accessibility of a piece of software or a website. But otoh, I like Dw's responsive design. I like how we can choose among different themes, layout options etc. and apply them as we see fit. I hear paid accounts on here have even more options.
sporky_rat: The Roman Orator from Rome, hand upraised. Text: Ahem (my own opinion)

[personal profile] sporky_rat 2017-02-21 02:48 pm (UTC)(link)
I like the dates on it - but I don't mind how many days it has sat in my inbox as well. Both would be nice.
montuos: cartoon portrait of myself (Default)

[personal profile] montuos 2017-02-21 03:22 pm (UTC)(link)
Please. Please please please! Fuzzy time drives me insane!!!1! I admit to being the kind of control freak who would prefer to be able to set the timestamp format explicitly, in 24-hour time, including timezone and day of week.

So in a perfect world, I imagine being able to change the default among a few common formats (including fuzzy time for the sake of those who prefer that), with the final option being the ability to customize the format.
turlough: The Girl & Party Poison (Grace Jeanette & Gerard Way) high-fiveing, on the set of Na Na Na, Sept 2011 ((mcr) yeah!)

[personal profile] turlough 2017-02-21 06:50 pm (UTC)(link)
Please. Please please please! Fuzzy time drives me insane!!!1! I admit to being the kind of control freak who would prefer to be able to set the timestamp format explicitly, in 24-hour time, including timezone and day of week.

+1000000!!!
marahmarie: Sheep go to heaven, goats go to hell (Default)

[personal profile] marahmarie 2017-02-22 08:17 am (UTC)(link)
+100000000000!!!

Please. Please please please! Fuzzy time drives me insane!!!1! I admit to being the kind of control freak who would prefer to be able to set the timestamp format explicitly, in 24-hour time, including timezone and day of week. [and how many seconds ago, ie: 24:32:15]

Except I'm not terribly fond of military time (too much conversion) but I wouldn't mind seeing "posted at 9:03:25pm" or "8:05:23am". I'm also one of those who can't remember if it's the 22nd or the 23rd, or what day it is, or sometimes what month... *sigh*
montuos: cartoon portrait of myself (Default)

[personal profile] montuos 2017-02-27 05:44 pm (UTC)(link)
That's precisely why I said "So in a perfect world, I imagine being able to change the default among a few common formats", because I know that even though I was raised on it, most people in the US are either unfamiliar with, or uncomfortable with, 24-hour time. Not to mention that I prefer an ISO standard datestamp, which again, most people do not.
brainwane: My smiling face in front of a brick wall, May 2015. (Default)

[personal profile] brainwane 2017-02-27 05:13 pm (UTC)(link)
What if the formatting honored the timezone and the 12hr vs 24hr display format setting you'd chosen in https://www.dreamwidth.org/manage/settings/?cat=display ? Would that be sufficient?

I'm also curious whether people would prefer UTC, "your time zone as set in your display settings on your account", something else...
montuos: cartoon portrait of myself (Default)

[personal profile] montuos 2017-02-27 05:45 pm (UTC)(link)
Anything more specific would be preferable to "217 weeks ago", which is completely meaningless to me.
eleanorjane: The one, the only, Harley Quinn. (Default)

[personal profile] eleanorjane 2017-02-22 08:50 am (UTC)(link)
Given time zones, I would love to see something like:

Posted: hh:mm:ss dd/mm/yy (X [time] ago)

So, eg:

Posted: 12:34:56 01/02/17 (34 seconds ago)
and
Posted: 23:45:01 23/01/17 (2 weeks ago)

So the time/date stamp is specific, and then it's followed by a relative "X time ago" which is specific and accurate for very recent postings, and gets more general the further back you go. So the X time ago might be "34 seconds ago" or "5 minutes ago" or "3 hours ago" or "earlier today" or "two days ago" or "three weeks ago" or "six months ago" or three years ago".
arethinn: glowing green spiral (Default)

[personal profile] arethinn 2017-02-22 09:15 am (UTC)(link)
Oh man. I haaate relative timestamps and how vague they get the further back you go.