In topic lists, black/gray font for topic titles - what does it mean?

(Anton) #1

I can see that some topic titles are black, some are gray - what is the difference?


The 1st and 3rd topics are written with black font, the others with gray.

(Kane York) #2

Those with grey titles, your browser considers visited. Because every post has its own URL, it’s effectively indeterminate whether or not you’ve read all the posts in a topic with a black title.

(Anton) #3

So what is the best useful feauture of having 2 colors? May I say this to my users?

If it is black, there are either unread messages or you have never visited the topic yet.

Is this conclusion correct?

(cpradio) #4

No, it isn’t correct, in fact, I have a bunch of black titles here at Meta because when I linked to the topic, the URL was …/3, taking me to the 3rd post, as that is where I left off, now it is …/last, because I read it all, but the title is black because I have never visited that URL using the …/last URL. So I have a completely read topic, but because the URL changes, my browser doesn’t mark it as “visited”.

So you can say that to your users, but it won’t necessarily be true. What we did at sitepoint was make the two link colors the same. You can simply use the Unread or New pages/tabs to find the topics/posts you haven’t read yet.

(Anton) #5

So having two colors is absolutely useless the way it is now, right?

(cpradio) #6

I won’t go that far, but we’ve personally had little reason to “want” the two colors. I will say it may strongly be related to personal preference. Our users seem to like that we stuck with one color.

(Jeff Atwood) #7

Maybe, but if the link color is “visited” you’re 100% sure that you were already there.

The only part that’s indeterminate is what the “unvisited” color means. But if you see a visited color you have definitely read that topic.

(Anton) #8

Any reason why it switches to /last instead of continuing to use /id?

Wouldn’t it be more useful with id-only links, so that also “unvisited” becomes 100% determinant.

UPD. So, currently it works as described below, please correct me if I’m wrong:

VISITED - can be both unread and read.

  • Unread if points to the /last but the newer last that I’ve never read before. Still, I’ve already visited the /last link in the past.

UNVISITED - can be both unread and read as by discussion above.

If the conclusion above is correct, then there is no sense to have 2 colors.
If it’s so, let’s improve on this?


I’ve tried looking around but cant find another related thread.
Has the greying out been turned off recently? is this a feature or a bug?

It’s really hard to tell which topics I’ve looked at and which I haven’t now.

(Jeff Atwood) #10

Yes, the visited and unvisited colors are the same now.

(Jeff Atwood) #11

We changed this in 1.4 so grey means the topic is completely read by you or in the case of anonymous visited by you.


Being new to Discourse, I also found it confusing to see most topics being grey with couple always staying black. I even visited every single post in them by using direct URLs …/1, …/2, etc and that still did not turn them to visited color. I did not want my users to waste time wondering and testing it like me, so I had to use custom CSS to make both colors the same and improve UX. Would be nice if that was a default.

P.S. The two topics that always stay black have the last post deleted (hidden), but only one of them is closed. Is that what’s causing it?

(David Taylor) #13

Yes, it’s a bug that’s been around a while: