The list of bookmarked posts is hard to find

(Rory O’Kane) #1

As a new user on Try Discourse, I bookmarked a post in the middle of a topic to read later, then opened Try Discourse on another computer and tried to return to that post. But I had a hard time locating the list of posts that I have bookmarked. I think the list should be moved, or have clearer links pointing to it.

On the original computer, I wanted to open a post with a YouTube video on another computer, since that didn’t have speakers. I clicked the bookmark icon in the bottom right of the post and confirmed by hovering that it was bookmarked. On the new computer, after arriving at the home page and logging in, I looked for the bookmark icon (the one represented by span.unread in code). I saw it next to Unread at the top, so I tried clicking that. But that list had nothing to do with my bookmarked posts; it just said that I had no unread topics. I went back to the home page and scrolled a bit down the page, but realized that there was no other controls further down that might link to bookmarks. Then I guessed that I might see my bookmarks by clicking the notifications speech balloon in the top right of the site. But the only thing listed there was the welcome mail from the admin. Finally, I tried clicking “view older notifications” in that pop-up panel. On the resulting Activity page, I finally saw Bookmarks listed on the left. I saw that I could click the bookmark in the All list, or click Bookmarks to filter the list to show only my bookmarks.

I don’t think the list of bookmarks belongs in the Activity section. An Activity log has an air of permanance about it. An action I did in the past is immutable. I can add a new event reversing something, but I can’t delete the original event. At least, that’s the way I understand the concept of Activity from Stack Exchange sites. However, bookmarks do not have that property. When you visit a post and un-bookmark it, the “bookmarked” action disappears, and the bookmarks section even disappears from the sidebar on the left.

What bookmarks do have in common with activities is that they happen at a specific time, and are often tied to a specific post. But their fundamental difference in permanence makes it too confusing for them to share a page with past actions.

I think the best solution would be to move the list of bookmarks to the Unread page, in a separate section of the page, since Bookmarks and Unread use the same icon, and are indicated by the same button on posts. The Unread section also contains a list of posts with times (I think; it’s hard to check), so bookmarks would fit right in. The Unread section doesn’t have any particular expectations of permananence or transitiveness, so bookmarks don’t clash with expectations in that way.

(I couldn’t check if someone posted about this already, because search doesn’t work for me anywhere. After I type search terms, the spinner just spins forever.)

(Jeff Atwood) #2

That is a whole lot of words to say “I could not find my bookmarks”. But you did find them! Bookmarks are personal, they belong to you and are not public information, therefore they appear on your user page.

I see zero connection between a personal bookmark and something that is “unread”. The bookmark icon you are referring to is the read indicator that indicates you have read a post, and that’s your last known position in the topic, like a bookmark in a book that shows the place you stopped reading It’s red. So the meaning there is

This is a list of topics you have not fully read yet, they have unread replies.


This is a list of posts you have bookmarked. (Note that you can bookmark both topics and replies)

It does have a bit of a double meaning because if you click the read indicator on a post it becomes a permanent personal bookmark.

(Also you should try clearing your browser cache, it sounds like something on the page is out of date for you.)

(Victor Oliveira) #3

As a user who is discovering the software features (and really excited too!) I did get confused with the bookmarks because of the unread session icon. I clicked on bookmark and tried to find my list of bookmarks… that led me directly to that session. I actually understood where they were after reading this post. Did you consider changing the icon?

(Jeff Atwood) #4

No, but you can propose any icon in this list:

(Jeff Atwood) #5

Well, if it helps there is now a Bookmarks option in your avatar drop down at the upper right.

(Matthew) #6

For the record, the bookmark option in the avatar dropdown is better than what Rory described but I still had to search on Google to find it (via this discussion thread).

What you say about bookmarks being private to the user and therefore they appear on the user page (and now user dropdown) makes some sense but it wasn’t intuitive to me. As a counter-example, which posts are unread or new is also personal to me (others will have different criteria for which posts are new and will also have different unread states) yet I find links to unread and new posts in the same menu as all the public categories.

To my mind I was looking for bookmarked posts, as opposed to bookmarks, so I went looking for them in the same hamburger menu as I find all the other posts…

(Sam Saffron) #7

Try typing gb that is what I usually use, there is an admin option to add bookmarks to the top menu if desired.

(Graham Perrin) #8

A minor issue, an inconsistency:

  1. a not logged in (NLI) view of /bookmarks properly reflects the private status of bookmarks
  2. a logged in but non-privileged view of another person’s bookmarks URL states “No bookmarks.” when truly there are private bookmarks.

Edge case. Expect (2) only if a person who is accustomed to manually altering URLs aims to discover whether there’s a feature, maybe a hidden option, to share bookmarks.