Year format on abbreviated post dates not clear

The current date format used on posts is not clear at a glance. It can be difficult to determine if a post happened last month or last year. For example, the two posts below:

Looking carefully, you can see that the first is from April 2014 and the second is from April 14. However, at a quick glance, this distinction is unclear. I believe that it would improve the UX if the year format were expanded to show the full year, instead of using the apostrophe format.


Additionally, for the ones that are the day of the month, perhaps add st/nd/rd/th after the number to make it more obvious that that number is not a year.

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Or just change it to use “14 Apr” for day/month and “Apr '14” for month/year?


Meh, that still looks like day number to me…perhaps even more so.

@riking’s solution? If so, the first is using a format to represent day and month and a different format for month and year. I think that does make a lot of sense (two different formats). It would make the visual distinction over time a lot easier to differentiate.

I get that we have only a limited amount of space in the topic list, so I guess showing “Apr 2014” is not an option. But wouldn’t it be enough to just show “Apr” if it was posted in April this year and “Apr '14” if it was posted in April last year?

But we have enough space (even on mobile) when the actual posts are shown. So, I guess we could show the unabbreviated year (if needed) for posts.

Glad to see this actually getting some attention now. It was quickly dismissed last time:


I like this solution a lot, it makes a lot of sense as a localisation option too as many countries refer to the day before the month.

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I have a test profile in my forum that is set for Spanish (even though my Spanish is close to non-existent any more) and I noticed that it does show the day before the month.

The official language of the TSI forum is U.S. English, however when I post admin announcements that have a date, I use a format of a two-digit day# + dash + month name + dash + four-digit year#, e.g. 25-May-2015. I figure that about everybody ought to be able to figure that out.

Of course that’s longer than is needed for the topic list, and also doesn’t take into account the formatting flexibility of localization.

See Change to DD Mmm / Mmm 'YY for post dates