Readers who sort comments: Your menu-clicking days are over. An update to the comment system released today will allow your chosen sort option — most liked, most replied, oldest first or newest first — to persist until you choose another sorting option.
That highly requested feature is one of a few new items. Also on the list:
- We’ve resolved a bug that caused lingering issues loading comments on Firefox browsers.
- We’ve updated the look of featured comments in a discussion, which are added manually by members of the newsroom.
- We’re improving on our moderation system to combat trolling and highlight the best of conversations on site.
- Performance improvements: With every release, we’re making the system faster and more flexible.
As always, feedback provided in the comment section below and in emails to the comments team at email@example.com guided the changes we’ve made. Thanks to all who wrote in.
What we’re doing
We’re implementing new comment software to give users, editors and moderators an updated set of tools to ensure that Washington Post readers can discuss the news in ways that are thoughtful, effective and enjoyable for years to come. We have heard your concerns about bots and incivility; this new software will help us address them.
We’re showing our work — what’s done and what still needs to be completed — so you can have the maximum opportunity to influence what we build. Please continue to share your thoughts in the comments below.
Our partner in building this software is a group called the Coral Project, which began as a collaboration between The Post, the New York Times and the Mozilla Foundation, funded by a grant from the Knight Foundation.
The software was most recently updated Oct. 5.
Ignore user: We moved the ignore function. Now you can ignore readers by clicking their display name.
Sorting: Readers can now sort a comments stream by most liked, most replied, oldest first and newest first.
See your comment history: We fixed a bug that interfered with the display of comment history for some readers. For now, for all readers, the My Profile section shows comments left in the new comment system, while comments from the rest of the site are available here. We’ll pull the lists together in the coming weeks.
See replies to your comments in context: Click the View Conversation link on the My Profile tab to see replies to your comments on their own slimmed-down page. Coming soon to this tab: counts of likes and replies for each comment.
A comment flow you control: Comments on our top stories used to scroll in far faster than many readers said they could read them. Now a button will appear at the top of a comment stream when there are new comments to see. Click it at your leisure — and take a moment to consider how or whether you’d like to join in.
Profile photos: Thanks to reader feedback, profile photos are displayed once again next to usernames in the new comment system. They’ve been slightly redesigned for your viewing pleasure.
Deeper threading of conversations: By reader request, we’ve added up to five levels of threading, meaning you can see clearly delineated replies to replies to replies to replies to an initial comment.
Improved comment editing: Our five-minute window for edits to published comments is now more clearly delineated with a timer.
Featured comments: Look out for comments selected by the Post team, to help curate the comment-reading experience.
Reporting offensive comments: Is a comment violating our discussion policy? Send it to our 24/7 moderation team by clicking the report button. Our new comment-reporting flow lets you send an explanatory note to moderators alongside your comment context if you’d like.
What has not yet been completed
Bolding/italicizing/hyperlinking text within comments: The ability to add simple styles to text will be available in the coming weeks.
A full comment history in one place: Comments you’ve left in the new system are available in the My Profile tab on any comment stream. Comments you’ve left elsewhere on the site are available here. We will soon be pulling these two lists together.
Merging your past ignore history: We’re working to carry over any readers you ignored in the old system. This will be completed soon.
Thanks to those readers who’ve joined in so far — and welcome to those of you who are joining now. You can let us know what you think of the new system, which features you’d like to see us develop and any other feedback about Washington Post digital discussions by commenting below or by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.