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16 May 2014 @ 12:50 pm
I don't find change to be a bad thing...  
I know there are probably some of you out there who aren't really appreciating the changes to Live Journal but I actually like them. Granted the "homepage" navbar is complicated but I think after spending a little time clicking around and getting used to it; it works well. Now, it does get annoying that LJ has to update things constantly but at the same time they are trying to improve things.

I've already noticed that some of the text editor issues have disappeared. I can now manually enter Blockquotes without the editor creating new line after new line between my previous paragraph and said blockquote.

What I would like to see is a return to table adding and blockquotes. Why did those buttons disappear off the text editor so long ago only to be forgotten?

A few more changes I would like to see:

  1. The ability to set what I want as my default size to images. I'm sick of them always coming up as 300px. I want them to be original size or whatever size I want to make them.

  2. The fore-mentioned blockquote button and table button.

  3. Maybe add userpics under that MyBlog menu so finding, updating and changing userpics isn't so difficult. Also add scrapbook so we can get to our scrapbooks easily.

  4. Give us the ability to "randomly" choose our user icon. This can be a fun feature.

  5. The ability to have pages and expand our navigation bar....

Why #5
Many of our friends from Live Journal have left for platforms like Tumblr and Wordpress. Notice both have the ability to add a "Page" to their blogs which in turn adds to their menu (some menu customization abilities maybe necessary for sub-content). I think LJ implementing this would put them in league with Tumblr and out shine Wordpress and I'll tell you why.

WordPress doesn't give the average user the ability to customize their layout. You are stuck with a few general layouts that are not all that appealing. Live Journal with page and menu customization would end up outshining WordPress for the fact that their letting their users make their blogs their own and giving them some flexibility while also being in the running for the "Blog Website" users. Premium users at Wordpress do have the ability to customize their layout but it costs 5 times as much as Live Journal. Even if LJ paid accounts cost $5 more a year to cover the "new features", you'd be paying a quarter of what the WordPress Premium users are paying.

Tumblr not only gives you the Page and Menu ability but they let you customize your layouts by going out and finding the coding or creating your own. The big issue I've found at Tumblr is the "open in new tab" links which are frustratingly annoying. Live Journal let's us control that through coding or the convenient check box when adding a link to our posts. Not only that but in my experience Tumblr's posting is more difficult than Live Journal where you can simply click "post".

Having said all that, I'm still liking the some of the newer stuff and am planning on creating a tutorial for some of the changes which took me a while to find.


What are you disliking about the changes? Anything you can't find?
Please be respectful.
 
 
Mood: creativecreative
 
 
 
esgee not sgslytheringurrl on May 16th, 2014 09:29 pm (UTC)
Hey, for # 1 on your changes, you can change the sizes. Or at least you could before the changes. LJ did not change me so I'm not so sure if the post page looks the same :) You probably have the default set to 300px which is an option.

Screenshots are below!

654
5465

Edited at 2014-05-16 09:30 pm (UTC)
Jill aka Jo: TO: Klaus & Elijahsireesanwar on May 16th, 2014 10:19 pm (UTC)
Here is the problem...

Where do you change the default because in my scrapbook it is set to Original but every time I try to add an image it is set to 300px which often gets overlooked.
esgee not sgslytheringurrl on May 17th, 2014 03:05 am (UTC)
Hmmm... I don't know. If I find out, I'll let you know :)
saurgristielsaurgristiel on May 16th, 2014 11:49 pm (UTC)
There are 2 things I don't like about te change (I can get used to the new bar thing):
1. The medium grey on full white. BAD DESIGN DECISION (even though far too many websites go "It looks so slick!". No it doesn't. If you want your website to look empty from a distance, make it empty).
2. Just like every change they make, they do it and then don't tell you they did it. Just BAM! No community consultation at all, just like always. I bet they're getting yelled at by what few users they have left.

I've never had a problem with the text editor, or pics, but I don't post a lot of pics. I can't really help you there.

I love your layouts and you've taught me a lot ^_^.
Jill aka Jo: Movie: Minionssireesanwar on May 17th, 2014 12:14 am (UTC)
Medium grey on white? Where exactly is this? Do you mean the text? That is actually annoying but mostly because my eyesight is bad and it is hard on it.

For me everything is white and blue which is the "clean" look. I don't mind it but it is a little simplistic to me but then that is the new trend... I'll just wait for the next trend.

Yes! It is annoying they don't consult anyone on their changes. I think I spoke too soon about the text editor.

Thanks. That was my goal.

Edited at 2014-05-17 12:15 am (UTC)
saurgristielsaurgristiel on May 17th, 2014 02:04 am (UTC)
Yeah, the text on un-styled, regular entry pages (LJ site-scheme pages). I don't have bad eyesight and I don't like it.

It leans towards a teal-y blue for me rather than BLUE, which is fine for the nav bar (been seeing it that color on my iPod for quite a few months now) but maybe it's a little too minimalistic. It's just... I overall don't like it.

I'm just happy they haven't gone to the rectangular "cards" that so many sites have (where they have a picture and then some text under it. I can give you examples if you want, just can't on my iPod XD; ).
Jill aka Jo: GOT: Three meetingsireesanwar on May 17th, 2014 04:42 am (UTC)
That is the grid "pinterest" look you are talking about. I'm glad they haven't done that. It is okay for Pinterest but not LJ.
saurgristielsaurgristiel on May 17th, 2014 06:30 am (UTC)
Obviously I've never been on pinterest XD

Some sites do it better than others: Anime News Network (though they have buttons so you can change how it looks, thank goodnes), Blender Nation (is okay, still don't exactly like it yet). Dvice (SyFy Channel's techie/geeky news site) is a total mess, and Ars Technica's default layout is OhGoshSoAwfullyCluttered (the have/had buttons to change the layout too). Gimme a pretty list like one of Anime News Network's options any day. :)
Jill aka Jo: Divergent: calling to mesireesanwar on May 17th, 2014 06:49 am (UTC)
It is true. Done wrong it is awful and distracting. But I think if two side by side with spacing and being equal lengths was done it wouldn't be too bad. You are right about Ars Technica. I went there. Dear Lord that is cluttered. Dvice is awful as well.
girlspell: drink upgirlspell on May 17th, 2014 12:40 am (UTC)
It's very bland and dry looking. I wanted to see some color somewhere. Anywhere. The friends feed is very long and narrow. Some of the things you mentioned I didn't see. It has a flat cold look of early facebook. By accident I allowed the new form in. I had to ask help to find a way to get back to the old way. LJ responded, but told me this will be the change and old way would be gone so I better get used to it.
Jill aka Josireesanwar on May 17th, 2014 04:52 am (UTC)
See I never changed to the new friends page and I'm hoping I'll never have too. I did test it out when they first launched it and then quickly clicked the Switch Back link at the top.

It is clean looking to me. I don't need LJ's overall site to be bright and colorful. I just want my layout to look that way.
Jane Mundanejane_mundane on May 17th, 2014 03:17 am (UTC)
I personally like the change. Which surprises me because I've been against almost every change LJ has made since 2004. I really love how simple and clean it is. It did take a while to figure out how to get to my userpics but now that I know where it is, it's no big deal.

The only thing that bugs me is that they call it a Blog. It's Livejournal. lol.

Edited at 2014-05-17 03:20 am (UTC)
Jill aka Jo: ST: ITD Better At Everythingsireesanwar on May 17th, 2014 04:45 am (UTC)
I do like the change but there are just a few things they could do to make it better. Not that they will. I'm usually okay with most of what LJ does. I just think it would be easier if the Userpics and Scrapbook where under that blog menu.

Yes, it is a LiveJournal... but then it is also a superior blog. LOL
Angelserenitysangel on May 17th, 2014 11:59 am (UTC)
What really annoys me is that they just go ahead and do it. I'm a paid account. I pay for the use of LJ and they don't give a damn about consulting it's users about the changes. Don't run a beta. Nothing. So far, it's okay, but then I've not explored it much. As long as my friends page and my LJ layout aren't affected I'll be okay. But really...Just don't mess with things that don't need messing with.

That said I would appreciated a better iOS app as currently hate using LJ on my phone because it's very limited and not that nice to use.

OH and why the hell does it keep asking me for a Captcha every time I want to comment? That will get VERY annoying VERY fast!
Jill aka Josireesanwar on May 17th, 2014 10:52 pm (UTC)
Yes, well I think they are going to actually force us into using the new friends page at some point which is really going to piss me off.

Yes, I'm looking forward to the new IOS app too.

Because you aren't a member of my Layout Lounge Community. Technically this post is on my community and I reposted to my journal where you found it. But when you comment it is automatically added to the community... hence Captcha.
Angelserenitysangel on May 21st, 2014 12:55 pm (UTC)
Will that impact layouts like I have. Currently it's in the layout I have, will that no longer work or won't it make a difference? Will piss me off if it looks any different, have to say.

Aye, that would explain it. Thought it might be a new thing with the new way of things...Glad it's not.
Jill aka Jo: BBT: Hit Me Amysireesanwar on May 21st, 2014 10:01 pm (UTC)
More than likely. They rolled out the new Friends "Feed" not that long ago and everyone hated it. Many of us have stuck with the old look but I'm pretty sure LJ intends to make the "Feed" look official at some point which will mean you Friends Page will never look like your journal again. Then I will hate them.

Nope. I was getting so much spam that I turned on Captcha for the "non-members" which effectively stopped the spam. I know it is annoying but the spam was so much worse.
Angelserenitysangel on May 22nd, 2014 10:09 pm (UTC)
Okay that will really suck!

Ah, okay. Makes sense.
Jill aka Jo: Bones: Booth and Bonessireesanwar on May 22nd, 2014 11:17 pm (UTC)
Oh yes. It will.
whenwhywhere: 優whenwhywhere on May 17th, 2014 05:24 pm (UTC)
This.

I love change. Most of the time anyway. I'm glad someone made this article, the only thing I find weird is how there's nothing up in the "new releases".

Other than that, I'm kinda excited for the new changes.
Jill aka Jo: Bones: Booth and Bonessireesanwar on May 17th, 2014 11:00 pm (UTC)
You and me both! I kind of love the modernization of LJ to an extent. I mean how is LJ supposed to stay solvent if they look old and ancient and no one wants to create a journal?

My only real issue is when they want to take away abilities I have had. Such as making my friend page look like the rest of my journal. I doubt people stopping by care that much about my friends list so if I'm the one looking at it... LEAVE IT ALONE. I know there are some new and special features on the new Friends Feed and that they are making it more like word press and Tumblr... but there is a reason I don't use those platforms.

Still, I like good change and I don't see most of what LJ has done as a bad thing. Also, I don't care to be updated everytime they want to change something... just maybe big stuff that will really affect a user.... FRIENDS PAGE.

Edited at 2014-05-17 11:00 pm (UTC)
(Deleted comment)
Jill aka Josireesanwar on May 17th, 2014 11:01 pm (UTC)
Yes, that is a good point. I mean I do love the changes but don't take away functionality for a modern pleasing look. If you can't do both then reconsider.
tracyj23: snarky - Beast/furry objectstracyj23 on May 18th, 2014 01:02 pm (UTC)
Let's see, where to start ... I'm not terribly resistant to change but I don't like it when:

1. They go and change things without telling us, without consulting anyone (I'm not a paid user or have a lifetime account but it would have made sense to ask those people for their opinions) and just assume everyone will like it.

2. They take away some of the things we used to be able to do without warming.

3. They don't allow us to choose - I'm reading comments and seeing people say they are choosing the old settings -- I never saw that option. I just went to log in the other day and bam! suddenly the site didn't look like LJ anymore and I had no idea what was what.

4. They make it harder to use instead of easier. I can't find half the things I used to know by heart. I'm not a developer like you are and hence I don't find it easy to just "figure it out" on my own. I need things to be easy to find -- maybe I'm just an apple junkie and taught that things SHOULD be user friendly and easy to work with but this is just AWFUL.

I don't like the way it looks and I don't like the way it functions and I really don't like that things aren't easy to find. Way to piss off users and drive them away. Change can be good but in this case it really isn't.
Jill aka Jo: BBT: Awkward Datesireesanwar on May 21st, 2014 12:38 am (UTC)
1. Yes, it is highly annoying when they don't consider what the users want. I mean they think the people who have held on this long are going to stick around even though they change everything these customers like about LJ? So stupid.

But then I also don't think they have to tell us everything. I think a lot of the users don't realize that without the updates LJ might just completely shutdown. They are in a business of the internet and if they don't stay with the program and change they are going to be left behind and will cease to exist.


2. This is highly annoying. And there is no excuse.


3. Okay so I understand wanting to be able to choose but from a development stand point, they can't possibly have too "operating systems" going for a long period of time. They would essentially have two LJ sites on one server which is not only confusing to developers but to the coding itself.

However, they could make it so they have different "views" which is basically templates of LJ. This is a more practical approach. They can then have the "Retro View" or the "Modern View". I personally think this is what they should do.


4. Okay so it is very true that my brain works much like the people programming this site but at the same time, a lot of people are afraid or reluctant to just start clicking around and seeing what does what.

But I have noticed a LOT of things that are sooo not easy to use and have really made things more difficult for the user. I've actually submitted suggestions to LJ for this and had a positive response that said they were going to make the changes I suggest. Let's see if it happens. (I'm somewhat doubtful but willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.)

I have to say that I actually find the posting process and moving around the site user friendly but there are certain things that just aren't.

I know people say it is hard to deal with LJ and they ignore users but I think part of it is the serious lack of respect and common courtesy which is being paid to people trying to keep LJ going. Not you. But you go on these communities where they are addressing LJ and it is RUDE.

I think thoughtful requests are a better way to go and in my recent experience are more effective than these people being down right nasty about it. First of all, "Change it back," will automatically be ignored. LJ isn't going to do it.

This is why I told them about issues I've found with the editor. Links that should be added to the navigation system, etc. Every response from them has been positive.

Now, having said that, I do feel that the people developing LJ aren't planning the site for the basic user. You don't build a site or make changes that someone with development skills is going to understand. You want to present it to the person who is on Level 1 (not that you are). That way someone who has never spent anytime on the internet can come to the site and understand it. Simple is better!
tracyj23tracyj23 on May 23rd, 2014 06:20 pm (UTC)
Absolutely polite requests and suggestions are the way to go. Does anybody like getting browbeaten and told they're idiots for changing things? Of course not. If people need to vent that's ok, vent in your own journal, like I did and like Angel did. We are certainly free to not like what they've changed, but as in your case where you have ideas that could make things better, having a polite conversation about it instead of just posting "you're idiots, we hate the new layout" is the way to actually have some good dialogue and for them to get people's feedback.

Oh, I feel like I'm a level 1 sort of person!! Simple is definitely better. Intuitive is even better, where things are where you expect them to be. While change is good, I think maybe they got a little too complicated (and definitely too geometric for my taste!) with this new release. I hope they do listen to you and others like you who have real suggestions for them to make things better.
Jill aka Jo: GOT: Dany with a whispersireesanwar on May 29th, 2014 08:25 pm (UTC)
No. It amazes me that comments people make to LJ and expect them to acknowledge them. It just isn't going to happen.

They do need to make things simple. I mean I can figure something out but do I want to put in all that effort for a post?
tracyj23tracyj23 on May 30th, 2014 11:58 pm (UTC)
They're already changing - when I went to log in just now I got a bubble pop up that asked for feedback and had an option to go back to the old journal style. WOW!
Jill aka Josireesanwar on May 31st, 2014 12:33 am (UTC)
That has actually been there but they are now telling you where to find it. LOL
tracyj23: Books - big shelftracyj23 on May 31st, 2014 11:40 am (UTC)
I was surprised it popped up as a bubble I had to deal with before I could actually access LJ. Which is good for me as I'd never have found it otherwise. *lol*
Daughter of A Jedi: Spring Ruby (Shades of Blue In Flower)ladyofavalon77 on May 18th, 2014 11:51 pm (UTC)
I'm not too sure about the changes. It's not as easy to navigate as the last set. Oh well, something else to get used to.
Jill aka Jo: Haven: Dukesireesanwar on May 21st, 2014 12:55 am (UTC)
You're right. It isn't that easy to navigate. I've been using that Cloud button on the navigation system to suggest things to LJ and they seem receptive to improvements.

They; however, are not receptive to "Change it back."

Let's hope they can improve upon it and someone will wake them up to what we want.
dikana: cooldikana on May 21st, 2014 11:23 am (UTC)
First of all, thanks for this post! It was very interesting, specially your comparison between LJ and other platforms.

I must say I really love these changes. I have my journal here since 2007, but my use of it has been very basic most of the times: just write and post. Maybe because of that, I don't find these changes annoying at all. Actually, I think things are rather easier than before. I don't agree with some of your points, like the userpics/scrapbook issues; they seem better for me the way they're now (although I admit I barely use/change/update them since a long time). I don't understand why is everybody complaining about this, because (just like you said) they're trying to "resurrect" LJ. We, fans of this site, should be happy. And I certainly am.

I'm not an expert on blogs, social media in general nor code/programing, so my opinion isn't the greatest thing. I just use what looks easy to me. That's why I've never left LJ in all these years. I really love this site, although many people keeps saying it's almost a prehistoric relic. Because of that, I want to thank you your post; it's been a relief to hear a real pro agreeing with my feelings. Neither Tumblr nor blogspot nor any other plataform look more appealing to me than LJ. I hate Tumblr with all my heart, blogspot/blogger/whatevergooglenamedit is frankly UGLY and I think Wordpress is confusing and complicated. I even took a look of Medium and it's... so lame, isn't it? XD LJ still seems better. What a pity there isn't more people of the same opinion.

Lately, I'd been thinking about moving to Wordpress, just because of what you've pointed: the "page" option. I totally agree with you. With that, LJ would shine even more than at its best years. It'd be a very useful and catching tool. If they're really interested on standing out as a long-length content platform (as they said on the article you linked on the other post), the "page" thing is mandatory. For we writers it'd be a blessing to be able to order our work and offer a better and clean experience for our readers. That was the only reason I would consider leaving LJ. So I'm crossing my fingers, hoping they take your suggestion at consideration. At least, they should.

Thanks to your post, I think I'll wait a little more to watch the rest of the changes. I didn't know Wordpress doesn't allow its users to customize their layouts. Nor even the headers? o____o WTF, Wordpress has fallen A LOT in my ranking. You're right, the freedom we've always had here in LJ it's its main advantage. These changes mean a lot to me, hope they make a good work...

Best wishes!
Jill aka Jo: Stock: Peacock Feathersireesanwar on May 21st, 2014 09:52 pm (UTC)
See I can't say I love the changes but I don't mind at all. I don't think they are as out there as so many and I think because of they way I see LJ (development and for the basic user), I think their updates are far beyond necessary.

Of course, no one agrees all the time and that is okay. Opinions matter, having the same opinion does not. It's always okay to have your own opinions.

I really love this site, although many people keeps saying it's almost a prehistoric relic.

Do you know how many times I hear people say this and in the next breath complain about the updates. They can't have it both ways. LJ is definitely trying to address the prehistoric relic persona and I'm all for it, like you.

So I've not had a ton of experience on a lot of platforms but Tumblr, WordPress, and Blogger are some.

Tumblr is for the person who knows how to code things. It is geared for those of use who do things the hard way. It is not for the "normal" person.

WordPress has it's uses but I'll tell you unless you want to spend $100-$299 a year it is worth it. Some of their layouts give you header and background images you can adjust. Only some and there is no change in how big the header is. If they have the dimensions set to 900x600 pixels that is how big your image is going to be. Nothing you can do.

Blogger does have a bit more control but it is complicated and not at all user friendly. I can manipulate sites into doing what I want most of the time and I fled from Blogger screaming. *shudders*

Medium made me have a WTF moment. I didn't like it and it just seemed like another version of places like Facebook.

In my experience, LJ is just where it is at. Dreamwidth and InsaneJournal are much the same but I like the original and I want to stick with it.

I really do think LJ would hit the holy grail with page options. The level of happiness would be out of this world and while you can mimic the look it isn't perfect which is ultimately what we are looking for.

Thank you for being encouraging and admitting you approve of the changes. Takes the brave to do so.
Katiekatiesangels on May 27th, 2014 10:03 am (UTC)
Have to say that I really like the changes they've made. I looks modern, fresh and in line with the current designs. I don't quite get comments of people who want the very old style back. LiveJournal wants to attract new users as well as keep old ones. But who'll join a site that looks like circa 2005.

I do agree that some things are a bit hard to find, like userpics and scrapbook. The latter I haven't figured out yet but I'm not using it much.

I liked to read their news jornal when it was updated regularly. Just out of curiosity more than anything else.
Jill aka Josireesanwar on May 29th, 2014 08:36 pm (UTC)
You can find both userpics and the scrapbook on your Profile under Statistics on the right. This I don't love but otherwise I love that things are more modern.

You really hit the nail on the head. That is exactly it. LJ wants new users and 2005 style is out.

Me too. It is only more recent that I've been sharing what they have to say here.
Katiekatiesangels on May 31st, 2014 06:15 pm (UTC)
Ah, I see. That's not too hard to find actually once you know it. Thanks for telling me. :)

Jill aka Josireesanwar on June 1st, 2014 06:37 am (UTC)
No problem.