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Forums Letters to the COW Team The new avatars

  • The new avatars

  • Bill Dewald

    October 31, 2008 at 8:27 am

    .. i think they’re kind of distracting… plus, they add lines to the post header – makes it _that_ much harder to scroll through posts…

    I guess I’ll live. I’ll probably like them more once I make one for myself.

    How are we all feeling about them?

  • Tim Wilson

    October 31, 2008 at 1:09 pm

    I’ll be honest, I have profoundly mixed feelings.

    I hadn’t thought about the real estate issue. I’m not finding it a problem so far, but I might reconsider when there’s a thread of 20 posts, all with avatars. So far, not so bad though.

    My biggest concern was introducing a bunch of skulls and Star Wars figures and such, but so far, so good there too.

    The more I think about it, the more I see one profound upside, which is to foster a deeper personal connection. We took one step by requiring real names, and this is potentially an even bigger one…as long as people use “real” avatars.

    So I’m more open to it than I was even last night. But I look forward to hearing other views.


    Tim Wilson
    Associate Director,
    Associate Publisher, Creative Cow Magazine!

  • Franklin McMahon

    October 31, 2008 at 3:58 pm

    Looks pretty cool..I am uploading one now. I remember when linkedin recently went from no pics to avatar was like night and day…suddenly there was much more of a connection with seeing the person’s face than just all I think its a good idea. Hopefully the Star Wars pics will be kept to a minimum.



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  • Ron Lindeboom

    October 31, 2008 at 4:49 pm

    [Franklin McMahon] “Hopefully the Star Wars pics will be kept to a minimum.”

    Maybe it is time to make a policy statement that Star Wars pictures are verboten unless you are a production person that actually worked on the movies in some capacity. ;o)


  • Kathlyn Lindeboom

    October 31, 2008 at 5:00 pm

    [Franklin McMahon] “Hopefully the Star Wars pics will be kept to a minimum.””

    mmm… I suppose that means I’ll have to get a real picture instead of “star kitty.”

    Kathlyn Lindeboom
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  • Bill Dewald

    October 31, 2008 at 5:02 pm

    I think my biggest issue is the size – the added white space around the header really pulls my eyes away from the post.

    I just took a look at Facebook for comparison – it seems to scale the profile pics so that there’s no added space when the avatar pops up in a post. Something to think about.

    It will be interesting to see what we all look like.

  • Don Greening

    November 1, 2008 at 8:02 am

    I’ll continue to foster a deeply personal connection with Tim without the need for an Avatar.

    – Don

  • Tim Wilson

    November 1, 2008 at 11:58 am

    Ah, but now you know about my big giant forehead!

  • Mark Suszko

    November 7, 2008 at 12:04 am

    So is there a policy yet about these? Because I was thinking of maybe using one that wasn’t my own face. Or are you going to use the rule I grew up with in Catholic School: “whatever is not forbidden is mandatory” ? 🙂

    I use some other sites with avatars in them and they generally look kinda goofy, so I don’t know… I kind of liked the clean, businesslike look without it before, and the mystery of having no face, just text, allows the women to imagine me as handsomer and the men to imagine me as taller, with more hair. I also kind of like that without avatars, your image of the person is based mostly on how they write and not what they look like, not judging by the cover, so to speak.. Different strokes, and all that. Is there a way to make the avatar really tiny on each post until you click on it to expand it? That might solve the white space problem?

    Hey, while you’re tweaking the site yet again, Ron, (smile) I just noticed the new alphabetic layout choices for the forums page. I actually found this a little slower to navigate to my favorite haunts as oposed to what I was used to. Is there a way for me to aggregate my own “hot list” of the forums I want to go to most often, and maybe set a cookie to have the page present just those forums to me in one “preferred” or “subscribed” set? I imagine that takes a bit of fancy coding to enable the capability.

  • Stephen Smith

    November 11, 2008 at 6:06 pm

    My avatar is not my face, after reading this post I guess I better change that. How do you change your avatar?

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