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A Letter to the Wikia Community Team

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Dear Wikia Community Team,


I am going to do my best to tell you this like a civilized human being. I will not swear, I will not type in all caps, and I will strive to make myself clear, concise, and understandable. I will also avoid such strong words as "hate," "stupid," "idiots," and "liars."


I believe I speak for most of the users when I say that I find the new look rather displeasing. Here are my reasons:


  • I don't appreciate change.
  • I don't like looking at those colors on a screen.
  • I am having a hard time finding anything on a given wiki.
  • Some of the menus are being cut out.
  • The editing is kind of hard.


And, of course, the least appreciated change (at least from some wikis. Namely the ones I go to.):


  • The Shoutbox was appreciated.


Now, I will go through these one by one.


1. ChangeEdit

I know this is none of your business, but I have been going through a lot of changes in my life, and not all of them are fun. In fact, I'm convinced I'll see another fun change when frogs start flying. It isn't bad enough that my sister is getting divorced, or my granma just died, or one of my friends is going to the East Coast and it'll be forever before I see them again. On top of all this, I have to get used to a new wikia skin and figure out how to use it. Some people, no doubt, are not having such tramatic change in their lives, and some are having more. But in my experience, people in general don't appreciate change. I've worked with the new skin, and I don't see that it works any better than the old one. So in this I see a change that is not a lot better (though in time I might get used to it), and I just don't like change.


2. ColorsEdit

Some colors do not go well on screens. Such is the case with these default colors. It is hard for me to look at them without my eyes aching as if I have been staring into a 1-inch screen in the dark. They are much too accented and bright, and I think they take away from the main page. Which brings up another point, I don't like the main page being just white. It's hard for the reader to tell where the article ends. The old skin had a very defined edge around the article. A reader might just read off the edge of the article and find themselves reading the Hot Spots column. I have found no option to change the colors, but I think they should be mellower, and there should be a border around the article.


3. Moving AroundEdit

This is becoming very hard. Now, the only easy links to something on any page are the Hot Spot ones. Being the kind of person that I am, I am not overly concerned with what is popular. And since the Shoutbox is gone, there aren't quick links to some peoples userpages. In fact, I will soon have to post links to what I visit often on my userpage so I can find it at all. I have tried the search, but it doesn't seem to work right. Perhaps this problem can be fixed, but it won't take me to blogs in the search bar with the new look.


4. MenusEdit

It's mostly drop-down menus that are suffering. In the old skin, there's a menu on the right that takes you to different places, depending on how the admins set it. In the new look, just one menu and all its drop-downs are still there, but any after that are just gone. Some of the menus are making no sense now, and it will force the admins to completely re-plan it. I don't think that's a desirable prospect.


5. EditingEdit

I'm finding that it's much harder to edit pages. I'm not sure what the deal is with the rich-text buttons, but they seem to be hanging into the editing box, which is NOT cool. It looks like they're broken. And with the edit box, there seem to be two scroll bars, which is confusing. It looks like there's twice as much box as there really is, and the rest of the thing is just blank white, with a scroll bar. I happen to be very obsessive compulsive, and all the wasted space is driving me nuts!


One final note on this subject: What happened to the edit summaries? There isn't a summary box, and those are important. It helped me determine whether an edit was worth looking at, and it was good to sum up just exactly what you did. Of all the things with the new skin, this is one of the worst.


6. ShoutboxEdit

I see no need to dwell on this subject. I wish you would leave the Shoutbox. I wouldn't know half the users on any wiki I go to without that, and it was much easier to chat with it than editing talkpages. One of the wikis I go to promotes role play gaming, and for simple things that were just spur of the moment, the Shoutbox was perfect. I have had a lot of quick conversations on the Shoutbox that to me were worth more than my weight in gold. I know and trust most of the people on the wikis I go to at almost a personal level, and I have the Shoutbox to thank. Beyond that, it's a good place to leave messages of things that people should know.


What I Like About the New LookEdit

It's only fair that I put in a bit for this, after I just listed what I don't like. But as much as I've searched, I have found only one thing that I like about the new look.


The Random Wiki button makes it really easy to spam other wikis.


In ConclusionEdit

Well, I went to a lot of trouble to write this like a civilized human, so I really hope you read it. You might consider it a list of problems with the new look. In which case, you might fix them. I realize that many of the messages you have recieved on this subject is pure hate. This is not pure hate. I am simply telling you what my problem is. I will have no problem whatsoever with the new look if you fix these listed. If I saw any indication that you were listening to any complaints I would make an effort to stop complaining. But so far I have seen no evidence for this. I hope that you will listen to this one.


Sincerely,


Snowpaw the Wild

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