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message 1: by Betsy, co-mod (new)

Betsy | 1761 comments Mod
If you are not a member of the Feedback Group (which is where members can give feedback on how well Goodreads works), you may not be aware that Goodreads is in the process of redesigning the homepage. If you want to see what the new one looks like you can go to the very bottom of the page. There should be a line of fairly faint type that includes a bunch of different links. At the far right is a link to "new site design". To get back to the current home page design, there is a link at the bottom of the right panel (not at the bottom of the page).

One of the important changes made in the new design is that it no longer includes the tab for Discussions, which allows you to switch easily between your Updates Feed and Group/Book Discussions, and in fact allows you to set the Discussions tab as your default view.

So, if you normally expect to be able to see your groups discussions (like this one) when you first connect to Goodreads, that would not be the case under the new home page design. Instead, you need to hover over your avatar at the right of the top menu, then click on "My Discussions".

We don't know when the new design will be finalized and go live. I just wanted you to know in advance that you might suddenly find that it looks very different and you might have trouble finding what you want.


message 2: by Jim (new)

Jim (jimmaclachlan) | 685 comments Thanks. Also, be careful of trying the new design. If you do, you get stuck with it unless you can figure out how to go back to the old one or so others have complained. I'm not sure how that is done.

Personally, I hate the new design. I mostly use my groups & the update feed only for book reviews of top friends & then on a PC. I don't use a mobile device.


message 3: by Betsy, co-mod (new)

Betsy | 1761 comments Mod
Jim wrote: "Thanks. Also, be careful of trying the new design. If you do, you get stuck with it unless you can figure out how to go back to the old one or so others have complained. I'm not sure how that is do..."

Jim, on the new design, at the bottom of the right panel (not the bottom of the page) there is a link for "Old Site". Clicking that will take you back, at least until the new design goes live.


message 4: by Jim (new)

Jim (jimmaclachlan) | 685 comments Thanks, yes I saw your instructions on a reread.


message 5: by Betsy, co-mod (new)

Betsy | 1761 comments Mod
Apparently, Goodreads is starting the rollout of the new design this week, and they added a link to Discussions on the Community menu.


message 6: by Jaye (new)

Jaye  | 13 comments Here is the link to the announcement:
https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...

Seems a lot of people are unhappy about it.


message 7: by Daniel (last edited Aug 03, 2016 09:25AM) (new)

Daniel | 106 comments Jaye wrote: "Here is the link to the announcement:
https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...

Seems a lot of people are unhappy about it."


To be fair, a lot of people are unhappy every time any site makes layout changes. I can't think of a single site that I've ever seen make even remotely major interface changes and not seen it followed by a long line of complainers about those changes.

And when you consider that as far as I can tell, they didn't make a single adjustment that was asked for over and over since the "beta", I guess we know that it wasn't so much a "beta" as a "get people used to to this thing we're doing no matter what", but call it a "beta" so it doesn't sound like what it is.

It's not like goodreads cares even the slightest amount about any user objections to this and it's not like people will stop using the site in protest. Now that facebook has proven repeatedly that you can openly take advantage of people and they'll make noise for a few days but still go along with it, why should goodreads care what it's users think?

So instead they care about what makes authors happy (they spend money to get their books in front of users) which is why this new design is all built around how to shove more books (read: paid ad space) into every user's face while making everything else less accessible. It's not a coincidence that every thing that moved into a bigger view are things they sell access to and I wouldn't be the least surprised to see them add even more ways to sell space on this new homepage. After all, why else would they do it? I haven't seen even one user out of millions say that it was a dramatic improvement in their experience.

People who sell cars don't care about the cars' opinions on the matter and you are goodreads' product, so why would it be any different, really?

For me, it will probably almost eliminate my group participation since it's a pain to get to, but otherwise, I don't really care one way or the other about the changes. Mostly, it's interesting to watch the same cycle play out every time any big site makes changes. It says a lot about businesses/websites but probably even more about people/users.


message 8: by Jim (new)

Jim (jimmaclachlan) | 685 comments Daniel, good summation, except it's not hard to participate in groups if you just make the discussion page your landing page on the site - at least it's easy for me from a browser. YMMV if you use the app. I don't.


message 9: by Daniel (last edited Aug 03, 2016 11:36AM) (new)

Daniel | 106 comments Jim wrote: "Daniel, good summation, except it's not hard to participate in groups if you just make the discussion page your landing page on the site - at least it's easy for me from a browser. YMMV if you use ..."

I don't really use bookmarks because I like to keep my browser space super clean as a matter of preference and if you don't use the bookmark bar, it's the same easy to just type goodreads.com into the browser since it autocompletes after a few letters anyway. But maybe I should revisit that setup some. Thanks for the suggestion.


message 10: by Betsy, co-mod (last edited Aug 03, 2016 02:11PM) (new)

Betsy | 1761 comments Mod
I was able to get the Discussions page to be my landing page in Firefox, so I don't really have to use the bookmarking functionality. I opened that Discussions page in a new window, then pinned that window to a new tab. Separate from the tab I pinned the goodreads.com default page to. Now, when I open my browser it pulls up that new tab with the Discussions page in it.

The only problem is that you can't hit the Home link in Goodreads, unless you specifically want to go to the new home page. You have to train yourself to always just hit Refresh (if you're on the Discussions page) or Community/Avatar > Discussions (if you're on a different page.

I don't know if other browsers would work the same.


message 11: by Betsy, co-mod (new)

Betsy | 1761 comments Mod
If you would like to take a survey on how you use the Discussions page vs. the Home Page, it can be found here.


message 12: by Jim (new)

Jim (jimmaclachlan) | 685 comments Thanks!


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 368 comments I signed in for the first time in a week and screamed.

I don't know why they're doing this - better than 95% of the people who commented in Feedback during beta testing hated these changes. (And those were very active threads.)

Did they listen to us? Not that I can tell, no.

Thanks very much for the link to the survey, Betsy.


message 14: by Jim (new)

Jim (jimmaclachlan) | 685 comments I have yet to hear anyone say they like the changes & group attendance seems to be way down. I did send out broadcasts to all my groups telling them how to find the group page again. Many thanked me since they were lost. This doesn't bode well for the future of groups, though.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 368 comments I put up a "public service message" in the one I moderate, and included a note about it in a group message I was going to send anyway.

I do not know why GR is trying to kill its groups, as it is its best selling feature.


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