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7/29 Performance and Search

29 Jul

Changes:

  1. We have upgraded our search engine which will help us deliver improved search results. Since the search software is new, please report any and all search issues.
  2. Over the past week we have worked tirelessly to improve performance on the entire site as a whole and we are happy to announce that our efforts have yielded a 15% speed increase on average for all page loads.
 
86 Comments

Posted by on 07/29/2012 in performance, search

 

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86 responses to “7/29 Performance and Search

  1. MMC

    07/29/2012 at 3:35 am

    This is awesome! Thank you for all your hard work! :)

     
  2. kat

    07/29/2012 at 3:55 am

    There’s a character in Naruto called Sai. When you search his name, you get results with the word says or sayings in it as well. Sai is also a particular kind of weapon, so this is rather inconvenient.

     
  3. kat

    07/29/2012 at 3:56 am

    It would also be cool if we could use strike through text in stories and forums. Such formatting can be utilized quite well to show sarcasm in a character’s inner monologue, and other similar things.

     
    • yemi hikari

      07/29/2012 at 3:35 pm

      That kind of text can be a pain to read. Not to mention a lot of the ways people use it isn’t how it is supposed to be used in writing.

       
    • favonilla

      07/29/2012 at 4:02 pm

      Not sure about this. It’s a little gimmicky, and gimmicks are no substitute for good writing. Yes, I know Umberto Eco used it in “Baudolino”, but that was to suggest a genuine striking out of a piece of handwritten text. As a device to replicate the human thought process in an internal monologue, it doesn’t even come close to being convincing.

      More to the point, as yemi hikari points out, it renders a piece of text difficult to read.

      I’m not saying it mustn’t be made available for those who think it would be “cool”, but I doubt I’d finish reading a story which relied on it.

       
      • Shawnesty

        07/29/2012 at 5:43 pm

        What’s wrong with just plain old italicized text for inner dialogue? I agree that strikethrough text is hard to read and should be used sparingly, and even using bold text can be hard on the eyes. Strikethrough is usually used to indicate something written and then readacted, or at least that’s my understanding of why people use strikethrough, so to use it for a character’s inner thoughts seems a bit odd to me, italicized works better.

         
      • yemi hikari

        07/29/2012 at 7:02 pm

        @ Shawnesty – Exactly what I meant by people not using it how it is supposed to be but couldn’t put into words myself. It is bad enough I see bold fond misused when it comes to dialog.

         
      • Guest

        07/30/2012 at 1:36 am

        That’s interesting about Umberto Eco. I’ve not read his work and have not seen the method utilized in any professional novel I’ve read. I have to check out a copy of “Baudolino” to see how he made use of the strike though.

        Personally, If I clicked on a story and saw strike through text, I’d immediately hit the back button on my browser. I’m not going to struggle to read it.

        As for other text formatting, I don’t mind a few sentences in italics. I use them myself from time to time to designate a character’s inner monologue. But when I see an entire chapter with them (such as a flashback), I stop reading. The same goes for authors who put an entire story in bold font. They key is moderation.

        One of the reasons I like FFN so much is how clean and streamlined it is. There are personal archives where the webmasters use funky backgrounds and all sorts of font gimmicks. All it does is give me a headache.

         
    • cindella204

      08/03/2012 at 12:17 am

      James Patterson uses strikethrough fairly frequently in his Maximum Ride series. Of course I can’t find it now, and I don’t plan to look through thousands of pages on my iPhone to find it (there’s no way to search it) but it would be used very similarly to this sentence I just made up:

      “—–Finding myself needing to be around Dylan (wth???)—— Feeling lonely,  I walked back to the couch and maneuvered back into my original sleeping position.”

      I can’t actually do strikethrough on here, so the part where the hyphens is would be where the strikethrough would happen.

      He’s been doing it less in the later books though, and he has an EXTREMELY informal style (lots of parentheses, lots of weird uses of em dashes, very choppy dialogue, etc), so you know…

      I never use strikethrough though, and I have a character who has a lot of internal debate. I just do something like this:

      “She’s gone.
      No. She’s been gone since the Games started.”

      I just find it easier then strikethrough because I have a few VERY grammar proper reviewers who would probably give me crap about it, and at the end of the day, I just don’t like it very much.

      I wouldn’t automatically shun your work for doing it though.

      And @guest, OMG yes. I work for a fic reccing blog and people are always like “Why don’t you ever do stories on LiveJournal.” Because my LiveJournal account doesn’t work half the time, and when it does I can only read the stories on my computer 75% of the time and I never can on my phone because of the crazy settings. Even though I’m very into rich text and cool stuff, when I’m reading a 100K story, white on dark grey in a sans serif font is enough, thanks.

       
  4. While

    07/29/2012 at 8:58 am

    It’s awesome that you’re becoming more active with site updates–I’m thrilled that we’re able to see what kind of updates are ammended throughout the site, especially with this new Blog setup. But do you think you can add a sort by ‘random’ in the search section and in the stories themselves? I’d like to see what kind of results come up if it’s possible :)

     
    • yemi hikari

      07/29/2012 at 3:36 pm

      Having a “pick a random story” feature would possibly help out people who don’t get many hits otherwise.

       
      • favonilla

        07/29/2012 at 3:55 pm

        I can see the potential value in a random story feature, although it’s not something I’d use – there are too many genres I simply refuse to read. For readers who are not sure what they’re looking for, and who don’t mind where they end up, it could be something of an adventure.

        If it doesn’t cause too many technical problems, and doesn’t make the page too jumbled, I’d say go for it.

         
    • Guest

      07/30/2012 at 1:40 am

      A random feature might be fun, especially in the larger fandoms where stories (particularly one-shots) get buried quickly. Like favonilla, there are many genres I don’t read, so I’m not sure how often I would use such a feature, but I would give it a try. :)

       
    • konarciq

      07/30/2012 at 2:54 pm

      It’d be an interesting sorting feature. I’d certainly use it in the bigger fandoms when I was looking for something new to read. That way you get random access to stories from way back, without having to plough through pages and pages.

       
    • dadadada

      08/02/2012 at 9:38 am

      To have a random featur would definitely be awesome. It would be good both for the reader who doesn’t know what he/she is looking for and for the unknown stories…

       
  5. ~Cherry!~

    07/29/2012 at 10:20 am

    Could we get an improvement on the report feature? For example I reported an abusive reviewer today and I’d like to know the status. (Has the report been seen my moderators, have they been removed etc.)

     
    • Guest

      07/30/2012 at 1:47 am

      This is an excellent idea! I’m not sure how difficult it would be to implement, but many of the complaints I see are related to the abuse function. There are legitimate concerns that seem to go ignored and others who gloat of abusing the ‘report abuse’ system as a way of trolling.

      Knowing our concerns in regards to a fanfic/author were being seen and not ending up in an empty void would be a huge improvement.

       
      • ~Cherry!~

        07/30/2012 at 7:49 am

        It would be a great comfort factor aswell. Many people who get cyber-bullied on the site would take great comfort knowing their abuse report has been read by an admin. It shouldn’t be too hard. A bot could e-mail an author when the abuse has been sent to an admin, then again at a later time when the report has been modified. (Taken down, kept up etc.)
        Who knows? If this feature seems useful if could spread to forums aswell?

         
      • yemi hikari

        07/30/2012 at 1:51 pm

        While I love the idea, something we have to keep in mind is that the abuse reports are NOT tied to our actual accounts which allows parents who don’t have accounts to see the status of the report. However, if they incorporated a spot where someone can type in their e-mail if they want to get an update on the status that would solve the problem.

         
      • Guest

        07/31/2012 at 3:58 am

        yemi hikari makes a good point – current abuse reports aren’t tied to our accounts.

        If a new system is implemented, I like the idea of being able to see the status through our accounts as Pierce suggests, but non-registered users should also be able to report violations. Maybe use an e-mail system, too? Or would that become too unwieldy?

         
    • Pierce

      07/30/2012 at 5:54 am

      ^ This.

      I hope you guys think about it and see if it wouldn’t be too hard, but if it’s possible — please do it. Maybe it would be a bit like the review history system? A seperate tab where we can see the status of the reports we’ve send, or something similar. It would definitely be a good addition.

      Also, wouldn’t it be possible to deal out consequences for people who abuse the report feature? With that I mean people who report innocent stories without a reason and just blab something in the report abuse screen that has nothing to do with anything. I know that there are people who report stories (or forums: take Critics United and the Literate Union for example, both have been reported countless of times without a genuine reason).

      The same goes for people who break the rules, actually. There are a lot of trolls (“Boots 2 Asses”, for example) that keep coming back account after account, or there are people whose stories get deleted, and then they just upload it again because they don’t care. Wouldn’t it be better if it was clear that FanFiction is not a paradise for those who wish to break rules or be trolls?

      I know that accounts get deleted when the violations get too bad, but that seems to take long in a lot of circumstances and it’s unfair, because the violators are right — it’s easy to get away with uploading songfics and “submit your own –” stories. I’m not saying “delete their accounts after the first violation”, but maybe an uploading ban would be good? And not just a day — a week to start with, and it gets longer the more that the author breaks the rules until it gets to the point that they lose their account.

      Just seems fair. I know someone whose one story got deleted four times, and she simply kept uploading it without any consequences.

       
      • anon

        08/01/2012 at 1:40 pm

        Pierce, all you said about trolls and violators sounds like a good idea. There needs to be more severe consequences in regards to violating the guidelines. Also, I do agree with you that there needs to be consequences to people who abuse the report abuse feature.

         
  6. Ray

    07/29/2012 at 11:16 am

    THANK YOU SO MUCH!

     
  7. Phantom Ou

    07/29/2012 at 12:19 pm

    Thank you very much!

     
  8. ethereal impressions

    07/29/2012 at 4:35 pm

    Thank you loads, the work you do on the site is really appreciated :) I think a good criteria for narrowing search results could be being able to sort by “world”, in the eligible fandoms. For instance, I mainly use the site for Harry Potter, but I prefer next-gen stories to, say, Marauders – and since this is already criteria in the browsing part of the site, I’d love to see it added to the narrowing search results section.

     
    • yemi hikari

      07/29/2012 at 9:39 pm

      If you think a fandom is eligible for having “world” tags submit it to the site admins. That said, I do not want every single manga with an anime adaptation getting a “Anime” and a “Manga” world tag UNLESS they constitute major AUs of each other. For example, Shugo Chara’s Anime and Manga very in the plot line, but Bleach follows the Manga plot line with filler arcs that could be covered with time frame tags.

       
  9. ethereal impressions

    07/29/2012 at 4:38 pm

    Also, other ideas:
    1) Have optional separate character/pairing results for different chapters. If somebody writes a collection or similar with various pairings/characters, it can be hard to find what you’re looking for.
    2) Users not be allowed to favourite/alert a story without reviews. A lot of people aren’t bothering to review and writers aren’t getting the feedback they deserve. I think some of us would rather have no favourite than a favourite without review.

     
    • yemi hikari

      07/29/2012 at 10:14 pm

      I am going to have to say I don’t want either of these things. I read and write collections for the collections theme not because I am looking for a one-shot featuring two particular characters. I also would rather have a story favorited or followed rather then nothing at all.

       
    • favonilla

      07/29/2012 at 11:54 pm

      Aren’t you being a little petty? Some readers don’t feel comfortable trying to put their approval into words; they’re not all writers, you know. Seems to me the most likely result of trying to force them to review would be that they wouldn’t review or fave. And the thing about favourites is that they place a link to your story on someone’s profile page. I’ve picked up a lot of extra readers that way who might not otherwise have found my stories at all. In that sense, a favourite is actually of more benefit than a review.

      When a reader adds your story to their favourites, they are paying you an enormous compliment. It seems a trifle ungracious to reject it simply because you’d rather have a different one.

      Your other suggestion doesn’t trouble me one way or another, as long as it doesn’t add extra complications to the search options. Unfortunately, I suspect it would.

       
    • Guest

      07/30/2012 at 2:03 am

      Regarding your second idea – As an author, I don’t want to force anyone to review my story, nor do I want to feel someone is twisting my arm as a reader to leave a review.

      I’ve had people review who don’t favorite, and people who favorite and don’t review. It’s all fine and dandy to me. I’m appreciative of both because they don’t owe me anything.

      Also keep in mind this is a global site. I have many hits from all over the world. Those who take the time to check out my writing might be comfortable reading English (or reading via a translator), but not be comfortable opening a dialogue in another language.

       
      • yemi hikari

        07/30/2012 at 1:53 pm

        I’ve also had some reviewers whose native language tell me that despite the fact they like the story, they don’t review when all they can say is, “I loved this so much” simply because it feels like they are cheating the writer.

         
      • cindella204

        08/03/2012 at 12:31 am

        The language thing: As someone who reads in languages I don’t speak for a practice activity, yes. I am a Spanish student that’s about 50% fluent meaning that if I was just going to translate something random I could do 50% of it out of my head and 50% I’d have to look up. I feel guilty if I don’t review, so I end up sending a bunch of super-broken Spanish that’s probably so hard to understand that the effort isn’t even worth it to the writer to decode it.

        I actually had an anon review my story (in English) completely in Spanish and then say at the end “Sorry you probably won’t understand it’s awesome.” I actually did understand most of it, and I was super honored that it was worth it to this person to struggle through this story not in their language.

        If you speak…whatever language you speak, and you understand enough of my story to favorite it, I am not going to be all whatever because you didn’t review. I am a review wh*re, I occasionally will PM people thanking them for the fav and asking them to please review. I really do mean thank you for the fav though, I’m not just trying to get another review. Thank you for being free advertising for my story. I have around forty-something favs and only have about five people who review EVERY. SINGLE. CHAPTER, but you know what, at least those forty-something people are bringing me new readers.

         
  10. Skysong

    07/29/2012 at 5:38 pm

    What would be useful in the statistics area would be if we could see the hits/visitors on a daily basis – i.e, which stories were hit/visited today, as opposed to having to troll through every story stat in order to see if it was read that day. Or try to remember the number of hits/visitors it had yesterday to work out if it had been read. The information is already there, it would just be helpful for authors if it were presented for each day rather than as a total with no indication of which stories the total makes up.

     
    • yemi hikari

      07/29/2012 at 7:04 pm

      I like the idea… and then I don’t. Don’t know how to explain it.

       
  11. Nispedana

    07/29/2012 at 6:56 pm

    Thank you for all the hard work! We reaally reaaaally appreciate it.

     
  12. The Imaginatrix

    07/29/2012 at 7:01 pm

    Could you please make it possible to insert a horizontal line in the document manager using a shortcut keyboard command? Or at least make the menu with the necessary button accessable via keyboard command? This would not only help me as a blind user, but would no doubt make things easier for people who would rather use this method when editing their stories. I am sure many would be pleased with this addition.

     
    • Guest

      07/30/2012 at 2:04 am

      I second this idea.

       
  13. MyNameIsJeffNImLost

    07/29/2012 at 9:34 pm

    I’m liking almost all of the enhancements, changes, and fixes over the past couple of months. However, the “More accurate word count for all stories” fix actually made the story counts worse for me. Most of my stories were previously within a couple words of what my editor reported. Now some are about 3% larger. For example, “This Never Happened” increased from 6000 words to 6241. I pulled out the contents and two different editors report 5995 and 5996. Re-uploading into Doc Manager also reports 5996.

     
  14. Guest

    07/29/2012 at 9:46 pm

    Can we have some sort of improvement with the way reported stories are being handled. I know you must receive hundreds of reports everyday but the reports of stories being plagiarized and containing explicit scenes are being totally ignored. Surely we could have some system where reports about plagiarism or Explicit content are red flagged and checked. I have reported a series of stories in a small fandom that I caught my 13 yr old reading where the scenes were extremely explicit and went into great detail about two male characters having sex- the writer has even rated them explicit on another site but my reports have totally been ignored,

     
    • yemi hikari

      07/29/2012 at 10:23 pm

      I remember your other comment and say thumbs up to how you handled the situation as I’ve come across some behavior from younger members which makes me wonder where their parents are. I’m going to suggest e-mailing the site admins (you can find the e-mail and how to do it under help). This way you can include screen caps AND you can highlight the material that is bothering you. Hope this helps.

       
    • ethereal impressions

      07/30/2012 at 10:03 am

      Hi, I don’t want to pick up on something irrelevant, and I’m sure you didn’t mean anything by it, but I don’t think the fact that the characters were both male increases the explicitness at all. Homosexual relationships are perfectly normal and from the way you worded your comment, it just seems as though you wouldn’t be AS bothered (I’m not saying you wouldn’t be bothered at all, I’m sure you would) if the characters were a heterosexual pairing.

       
      • MMC

        07/30/2012 at 3:53 pm

        I’m pretty sure she didn’t mean to say anything to offend anyone else’s preferencse or sexual orientation; just explaining the situation of what it was her 13-year-old was reading.

         
      • Guest

        07/30/2012 at 4:54 pm

        Sorry if I offended anyone if my wording sounded like I was more disturbed that the story was about a homosexual relationship.That’s not how I meant it to sound. I was just trying to explain the scene I caught my daughter reading and how explicit the scene was that the writer had written. Its the fact that it is an extremely explicit story in a series of explicit stories that I found my daughter reading on a site that even states they are not allowed and then ignores the reports that I am upset about.

         
  15. Guest

    07/29/2012 at 10:30 pm

    I have been emailing the site admins daily since this happened with links to the offending stories and to the writer’s profile plus adding the cut and pasted scenes. I have also been reporting the stories through the report abuse link in the stories but it has totally been ignored. I am hoping if I point it out in the blog maybe one of the admin staff will finally take these type of reports seriously.

     
    • Suzie Webber

      07/30/2012 at 12:53 am

      If you don’t mind me asking what fandom is it from? It seems certain fandoms are better monitored than others. You would think certain categories that are more aimed at kids would be better moderated.

       
      • Guest

        07/30/2012 at 1:23 am

        It was in the Hawaii Five O (original fandom). She had thought she had clicked on the new show- and although she knew she was not allowed- she had clicked onto the M section- She has been punished for this but the story definitely should have been rated MA or NC17

         
    • yemi hikari

      07/30/2012 at 12:53 am

      They do take the reports seriously. However, I’ll tell you one of the unfortunate truths that the site admins have to deal with. There are people on this site who get mad at someone for leaving legitimate critique on one of their fanfics or telling them their fanfic breaks the site rules and can be reported to the site admins for removal and they revenge report stories that aren’t breaking the site rules. I did see someone post a link in the blog comments to a story with MA content in an earlier entry and it wasn’t there when I clicked the link. If you don’t do that they’ll still have to dig through the e-mails for the report.

       
      • Guest

        07/30/2012 at 1:09 am

        I do understand what you mean. This is the link to the chapter I found my daughter reading. The scene I am talking about is at the end.

        http://www.fanfiction.net/s/7043586/4/The_Telephone_Rang_Part_3_Shame_and_Memories

        I discovered the story was part of a series posted to the fandom called- The Telephone Rang and when I looked at the stories each contained scenes of mutual masturbation, oral/or anal sex.

         
  16. lord_spyridon

    07/30/2012 at 2:14 am

    I wonder if ff.net might be willing to help with the problem of author’s updating an old chapter with a newer version that is a major edit. One of the author’s I follow just replaced two chapters of her old story with significant changes but when I went to review on it, the site said I couldn’t since I’d already reviewed the old versions. In the end, I had to send it in a private message which bites since the changes made the story even better and following the new season of the show.

    I know DeviantART has a system where if a gallery piece has been redrawn, edited, or finished, they give a choice of asking if it’s a not significant change that requires no email alert or if it is significant, then they send an alert out to the followers. It would be able to cut down on ‘chapters’ that are only posted to alert readers that significant changes were made in earlier chapters. Adding it to the replacing chapter area of the edit story section will be a good place, like a check box to send an alert of major story revision. Usually people tend to update due to the mundane little things so having it unchecked would be better.

    The only problem I see is people taking advantage for little details. If you reset the review story thing after the revision, people might abuse it to get more reviews per story. Anybody might have any ideas to overcome that or is it a permanent albatross to the suggestions?

    Good I remembered before hitting post. I was wondering if links appear on the author’s profile on the iphone? Links don’t appear when I go to profiles on my iphone.

    So the two things I’m suggesting is:
    1) An alert for major story revisions to a pre-existing chapter/story to all followers
    2) A way to review an old chapter/story that has already been reviewed following a major story revision that replaces the old version.

     
    • Guest

      07/30/2012 at 2:43 am

      This is an interesting suggestion. Unfortunately, as with so many things on this site, I would expect immature authors to abuse it, updating a chapter simply send out alerts.

      I’ve also read stories where the author makes improvements based on feedback, but am unable to leave a signed-in review as I have already done so. In those cases, I usually summit an anonymous review and mention my penname. I’ve also had slip-ups where I submit a review too soon or realized too late I forget to comment on a specific detail.

      Perhaps the site could allow two reviews per chapter, with some sort of time feature…For example, 24 or 48 hours must pass between the first and second review? That system also has the potential for abuse, but the effects are limited and we can see who is abusing it by glancing at the reviews. Any thoughts?

       
      • S.H. Marr

        07/30/2012 at 3:18 am

        I think a better idea would be to allow editing previous reviews. We can edit forum posts, but often I see a review I’ve posted that has a horrendous typo or I missed something I wanted to say or thought of later. I think editing them would be a nice addition.

        Another thing I’d like to see is the ability to delete your own forum posts if it turned out to be idiotic. Currently, only forum moderators can delete you posts. I’d like to do that for myself.

         
      • lord_spyridon

        07/30/2012 at 7:40 am

        I know the ability for abuse is great. The only thing I can think the only thing that might work is that 24 hour delay that you were mentioning about. But I was wondering if authors can really do a major rewrite in 24 hours. Maybe if we increase it to a week or two. That will certainly cut down on alerts plus it might give an incentive to allow authors to have a beta read it over and such since updating within 2 weeks would be pointless.

        Just saying.

        I know my own updates take forever if at all.

         
      • Guest

        07/30/2012 at 9:53 am

        Oops, I wasn’t entirely clear. Sorry about that.

        I meant that at least 24 hours (or whatever the designated timeframe is) has to tick by before another signed review can be left. That way, if an author makes changes a few weeks or months down the line, we can comment on the revised piece. I sure couldn’t make revisions in a day or two either! :)

        This would hopefully minimize abuse since a signed-in reviewer couldn’t leave two subsequent reviews minutes apart.

        I do like your suggestion of allowing an author to alert readers of major revisions. If only there was a way to implement it. I could never run a site like FFN. Having to consider how each new feature can – and will – be abused would drive me nuts. Xing and crew deserve huge thanks!

         
      • lord_spyridon

        07/31/2012 at 2:14 am

        As much as I would like for multiple reviews on an old chapter with 24 hours delays between, I’m worried about people abusing that to bust up review counts since you can now use that to search for stories. I still think that having a recommendation system instead of showing favorites and follows and searching by reviews is better. You would need the ability to remove a recommendation which will need to be anonymous.

         
      • Guest

        07/31/2012 at 4:10 am

        These are some good ideas.

        @S.H. Marr – I would love the option to edit my reviews to correct typos and awkward sentences I sometimes end up with. But again, the potential for abuse is great. When an author pens a solid mystery, I enjoy reading reviews to see who else shares my suspicions and who is on a different train of thought. I fear a lot of that might disappear.

        @ lord_spyridon – I agree when an author takes constructive criticism into account and makes revisions to the better, there should be a way to reward them. Too many simply want glowing praise without exerting any effort. I have great admiration for those who work to improve their storytelling skills. How would a recommendation system work?

        It’s depressing that so many great features out there, but can’t be introduced because a few bad apples spoil the bunch.

         
    • yemi hikari

      07/30/2012 at 2:02 pm

      I critique and I’ve had some of the writers completely delete the story and start over and completely replace the chapters with new ones and I’m out of reviewing space for their story. I also see certain writers abusing the system, particularly the ones who WANT more reviews.

      Another reason why I’m glad people DON’T have the option to turn of anonymous reviews because I’ve used the anonymous reviews to leave reviews congratulating them on their major improvements. (For some of the younger writers this is a positive thing.)

       
    • lord_spyridon

      07/31/2012 at 5:42 am

      The recommendation system would be similar to the kudos system they have on AO3 archives or even the weird rating system on Ficwad. If you like a chapter, you ‘rec’ it and it would on the public story stats, instead of showing the number of followers and favorites. This would keep those stats private, making it a compromise between those who want to have a way to search by such a feature and those who wish to keep those stats private.

      I am not sure if people would want a list of signed readers that rec’ced the story along with the number of anonymous guests (anon would be recorded by their IP I guess), similar to the lists of those who favorited, alerted, etc on the legacy stats page. Personally, the stories I recommend isn’t my complete list of favorites.

      I don’t know about you, but there are times where I’m reading a story that liked in the beginning but as the author updated it, I found myself not liking it. This is what making me think that if we rec a story, there also should a way to remove that rec. This way is preferable than having a second button, like a thumbds down button, to show the discontent of some readers. For recs, the lowest you can go is zero, no negatives.

      I am debating if the rec feature should be standardized due to most stories having one chapter and others with multiple chapters. It would help if the number of recs are divided by the number of chapters. That way, people can rec chapters on an individual basis. On the other hand, you can screw the standardization and just have the ability to rec a story overall.

      I still wish that maybe ff.net will have a social area on the profile for those of us who use facebook, twitter, livejournal, insanejournal, dreamwidth, skype, etc. I know adultfanfiction.net has the basic url on their author profiles. All you have to do is type in your personal username/ID and the site will automatically embed the link into your public profile. Just food for thought.

      I do hope that system for linking stories in a series together is being worked. I’m practically drooling over that.

       
      • Guest

        07/31/2012 at 9:07 am

        I’m not familiar with Ficwad, but I’m against any sort of kudos system. Let’s see if I can articulate why. This is why it takes me forever to write chapters. :)

        With the current system of reviews, favorites and follows, each feature serves a distinct purpose in my opinion. Reviews are used to give feedback. I use them to express my opinion of a story. This is the only method I consider a true indicator of like/dislike. I feel a kudos button would take away – or compete – with reviews.

        It’s also easy to abuse such a feature. One kudos per story to a registered user, but what about unregistered readers? My ISP changes my IP address regularly. It’s also easy for me to renew it.
        If you want to leave a dozen anonymous reviews to your own story, it’s usually obvious to others when you do so. :) It won’t be so clear-cut with kudos.

        As for a story veering off into a different direction – it’s easy to express that in a review, but taking away a kudos doesn’t tell me as an author/reader why you feel the piece is no longer worth your time.

        Favorites and follows are more personal. I favorite a story because it’s something I expect to read again in the future. I favorite an author when he/she has several stories I plan to revisit. This also helps to keep my list of favorite stories from becoming unwieldy.

        I subscribe to story alerts so I don’t need to check in every day to see who has updated. When a story is marked ‘complete’, I delete the alert. I usually only subscribe to author alerts when the author writes for one fandom only. If they begin to write for other fandoms that are not of interest, I have no qualms about unsubscribing.

        When favorites and follows went public, I hated it. Since these stats have been private since thier inception, I felt it violated my privacy. I’ve grown to ignore those numbers when I browse the categories. Since I delete follows for completed works (and I can’t be the only one), they aren’t a solid indicator of quality.

        Sorry for the saga. I’d much rather have independent features that don’t overlap.

         
      • yemi hikari

        07/31/2012 at 1:51 pm

        Somewhere in the blogs in response to a previous comment the site admins have already said they won’t be implementing a like/dislike system. I know other sites have them, but unlike other sites this one advocates for critique to actually go on. If people revenge report stories with their friends, what is to stop them from revenge disliking too? And unlike revenge reporting the site admins can’t really control revenge disliking.

         
      • yemi hikari

        07/31/2012 at 1:56 pm

        @ Guest – That is what bothers me about the kudos system. While people do try and play a numbers game with the reviews, favorites and follows… they can actually be easily caught when it comes to reviews or sock puppet accounts.

        Follows aren’t an indicator of quality when it comes to completed works, but if you are only searching incomplete works then it ends up being a good way to indicate if something is popular. However, popularity doesn’t mean it is quality, but with popularity comes a variety of reviews that will tell you if it is popular for the quality or if it is popular for feeding a fad or trend.

         
  17. ShikiKira

    07/30/2012 at 3:41 am

    This has nothing to do with the search engine upgrade, but it seemed a bit weird to me. I just updated my story and I’m checking the stats for the new chapter. i am pretty sure that I should only have stats for it on 7/30 because I updated just a bit after midnight. However, as I am looking at it I also have stats for the new chapter for the day before when I had not updated. Is the statistics supposed to be like this or is a glitch because of the recent update?

     
    • yemi hikari

      07/30/2012 at 2:04 pm

      Was it midnight your time or midnight the time of the site. I would suggest checking the update time stamp.

       
      • ShikiKira

        07/30/2012 at 6:08 pm

        It was midnight Pacific Standard Time, so yes it’s the same as the site. And the update stamp is 7/30, but I have data for it on 7/29.

         
      • ShikiKira

        07/30/2012 at 6:13 pm

        Make that several hours later than the sites.

         
  18. Imablack

    07/30/2012 at 11:05 am

    First, I would like to thank you and your crew for all of the hard work they have put in to improving these sites. Some of the changes take some getting used to, but I have no complaints so far.

    I would like to make a request, however. Is it possible to fix the formatting for PMs? If there is more than one correspondence, oftentimes replies run vertically along the side and the whole thing looks like a jumbled-up jigsaw puzzle that is nearly impossible to read.

     
  19. Ariel

    07/30/2012 at 12:20 pm

    Something I’d like to see on FFN is the ability to categorize story sequels/prequels into a series. A prime example would be justinbieberfanfiction.com. I know, it’s a Bieber fanfic website, but I find it really convenient when I can pull up a page of certain stories written by a user in a particular series of theirs.

     
    • yemi hikari

      07/31/2012 at 1:55 am

      I’d use it. I’d have to pick and choose which sequel gets priority over others though as some of my fanfics do bridge out to multiple series.

       
  20. D

    07/30/2012 at 11:17 pm

    I think we should be able to delete both kinds of review. More times then not, when someone gets a negative review its just a giant flame that insults them and has nothing to do with their story. I had one about me deserving to be raped multiple times that I could not delete. I think its unfair that we can’t delete both kinds because then you have to live with that on your story and if someone goes around spamming all your stories with the same review 15 times you can’t delete that and this site doesn’t take time to do it either.

    So what if people would delete all negative reviews, how does that hurt you as a person? More then that, what does it have to do with you at all if it’s not your story? You can’t judge someone else’s story by their reviews. You have to take the time and read and see if you like it yourself not what other people think of it.

     
    • yemi hikari

      07/31/2012 at 2:55 am

      I’m don’t think people should be allowed to to delete signed reviews unless they are the site admins. We have a report abuse system in place and that is good enough, keep reporting the reviews until they are removed and GET your readers to help you. Also, BLAME the people who send in fake reports trying to get any and every negative review removed simply because they don’t want ANY negative reviews. Be GLAD that we have a report review system too, because I remember when we didn’t have one.

      If a person is able to delete any negative review even if it is criticism rather then a flame then they are committing censorship on both the person who reviewed and the people who read reviews to figure out if the story is worth reading or not. And contrary to what you believe, if a critique is well written it can help readers who are more discerning about they read BEYOND like and dislike about figuring out whether a fanfic is picking up to read. If a fanfic is badly written a reader should be allowed to know that.

      I doubt the site admins will allow people to delete reviews as the site guidelines also says this, “Respect the reviewers. Not all reviews will strictly praise the work. If someone rightfully criticizes a portion of the writing, take it as a compliment that the reviewer has opted to spend his/her valuable time to help improve your writing.” The last thing they want to do is allow people a way to circumvent this rule.

       
      • D

        07/31/2012 at 1:07 pm

        You can’t use that excuse with censorship because people can delete reviews by people who don’t have an account. And since this is a private owned site they can get away with a lot more things then a public owned. And the report system does not work, you think just because a few people want to get rid of a ngetaive review that all people who say they are being attacked are faking it. If someone doesn’t feel the need to delete a negative review then they wont. Its not about the reivews its about being attacked and having to stare at that review intill you delete your story and start over.

        Have you ever read the reviews people put on stories now a days? They are nothing more then attacks on people and nothing about the story. I can’t respect reviewers when they are spamming my stories with 15 reviews and saying I should be raped. The guidelines also say that reviewers are also suppose to respect the author and not put hate and threats but they still do anyway so I fail to see why the site has stopped doing its job and letting people get these reviews. They don’t look a reports, they never have and i’ve been on this site for years and no its not good enough to threatened with rape and not get help for it.

         
      • yemi hikari

        07/31/2012 at 1:27 pm

        Those who delete anonymous reviews that leave legitimate reviews are also committing censorship and they are disobeying the site rules. Allowing them to delete signed reviews as well will allow them more freedom to censor more reviews. I know of PLENTY of people on this site who think that EVERY negative review is a flame simply because it is NOT what they want to hear.

        For those of us who GIVE legitimate critique and refrain from flaming unless it is done unintentionally should not be punished because a minority group is going around flaming people. You are NOT the only person whose had someone spam their stories with that kind of review. As I’ve already said, consider yourself LUCKY that you can report those review. I got revenge flamed by Flame Rising when he was still rampant on this site BECAUSE I stood up to him and it took TWO YEARS to get his reviews removed BEFORE the report system.

        Also, just because it takes a couple of months for them to GET to the offending reviews DOESN’T mean they aren’t doing their job. The site has TONS of users, TONS of stories and TONS of reviews, so logically it is going to take time for them to sort through the TONS of abuse reports they have. WHY should you have your report taken care of before someone who submitted it before you? Please learn to be patient.

        When dealing WITH a flamer,

        ~ report the thing daily until it gets removed and get your readers to help review
        ~ leaving the spam reviews there UNTIL they are removed also ISN’T a bad thing as your readers can see that the person is a flamer and CHOOSE to block them… (that’s what people had to do with Flame Rising)

         
    • Guest

      07/31/2012 at 4:28 am

      I hope the site administrators never allow the option to delete signed reviews. If you are receiving threats, report them immediately. I want to see honest feedback, both as an author and a reader.

      The more comments I read here, the more I’m led to believe authors only want glowing praise and pats on the back for a job well done, whether the work merits it or not.

      Having both positive and negative feedback is no different than reviews published for books and movies. Not everyone shares the same opinions and they should be free to express their views. I frequent many smaller fandoms and a few highly popular ones. I’ve not witnessed the spamming and bullying; if I had, perhaps I would feel different. What I have noticed is authors getting upset if a reviewer points out even the smallest flaw.

      As for not being able to judge someone’s story by the reviews, I find that’s not entirely the case. If there’s an entire page of reviews left by people who can’t string two coherent words together or can’t comment on one specific detail (such as ‘update soon’ or ‘good job’), I’m less likely to waste my time with it.

      As an author, I crave solid feedback. If I’m losing focus, tell me. If my characterizations don’t ring true, I want to know it. Do I have typos? Point them out.

       
      • The Imaginatrix

        07/31/2012 at 6:27 am

        I would have to agree with both Yemi Hikari and the guest who commented on this. It would be a very bad idea to allow writers to delete signed reviews. I also agree with Guest regarding detailed reviews. I value a thorough critique, although knowing someone likes my stories is nice too. But I also take the time to give a detailed review whenever I like something, even if I’ve skimmed it, which I tend to do with most long fics I read. But that doesn’t mean I like them any less.

         
      • yemi hikari

        07/31/2012 at 1:45 pm

        I’ve been a victim of spam flaming. I still hold that the site admins need to be the ones handling the deletion of the reviews and not the members of this site. If you can delete a signed review, then why report it to the site admin? If you don’t report a review to the site admins then how can they ban these people from using those accounts? This is particularly important when it comes to the case of spam flaming. If the site admins know that a person is spam flaming rather then flaming occasionally they can remove ALL of the reviews from this person in one shot. That is what happened to the person who spam reviewed me. One day the site admins up and removed all of his reviews from all of his accounts. A bully loses momentum when their power is taken away and allowing the members of this site to delete the reviews doesn’t take their power away.

        I critique fanfiction. I’ve met quite a few people who think any negative review is a flame and allowing them to delete any review they don’t like would feed into this belief and allow more people to believe it. I’ve been in a smaller fandom that is aimed towards a younger audience and I had to leave for a year because a bunch of little kids ganged would gang up on me by reviewing after I did saying how I was wrong for bringing up even the simplest of critique, that they needed to work on their grammar, spelling and paragraph formatting. This was also despite the fact I said I LIKED the fanfic, but their REALLY bad grammar and spelling that was WAY worse then mine detracted from them being a good writer.

        Sorry for the rant, but the people advocating for this particular change don’t know what kind of long term damage it will cause the site.

         
      • cindella204

        08/03/2012 at 12:49 am

        I wonder if the Guest with the green icon is the same person every time. I agree with pretty much everything you say :O

        I got the first the first negative review I’ve ever gotten about two weeks ago (more than a year after I started the story, I’ve been blessed). I was traveling and hadn’t slept for more than thirty-six hours, so I was all whatever about it, but once I actually got some sleep and thought about it I realized it was a really good thing. She (the reviewer) made me aware of some things I didn’t notice, and I’ve improved a lot because of it.

        I have a couple reviewers that I love to death because they’ll notice little tiny details in the story and comment on them. That’s great. I love that. I had someone point out that I gave a height and weight for a character that made them severely underweight and then feel super bad about it. I was like PLEASE tell me stuff like that, because I addressed it in the next chapter, since the way it was written it could actually be a problem.

        If you can prove it’s abusive, report it. If not, it shouldn’t be deleted; take it in stride and learn from it.

        Sorry.

         
  21. Guest

    07/31/2012 at 7:44 pm

    would be nice if when you do searches by update date on twilight stories it actually showed any updates since 7/28. There are a couple with dates of 7/29, but none with 7/30 or 7/31 dates. You have to go to a story to find out if they’ve updated since the weekend

     
  22. John Carter

    08/03/2012 at 6:00 am

    Hi Fanfiction I know that you upgraded your search engines but if you did then why did my favorite author unparralleledthinking disappear on this site as of June 26 2012. I tried numerous times to search for her on your ffm branch but I have not been able to find her at all. Please answer I would like to enjoy reading her work again.

     
    • ~Cherry!~

      08/03/2012 at 7:10 am

      She was probably banned, changed her user name or asked for her account to be deleted.

       
      • John Carter

        08/04/2012 at 12:45 pm

        If she deletes her account, would her work stay on fanfiction?

         
      • ~Cherry!~

        08/06/2012 at 2:56 pm

        I don’t think so.
        Most likely she changed her profile picture and username and removed her story for editing.

         
  23. ~Cherry!~

    08/03/2012 at 6:08 am

    I have a review that hinted she would kill me if I didn’t stop reviewing other peoples work. I reported it twice but it’s been more than 72 hours. Why is it still up!?!

     
  24. lilyannrose

    08/27/2012 at 9:55 am

    does anyone know how to find a story that you can’t remember the name of, but can remember some of the things about it? Such as I’m looking for a story where harry and Severus are lovers, and harry has two new familiars named Sitara and Kali. Both are cats that can grow to the size of tigers. Oh yeah, and Harry is the heir of Gryffindor.

     
  25. Chelsea

    08/29/2012 at 3:50 am

    I can’t seem to find search on my iPod if it’s in the more part of the toolbar I can’t seem to access it as it doesn’t let me click on more. Can you please fix this problem as it is extremely inconvenient as a can’t search for specific authors or stories

     
  26. Ash

    09/12/2012 at 6:49 am

    The ‘sort by update date’ function does not seem to work at all. I tried searching with several keywords and none of them are sorted by update date.

     
  27. tannerose5

    09/30/2012 at 7:36 pm

    I have a Droid4. When I try to read a story, I get the message to close tabs before opening a new one. How do I close a tab? Yeah, I feel stupid, but I really need to know.
    Thanks,
    Margie

     
  28. Camille Bigornia

    07/30/2013 at 6:35 am

    good day… I’m having a problem on my account damnheart.o3… I cannot access it using my facebook so I wonder if it can be fix? thank you :)

    excuse my grammatical errors

     

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