7/13 Update

13 Jul


  1. New sorting types for story listings. Now available are sorting based on the number of reviews, number of favorites (favs), and number of follows (subscriptions).
  2. Community pages received a minor face-lift to be more consistent with rest of the site.
  3. More available display width for screens with 1280 pixel width or wider resolution.

UPDATED: Crossover in-page sorting has been fixed.


Posted by on 07/13/2012 in community, stories


Tags: , ,

230 responses to “7/13 Update

  1. Brandee (RingTheBella)

    07/13/2012 at 1:42 am

    I just wanted to say thank you for # 3 on the list.

  2. Brandee (RingTheBella)

    07/13/2012 at 1:53 am

    (I would edit my original comment, but I can’t seem to figure out how.)

    I just wanted to through in my two cents and agree with the people who commented previously, that I would also very much appreciate if the follow (or favorite) author/story boxes were UNchecked by default.

  3. chronodekar

    07/13/2012 at 1:53 am

    FINALLY !!! We can sort stories based on the review count! Also, thanks a LOT for adding “favs” and “followers” based parameters too! It’s nice to see it when browsing the stories. (^_^)


  4. Katie

    07/13/2012 at 3:11 am

    I’m sorry, but I dislike the whole “fave” and “follow” options on stories. All it facilitates is popularity, something that should not be a factor when reading stories. Reviews are one thing, but favorites and followers do not indicate the worth of a story. It’s a ridiculous feature.

    • Lorraine

      07/13/2012 at 10:47 am

      Well said. I would like to agree with this wholeheartedly.

    • Phantom Ou

      07/13/2012 at 2:20 pm

      I agree with Katie here. The “favs” and “follows” system that is implemented is absurd for it is patently obvious that it advocates popularity. Stories are being discriminated by the number of favorites/followers they have, which is hardly fair. There is no doubt that this leads for people to choose stories based on the amount of favs/follows they have and not by the quality of them. This is their mindset: the more favs/follows the story has, the more popular it is so this story /must/ be better than those with a fewer amount. Now before someone refute this by saying “not everyone is like that” (this argument is rather self-evident), it is needed to be stated that there is a /substantial/ amount of people that are ‘shallow’ just like that, deplorably.

      • tiquatu

        07/13/2012 at 5:42 pm

        I think that if the site default was to order popular stories by likes/favorites, there would be more to complain about. But it doesn’t. Some readers want to look for popular stories (not saying that popular stories are necessarily good…).

        It’s just another method of sorting, like genre, rating, or pairing.

      • konarciq

        07/14/2012 at 4:33 am

        Tiquatu: but genre, rating or pairing have absolutely nothing to do with quality or (presumed) popularity of the story. That’s the difference.

        I don’t mind the fact that new sorting options are added to cater to people’s different needs and wishes – some good other examples are mentioned throughout this thread.

        But having the favs and follows made public on the story page, including a way to sort them by those two parameters, makes it far too much like a popularity contest. *That* is what I protest against.

    • dawnstarpony

      07/13/2012 at 3:56 pm

      i would like to kindly disagree. it is a way for people to “easily” get back to the stories they like. well i agree that it kind of promotes a popularity contest, but not really. at least, not as much as popularity contest as figmentfiction encourages.

    • m

      07/13/2012 at 8:42 pm

      I completely agree with you 100%, Katie. This is ridiculous, as it promotes popularity of stories that are already popular, pushing other stories that may (or may not be) just as good further down into the pile. The compounding effect of using the feature only adds to the popularity of the stories with more follows/favorites (which may be partly due to luck and chance based on update times). I STRONGLY suggest to that they remove this feature. I am fine with upgrades and think that overall they improve the site significantly, but as much as I dearly love the site–this is absolutely absurd.

  5. konarciq

    07/13/2012 at 3:15 am

    I’ll second the thanks for Nr. 3! As well as the plea for having the follow/favourite boxes UNchecked by default.

    But one thing puzzles me. I distinctly recall that a while back, stories listed in the genre “general” were decided not to have any genre listed at all on the story page because it cluttered the page too much.
    Now however, we get the Fav and Follow listings in that same area.

    If those apparently are *not* judged to be cluttering the page too much, would it perhaps be possible to have *general* back as a listed, full-fledged genre on the story page as well? After all, it’s a genre in its own right for stories that don’t fit any of the other genres, so why discriminate that one genre?

  6. Lisa

    07/13/2012 at 3:45 am

    Is there a way to disable that extra info being displayed on my stories? I actually don’t WANT my stories ranked by ‘favourite’ or ‘review’ or ‘follow’ or whatever. I want people to read my story for its summary etc. I feel like all this is going to do is encourage people to glance at how many people have fav’d it and then move on if they don’t deem it ‘enough’ – really, really don’t like this information being displayed.

    I also really hate the way the break line fades out at either end. I find it really distracting and I don’t understand why it’s been changed to be that way.

    • Yawn~

      07/13/2012 at 5:25 am

      Not everyone is shallow enough to judge a story by it’s numbers of followers, favorites or reviews. Hate the break line? Does it kill your brain cell to make your own?

      • Lisa

        07/13/2012 at 4:19 pm

        Any break I make on my own disappears. Also, it hardly matters on my own stories, as I don’t read those. I read stories by OTHER people, and if they use the line break I have to look at it. I’m glad it doesn’t bother you, but we don’t all have perfect eyesight and it’s seriously a distracting problem for me now that it fades out at either end.

    • Guest

      07/13/2012 at 9:26 am

      I agree with you, Lisa. The writing should stand on its own. With this new sorting feature, it only serves to turn fanfiction into a popularity contest. Sad.

      • Azami-san

        07/13/2012 at 5:57 pm

        I also like to say kindly did not like this new feature. I do not think a story is classified as good or bad by the number of comments it receives. Fanfictions I’ve read that they had many wonderful comments. Do not select the fanfics that I read of their popularity and I think that many people do not because most of the comments I’ve read show that people find this feature unnecessary.

        Writing is not a popularity contest, is it? I do not like to see as well.

      • m

        07/13/2012 at 8:52 pm

        I also agree with Lisa and Guest–this should be an optional feature, because I really don’t think a story should be judged on it’s “popularity” either. And like Azami-san, I don’t believe that favorites/follows indicate a good story by any means. Some of the “popular” stories I’ve read are complete bogus, poorly written, out of character, etc., while some of the “less popular” stories are much more realistic and well-written.

  7. CLA

    07/13/2012 at 3:50 am

    I’m not sure if this is a consequence of the new sorting option, but the crossover fics sorting has become faulty, it doesn’t list stories by update or publish date when asked to.

  8. konarciq

    07/13/2012 at 3:52 am

    Just wondering: it was said categorically on one of the other pages here that there would be no rating system for the stories.

    But doesn’t making the Favs and Follows public serve a similar function?

    This is just my opinion, but personally I would prefer having that info public on my profile page (where at the moment it is not visible), where people who are interested in my work can see how well it is liked.
    But I don’t think it’s fair to put that info on the fandom story page, where it may inadvertently influence a reader’s choice as to what to read and what not to read.

    As others have pointed out: having many Favs and Follows does not automatically equal an excellent story. As well as the other way around: few or no Favs and Follows do not necessarily mean the story is rather bad. It may very well be the opposite, and just not gotten the attention it deserves.
    And then I’m not even talking about those who Fav and Follow every story of their friends, no matter the quality. FFnet is not a contest to see who has the most friends, is it?

    As an example: I tried sorting the stories according to Favs and Follows on the Hogan’s Heroes site, where we annually have a big election choosing the best fanfics of the past year, so I am able to compare the *chosen* winners with the number of Favs and Follows as listed.
    Incidentally, the majority of the chosen winners (even those that won the most prestrigious category *best fanfic of the year*) are conspicuously missing from the first few pages if you sort them by either Favs or Follows.

    Which just shows that the number of Favs and Follows is no guarantee for quality.

    • Lisa

      07/13/2012 at 4:06 am

      I agree. I really, really don’t like this feature, and you’ve explained why much better than I could.

    • Lord Kelvin

      07/13/2012 at 4:08 am

      I don’t expect FFN to remove this feature even though I’m not a fan of the first addition. Quite a few people look for things like ‘most reviewed fanfic’ and extra sorting caters to them. Yesterday, you could have found the most popular fics manually in 5 minutes time. Now, you can do it in seconds. This is a matter of accessibility, not story quality.

    • DC111

      07/13/2012 at 2:36 pm

      “This is just my opinion, but personally I would prefer having that info public on my profile page (where at the moment it is not visible), where people who are interested in my work can see how well it is liked.
      But I don’t think it’s fair to put that info on the fandom story page, where it may inadvertently influence a reader’s choice as to what to read and what not to read. ”

      I definitely agree with this. Well put.

    • Phantom Ou

      07/13/2012 at 9:44 pm

      I agree entirely. Very well-stated.

  9. marzydotes

    07/13/2012 at 7:28 am

    I couldn’t see it. My login was down when I woke up this morning for over an hour. Just got back up.

  10. Jan

    07/13/2012 at 7:37 am

    Like a number of others have said, I would prefer not to have the Fav/Follows shown, it distracts away from the story, which is what this site is all about isn’t it?

    There’s also the concern that the “one-shot” stories may be ignored because they never get followed and may not get a lot of reviews simply because it only has the 1 chapter.

    • KageNoNeko

      07/13/2012 at 2:06 pm

      I agree with this. One-shot are getting screwed by this automatic box checking and being not likely to followed by people.

    • Desiree

      07/13/2012 at 5:02 pm

      I for one totally agree with you on that. Its absurd and distracting from the purpose of going on fanfiction to enjoy stories instead of making it into a popularity contest.

      • m

        07/13/2012 at 8:57 pm

        Adding on to what others have said above, “popularity contests” are not for the world of fanfiction, at least in my opinion. Save the popularity contests for the outside world–this is supposed to be a supportive community where people can learn how to improve their writing. Making the “popular” fanfiction more popular doesn’t really serve a purpose.

      • konarciq

        07/14/2012 at 4:36 am

        m: I couldn’t have said it better! 100% agreed!

  11. Sariniste

    07/13/2012 at 8:00 am

    I’d like to say thanks for making faves and follows publicly visible! Now it’s actually worth something when people fave or follow a story. Great job.

    And at last, we can filter by reviews, faves, or follows. Thanks! It’s true that none of these equals quality, but it’s still a very helpful way to look through the site, and makes it easier to find better stories.

  12. WarChild

    07/13/2012 at 8:22 am

    While more sorting options is nice, something got broken with sorting when dealing with crossovers.

    Expanding the area the stories use for higher res displays, also nice.

  13. Rachel

    07/13/2012 at 8:32 am

    I’m not sure I like the favorites/follows thing, honestly :/ Like a lot of people have said, it doesn’t give shorter stories a chance, those that don’t have as many chapters to gather followers, and oneshots usually don’t get any at all. I feel like if you’re going to do something like this, have the top 5 stories in the archive – by reviews, favorites, or alerts – linked at the top of the page, and then have the usual “by update” archive options and such. That way, people will be able to read some of the better stories without having to search through potentially thousands of them, but they’ll still be going through the regular archive because 5 isn’t nearly enough, and chances are, those stories aren’t going to be exactly what they’re looking for.

    Just a bit of input. I feel like this’ll bring down the amount of attention to newer users, newer stories, and original ideas in general, and based on what people have been saying, I’m not sure it’s very across-the-board popular :/

    • Lisa

      07/13/2012 at 2:30 pm

      Honestly, having the most favorites or reviews does not equal quality. In my fandom, Shugo Chara!, the most popular fanfics usually follow the same kind of plots: “playboy” meets girl indifferent to his antics or has to win over a nerdy girl and falls in love with her (for example, there are about four of five plotlines circling around that are most commonly used). These stories are uninspired and very out of character, yet people like them because they like the pairing.

      FanFiction, don’t fall into the popularity trap. This update will only cause more and more people to write stories with the same plots to get faves and follows, and it will push other writers, who are serious about their writing, away.

      I don’t have anything about the other changes, I really like most of it, but don’t make a popularity contest out of writing…

      • konarciq

        07/13/2012 at 3:11 pm

        “FanFiction, don’t fall into the popularity trap. This update will only cause more and more people to write stories with the same plots to get faves and follows, and it will push other writers, who are serious about their writing, away.
        (…) don’t make a popularity contest out of writing…”

        Wholeheartedly agreed!

      • m

        07/13/2012 at 9:27 pm

        Some of the “popular” stories in my fandoms have the exact same classic plot and it’s honestly starting to bore me to death. Some of the more originals are ignored or criticized because they are original.

  14. Back Again

    07/13/2012 at 8:36 am

    Okay, good, this is a good idea… now they just need a place where we can actually SUBMIT our requests……..

  15. ThePowerOfRandomnes1

    07/13/2012 at 8:43 am

    Thank you for the option to sort stories by reviews!

  16. anon

    07/13/2012 at 9:07 am

    I’m not fond of fav and follow features. Is there a way to disable it? I don’t think it’s necessary to see the numbers of favs or follows. In my opinion, I think it should be kept private.

  17. WarChild

    07/13/2012 at 9:19 am

    And another problem, your Twitter feed isn’t showing up on the main page.

  18. Izraill

    07/13/2012 at 9:32 am

    I agree with what some people already said, having the fav/followers shown is unfair for the new authors and the one-shot/drabble authors, no one will read their stories, even if they’re amazing, it would be better to put those in the author profile, so if someone is interested he/she could go and check, but not decide what to read because of that.

    About the ‘sort by reviews’, sometimes the bad stories get more reviews than the good ones, so that means you have to sort by reviews, and read the reviews, and that’s boring.

    Now I’ll spam here with one of my ideas (I’m not sure if I should call it ‘spam’ but here it is):

    If there’s a section for beta-readers, why not making a section for translators, that would be cool for people who want to post in other language. The stories would be posted in the author account AND the translator’s account and would be something like this:

    Super Awesome Story by Killer_Potato translated by Izraill

    There would be requeriments, like the beta-readers, something like “You must have written at least 1000 words in the languages you want to translate” So, if someone wants to translate English-Spanish or Spanish-English, He must have written in those two language.
    Some people says that the author wouldn’t be able to read the reviews, but he or she can use google translate, or ask the translator to translate them, or you can make translating the reviews a responsibility of the translator or even make a section for review translators.

    Please, consider this, it would help some authors to show their stories to more people and it would prove someone has authorization to translate a story.

    • konarciq

      07/13/2012 at 10:04 am

      Excellent idea, Izraill!

    • Lorraine

      07/13/2012 at 10:51 am

      I think this is a fantastic idea!

  19. Cyth

    07/13/2012 at 9:41 am

    Thank you for number 3 – it makes editing so much easier.

    Also, I understand the issues for #1 – the number of reviews might also depend on how many chapters there are in the story so you can have some awesome one-shots that are still far down on the list – is there any way that it could be changed to ‘average reviews per chapter’? And, the ‘favorites’ list is padded right now because of the automatic selection of ‘follow story’ and ‘follow author’.

    Finally, is there any way to manually make the page break line darker? I’d rather use the line because it doesn’t pad the word count but I’m going to have to go back to manually making page break lines since they are a little too light

    Thanks for these changes, it is awesome that the fanfiction team is working so hard to constantly update the site to make it easier for readers and writers.

    • DC111

      07/13/2012 at 2:34 pm

      I gotta second this; average reviews per chapter would be a much fairer way to do it if it’s going to be done at all.

      • konarciq

        07/13/2012 at 3:14 pm

        I’ll third it. If there is a request for being able to sort by the number of reviews, then do it by the average number of reviews per chapter, and not the overall number. It’s only fair to the shorter stories.

        For certainly we do not consider the shorter stories of less worth than the long ones?

  20. Daniel

    07/13/2012 at 9:47 am

    The cross-over sections are faulty. Where do I go to tell the people who work on the site? I put this here because it did not happen until this update.

  21. Always a Crossover Writer

    07/13/2012 at 10:04 am

    So will we have that note feature you were talking about or what? Honestly, beside from additions of the numbers of ‘followers’ or whatever being visible and a ‘better’ ability to filter stories, I don’t exactly see much of changes. They actually all seemed so useless, really.

    I’d like that author’s note feature, just for the sake of convenience and readability though (provided that it got limitless word count that is).

    Also, the filtering of most reviews or followers doesn’t seem to work in crossover categories (though I actually believed that would actually hurt the new authors or good yet unpopular writers with the uses of it-but that’s just me). So please don’t forget to fix it.

    I do have some suggestions…Maybe you can improve better with Beta Reader sections (especially those that write crossovers)? Or maybe give notifications of an author in need of a beta? I noticed that some of the authors actually had a hard time of finding a beta reader.

    Again, just a suggestion though. *shrugs* I’m just someone who is always willing to improve my writing yet always had a hard time finding a beta simply because I’m either too long winded or that I’m a crossover writer.

  22. Ryne

    07/13/2012 at 10:07 am

    I don\’t mind adding in other ways of sorting stories, but they’re not even working right. I sort by update date, and I get a story that was updated on 9 days ago first, a story that was updated last month second, and a story that was updated a week ago third. The other methods of sorting aren\’t anymore accurate than that either.

    I hope you can fix this soon. Not being able to sort it accurately is a pain. Once it’s working, it actually helps authors by showing them where their story sits in comparison to another story in terms of popularity.

  23. ShotgunWilly

    07/13/2012 at 10:09 am

    Honestly, re: #1, I’d like it if we could sort by wordcount too, but that’s just me. What I’d really like would be for all of these sorting options to be introduced into the communities rather than just by add and update date.

  24. Shar

    07/13/2012 at 10:44 am

    In a totally unrelated question:

    Email Delivery Problem Report for: We have recently logged an email delivery problem to your inbox at: As result, we have DISABLED all alert features for your account. Once you have resolved your email issues, you can re-enable alert features here.

    Error Time: 07/12/2012
    Error Message: You or email provider unsubscribed you from our site.

    Please follow the guidelines below to ensure our emails are safely delivered to your inbox:

    Add to your email account’s Contact List/White List/Safe List.
    Do not tag our emails as spam.
    Check your Spam/Trash folder to see if our email is mis-categorized. If any are found, please mark them as ‘Not Spam’.
    Make sure your email account is not full/over-quota.

    This message keeps reappearing on my page every time I refresh it. I have done everything recommended but nothing seems to be working. Is anybody else getting this? Is there a way to fix it? Support won’t respond to my emails, so…

    • Xing

      07/13/2012 at 4:41 pm

      You are supposed to acknowledge the message and it will disappear.

      • Shar

        07/13/2012 at 4:43 pm

        I have, over and over and over and over again. I just changed my email, but now when I go to change it back, I’m not getting any verification email.

  25. kat

    07/13/2012 at 11:18 am

    If we can sort by reviews, people will go to stories that have the most reviews will get more reviews, and people won’t pay attention to the stories that have less.

    Also, can we have a way to sort /out/ certain genres or characters?

    • Lori

      07/13/2012 at 11:50 am

      I agree that there should be an option to sort out. Some fandoms are absolutely flooded with certain pairings that some people don’t like, so it would be nice to have that option.

  26. carla aka cali-chan

    07/13/2012 at 11:27 am

    i see from the comments that many people appreciate change #3 on the list, but i personally prefer a narrower layout (saves me the trouble of having to toggle the settings so that the stories display at 3/4 length. now i have to do that, and it looks weird because there’s a bit chunk of the white bg of the story, and then the gray bg of the page itself. maybe i’m too OCD but it puts me off). could there be maybe an option in the account settings to let us choose the layout width we prefer? that would be awesome.

    i don’t care one way or the other whether people can sort by favs and alerts (people browsing will find a way to choose the fics they read by popularity either way), but i do think it’s looking a little cluttered now. maybe that whole grey line could be in a smaller font than the story summary? that would save up some space, possibly.

  27. Kiki

    07/13/2012 at 12:47 pm

    My concern is if stories are sorted by reviews, that encourages the extremely bad behavior as evidenced by a writer on one of the sites I read on. Her main goal was to break the review count record in the fandom without actually bothering to produce a story worthy of that number of reviews. She actually stated her intention was not to be a good writer but to be the most popular via the reviews, forgetting that to get that kind of praise, you actually have to sit down and work on writing something worthy of that attention, rather than crapping out a short chapter that basically rips off the episodes of the show and passes it off as her own. And of course her little clusterfrick of friends are more than happy to assist her by pumping her reviews up by sock accounts, so it’s a little unfair to those writers on the site that actually DO work hard at creating good stories, having some little lamebrained untalented twit turn the site into a teenaged popularity contest like that.

    • Always a Crossover Writer

      07/13/2012 at 1:14 pm

      Hmm, that person sounded familiarrrr~ of course I’m sure every big fandom had one of those, sadly enough. Tsk, people these days…

    • Gustav

      07/13/2012 at 4:16 pm

      Don’t you think that the most of the people that read this story will come to the same conclusion that you did? And after doing that rather ignore the author in the future?

      We who read mostly do so to be entertained and out time is as limited as the authors – we will not read something bad and post multiple reviews. We will read to a point where we find it crap and then leave – perhaps leaving a review and never to return.

    • m

      07/13/2012 at 10:17 pm

      I really don’t appreciate the people who review just to kiss up to the writers like those ones. Good to know that people actually see through that.

  28. Anon

    07/13/2012 at 1:00 pm

    I am attracted to stories that do not have any reviews or have not received a review in more than six months. I like this feature. As an author, I don’t think other authors should focus on the amount of reviews they have received. You should write a story because you want to write the story, not because you want to become Internet Famous. Most of the mindless minions will indeed flock towards more popular stories. Initially. It will even out in the end to where this feature is just another tag to sort with.

    Since some people are making infeasible site requests, I’d like to add one to the pile. People should have an incentive to review. Reward them for reviewing. How? Badges. An author earns a badge for leaving a certain amount of reviews. That badge is displayed in their profile page. It would be like those icons that signify how long an author has been on the site in the forums or what country they’re from in their profile. Personally, I’d use rocks and minerals. Jade, obsidian, amethyst, gold, etc. A diamond would be the highest possible rank you could get. These ranks would have to be paced appropriately.

    Yes, certain people could abuse that, but they also could and probably will abuse any other improvement to the site.

    • konarciq

      07/13/2012 at 1:50 pm

      I like the review badge idea. Like you say, it can still be abused, but anything good can be abused. That’s no reason to automatically discard the idea, I think.

      But the steps up the ladder should not be too easy – you really have to *earn* your rank. 50 reviews as the minimum for your first badge perhaps, and then something like 100, 250, 500, 750, 1000 and 2000.

    • Phantom Ou

      07/13/2012 at 2:25 pm

      This is a superb idea. It is a great promotion for people to leave more reviews/constructive criticism, in which would help the respective author/authoress improve at writing.

    • DC111

      07/13/2012 at 2:33 pm

      I too like this idea. 🙂

    • Lisa

      07/13/2012 at 2:34 pm

      Make that different. People who leave meaningful reviews could earn badges. Otherwise, a lot of people who write “i luv it plzzz updte soon!” on every story they see would soon have the highest rank.

      Of course, that would mean the imput of readers, and since a lot of people think constructive criticism is mean, that would also go down the drain *sigh*.

      • m

        07/13/2012 at 9:33 pm

        Maybe if the reviews could be “liked”, etc. then this would prevent Lisa’s “i luv it plzzzz updte soon!!!!!!!!!!!” conundrum. If a review earns a certain number of “likes” then it counts towards your reviewer’s score. Of course, this is also flawed because an author could log out and then dislike any negative comment on their story…but it shouldn’t be too hard to fix.

      • Phantom Ou

        07/13/2012 at 9:40 pm

        Lol, I see what you mean here. True, those prosaic reviews are easier and faster to type, so it will result to those kind of reviewers to have the highest rank. I also wish we can grant badges to people who bestow meaningful reviews, though I don’t see how we can monitor and judge the quality of them since every review is automatically published into the system, hence the badges would be given in the same manner. Perhaps we can the author rate the helpfulness of the review, and the amount of points that reviewer will earn is decided then? I don’t know, just brainstorming at the moment.

        Ah, some people do not take constructive criticism well now and then, but in my reviewing history, there are a good amount of people that understand and do not take personal offense. As long as you are being amicable while delivering the critique, it, for the most part, works out fine.

      • m

        07/13/2012 at 9:57 pm

        If the author appreciates it, it wasn’t rude but it was also helpful, so that could be a good system. The author could earn badges based off of “helpful” reviews.

    • konarciq

      07/14/2012 at 5:24 am

      I was thinking about this last night, and I think I got an idea. Not sure if it’s technically feasible, but that’s for other people to worry about 😉

      Author A publishes a story, and gets 3 reviews. Reviewer X simply writes “love it”, reviewer Y gives some constructive criticism to help him improve his work, and reviewer Z only complains why character Jimmy wasn’t included.

      With each signed review, there is a little icon (like now the report abuse and reply to reviewer) that *only* the author can see. And the author thought X’s review was nice but not very helpful, Z probably shouldn’t have read the story in the first place if he wanted Jimmy in, but Y really gave him something to think about in order to improve his writing.

      So the author clicks on the “good reviewer” icon with Y’s review, and chooses to leave it be for X and Z.

      Y now has 1 vote for being a good reviewer, and this will be communicated to him through an alert (if he’s opted into that).

      Other authors can do the same, but author A can give Y only once a vote for being a good reviewer – this to avoid favouritism.

      If other authors think Y gives them useful and good reviews to their story, they can give Y 1 vote each, too.
      And when Y has collected say 25 votes for being a good reviewer, he gets a review badge that is visible on his profile and with each review he leaves from then on.
      If this needs further development through different badges for more and more (50, 100, 150 etc) votes for being a good reviewer remains an option.

      An author can give votes to as many good reviewers as he wants, but only the author can give those votes regarding the reviews of his own story – you can’t do it for a review for someone else’s story.
      And you can only give 1 vote to a specific reviewer. If the same reviewer gives you an excellent review again, you can’t give him another vote.

      By putting the threshold high enough to make the review badge a real honour, it will also make it more difficult for groups of friends to help each other to get the badge. It’d have to be a pretty big group in that case.
      It’s not entirely foolproof of course, but maybe just the beginning of an idea?

  29. karatemaster101

    07/13/2012 at 1:01 pm

    I found this weird bug…don’t know if it’s happening anywhere else.
    Then new features work fine on normal categories, but in the Crossovers section, it’s all jumbled up. For example, “Update Date” is the default setting, but when I checked out the AF/HP crossover archive (and a bunch of other ones as well), it sorts by publish date. I don’t know how to revert it back to “Update Date” (which is probably how most of us look for our stories). To make things worse, the feature doesn’t list the publish dates in one direction only. The stories published more recently are displayed first BY PAGE, but within the page itself, it lists the more recently published stories on the bottom rather than the top. Since Fanfiction normally displays the recent ones on top, then going all the way back, it really throws me off.
    Also, when I try to sort by reviews…what is the system based on? The first story listed at the top has 800+ reviews, which makes sense…but then it jumps down to 211, back to 765, down to 96…etc. I see several stories with 300+ reviews all the way at the bottom of the page. It looks like it’s been sorted randomly. I don’t get it. It doesn’t even make sense when you count it by average reviews per chapter or something like that.
    When I click on “Sort by: Favs” or “Sort by: Follows” I get the same exact order as “Sort by: Reviews.” And like “Sort by: Reviews” , there’s no set order in which it is organized. The numbers are jumping all over the place – again, there are stories with a lot of Favorites or Follows at both the top and bottom, and stories with not as many scattered between them.

  30. Sunnyshiney

    07/13/2012 at 1:18 pm

    I don’t know if anyone else is having issues now, but I can not access any links on my profile, e.g. favorites or alerts. When I click on any of them they will not open. Also, I can not add anything to my favorite lists. I’ve turned my computer on & off, etc. but none of that seems to work. I wonder if it’s from the website update?

    • Sunnyshiney

      07/13/2012 at 1:22 pm

      Never mind. It’s working now 🙂

  31. Mouse

    07/13/2012 at 1:21 pm

    I have a question concerning upgrades. Why is it that almost every time an upgrade is made to the site the alerts feature goes wonky? I received a private message a little bit ago and the only reason I knew is because I happened to look at my account, never received an email. This happens almost every upgrade so maybe you could make sure to check the alerts feature after upgrades to make sure it’s working properly.

    Also, concerning crossovers. If I write a crossover of two fandoms must I list it in the crossover section or am I allowed to choose between either the crossover section or the main section for one of the fandoms? I ask this because sometimes a story is a crossover but it’s centered mostly in one fandom.

  32. NKY

    07/13/2012 at 2:26 pm

    The whole follow and favorite feature is ridiculous. Not only will people discriminate against the story, they’ll snub it for what they deem insufficient.

    They need to change it back. It’s like a monkey is updating the features… -____-

  33. DC111

    07/13/2012 at 2:38 pm

    This seems like a good idea on the surface, and I was kinda happy about it at first, but at the end of the day I think it’s just gonna make FFN another popularity site. :/ I liked FFN’s subtlety before. Everyone should have a fair chance for their story to be read, and the site should encourage people to click on the story because they like the SUMMARY, not because they’re skimming through everybody’s stats.

    • Guest

      07/13/2012 at 3:35 pm

      “Everyone should have a fair chance for their story to be read, and the site should encourage people to click on the story because they like the SUMMARY, not because they’re skimming through everybody’s stats.”

      Well said! I agree 100%.

    • m

      07/13/2012 at 9:38 pm

      Ditto. I think it’s far too easy for someone to write a trashy story, hit 1000 reviews and far too many favorites, and then have their story get more and more popular by the day. This entire “popularity” scheme is ridiculous; everyone’s story should have the same chance from the beginning.

  34. zevgirl

    07/13/2012 at 2:43 pm

    Agree that favs and followers is a terrible addition. Promoting that kind of favoritism is counter-productive for writers.

  35. Anna

    07/13/2012 at 2:48 pm

    Please please *PLEASE* deselect ‘story alert/follow’ ‘fave author/story alert’ from being DEFAULT. It is EXTREMELY aggravating, annoying, counterproductive and counter-intuitive to have to force people to de-select these features for *every* story/chapter they read. I’ve had readers say throughout the site that they have just stopped reviewing stories altogether, because being forced to OPT-OUT of this feature is too much of an aggravation. PLEASE, this feature is not *helping* authors, who are your very *life-blood* of It is actually HURTING us.

  36. Sariniste

    07/13/2012 at 3:09 pm

    I love the new ways of sorting and have wished for them for a long time.

    None of the old ways of sorting stories have been removed; I still look for new stories with the “sort by update date” feature. However, now there is a new option to sort by reviews, faves, or follows. Of course none of these equates to quality; of course popularity also does not equate to quality.

    However, I had recently almost given up on reading fanfics because so many of them were of very poor quality. With this new way of sorting by reviews, faves, or follows, I was able to scan my fandom. Yes, a couple of the top-reviewed stories are clearly inflated by false reviews and are of poor quality. But by scanning through to page 3 or 4 of my fandom, I found a couple of stories I am really enjoying reading, that I never would have found before.

    I am reading some great stories I would never have found before! So I love this new option. It only adds to the site.

    As for the poor quality but highly-reviewed fanfics, I read the first page and then never click on them again. I’m not too worried about them.

    Give this change a chance, everybody. I think after a while the excitement will die down and you’ll see it’s a good change and you’ll be able to enjoy more and better fics.

    • favonilla

      07/13/2012 at 4:08 pm

      I don’t understand why so many readers want to see the stamp of others’ approval on a story before they even give it a try. Why can’t you make a decision to read or not to read based on the summary, or actually *read* the reviews, rather than just assuming that because a story has a high count, it must automatically be better than one with less?

      I’m sorry, but I must object to this innovation. Showing the number of favourites and followers is making what was a level playing field into a popularity contest, and will encourage the more shallow writers to create multiple identities with which to inflate their own figures. Oh, yes, it will, and that’s going to detract from the credibility of the site as a whole.

      Not good, people.

      • tiquatue

        07/13/2012 at 5:55 pm

        Why not? It’s not like a visible star rating system, where people can rate a story up (or down). I’d consider that to be a real popularity contest because if you’re an unpopular person, your story might reflect that. Not only that, it’s not on authors but stories. If it readers could search for popular authors, then that would also be a real popularity contest, IMO.

        There are those who want to read the popular (though not necessarily good) stuff. Now they don’t have to plow through page after page in order to find it.

      • konarciq

        07/14/2012 at 4:45 am

        Nowadays it seems like something can’t be considered *good* unless someone else says they like it… Can’t people make up their own minds anymore?

        And stars or no stars, it *is* a rating system. It’s visible directly with the story, and it shows how many people like the story. And whether it’s the popularity of the story or the author makes little difference IMO.

      • m

        07/14/2012 at 7:36 am

        favonilla: absolutely right. Every time I see a story with a high review count, I get suspicious because the reviews might be negative. Well said about the level playing field.

      • m

        07/14/2012 at 7:38 am

        Also, popularity contests are preferably NOT for the world of fanfiction, IMO. If they want to find a particular “popular” story, they can use the search engine if it was good enough that they remembered the title.

  37. turi

    07/13/2012 at 3:15 pm

    I’ll keep this short.
    1- I don’t like the “sort by review/fav/follow” option for all the above reasons that have already been stated.
    2- I’d really enjoy a feature like kat proposed, to exclude certain genres or characters.
    3- as some alreay pointed out, the crossovers are out of whack.

  38. CuteCiboulette

    07/13/2012 at 3:50 pm

    As a matter of fact, favorites and subcriptions are sometimes (possibly often) used as a “will read the fic later” feature. I know that because numourous authors and readers said so on a French forum on FFnet. I don’t see why French people would be the only one to do that 😉
    So, having a “will read later” feature to track the stories that seem promising but that we don’t have the time to read RIGHT NOW would be great, I think. Especially in big fandoms like Harry Potter where everyday, dozen of new fanfics are published/updated.

    • CuteCiboulette

      07/13/2012 at 3:56 pm

      And BTW, as a “one shot” author myself, I second the “reviews per chapter” request

  39. dawnstarpony

    07/13/2012 at 3:57 pm

    you guys are so dedicated. i can’t believe you make changes everyday. is there a way to see reviews posted on YOUR stories as easily as you can see reviews you posted on **other** people’s stories?

  40. Raf

    07/13/2012 at 4:06 pm

    I liked the introduction of the fav/follow system because it creates a method to indicate how good a story is and, especially if it’s a long fic, it’s worth to use my time reading them. The problem with a like/dislike, as in Youtube, is that FF dot net is a place for amateur writers and then it could discourage newbies, but with this method, it’s more neutral. Good job!

    • anon

      07/14/2012 at 4:27 am

      Just because a story has a lot of favs or follows, it doesn’t automatically mean that every story is good quality. I’ve seen many poorly written stories with lots of reviews and I’ve seen well written stories that has little reviews.

      • Raf

        07/14/2012 at 7:38 am

        Yes, and my point is that is a tool, depends on how to be used, which depends on the person. It doesn’t NECESSARILY mean that is a good story with lots of favs or follows, but it CAN be an indication whether is good or not, which ultimately is a SUBJECTIVE thing. And I think that people are overreacting, I doubt that this will turn the site into a popularity contest. There are millions of fics over there, any tool that may help us to find good fics is welcome.

      • Sariniste

        07/14/2012 at 9:23 am

        Well said, Raf. I think people are overreacting. The default is STILL to search by latest update, which is what I will continue to use in my fandom most of the time. We simply have a new OPTION to search in a different fashion.

        And although I agree that the three or so top-reviewed fics in my fandom are very poorly written, from about the middle of the first page to about page 10, the ratio of quality to junk is much higher than it was using only the “latest update” sort. I think it will increase readership, judging by the time I spent yesterday reading fics (on pages 3-10 of my fandom) that I had never heard of that were quite good (I had almost given up on finding decent stories to read because it had become discouraging to look for that needle in a haystack).

        Sorting by faves and follows is slightly better than sorting by highest-reviewed, but again absolutely no guarantee of quality.

        If a story is badly-written, but the author falsely inflated their reviews (I’ve seen a few of those in my fandom as well), this new option will just make it more glaringly obvious that they faked their reviews.

        Seriously, there are always going to be people who try to game the system, however it’s arranged. Speaking as a relative newcomer to fanfiction, I agree that it’s hard to get attention when starting out. That was true in the old system as well.

        I’m still going to continue to search by latest update as after a few days sorting by highest-faved is going to show me the same stuff over and over again, and it’ll get boring.

        So please don’t worry. I think it’ll actually increase attention on the good stories that haven’t been reviewed enough; here’s why. FFnet will garner new readers because right now a lot of new visitors to the site get disgusted with the quality of the writing on the top page of their fandom, and never come back. With the new sort options, it will be easier to find some of the better stories (although not all as has been pointed out). But people will be encouraged to stay on the site. After a few days, people will all go back to the default sorting. Then they will discover those new, good stories that have not yet been reviewed, faved, or followed enough.

        And those who are new to the site, who spend hours on each chapter, who always finish stories, who make sure to have good grammar and spelling and work hard to keep everybody in character… will have more readers over time.

      • m

        07/14/2012 at 7:40 am

        I think that this IS a popularity contest by definition. Essentially, when anyone clicks the “sort by favorites/followers/reviews” button, they are sorting by popularity.

    • m

      07/14/2012 at 7:33 am

      I don’t necessarily agree that “good” stories are the ones with lots of reviews…

      • Raf

        07/14/2012 at 7:40 am

        See my reply above, but it’s true: trollfics used to have great number of reviews (My Immortal, for example), but they should have a really diminute number of favs, so that my indicate something wrong, right?

  41. Gustav

    07/13/2012 at 4:11 pm

    The addition of these functions does NOT break anything for anyone, or create extra work (like the change of anonymous reviews that get approved automatically if the author does not actively delete them <- this change created extra work for these authors that already are trying to find the time to write to entertain us
    A change to perhaps set the default setting for new work to allow all reviews but letting authors to block anonymous ones, really blocking them, might perhaps be a compromise?).

    Back to the sorting criteria – It gives a subset of users, perhaps a majority of them readers, tools to browse the site in a way they choose.

    Why the need to take away that choice?

    By saying that the number of "X" will skew the selections of stories which get to be read – isn't it like saying that readers are idiots that don't know what the would enjoy reading?
    I don't think that the users are idiots.

    So I'm chiming in with Sariniste, lets give this a go. Or please describe in detail (I'll take examples aslo) why this is bad so the one of us who don't see it can.

    • konarciq

      07/14/2012 at 4:49 am

      “Back to the sorting criteria – It gives a subset of users, perhaps a majority of them readers, tools to browse the site in a way they choose. Why the need to take away that choice?”

      Because it’s invading the author’s private information on our stats without our consent, and based on what we see on other popularity contest sites, it’s very likely to be detrimental to new authors and to those that don’t write according to the most popular specs within a fandom.

      • m

        07/14/2012 at 7:43 am

        I agree with konarciq. Some fandoms just hate it when someone writes a “different” story. And this will most likely prove to be discouraging to new authors.

      • Gustav

        07/14/2012 at 4:04 pm

        OK I can understand the point about certain stats and that they can be perceived as private by authors.
        But I would like to know which stories are read by many people for my fandom and search criteria. It would be yet another way that I can try to find stories that I wouldn’t consider otherwise – how could that be accomplished.
        I’m not meaning that a story which is popular will appeal to me just on that fact, but if I haven’t noticed it before then maybe i should give it a look-see.

        As I stated in another comment, the site should be as hassle free for authors as possible. It is after all these people that take their time to write the stories that we enjoy.
        If this – having follows and favorites – on each story create extra tension the perhaps it would be better to remove it. I would rather that the authors that I follow spend their energy writing than irritating themselves of the stats being published.

        There are other things that I as a reader would like more than these stats – but I’ll raid this after the next round of changes.

  42. Bill

    07/13/2012 at 4:25 pm

    Okay is it just me, but I don’t see *any* option to sort by review displayed anywhere.

    • DC111

      07/13/2012 at 5:43 pm

      It’s the first drop down box where it says sort by update date.

      • Bill

        07/13/2012 at 6:34 pm

        Thanks ^^

  43. Desiree

    07/13/2012 at 5:00 pm

    This is absolutely ridiculous. Its bad enough readers tend to based a stories decency by review amounts alone but to add the discriminative factor of favorites and alerts is just dumb. Why would they add such a feature? Its not only violating an author’s privacy but I for one would rather readers read my stories based on quality not by number counts. I seriously hope that feature is taken away at once. I have no idea what fanfiction was thinking when adding a “useless” function like that. Is there no way to disable that view or are we stuck with it?

  44. Darkelf

    07/13/2012 at 5:20 pm

    The new sorting based on favorites, followers, and reviewers has both advantages and disadvantages.

    A disadvantage is that it makes it harder for authors posting new stories, since they have no reviews , favorites, or followers. This method of organization seems to encourage the stories with the most reviews to receive even MORE reviews, and make it more difficult for newer stories to receive any.

    The advantage, however, appears when a reader is looking for other stories to read. Not all, but many well-written stories are rewarded with a large number of reviews. This allows readers to find new stories they like and other people enjoyed too. Many good stories don’t have as many reviews as they maybe should, though…

    Basically, it’s good for the readers but makes it harder on the authors with less popular stories. That’s my take on it, at least.

  45. dr.girlfriend

    07/13/2012 at 6:11 pm

    Well, no surprise that I *love* the new sorting features since I was just advocating for them a few days ago. I still don’t see why people are grousing about them. Sure, they will potentially bring more attention to more popular stories, and sure there is no “perfect” measure of story quality. But, at least this gives you a lot of options. If you think the number of reviews is unfair to one-shots…well, that’s taken care of if you sort by favorites. I personally have recognized that I get more and more reviews for each new story because I’m building a “readership,” but the first story I posted (which I think is probably my best) still has the most favorites — people tend to favorite it but not bother to review, probably because it’s “older.” So, if one sorting criteria doesn’t seem “fair” to you, another might.

    I discovered the new sorting options on my train ride home today, and I’ve read more great fic in my fandom in the last few hours than in the last few months probably. I write in one of the most popular fandoms, and when there are around 15,000 stories to read, you have to start somewhere. So, immediately I have to narrow it down by a character or something to get a handle on it. Now I find myself reading pairings, etc., I have never explored before because I have some kind of indication that the writing is good. Maybe I’ll still get a lemon or two in there and some crap is still popular, but overall, stories that have lots of favorites *are* good. And the one with the most reviews was written in the last year, even though the fandom has been around since the early 2000’s, which contradicts the idea that the system of sorting by reviews is unfair to newer stories.

    I also don’t understand people saying that a summary alone is supposed to indicate to you that the story is well-written. What magical summary can convey the depth of characterization, the consistency of pacing, the use of language, etc.? Hell, I’m happy if a summary spells a main character’s name wrong — or even better calls itself a “summery” — so I know to skip it.

    So, thanks Xing, for the site, and for the upgrades. You may hear a lot of complaints, but count me among the compliments. 😀

  46. Bullwinkle's Lady

    07/13/2012 at 6:38 pm

    Contests feature would be cool!

  47. prestoncook

    07/13/2012 at 6:42 pm

    What is it with people and overreacting about changes to this site? Honestly, do you people really think that all of a sudden the site is going to turn into some massive popularity contest and people are going to fabricate all sorts of accounts just to push their stories up? This idea is so absurd. Mainly because you’d have to create quite a few accounts to bump up your stories because no one looks at the one’s digit, everyone looks at the hundreds and tens digits and rounds a little.

    Furthermore, everyone reads the freaking summaries, quit acting like this one little addition of sorting options is going to change that. If I don’t want to read Naruto/Hinata or Harry/Ginny fanfics, then I don’t care how many reviews or followers it has; I’m not going to read the story. Most people get all the information on relationships and other information from the summary, and that’s generally after they read the cliché snippet “what if blah blah blah…”

    My final point on this issue is to encourage you to actually implement the sort. Look which fanfictions come up. LOOK HOW OLD THEY ARE!!! Seriously, any idiot who sorts this way is just going to get a bunch of dried up stories from years ago when the canons of the various fanfictions were much much different. I read a lot of Naruto fanfics and I definitely don’t want to read a story where Minato is named Arashi Kazama and the bloodlines come from Biju. (Seriously, how many of you remember when these types of Naruto fics were all the rage lol). And this does vary from category to category but at the same time most of the stories with high review counts, favorites, and followers are really only there because they were decently written and have been around for over three or four years.

    Anyway, here’s three statistics that I think would be really awesome to see implemented.

    1. Average Update Speed (Days/Chapter) on the story summaries.
    2. A Date Stamp on each chapter so the reader knows when it was first posted.
    3. Average Number of Words per Chapter on the story summaries.

    And before anyone says anything, no, I do not look at just one of these numbers. I look at all of them and a great deal of other aspects including the first chapter before I decide to actually read a story. I really doubt that anyone looks at just a single statistic for a story and decides whether nor not to read it. So quit complaining about the new sort features; they’re a ripple not a tsunami.

    Finally, thanks for the updates, Xing. I hope the fanfiction team continues to add more features to the browsing filters and sorts.

    • konarciq

      07/14/2012 at 4:53 am

      I don’t think we need any more info in the grey story summaries… It’s getting cluttered enough as it is. But a date stamp on each chapter seems like a good idea!

      • prestoncook

        07/15/2012 at 7:22 am

        Ideally we should be able to pick which fields we want to see in that area. I never care about content ratings or genre and my filters are always set to English so I don’t need to see that at all. I don’t really need the favs or follows because the review count can give the indication of popularity. But even if they decided to include all of this information, there are ways to do it stylishly. They could take all of the numerical items and place them in a small box on the far right while the wordy pieces stay where they’re at. They could also introduce a mouse hover feature where you hover your mouse over a lit up word like “Statistics” and a box appears with the numerical stats in it.

  48. Kaza

    07/13/2012 at 7:01 pm………………you’re messing with my dougie bruh

  49. Alysse

    07/13/2012 at 7:09 pm

    Personally, I like being able to see how many follows and faves a story has — and it’s not so I can find the popular stories. I want to support underrated stories, the ones with fewer faves and follows than they deserve, and I really don’t mind if people deem my story unworthy because it’s not on enough favorite lists. I might actually start doing more reading on FP because of this! 🙂

    • m

      07/13/2012 at 9:49 pm

      I wonder if they shouldn’t have reversed the fav/follow/reviews filter so that the LESS “popular” stories are at the top for this exact reason…

      • konarciq

        07/14/2012 at 5:02 am

        That’s a great idea! It would actively promote the less popular stories, and those who want to get to the most popular ones instead can do so with one extra click (*last*).

        To be honest, I don’t think I’d be using it anyway, but I’d much rather see this site actively promoting the underdogs than to give the already popular stories the chance for even more popularity. *Those* authors don’t really need more encouragement – they get enough. But those who hardly got a review for their work could do with an extra thumbs-up. Or with a constructive review to help them improve their writing and their story.

  50. Lady Khali

    07/13/2012 at 8:02 pm

    On my PC, including favs and follows is okay. I don’t believe it’s necessary information, but it doesn’t clutter the display. However, I do 95% of my fanfic reading on a Kindle.

    Unfortunately, the current mobile version doesn’t work for me where the version two months ago did. The current version presents too much information in a tiny space where the information was already bordering on illegible. For me, the clutter adding favs, alerts, and changing the ‘ch’ to ‘chapter’ added to the rating, word count, and chapter count, which are far more important to me as a frequent reader than how many people asked for an alert, line renders the information almost unusable in its current mobile presentation, especially on a black and white screen.

    Being able to sort by reviews, favs, and alerts is nice, but it’s not a feature I see myself using very often. However, it’s probably indispensable for someone new to a fandom.

    That said I greatly appreciate the PC layout improvements. My eyes thank you. I just don’t use it very often.

    One mobile improvement I would adore is the ability to save review snippets. There are some phrases you use repeatedly and being able to just pop them into the review box and then add a few more specific comments would encourage me to review more often. I still won’t be sending long reviews from my Kindle, but being able to send a few comments and a ‘good job’ or ‘I didn’t follow…’ quickly would be wonderful.


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