LittleAtari wrote:Second, am I the only person that thinks it's weird that something so random is on the main page and easy to find? I mean it's easier to find the journals than is it to find the search options or forums.
A lot of the people who like the journals being where they are, are people who already know all about the forum and where all the links for searching and such are. They're journal regulars. And with them on the front page, and watching the front page, they're in a position to notice when non-regulars post there. This is a good thing, in my opinion.
I like that it tells the name of the people who've posted recently. I don't want to read about every bowel movement a person has, or their twitter-like daily posts in their journals, so I don't want to subscribe to them. But if I see a familiar name on the front page, I check it out. I often use the frontpage journal entries to see if there's anything brewing in the forum, since thick topics in here draw familiar names to post out there. I would not want to see the journals hidden away on the people's profiles because then I'd only see the journals I subscribe to, and I don't want to subscribe to every familiar name I know on the off chance they'll post something I'm interested in someday. I'd also miss all the unfamiliar names that pop up on the front page. I saw a new girl post in her journal this afternoon, talking about how she'd just posted her very first vid. I went and looked at her vid and will probably op it for her since I like getting first dibs on new vids by new editors. I'd never have seen her vid or even been aware of her sudden existence if not for her unusual name being on the front page amid all those familiar people. This is useful to me. I don't take it for granted. I don't want to lose it.
Put another way, Journals are our off-topic section. Yeah, donators can post in the OT section of the forum, but there aren't many topics being discussed down there. Usually it's the same ten or so threads and the same fifteen or so donators. With journals you get everything any member of this site feels like writing about. And while you can't currently respond to them very well (outside PMs), it's still a way to get to know people's views about topics they might never post about here in the forum, even if they were allowed to post about them here. And a few years ago the journals were a subsitute 'introduction' section as well. I think the journal buddies have officially disbanded or toned down a lot, but we still have a lot of familiar names who stay on the front page pretty often - right where they can (if they choose to) see and greet first-time journal posters. All of this will be gone if the only journals anyone knows about are the ones they've already subscribed to directly from the member's profile.
So, I'm for keeping the journal on the main page right where it is. No minimizing or hiding it, unless it's shown by default and people are given the option to hide it if they never use it. New members see it, that's why they post in their own journals, often making their first journal entry the same day they join the org. If it were hidden by default then a lot of them would never know it exists.
I like the idea of comments. The last time I checked, having conversations in your journals was against the rules. We'd have to officially change that rule before we can even discuss making it possible to comment on journals. Personally, I use my livejournal more than my org one. If I want people to comment, I can just make the post in livejournal, copy&paste it into my org journal, and link them back to the original livejournal post if they want to respond. Heck, I don't even have to copy and paste the entire entry into the org journal, just a quick summary and a "come here to read and comment" link would do the trick. Since a lot of people have journals and blogs outside the org, we don't *really* need comments to be available on the org journal. But...if they were available...people might post in their org journals more often. They certainly would have less reason to direct org members off-site in order to communicate with them.