torachan: (Default)
Travis ([personal profile] torachan) wrote2011-01-03 12:24 am
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Okay, I was excited when AO3 introduced the kudos feature (and even more excited when they put in notifications for it, so you actually knew people were leaving kudos), but I have to say, after having had it for a few weeks...I really, REALLY love it.

I love it as a reader because there are times when I don't have anything other to say than "I liked this" or similar, and I kind of feel awkward leaving comments like that (though it doesn't stop me from doing so) because I feel like I should say more, and also because I know the author will feel obligated to respond and there's not really anything you can say to that besides "thank you".

So for stories like that, I just hit the kudos button now. Which means, yes, I'm using it in place of a comment. But I'm not using it to replace comments that actually said anything. Clicking a "like" button is exactly the same as typing "I liked this", but it's less work and stress for everyone all around.

I also use it in addition to comments. Sometimes there are fics I really love so much and I want to tell the author in as many ways as possible. And even when I leave gushy feedback, I'm kind of crap at it. I'm not one of those people who leaves long, detailed, amazing comments because I just can't express myself well. So for something I really love, now I can not only leave a comment, but I can leave kudos in addition to the comment. (And I will also use the AO3 bookmarking feature to bookmark it, even though I don't reread and will not actually use the bookmark, because it leaves a heart for the author and that is yet another way I can show how much I loved the story.)

But what about as a writer? Do I feel like I'm being cheated out of something when someone "just" leaves kudos rather than commenting? Absolutely not! I love every comment I get on my fics (unless it's like, trolls or spam or something--nothing worse than getting excited over a new comment only to find it's spam), even ones that are nothing but "I liked this". So kudos functions just the same as an "I liked this" comment. It lets me know that someone enjoyed the fic, which is something I really like to know.

I have the hit counter, too, of course, but all that tells me is that someone clicked onto the page. It doesn't tell me whether or not they liked it, or indeed, whether they even read it or not. There are plenty of reasons why one might click onto a fic and not read it, and not just "bad" reasons like they clicked in, saw something they didn't like and left. Kudos tells me they actually read and liked it.

Of course a long, gushing comment and/or detailed concrit is always awesome, but let's be real. Most people don't leave comments like that. I don't leave comments like that most of the time, so how can I expect others to do so? Whether the kudos replaces an "I liked this" comment or is left by someone who wouldn't have commented at all otherwise, I don't think it is keeping people from leaving longer comments if that's what they are moved to do. I really don't think that someone who would have left a paragraph-long comment otherwise is going to see the kudos button and go "oh, I'll just hit this instead of commenting". And even if that did happen, so what? I'm not entitled to anything, and I'm grateful that someone takes the time to let me know in any way, whether by comments or kudos, that they liked what they read.

Also, I do feel stress in replying to comments sometimes (even though I am not someone who gets a lot), and so it's nice to have something like the kudos feature where there is no obligation to reply back.

Getting a notification of a comment in my inbox makes me happy. Getting a notification of kudos makes me just as happy. To me, there is no downside either as a reader or a writer.

Now if only DW would get a "like" feature...
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[personal profile] telesilla 2011-01-03 08:50 am (UTC)(link)
*kudos this post*

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[personal profile] thedivinegoat 2011-01-03 09:42 am (UTC)(link)
"Likes" this post.
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[personal profile] vi 2011-01-03 10:05 am (UTC)(link)
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[personal profile] calvinahobbes 2011-01-03 10:11 am (UTC)(link)
Thank you for explaining how you combine kudos and comments, because I've had some people leave both and I was a little confused as to the thinking behind that. Of course, there's no way to tell whether everyone does it for the same reasons (or indeed whether leving "kudos" means the same for everyone), but at least now I have an inkling :o)
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[personal profile] aris_tgd 2011-01-03 11:15 am (UTC)(link)
I know for Yuletide at least I was kudos'ing and commenting mainly when I a) wasn't sure if I had anything to say, and then commenting when I didn't feel like a kudos had said enough, or b) I wasn't sure the archive was going to let me leave a comment due to overload. ;)

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[personal profile] lilacsigil 2011-01-03 10:22 am (UTC)(link)
Counting back to my last Yuletide fic, I have about 10:1 hit:comment ratio, just as I did last year (more comments this year, but with a much shorter story). This ratio holds on most things that I post new to the Archive. In addition to this, I also have a 10:1 hit:kudos ration, which means (at least in this tiny survey) that the people who would comment are doing it anyway, and the people who are leaving kudos are taking an extra step. Kudos to kudos!
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[personal profile] sarken 2011-01-03 10:46 am (UTC)(link)
Now if only DW would get a "like" feature...

If they had one, I'd be using it on this post.
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[personal profile] sqbr 2011-01-03 09:02 pm (UTC)(link)
Seconded :)
Edited (A one word response, and I misspelled it ) 2011-01-03 21:03 (UTC)
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[personal profile] erda 2011-01-03 12:34 pm (UTC)(link)
I was just thinking about this, as apparently some people want to disable the kudos option on their fic under the assumption that this feature will reduce their comment count. I often leave a tab open on a story I've enjoyed with the intention of commenting, and then after several days close the tab without saying anything because I can't think of what to say. I love the kudos feature.

I'm also very happy to get kudos as I don't write the kind of thought provoking fic that would get long comments, but I would like to know if anyone is enjoying reading.

And, yes, I would love this function on dw also, as I lurk a lot, and I follow peoples' links so often and enjoy them without letting people know, as it seems silly to keep saying thanks for the interesting links, and then the person is kind of expected to reply to my thank you with a thank you for commenting. Hahaha. Kind of like thanking someone for sending you a thank you card.

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[personal profile] quivo 2011-01-03 03:52 pm (UTC)(link)
as apparently some people want to disable the kudos option on their fic under the assumption that this feature will reduce their comment count.

...I know this shouldn't surprise me, but WHAT. *facepalm* The worst thing is, I can actually see AO3 putting in that option, perhaps to serve people who just want to turn off feedback entirely or whatnot. If it ever happens that you can turn off kudos, I know I'll be judging authors that do it and leave comments on or whatnot. I'm all for getting more feedback, but cutting out an easy way for lazy or shy or busy or whatever readers to indicate that they liked your work is just daft.

And I hear you on the thank-you-for-your-thank-you feel that comments can sometimes have. I kind of wish there was a universal like button of sorts on everything, just to take away from having to go through those exchanges with people. I also doubt it would take away from those times when you want to emphasize your "thank you"; it would just be another way to express appreciation for posts.
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[personal profile] sprat 2011-01-03 01:51 pm (UTC)(link)
I read through Stanza on my ipod a lot, which I do because I'm often reading on a break at work or while cooking supper or something, so the kudos button is awesome for me. I can just click the link at the end of the downloaded file and then click to leave kudos -- far more doable than trying to leave coherent feedback with my iPod's keyboard, and far likelier to happen than coming back to the story when I'm at a computer later on. I do leave real comments when I have the time and something to say, but that's rare. At least this way, I'm not just another unaccounted for page hit.
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[personal profile] cereta 2011-01-03 02:38 pm (UTC)(link)
*nods* I interpret the kudos as a general "hey, this was nifty!" comment, which I am always happy to get. I appreciate it both as a reader and a writer. I know it probably led to me leaving more feedback on Yuletide, too.

[personal profile] octette 2011-01-03 02:49 pm (UTC)(link)
yes! i feel similarly about the kudos button, and i enjoy getting the kudos notification about as much as the comment notification!

on the other hand, if i participated in a challenge and only received a click of the kudos button from the person i'd written for, i'd be upset, so there's definitely a different for me under some circumstances. i should think more about that, actually. hm.
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[personal profile] quivo 2011-01-03 03:56 pm (UTC)(link)
Haha, I guess exchanges where you have a recipient would necessarily be a time when getting a kudos or a like instead of a comment would be construed as insulting or at least inadequate. But then that situation is different from someone coming across your fix and reading it-- gifts should be personally and politely acknowledged, and a kudos just isn't quite as personal as its comment equivalent.

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[personal profile] zulu 2011-01-03 04:34 pm (UTC)(link)
What I've found is that lately I've gotten quite a few kudos on old fics that I'd recently uploaded to the AO3. I never would've known people were reading otherwise, so it's a feature that works for me!

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[personal profile] melannen 2011-01-03 04:39 pm (UTC)(link)
I love the Kudos button! As a person with major, major comment-feedback stress (about both writing and recieving it, tbh) kudos is *brilliant*. I'm currently reading through everything on AO3 for a single pairing, no matter how old or not-wonderful it is. Before kudos I'd've been lurking completely, but I have left kudos on every single story! Without any stress or wibbling! And the other cool thing is that I can tell I'm not the only one doing this, because the same two people, in the same order, have already left kudos on most of the same stories, which is just neat to observe.

I especially like that they went with 'kudos' as the name, instead of something more value-judgement-y, because I am fine leaving kudos on a story I am somewhat meh about and would have hesitated to post 'like' but I still want to give the writer - well, kudos! - for writing about that pairing/fandom/theme.

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[personal profile] couchemal 2011-01-03 07:09 pm (UTC)(link)
Oops, I posted my comment before it was done. Here we go again:

I tend not to leave comments on AO3 because I can never think of anything to say and I don't like how it's set up (leaving my email places, even if you can't see it, makes me paranoid for whatever reason), so if people disable the kudos button they're probably not going to hear from me. So I really like the system because before I had a major case of guilt for not leaving any kind of comment at all and now at least the author knows I'm reading and that I liked the story.

[personal profile] couchemal 2011-01-03 07:10 pm (UTC)(link)
Before *this*, I should have said.

[personal profile] couchemal 2011-01-03 07:25 pm (UTC)(link)
Another reason I dislike leaving FB on AO3 is that I don't like leaving things on the internet I can't go back and delete, so I'm guessing I'd need an account to do that and look at this:

To get a free Archive of Our Own account while we're in beta, you'll need an invitation. There are currently 836 people on the waiting list.

I don't write fic so getting an invitation just so I can delete comments (and I don't know that the feature even exists) would be shitty on my part.
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[personal profile] liviapenn 2011-01-05 07:12 am (UTC)(link)

You can edit & delete comments if you have an account, yeah.

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[personal profile] kate 2011-01-04 12:23 am (UTC)(link)
I would totally give this post a like, if DW had it.
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[personal profile] themadlurker 2011-01-04 05:21 am (UTC)(link)
*kudos this post*
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[personal profile] sophinisba 2011-01-04 05:24 am (UTC)(link)
The kudos button is great! I didn't expect to like it as much as I do. And you are right that there are so many different factors going into hit counts that you can't draw a lot of conclusions from them. But kudos! Such a good feeling, on both sides!
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[personal profile] alchemia 2011-01-05 01:09 pm (UTC)(link)
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[personal profile] fizzyblogic 2011-01-05 03:53 pm (UTC)(link)
If I could hit the like button on this post, I would.