"Reply To" button in comments

This is related to Threaded comments feature

However threaded comments aren’t there yet and I want to propose a UI feature that could later be used with threaded comments but now will be useful by itself.

I propose to add a button in the comment view (where report or delete comment buttons are now), which would be a “Reply To” the comment button. When user clicks it, the front end automatically inserts the mention of the comment’s author to the new comment input area and also quotes the comment text. This is similar to how comment replies work in VK.com.

When threaded comments feature arrives, this button will also select the thread for the comment.

Threaded comments are only missing because the UI for it is missing. When you already add a button, why not adding the threaded comments completely? Threaded comments are already part of the protocol and friendica already uses this and it’s federated correctly. Yes, there are some backend changes missing, but I could add them really fast, but then still somebody needs to created the UI, so I didn’t do this yet.

Hmm, well, threaded comments is a bigger UI concept than that. We should render the comments in the right order and/or with the right indentation, i.e. indicate the threads. I don’t have a good concept of that in my mind. And the button can be just added as a separate step without touching the backend at all.

In that point you’re right, it’s probably something we need anyway, so why not start with it. But still, we should look at the threaded comment feature at the same time, because it’s something that needs to be done. It’s somethimes really hard to tell to which comment something is a response when there is just a mention and a sentence and you need to go to friendica and see it with threads to understand the response.

Sadly I can’t really help with frontend stuff because I don’t really know javascript. Maybe I can start learning javascript in some years when I finished all the backend changes I wanted to do and everything is waiting for a UI, but I’m hoping that we can add threaded comments earlier. There was already a userscript with a UI, so it probably just needs to be refactored, updated and cleaned up a bit (ping @deusfigendi, AFAIR you did that userscript?).

When adding a button like this it should at least already store and federate to which comment something is a response, so it can be used in the future when we have the UI to display it correctly.

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Yah, I also added a link to the parent comment like [answer to](/post/postguid#commentguid]) to help non-users of the script to find the comment this one is referencing to.

I don’t think it’s done with a little refactoring but I have time the week after next week (I’m on vacation… at home from may 10th to 22nd) so maybe I can work on this feature. People also asked for more automated quoting like it works here in discourse.

But maybe some UI-concepts could be adopted from there:

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This does sound like a great idea. One thing that I used to find annoying but actually like more nowadays is limiting the level of nesting that is available. I think limiting it to one level can be a bit draconian but perhaps 3 or 4 would be appropriate.

Yes there must be some limit, because of limited space XD

On the image you can see it works on 4 levels but it is already at its limits I’d say.


So the “Testing how it behaves with more comments” is already very hardly to be okay. It this is only a usual paragraph. If it would contain a headline or an bigger image this wouldn’t work out anymore.

So there must be some limit but because of the decentral nature of the network it can always be the case that there is a 20 level deep discussion e.g. take a look at this discussion in a german web developer newsgroup so this must be handled some way. Maybe by an “expand” function or something external on an own page or horizontal scrolling… I’m not sure.

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