Comment on Upcoming changes to kudos

  1. I've taken a little bit of time to think about this comment, and I have a lot of thoughts about it, but I'm not sure I'm going to be able to articulate them well. So I apologize in advance if any parts of this comment come across as awkward or harsh.

    First, I want to say that as a writer, I had no idea that authors were deliberately exploiting a glitch to leave multiple kudos. I always thought it was just a glitch. So when I first saw that four kudos were left by the same user on one fic, my thought wasn't, "Wow, I bet they really loved my fic!" but, "Huh, that's weird, must be an error in notifications." And then every time after that. I saw it and thought, "Huh, that same notification error again." It never even crossed my mind that users could be leaving extra kudos deliberately. And I've seen through this comment section other users mentioning the same line of thought--so leaving extra kudos doesn't necessarily mean anything to the author at all. It could, but they could also assume it's just a bug, like me and others did.

    Second, I think it's important to remember that this glitch always was glitch that was going to be corrected at some point. It was never intended as a way for readers to leave more feedback on works. I feel like kudos in itself already exists as a helpful alternative to both readers and writers, so that readers have a way of leaving feedback without actually commenting, and so writers could know their work was getting feedback, even if it wasn't necessarily comments. At this point, readers have a kudos option to leave feedback, and a commenting option to leave feedback. One offers the opportunity for further engagement while the other does not. And while it's not my intention to be harsh, if readers choose to kudos but not to comment for their reasons, I don't necessarily think it's AO3's responsibility to offer the readers further options for feedback.

    If you want to show your support for a fic but don't feel comfortable commenting, you do have other options. You could use the existing AO3 bookmark feature and save the fic as a bookmark so that author knows you truly enjoyed it. Or you could post it as a rec to your blog and encourage others to read it and give feedback. Or if you don't feel comfortable writing a rec necessarily, you could make a moodboard or similar for the fic and post it to Tumblr with a link to the fic.

    These are, of course, all suggestions. By no means do you have to do or even consider any of them. But they're just a few ideas of how you could continue to show your love for fics after the extra kudos option is taken away.

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    1. I have nothing to add to your comment except that I like it and agree with it 👍 (especially the rec list part! I discovered very recently that some people felt more comfortable saying what they thought of fics in recs lists than by leaving a comment).

      Last Edited Mon 16 Mar 2020 03:12AM EDT

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    2. As someone who is fairly neutral - I personally prefer comments, and would take even a 'nice fic heyo' over a kudo any day - but understands how people might be afraid, uncertain, or simply not know what to say..? This is a fantastic comment. I love posts that try to figure out solutions and alternatives, and the idea of creating moodboards for a fic you like is just - so terribly sweet? I adore it..!

      Not much else to say, but thanks for putting so much thought into this!..

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