I browse Reddit on mobile in Incognito mode in Chrome, frequently, for various reasons.
This means that there is no cookie history, and (when Chrome shits its pants and dumps the Incognito session), the settings are lost. This seems to occur every few days, occasionally every few hours. Reminds me a lot of Netscape 4 days.
Every. Fucking. Goddamned. Time. I go to Reddit, I get:
1. The "Use our Mobile fuckwitted app" fucking nag screen.
2. I have to disable that fucking nag.
3. I have to select "use Desktop".
(Chrome's own "use Desktop site" option isn't sticky across sessions, or even tabs, AFAICT, when selected on a site-by-site basis.)
And I'm finally where the fuck I wanted to be in the first fucking place.
I maintain a small but fairly well-received sub, and moderate a few others. For numerous reasons, these haven't taken off or succeeded in generating much by way of active discussion (Reddit has long been an exemplar of how to design site mechanics to fully kill and destroy any active conversation). Mind, that's a hotly-contested field, but for all it does vaguely well (and yes, Reddit does have some nice features and a large and not entirely useless community), there are a few small things that could be changed to improve this ... which manifestly haven't happened.
Another site I criticise heavily, Google+, actually does this fairly well, given a number of preconditions.
1. The discussion has to be actively and effectively moderated.
2. There's got to be a good, and not overly-large, discussion cohort. I find ~5-10 people is a minimum (with the right 5-10), and in rare cases, up to a few thousand probably an upper bound. The most lively conversation I saw was in a private community of about 50 people, tightly monitored for behaviour but not (with a few bounds) content.
3. The fact that a discussion stays live for an extended period of time and the Notifications loop back earlier participants is key.
4. Individual discussions can only run to 500 comments. This keeps things from running on too long.
5. Discussion is flat, not threaded. This isn't my initial choice, but it actually works ... fairly well. I'd ultimately prefer client-based determination of order, much as with Usenet or decent email (that is: Mutt) clients, including threads.
I'm not saying G+ is great. It has many, many, many flaws. But it is the best general-use system I've found on today's Internet, despite my many reasons for wishing that weren't the case.
I've found and met some great people, and had really good conversations, many lasting days and weeks, more than a few months and years.
And no, not all discussions go well. One of the best hosts on the site is its former chief architect, Yonatan Zunger. And even he has increasingly had to shut down discussions that ended up as shitshows. See: https://plus.google.com/+YonatanZunger/posts/cnqAekPSFgB
The fact that Google doesn't have to crank up impressions on the service for advertising dosh probably helps. The other games the company's played for generating activity stats have quite negatively impacted it in many peoples' eyes, my own included. The G+/YouTube fiasco being the worst.
1. Mutt offers: threaded, date, sender, and subject sorts, reversible ordering, and extensive filtering, including the ability to arbitrarily tag items and view only those. It remains hands down the best messaging tool I've ever used, though I find email almost entirely untractable for other reasons these days.
2. This ended up with the three top stories on HN on that date being either items I'd posted elsewhere being submitted here, or related fairly directly to those. Interesting experience.
I don't understand the drive to force people to use the app. Medium trys similar but less annoying tactics. Either way you get eyeballs on your site. Perhaps there's better tracking that they can get hold of from the app.
But yeah when ever you don't follow the path that the major sites want you to go down you have to keep jumping around
Similar with Gmail, all links in the email go via Google tracking so you have to do a right-click and get the link then open a separate tab and paste it (obviously a signal for me that I shouldn't be using Gmail in the first place).
Apps will cut down multi-site use too, stop users "changing the dial".