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Question - is this at the top because you've pinned it there, or because people voted it so? I've been around here for 6-ish years now, and don't think I've seen any pinned mod comments before.


I pinned it. I usually do that for more boring reasons, like linking to a previous submission when an item is a dupe. But sometimes there are admonitions like https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=23158853 from a couple days ago, and https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=22827249 from a month ago, that try to steer a thread in a more guidelinesy direction. That works. But I try to do it sparingly.


I follow Dang's comments because I find it interesting how he moderates the site. I have definitely seen comments like this one which always appear at the top of threads, so I'm quite sure they're pinned.


This is absolutely pinned. I prefer to imagine that since we haven't noticed such comments on the regular means this power is not habitually abused to float a particular opinion/angle to the top of threads. That policy is not guaranteed to be enforced, so I'd prefer a visible indication (eg. via an icon, akin to Reddit) indicating the comment has been pinned. Transparency for the win.

Of course, a truly Evil™ company would have both options available: a visible icon for transparently pinned comments, but also the ability to invisibly pin a comment to influence readers. There is no real foolproof method, unfortunately.


I don't know if pinning is even necessarily a chief tactic as I presume they're also able to arbitrarily modify a comment's votes, or at least to overlook manipulation of votes from an entity they've given agency to.

All pretty cynical, though.


Seems like a public announcement. Don't see any problem with pinning it to the top.


I'm quite sure thare's pinning functionality in HN, it just that HN doesn't mark it like reddit does.


Why there is no sort by rating like on Reddit? I’d prefer reading top comments, not random of 1600


To be honest I don't know there's a reason why, beyond not having thought about it much. I'll add it to the list to think about.


Is it possible to add some basic sort options for comments - latest and top score?


The problem with "by top score" is it would itself influence the scoring, even if only some people used it. The oldest comments would stay at the top of such a list, because they get seen more and thus have more opportunities for upvotes, creating a self-sustaining cycle. You always need a time counterweight.


That would be nice. And also a way to wrap all comments that are replies to first-level comments so that we can see all these and only reaf discussions on projects that interest us.


What do you mean by 'wrap'?


Sorry, it may not be the right word. I mean the effect that clicking on the little "[-]" does. A way to automatically clic this for all second-level comments, so that only first-level comments that directly answer the "Ask HN" appear.


Got it. I think this would be useful. But where in the UI would we put all these options? This is my main concern.


If you find a place for comments sorting options (what my parent comment initially suggested), it could go there too (it's also related to comments display settings).

Maybe a line between the "add comment" button and the first displayed comment?


Have made a site out of links collected from this page. Check it out https://born-out-of-covid.f22labs.com/

Planning to add sorting and voting (If this interests people)


It's on the list to consider.


Let me know if you like the site, we can put it out in a proper domain and add submissions, sorting etc.


I struggled with whether this point is closest to pagination or sorting/ordering and ultimately chose here.

Is there any chance to get client-side thread collapsing?

Use case: suppose I'm interested in reading about side projects and not pagination or I'm "done" reading about side project X and want to get on to side project Y. If I could click to collapse the entire pagination thread (client-side only) and then later collapse project X's thread, that would represent an improvement in experience on this thread. (It's less clear that this applies generally to topics with 50 comments, but over 250, it could help.)


Sorting by new might be nice also, in comments, for this type of thread.


That's a great idea. I don't even think it's on our list. I'll add it.

We have an experimental feature to highlight new comments if you or anyone wants to give it a try - email hn@ycombinator.com. But you'll still have to scroll through the pages to find the new ones.


That feature would be useful on the user's personal 'threads' page to respond to new comments, I'll email you!


It doesn't work on 'threads' yet but it will.


Consider whether we might be better off without that feature, which also makes it super easy to keep aging threads alive, which is something HN has subtly discouraged thus far.


I've definitely been considering it, but it's also the most-requested feature by the people who've been using the highlighting so far. I think as long as we make it relatively passive, i.e. you still have to scroll to see the new things, it might not be too much of an unwanted catalyst.

Worst case, if it did turn out to have a major negative effect, I hope (I pray?) we would have enough killer instinct to claw it back.




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