Mon 16 Jun 2014 3:49PM

Editing posts - possible?

AZ Alexander Zatko Public Seen by 350

Hi, I recently started to use D*. After making a couple of posts I noticed a typo in one of them that I want to fix. However, I do not see a way to do that. Tutorials at http://diasporial.com/tutorials were no help. Am I missing something?



Faldrian Mon 16 Jun 2014 4:20PM

Not possible due to the mechanism federation is built & people want to comment on posts or like posts that are not changed to something completely different afterwards.


goob Mon 16 Jun 2014 5:02PM

Hi Alexander, and welcome to Diaspora. There's information on why editing of posts isn't possible in that article Flaburgan has linked to. There is also a previous discussion in Loomio about this - it's always worth using the search facility before starting a discussion in Loomio and having a look through previous discussions so that you don't make a duplicate discussion.

By the way, Loomio is for matters of policy and discussing the direction of the project, including feature requests in some circumstances. See this article for more information about using Loomio. For help on how to use Diaspora, it's best to ask in public posts in Diaspora itself, using tags such as #help and #question, or try IRC or the mailing list if you can't get the help you need in Diaspora.


Alexander Zatko Wed 18 Jun 2014 3:46PM

Thank you all and sorry for posting my question here. Regarding "search first" - that's what I was trying to do, but I did not see the search functionality at that time. I see it now.


goob Wed 18 Jun 2014 4:19PM

One caveat about the search function: it only returns results for groups you are already a part of. So if you are only a member of 'Diaspora Community' and a discussion on the subject you're searching for is in the 'Developer proposals' sub-group, you won't see that discussion in your search results. So it's always a good idea to look through the list of discussions in each sub-group in which a discussion on the topic you're interested in might have been started, as well as performing a search.

Hope that helps.


Sean Tilley Thu 19 Jun 2014 3:09PM

Actually, Tent has a great concept for post revisions, which could allow federated posts to be edited. You edit a post, and the latest "revision" is pushed out to all recipients, sort of like a git commit.


Erwan Guyader Thu 19 Jun 2014 3:45PM

Having versioned posts would be great but we would need some UI changes so people can see the differences between 2 versions and change/remove/validate their comments with regard to the latest version of the post.


goob Thu 19 Jun 2014 7:22PM

Having versioned posts would be great but we would need some UI changes so people can see the differences between 2 versions and change/remove/validate their comments with regard to the latest version of the post.

Indeed. Without something like this (which seems quite complex for a social network), I wouldn't want editing of posts to be introduced.


Alexander Zatko Fri 20 Jun 2014 4:10AM

While others have expressed their opinion on the subject, I hope I will be excused to voice mine. I think the opposition to implementing the editing functionality is in fact an artifact of a developer-centric view. Ask 90% of normal humans whether they want and expect such a functionality and they all say yes. As far as I can remember, all web solutions that I have used so far have this functionality. And, we don't have to look for examples too far. loomio allows this as well.


[deactivated account] Fri 20 Jun 2014 5:29AM

FWIW: Libertree supports post editing. Edited posts are pushed to remotes as revisions. All revisions are kept on the remotes. Our community has not requested a feature to compare revisions (though it could be added without too much effort); there's a timestamp in the UI to indicate changed posts. So far, we had no problems with people abusing this feature to change the post fundamentally after a discussion has erupted.


Karthikeyan A K Fri 20 Jun 2014 6:31AM

Yup revisions will be better. If I post, I own it, so would like to edit it.


goob Fri 20 Jun 2014 9:54AM

@alexanderzatko, I'm not a developer. I'm just a human. Whether or not I'm normal is a matter for debate...


Julian Dumitrascu Sun 29 Jun 2014 2:20PM

@rekado Hi! Would you invite me to use Libertree?


[deactivated account] Tue 1 Jul 2014 7:18AM

@iuliandumitrascu send me an email to libertree@elephly.net or pop by on IRC #libertree on freenode and I'll give you an invite.


Poll Created Sat 2 Aug 2014 9:47PM

Should diaspora* aim to support post editing? Closed Sat 30 Aug 2014 9:08PM

Leaving out the technical details and talking purely about whether the network needs a "Post edit" feature. The edit could be for a short period of time only, permanent, versioned, non-versioned, etc - whatever that counts as modifying a post after it has been published.

YES - Editing posts should be possible
NO/BLOCK - Editing posts should not be possible


Results Option % of points Voters
Abstain 2.1% 1 RZ
Disagree 12.5% 6 DS R W J R M
Block 0.0% 0  

48 of 284 people have voted (16%)


Sean Tilley
Sat 2 Aug 2014 9:49PM

I think it would be useful. Tent has an idea of letting posts have revisions, like a mini git repo that grabs the latest version of a post when an update is pushed out and federated. Could cause us to work more on our federation system.


[deactivated account]
Sat 2 Aug 2014 9:50PM

Though it could be technically exhausting, it is a clear handicap to not be able to correct posts


Justin Thomas
Sat 2 Aug 2014 10:44PM

Content is the property of the originator and they should be able to do what they want with it.


Sun 3 Aug 2014 12:44AM

Simple. It's not only found in all of the major social networks, and not only is it technically feasible, but it's also one of the most requested features from users that comes up every time.


Karthikeyan A K
Sun 3 Aug 2014 5:50AM

Better it comes with versions too.


Sun 3 Aug 2014 7:20AM

Often you have forget something, or there a new facts that have to include into the post.


Inky Dining Philosopher
Sun 3 Aug 2014 7:29AM

definitely, users feel lost when they cannot edit posts. must have feature.


Andreas Obersteiner
Sun 3 Aug 2014 12:27PM

short period of time (or until someone interacted with the post in any way) - plus there shouldbe a message "edited @ 13:37" after a post has been edited.


Sun 3 Aug 2014 1:24PM

Hell yeh brah!


Guilherme Carlos
Sun 3 Aug 2014 2:13PM

It's a need especially when occurs some typos in posts. Maybe only allow editing just for few minutes after the message had been posted or if there are no one comments or like


Sun 3 Aug 2014 3:29PM

Regardless of the problems of implementation, in the absolute, yes, it should be a feature. Edited posts should be labelled as such with a timestamp for last edit. Notification of edit to commenters would be a plus (though tricky to do, I guess).


Miroslav Mazel
Mon 4 Aug 2014 9:40PM

Here's a proposal:
* Always allow editing.
* If the edit isn't done shortly after posting or there are likes/comments, label the post as "Edited".
* Label older comments "Posted before last edit".


Melroy van den Berg
Wed 6 Aug 2014 2:45PM

I know it's hard to implement, but it's a must have in my eye's.


Trolli Schmittlauch
Mon 11 Aug 2014 1:34PM

Making edits transparent by versioning the post would be great. Versioning may also be usable for federation


Mon 11 Aug 2014 3:04PM

Alone, alone. - I'm a fan of simple-as-possible solutions and editing (or specially the actions for transparent editing) would be much to complicated for users and the technical background.

A simple non-transparent editing isn't a solution anyway.


Mon 11 Aug 2014 3:06PM

Alone, alone. I'm a fan of simple-as-possible solutions and editing (or specially the steps for transparent editing) would be much to complicated for the technical background and users.

A simple non-transparent editing isn't a solution anyway.


Mon 11 Aug 2014 3:06PM

Alone, alone. - I'm a fan of simple-as-possible solutions and editing (or specially the steps for transparent editing) would be much to complicated for the technical background AND users.

A simple non-transparent editing isn't a solution anyway.


Tue 12 Aug 2014 4:18PM

I just copy, delete and repost, now.


Renato Zippert
Mon 18 Aug 2014 7:54PM

Actually any would be fine. To stay as it is and to implement editing...
There are other things that should be prioritized over this though...


Wed 20 Aug 2014 12:42PM

Se puede copiar, borrar y pegar. Prefiero dedicar tiempo a los eventos


Dennis Schubert
Wed 20 Aug 2014 1:44PM

Too many issues to solve. We already have issues with the federation and editing posts and having multiple revisions of posts distributed over the networks seems even more painful.


Mon 25 Aug 2014 10:42AM

This feature is needed, but we definitely need to improve the federation first. So guys now you know what you need to do if you want to see that implemented ;)


Wed 27 Aug 2014 8:12AM

I think the technical effort would be higher than the actual benefit for the user.


Jelle Langbroek
Fri 29 Aug 2014 10:26PM

This can be very convenient.


Jason Robinson Sat 2 Aug 2014 9:47PM

YES - issue https://github.com/diaspora/diaspora/issues/1762 will be reopened
NO - leave issue closed :)


[deactivated account] Sat 2 Aug 2014 9:59PM

@seantilleycommunit : I don't know how the posts are actually stacked in the D* programm (I presume it is classic database). But I know it is possible to use DB to make revisions of objects. I already saw that in the NeXtep project, a DB schema versionning system I'm currently working with at work.

For the replication of the information I suppose it could be done the same way posts are managed ?


RAM518 Sat 2 Aug 2014 10:23PM

I agree that editting posts should be a feature that D* devs attempt to support. Other social networks have that feature, and we don't want to fall behind the standard here.


Balasankar C Sun 3 Aug 2014 5:41PM

Yes, We must implement post editing feature. My suggestions :
1. Posts can be edited only within 1 minute without losing likes/comments. 90% of the edits within 1 minute are for typo corrections.
2. After that it loses its likes and comments. But the users who made those likes and comments must be notified.
3. Option to report editing (It is too much to ask, I know. :) )


Brent Bartlett Mon 4 Aug 2014 7:13AM

@balasankarchelamat In some respects, I like the way Reddit handles this. If you edit after about 1 minute, it's marked as edited. I think that there should also be a timestamp with the date of the latest revision, though. Dropping the likes and comments is too drastic, imho. It's like punishing the user for editing.


Juan Santiago Wed 6 Aug 2014 2:53PM

Sometimes make mistakes, it is better to edit a post and not delete it once was shared by other users, to prevent tampering in discuciones good as previous versions in the background to be consulted are preserved, but not in the foreground.


Mike Macgirvin Thu 14 Aug 2014 1:33AM

We've had post and comment editing in Friendica and Redmatrix for years now with no issues. We do make an edited timestamp visible but don't provide a version comparison (this could be a privacy issue if the edit was to remove something sensitive - and that needs to be considered).

Ultimately this boils down to a question of trust. Somebody who tries to abuse this facility won't have many friends left and will see comments on their posts drop to zero in a very short amount of time.

We haven't seen one instance of abuse. I'm not saying it can't happen - I'm just saying that perhaps it isn't as serious a problem as you think it might be.


goob Thu 14 Aug 2014 10:20AM

This is a difficult one. I am really not keen on allowing editing of posts, because of the dangers it brings. And I think it just encourages lazy thinking, just posting whatever comes into your head without thinking it through. We have the preview feature for editing - you can perfect your post before you post it. And, you know what? On a social network, typos rarely matter.

I'm not going to vote on this proposal because the options provide don't allow for any nuance. I can't vote in favour, because I could not support such a feature unless it had very solid means of preventing abuse (e.g., in an extreme case, posting a link to some kittens, wait until loads of people say 'this is wonderful', and then changing it to a white supremacist hate site). OK, it's not likely to happen often, and it's great that it hasn't happened in Redmatrix, but our networks are still small and largely populated by supporters of the networks rather than people who see them as an opportunity to 'do their thing'; once a network becomes larger and more mainstream, it becomes a more tempting target for abusers. A far more likely occurrence is misunderstanding, in which an edit done in an unthinking way creates ill feeling in people who had commented before it was edited, even when nothing malicious was intended. Even though this was a mistake, it still created ill-feeling and is likely to make people look less favourably on the network.

These means of preventing abuse/misunderstanding could be in the form of identifying revision history, linking each comment to the revision on which it was made; or preventing edits on posts which have already received interactions (comments, likes, reshares).

I won't vote conclusively against this feature, but we must not knowingly introduce features which allow for abuse, however unlikely that is to happen. Therefore, editing of posts should only be introduced once all the potential pitfalls have been identified and addressed adequately. Until that stage has been reached, you can consider my vote as being against this feature.


Brent Bartlett Sun 17 Aug 2014 12:33AM

@goob Fortunately, there are tons of models to draw upon. Most forums or social networks I use have some kind of editing feature. Many of them also have some method of indicating that a post has been edited. For example, on Reddit, if your editing occurred after a certain period of time (one minute?), then there's an asterisk after the timestamp. This draws attention to the edit and indicates that it might not've been due to a simple typo (for example).

BoardGameGeek is another forum I often use. Its software is a bit more aggressive. If you have to do any edits at all, within any timeframe, it prominently announces that fact at the bottom of the post. For example:

Last edited Thu Aug. 14, 2014 7:15 PM (Total number of edits: 1)
Posted Thu Aug. 14, 2014 6:30 PM

So, in your example (switching the kittens with the hate site), you could compare the dates on the replies to the "last edited" date on the original post. If the date of the OP is later than the dates on the replies, then it indicates that some shady business may be going on.

I prefer a cross between Reddit and BGG's editing notifications: update the timestamp, with a discreet yet noticeable indication that it was edited a significant amount of time after posting (say, one or two minutes).


Steffen van Bergerem Sun 17 Aug 2014 8:07AM

There is still a federation problem. Let's say someone edits his/hers post but that update needs some days to get to another pod (or never arrives there). A user on that pod comments on the post after the edit but before he sees the edited post. Users from different pods could comment on the same post but all of them could see another version of it.


[deactivated account] Sun 17 Aug 2014 8:43AM

@steffenvanbergerem : Maybe it is time to change a bit the federation protocol. But first we should finish to separate it in a distinct gem.


Brad Koehn Mon 18 Aug 2014 3:25PM

I'm not too worried about comments, synchronicity, etc. It's just a social network, not a rigid communication mechanism. I would argue there are other, higher-priority features that should get developed first, but I have no problem seeing this implemented.


MrFrety Wed 27 Aug 2014 2:11PM

@alexanderzatko : As I said in my vote it is possible to correct a typo by deletion.

Complete deletion should still be possible with the edit feature because it gives you an opportunity to take back something wrong you said.


trekkie@nomorestars.com Sat 30 Aug 2014 12:24AM

yes, everyone typos and wants to fix.


goob Sat 30 Aug 2014 10:39AM

I'm afraid I see this vote as meaningless, because it ignores all issues, technical and otherwise, involved in such a feature, and all that is left is a contentless 'I wish'.


Jonne Haß Sat 30 Aug 2014 11:06AM

Guess why I don't even bother to vote ;)


Jason Robinson Fri 19 Sep 2014 8:12PM

I’m afraid I see this vote as meaningless

If I remember correctly the vote was needed to keep the Github issue open :P (yes, that is stupid)


Sean Tilley Fri 19 Sep 2014 11:26PM

I don't think it's meaningless. It's a discussion about project aspirations; and editing posts is something other decentralized platforms (RedMatrix, Tent.io) have been able to implement. There are ways to make something like this work, but it isn't by any means a small feature.

This is a discussion about whether we should look at things further and give it a try. As there is always room for improvement, I think it's worth giving it a shot.


Seth Martin Sun 21 Sep 2014 2:56AM

By far meaningless... most days, I edit my redmatrix posts because a single word was left out, which changes the entire message, then I say, F@#!, this federated to all my diaspora contacts too, and they won't get the edit.


Jason Robinson Sun 21 Sep 2014 11:00AM

@sethmartin editing is not meaningless, that was clear from the vote. Goob just indicated that the vote was meaningless :) I think it's clear this feature is wanted by the community.


goob Sun 21 Sep 2014 11:16AM

I think it’s clear this feature is wanted by the community.

From the vote, it's only clear that it's 'wanted by the community' without consideration of all the technical hurdles or even whether it's a good idea in the first place. Hence why I think the vote (and result) is meaningless.


Shmerl Mon 29 Sep 2014 3:06AM

The vote doesn't address technical aspects of implementing it, but that's a separate topic. First it's good to figure out whether it's something diaspora* users want or not. I think the majority want it (it's a frequently requested feature). If you agree that it's something worth pursuing, then someone should open a thread (or use this one) with proposals of how to implement it.


Camil Mon 29 Dec 2014 5:39PM

I have to bump this, maybe one will think about a technical solution for implementing the editing post feature. As previously stated, there are big technical issues which bar us from working on this. However, it's altogether possible, we just need to figure out a pertinent creative solution :-)


Brent Bartlett Thu 1 Jan 2015 9:41PM

I don't know much about the technical aspects. I can create a comment and it will federate. Then I can delete the comment, and it will disappear in federation, too. So why couldn't my edits also federate?


goob Fri 2 Jan 2015 12:04PM

I can create a comment and it will federate.

Not reliably, at the moment.

Then I can delete the comment, and it will disappear in federation, too.

Not reliably, at the moment.

So why couldn’t my edits also federate?

It wouldn't be reliable.


Camil Tue 6 Jan 2015 9:02AM

To be or not to be reliable, that is the question.


Nicholas Riegel Thu 7 May 2015 1:39PM

We would like to add this feature to Diaspora and have written a software specification in a Google Drive document that is shared by the following link:


We have written scenarios and step tests. Please review. If you think anything should be changed or added, please use the Google Doc / Drive comment system (select/highlight text, right click, select Comment (or CTRL+ALT+M), write your comment).

We will do our best to make sure we incorporate comment suggestion into our development, but we cannot guarantee they will make it into the final pull request.

ITpedia Solutions is funding the full development cost to fix this issue and this currently exceeds the bounty offered. Please consider contributing to the bounty. Thanks for your support and input!