I have a question about the list of foodpickle questions and answers

Until today, I could check in on foodpickle questions and answers and they were in a linear sort based on time of the question asked. Now they seem to be random, so questions I have been following show up all over the place. How can I sort them based on time of the question asked? Thanks in advance.

  • Posted by: SKK
  • May 23, 2011


I confess I'm a very irregular user of food pickle and have really enjoyed reading this discussion, which I would have missed had it not been pushed up in order thanks to the recent comments. I don't have a strong preference, but love the idea of being able to toggle back and forth some day between most recently answered and most recently asked. I definitely like the email notifications - it can be overwhelming when I see 62 in my inbox, but it's pretty quick work to scan through them. But one thing I really didn't like was the reordering of the response based on likes. It really broke up the discussion. But mostly, I continue to be so impressed with the thoughtful way you guys are building the best food-centric web site out there. There are some really good ideas here in this forum, and I appreciate you considering them!
Panfusine June 2, 2011
Thanks so much Peter, for making this work so beautifully, yes I did see the 'expert' comment pushed to the top in the question about Wine pairings for Ethiopian food. which is fabulous because these are priceless bits of information! Thanks again!
Peter June 2, 2011
Panfusine, glad the system is working for you. And yes, up until yesterday, replies would get jumbled out of order a bit when people "liked" an answer -- the "liked" answer would get pushed to the top of the list of answers... but as you saw, it made for confusing dialogue.

As of yesterday, that shouldn't happen anymore. The only answers that push to the top are the very few we get from our newly recruited "experts". As their answers usually don't pick up on the conversation thread, we don't think this will be confusing.

Do let me know if you see otherwise though -- we're not above making mistakes. ;-)
Panfusine June 2, 2011
As Peter Steinberg said, I think the new system is growing familiar. I don't really mind seeing questions in a random order (although a provision to sort them would be wonderful) But the one thing that I'd really want to see is that the replies to the original food pickle query get sorted in the chronological order that the food52 server receives them. I see them jumbled all over and the pleasure of a sequential read is lost!
Peter June 2, 2011
Greenstuff, we have it on our to-do list for you to be able to see all the questions or answers from any 1 individual.

And for those who view Foodpickle "first and foremost as a place to get immediate answers" I'm happy to say that since the change, not a single question has gone unanswered and while I don't have stats, my general sense is that questions are getting answered a little *faster* under the new system, not slower (some of us here at the office get an email whenever a question goes unanswered for 10 to 15 minutes. I feel like I'm getting fewer of those emails.)

Maybe they're getting answered faster because people are hanging out in Foodpickle more because the conversations that are occurring are more engaging? I'm not sure.
Greenstuff June 2, 2011
Personally, I'm totally happy regardless and probably prefer the new way. I like the discussion. On the other hand, I have paid attention to those who have viewed Foodpickle first and foremost as a place to get immediate answers. They probably prefer the old way. So maybe switching back and forth is the way to go.

In another direction, I would really like to be able to search Foodpickle questions and answers by member name. I can easily get everyone's posted recipes. Sometimes I think I'd like to get their collected Foodpickle wisdom.
latoscana June 2, 2011
Thanks for responding in a nanosecond, Peter! I think it's a great idea to bring these older posts up front but would like for it to be easier to find the new posts.
Peter June 2, 2011
Latoscana, thanks for the feedback.

How about everyone else? Opinions? Prefer the new way? Prefer the old way? Happy with either but would like control so you can switch back and forth?
latoscana June 2, 2011
Ok it's been a few weeks to try out and evaluate the new system. I feel it needs some tweaks. I'm not seeing the new questions and threads and find it frustrating to find questions. What about presenting two sections: one for new questions and one for the older and popular ones? Then we could all keep up.
drbabs May 25, 2011
And the great thing about email notification is if you're interested in a topic and you want to know if people respond, you can comment on it and you'll get email notifications when there are more comments.
boulangere May 25, 2011
I was disoriented at first, Peter, but for a change I decided to accept that someone knows more about something than I do. I've given it some time. What I've found has been interesting, well to me at least. I find that I go back to the foodpickle MUCH more often and scroll through recent responses. I've found questions I missed entirely when they were posted, answered, and then vanished. And I love email notification even more now. It's the reader's digest way of seeing what has happened on posts where I've posted without scrolling through them all in what is now a whole new world order.
Panfusine May 25, 2011
why do the responses to the foodpickle questions appear jumbled up.. The chronological sequence of the replies seems to have gone awry! Peters responses appear before the queries!
Sadassa_Ulna May 25, 2011
I learn so much from other peoples quandaries and the informative responses from fellow picklers. For example just the other day I learned that the bright green seaweed salad served in sushi joints is frozen wakame - I had only ever encountered the dried form. And the name of those beautiful Indian spice boxes - Masala dabbas - and how the center area is used for mixing the spices from the side compartments.
What if I missed something? Ack!
Whenever I have to leave the pickle for several days (OK that's never happened, several hours maybe) I like to go back and review what I have missed, which is easier to do when the order is chronological.
I was kind of hoping that there would be a toggle between "recently-asked" and "recently-answered" (like the recipes section toggle of most buzz / most recent). I also agree with susan g about not ordering the liked answers, because often there are dialogues that get mixed up. Perhaps there could be an icon of liked-ness (like cute little cherries that line up next to posts for each "like").
In any case I will post, answer and enjoy the pickle no matter what, old format or new.
(but what if I miss something?)
drbabs May 25, 2011
I'd like to add another suggestion to the mix. I've noticed that some of the discussions on foodpickle are about food pickles (cooking etc.), and some are interesting topics, restaurant requests, rants, etc. Would you consider 2 discussion forums: foodpickle for real cooking questions, and another, "food for thought," maybe? where we just talk about stuff in the community (like restaurants or pet peeves or even stuff like this)?
Peter May 25, 2011
Sadassa-Ulna, thanks for chiming in. May I ask why you prefer the old order to the new one?

And of course I have to take this opportunity to point out that until this change, you'd never be able to "[pop] in so this thread stays near the top." :-)
Sadassa_Ulna May 25, 2011
Just popping in so that this thread stays neart the top. I don't want it to sink to the bottom. But while I am here I will add that I prefer the "recently-asked" order over the recently-answered. I look forward to finding out what is coming in the next week or two!
Peter May 25, 2011
Greenstuff, I think we'll always need emails. While there are definitely some regular users who stop by daily, a lot of people are occasional and would never know answers were posted without the emails.

That said, we are going to do more to lessen the email. First of all, have any of you noticed that every email now ends with this line:

No longer want updates on this Foodpickle? _Click here to turn them off._

Second, we're going to make a change soon that lets you turn off the email for a question as soon as you post an answer (that way you won't have to wait for an answer to be posted so you can get that email and click that link.)

Nutcakes, thanks for expressing a contrarian opinion. And thanks for inspiring a new idea -- I'll look into our highlighting all recipe comments from the person who posted the recipe. That way you can more easily find their comments.
nutcakes May 25, 2011
I avoid posts with many answers, I figure they've got enough already. Only if it is something I was wondering about will I open it. If you want discussions, have a threaded discussion board. I don't like discussions on the recipe comments at all, like 'sounds good, may try it some day', it wastes time trying to find the feedback from those who made it. Interaction in foodpickle is okay to some extent, but I like the focus on helping the asker ASAP.

Of course I wll give it a week for further opinion,.
innoabrd May 25, 2011
Because I sometimes go a few days between visits, I kind of count on their being arranged chronologically so I don't miss anything. Understand the reasoning, but would really like the option to arrange chronologically.
lorigoldsby May 24, 2011
I could live without the email notifications...when I'm interested in a thread I keep checking back and when I ask the question, I check back...or maybe only the person who posted will get the updates...
Greenstuff May 24, 2011
Peter, once you have this down, it may not be as necessary to have the email notifications. Just by going to Foodpickle, we'll see that questions we're interested in are still active. Even better would be if we could tell that we'd participated in a question by a little icon or something. I suspect a lot of us wouldn't mind clearing out our in-boxes a little bit.

Keep up the good work.
Peter May 24, 2011
Lori, you're welcome. Thanks so for saying so. And yes, we're looking into allowing replies to individual answers. It's a bit tricky though... who should get email notifications of those replies to posts? Everyone? Just the person who asked the question and the person being replied to? Just the person being replied to? It takes both some noodling and some digging into the code.
lorigoldsby May 24, 2011
Ok, I get it and may even like the new format, so while you are tinkering....can we respond to the individual comments (similar to what is available on the recipe pages)? I think this would be helpful, especially when it is a heated discussion thread...and it would make more sense to a reader. BTW...you guys put out an awesome product EVERY day, thank you.
Peter May 24, 2011
Panfusine, you read our mind. Indeed, we're exploring a variety of ways to give you control over the order -- newest asked or newest answered. If we think it's needed, we'll likely add something in the next week or so.

I ask everyone though to just give the new order a chance for a bit and re-evaluate in week or so.
Panfusine May 24, 2011
can we have a little user friendly drop down box (like the retail vendors do) to arrange the questions in terms of most recently asked, most recently answered?
susan G. May 24, 2011
Yes, this will keep the raging discussions going longer and weaving a more interesting dialogue. I think that if you keep answers in the order that they come in (instead of moving 'like' answers to the top), it will also benefit, by keeping the logic of the interplay clear. Thanks for all the thought that is going into the process.
SKK May 23, 2011
Hi Peter, I don't consider myself a regular - a newcomer. Given that, I am still confused about the logic of the postings and the benefits of the logic. Not too interested in how most forums on the internet work - why Food52 appealed in the first place.
phyllis May 23, 2011
Thanks so much for your response, Peter. I like the idea of keeping questions that have current responses at the top. Foodpicklers generally jump on questions fairly quickly so I suspect that few will vanish before they have answers. I'm pretty sure the foid52 crew are monitoring. I'm very curious about the near-future changes!!!
boulangere May 23, 2011
Thanks, Peter. Very interesting, and I get your logic. It's a question of adjusting to the new format. Old dogs, new tricks.

Voted the Best Reply!

Peter May 23, 2011
Wow! Lots to cover here. Here goes:

First, SKK, you're right -- we changed things up on you today.

Second, Syronai, you're right -- we're now showing the most recently *answered* questions first, instead of the most recently *asked* questions.

(We do have a minor concern that some questions will go unanswered as they fall down the list more quickly but we're going to keep an eye on this and find ways to bubble unanswered questions back to the top if need be.)

Third, why'd we make these changes? Well, for at least 3 reasons:

1) For some time now we've felt as Greenstuff does, that some really interesting questions that faded away too quickly. Now, as long as a question remains interesting enough to garner new answers, it will keep percolating to the top of the list. (This is the way that most forums on the internet work).

2) While we cherish our Foodpickle regulars, we also have a ton of visitors who are brand-new to the Foodpickle. We think they'll find it more interesting if the list leads off with a mix of new questions that only a few answers and older questions that will have tremendous depth to their answers.

3) Well, we're not quite ready to announce the second reason yet but keep an ear out -- news is coming in the next week or two.

Fourth, I suspect the general disorientation will pass fairly quickly and that soon enough we'll all just enjoy seeing interesting questions and conversations. I know I marveled at the change numerous times today at the office as older questions I had an interest in bubbled back up top the top.

That said, if you're still feeling a bit disoriented in a few weeks please speak up? We're exploring different ways of denoting which questions are "new to you" and which answers *within* those questions are new to you but want to hold off on that more complex task until we're sure it's needed.

Finally, prettyPeas, in the past, we've always posted all questions to Twitter. As of today, a certain subset of the questions that come in from Whole Foods will not go out on Twitter but that's a very small number of questions so it shouldn't really be noticeable.

Whew! I think that covers everything.
Greenstuff May 23, 2011
Yep! We are all disoriented! I'm assuming its part of a learning and development curve. Some other website forums do a great job of keeping the issues with new content at the top of the list without being confusing, and hopefully, that's where we're headed. Foodpickle's past practice of keeping everything in the order in which it was posted meant that questions vanished pretty quickly. So, I'm supportive of the experimental tweaks, even though I'm reeling a teensy bit right now.
beyondcelery May 23, 2011
I suspect it's reordering the questions to always keep the most recently answered ones at the top. But yes, it's hard to find things now.
prettyPeas May 23, 2011
Yes, it's a bit confusing, and I'm still confused as to which questions show up on twitter vs. which (seems like the majority now) don't.
boulangere May 23, 2011
I noticed the same thing today.
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