What's going on with DeviantArt?
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NEW WATCH DISCUSSION
Last fall we introduced a new page in DeviantArt's primary navigation called Watch. Watch, which has been in beta since launch,  aggregates activity from the deviants and groups you watch (aka follow).  There’s no doubting the convenience of visiting your Notifications to view the latest deviation submissions and other updates (like journals, critiques, and polls) from the deviants you watch, but it’s not a great way to view and engage with art.  That’s why we’re continuing to explore new ways to improve a standalone Watch experience. Our initial idea was designed around a sequential stream of activity – includi
spyed's avatar
By spyed   |   Watch
89 616 151K (4 Today)
Published: December 17, 2015
There's a lot of changes going on with DeviantArt, and we recognize that this is irritating. We don't want it to be irritating, but unfortunately we don't have a choice.

DeviantArt must transform. The live product is failing to interest as many new members as it used to. We've identified many of the reasons for this, and we're making transformative changes to help new users adopt DeviantArt. We especially want new users to come in and Watch Deviants, and begin conversing about Art. Ultimately we want new Deviants to post Deviations and contribute to the community. DeviantArt is meant as the place to support people in the world as they become more creative in their lives. As a community, we represent the journey of being a more creative person. 

The current state of DeviantArt isn't adequately communicating our value to new members. And the products they are using confuse them. We've interviewed new members on the phone, in surveys, via email. We know what the issues are.

To fix these issues DeviantArt is transforming. These transformations are often annoying to existing members. Please don't think we're doing these things to annoy you, we're actually doing these things to improve the community and the ease with which new members can join in on the community. DeviantArt is 15 years old, the world out there has changed a lot over the past 15 years. There are expectations that new members have that older members have become comfortable with.

So. Let's get specific.

We want to remove Watch from inside of Notifications and give it a proper home where it can breathe, and truly allow your Watch to shine. Notifications (where your Feedback and Notices live) will continue on with a similar approach, but will be updated visually to be more attractive. Don't panic, we understand how sensitive such an uplift is. Consider this: We (the team of DA) love the way Feedback works in your Notifications. Everything about it. So the essence of this will not change, but certainly some design tweaks wouldn't hurt it. We also think we can provide a better "All" state that will help you get through your Notifications faster. 

To achieve the extraction of Watch, we run into some dependencies. Things we have to do to get there, especially in light of your feedback to us on the Watch Beta, and the older Watch Beta that's currently live on the homepage.

We understand that it is very important to you to visit your Watch, and see what is New there. The Watch Beta, the other Watch Beta, they both failed at this. They just feed you what's newest, but they don't specifically call out what's changed and what's new in your Watch. And this is a key feature. We would like to do this, but we are having some trouble producing a system that achieves a more powerful method of consuming your watch, while also making it possible to see exactly what is new. This type of thing should be easy. But it isn't. We will solve this, and at that time and with some testing we will roll it out. We will not move Watch out of Notifications until we have proper levels of adoption from long time members so that we know for certain you like the new approach. We aren't there yet. So don't panic. Your Notifications Watch will not change until it is clear in our usage patterns that active, long time members of DeviantArt really like it. We are not there yet.

We are going to put a huge amount of resources on to this problem until we can safely make this transition. We must make this transition. We aim to achieve this over the next 3-4 months. Stating things like, "Don't move the Watch out of Notifications" is not an option. Providing feedback to the staff about how to make the Watch function better than the Notifications Watch is the only option, and it is where we need your feedback. Ultimately, Watch must come out of Notifications. It must. Without this change, the platform of DeviantArt is too difficult for new members to use. All of the data, all of our interviews, all of our traffic models demonstrate that this is the problem.

Don't shoot the messenger. :)

We need your support to do this. So I wanted to explain why we're doing it in hopes that it will bring you to understand the need.

If you have any questions I'm happy to talk to you about it. Some of your questions might be too complicated to answer but I will try my best.

-- Angelo 
Recommended Journals
Beta Launch: Notes Search
One of the most highly requested features is now here: the ability to search notes! Notes search allows you to do things like:Find all notes you’ve sent to a specific deviant Find all notes from a deviant that contain a keyword Search for a keyword within a custom folder Find all unread notes that contain a keyword Search your drafts To search your notes, simply enter a keyword in the search box. You can also use the advanced search dropdown to filter your search results. During the initial launch, only the past year of your notes will be searchable. Try it out! Beta Testers, we need your help in testing notes search! Try searches you
Site Update: Mobile, Help Desk, Channels, Prints
Intermittent Site Updates As you may have noticed in the past few weeks, we’ve stopped publishing our regular Site Updates. Four months ago, we launched the DeviantArt Timeline to showcase our past accomplishments and provide insight into future happenings on the site. We will continue to use the DeviantArt Timeline as a central hub of our announcements. While we are phasing out the weekly updates, we will continue communicating changes to the community when we have announcements to share.  Smaller site changes, which were normally in the Change Log section of Site Updates, may still be communicated through ad-hoc Site Updates. This ch
NEW WATCH DISCUSSION
Last fall we introduced a new page in DeviantArt's primary navigation called Watch. Watch, which has been in beta since launch,  aggregates activity from the deviants and groups you watch (aka follow).  There’s no doubting the convenience of visiting your Notifications to view the latest deviation submissions and other updates (like journals, critiques, and polls) from the deviants you watch, but it’s not a great way to view and engage with art.  That’s why we’re continuing to explore new ways to improve a standalone Watch experience. Our initial idea was designed around a sequential stream of activity – includi
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Comments (487)
RisenArt's avatar
RisenArtEdited |Professional General Artist
I've been on DA since 2004. My biggest issue with DA right now is the free posting of sexually explicit content on a site that is accessible to tweens and kids. I don't want to see it either and mature filters are not adequately enforced.

Porn = images designed to sexually stimulate the viewer by drawing attention to sexual body parts, detailing sexual acts, etc.

Your definition listed on the site is not adequate hence creating a loophole for these explicit images to be posted without a care.

DA, you are sabotaging yourself in this respect and this place is getting sleazy because of it. It's to the point I don't want to use the search feature anymore. Fix that then I'll worry about the technical features on the site.

FIX IT.

You will not see any core membership from me until you do.
Reply  ·  
EddieVerso's avatar
EddieVerso|Professional General Artist
I'm a member since about 9 year, and I'm a web designer too. I think DA needs to improve its design and UX that are still too complex and had never evolved too much.
I notice that there are less interactions, comments and favourites. I always loved DA but it seems to be a little less funny...
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Kuroikage-Stories's avatar
You see, every time I go to the edit page of my deviation, it keepa loading incomplete on all my devices. I can't even update my work anymore, and not only that, but the tag choosee can't load, nor can I edit the description box. Also Sta.sh writer has some problems too, it's suddenly harder to drag corners of a picture to enlarge it. When I save it, it saves as it's original thumb/large size rather than the size I set it to.
Reply  ·  
GlamzGlitz's avatar
GlamzGlitz| General Artist
I need advice.
Okay, so I joined the kisekae group on deviantart, and then I left it. I don't really make kisekae pictures anymore, and I am not part of that group anymore, but I am still getting notifications about kisekae pictures. Help?
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KyotoKid's avatar
...would like it if there were a way to simply block faving of images (and/or allow only certain members to do so). 

More and more I am finding images of my characters among fave collections that include BDSM, explicit poses, sexual situations (some bordering on rape), and nude 3D works that appear to feature underage subjects. 

I have written two journals about this asking people who are apparently into such work to not fave my art, but seemingly to no avail.

Many of the illustrations I create and post involve young or youthful looking characters that are from my storylines.  I find it unnerving that when I check out the collection of the member who faved the work I find often find it amidst mostly by erotic and highly suggestive works.  I have no issue with tasteful artistic nudes, but there is a good portion of work I see in these collections I feel goes far beyond "artistic" and more to borderline "pornographic".  This makes me wonder about the reason the work of mine was chosen (particularly when it is of one of my more youthful characters).  

I know I can block individual members but that is a fairly involved process having to go through the entire faves list and viewing collection after collection to determine whether I feel it is an appropriate place to have my works seen in and requesting my images be deleted before blocking an individual.
 
Reply  ·  
RisenArt's avatar
RisenArt|Professional General Artist
The problem is DA is flat out allowing porn art to be freely posted and mature filters are not adequately enforced. Their definition of porn splits so many hairs and allows for so many loopholes. I feel like they're doing it on purpose.

Porn - "images designed to sexually stimulate the viewer" not hard, DA =/
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Little-Lyrebird's avatar
Anyone else having a problem with search? I'll type something in and when once I'd get hundreds of matches I now only get 1 or maybe 10 at most...
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ManuelaLabor's avatar
ManuelaLabor|Student General Artist
Yes! I know that something is up bc when I went to my Watch, one of the artists works was new but didn't show up in the only about 70 pieces the search/ browse category came up with. That, and about 1/4 of the results were highly explicit sexual Fetish work. (I'm  very suspicious that it's spam).  I've just tried reporting this results issue, I'm not sure what else can be done. I would think, from this OP from them that they'd be concerned with this bc it effects user experience a lot. This is a huge issue IMO. I found my watches bc of the categories I browsed. Now, there's nothing there. Doesn't make me want to post anything here or browse. It's a huge loss to the site. The community here is unique.
Reply  ·  
Monseo's avatar
Monseo| General Artist
that happened to me a few days ago, another time I got a few 100 but only 10 of them with anything related to the search...
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Feleafy's avatar
FeleafyEdited |Hobbyist Digital Artist
And I don't even understand a thing with their suggestion page... How can a hedgehog couple drawn traditionally in manga style relate to psychopathic robots in animal suits drawn digitally and black ink demon doodled on paper???
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RujanSingh's avatar
RujanSingh|Professional Digital Artist
The number of my watch has dropped to almost half. What is going on? Can someone tell me?
Reply  ·  
deadlyace13's avatar
I just payed for core and already regret it. I wanted to use the website and thought that getting rid of ads would help. It didn't. I just want the website to work like a website holy fuck.  
Reply  ·  
chiisanae's avatar
I really hate the current page layout/format of your submitted art. There used to be a more clear layout where you could see how many faves you got etc. Right now its so tiny... You have to look for it. Details and stats are at the bottom right for me on the screen and when it first changed it took me ages to figure it out again. There used to be way more info on the side.
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REDMAN50222's avatar
REDMAN50222|Student Traditional Artist
Have they explained why they did away with pages in looking through favorites? Its freakin' confusing with the endless scrolling!
Reply  ·  
ManuelaLabor's avatar
ManuelaLabor|Student General Artist
Yep. Think it's trying to imitate Insta?
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ADE-doodles's avatar
ADE-doodles|Professional General Artist
ditto
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BigAl29's avatar
#MakeDeviantZARTGreatAgain

We should build a wall, and make the sonic OC's pay for it. :D (Big Grin) 
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SirNardo's avatar
Did the sitback feature go away? I used to get on and go through my favorite artists images to relax and see what they had been doing. I havent seen this in a while.
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ADE-doodles's avatar
ADE-doodles|Professional General Artist
ditto
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ShadowRx's avatar
ShadowRx|Professional Digital Artist
And, thank you for the announcement/journal entry. Sorry my comments are so late, but I only just discovered this page. (from the frightening google search "deviantart website failing", as recent events and excessive delays with the helpdesk had me wondering)

This journal should have shown up in site-news/events feed in our inboxes, like wrecklings site updates used to. You would have gotten more input/eyeballs if it had.
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ShadowRx's avatar
ShadowRx|Professional Digital Artist
The whole Premium to Core fiasco lost money. I saw that coming. You rebranded the product then doubled the price. Consumers/Users are not idiots, a label change does not increase the value of a product one iota. The move was rushed and felt like a betrayal to loyal members. You did not explain (ahead of time) that you needed/intended to raise the price, you did not add features/value to justify the new price, and you did not make the transition OPTIONAL (it could have been presented as a third membership tier, with additional features and an honest explanation that could have included a limited transition period and migration of features from premium to core).

The result is for twice the price you had FEWER THAT HALF the buyers. YOU LOST MONEY. You also lost LOYAL LONG-TIME USERS over this.

What's more, you stopped DEVELOPING the website features (for the most part) at the same time. Prices went up, perceived value went down, customers went elsewhere. This is Market 101 stuff, guys, you had to know this would be the reaction.

We miss the weekly updates, we miss seeing new features regularly in development, we miss wreckling's journal entries showing up in our inboxes with excitement and hope for the future of this community. Ever since you made the transition from :dalogo: to :deviantart: things have gone to hell. Its not the rebranding in and of itself, its losing who you were, who we were as a community. You had millions of artists right here that you didn't even consult before the changes, and blew a bunch of money on some marketing firm outside the community and suddenly needed a bunch more money to operate. Perhaps without that move, you wouldn't be so hard up for cash now.

Remember where the value of the site comes from. USER GENERATED CONTENT. And us users come here because we like the features/CMS and the Communities that have developed here. But we see our communities, our niche groups, eroding away. With each year a great many very talented artists either leave dA (whatever the reason) or give up on their art entirely. When that happens, we all lose.


By the way, when you changed the readable dA logo to the weird symbol, some of us started calling you "the website formerly known as dA", after all, this wasn't the first time something like this has happened. We all have identity crises from time to time. ;p
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ManuelaLabor's avatar
ManuelaLabor|Student General Artist
Exactly. Same experience of how I found this post. Granted I've not been consistently active, but largely bc when I began to try and use the site more, these issues became apparent. The results are lacking to say the least. Your comment:

-Remember where the value of the site comes from. USER GENERATED CONTENT. And us users come here because we like the features/CMS and the Communities that have developed here. But we see our communities, our niche groups, eroding away. With each year a great many very talented artists either leave dA (whatever the reason) or give up on their art entirely. When that happens, we all lose.-

Is exactly what's happened. The best art was on here. Now, it might still be, but I can only find it bc I already Watch that artist. Not bc I found anything new. Which I haven't bc the search results come up with practically nothing even though new work is being posted by my Watch. Sad but this is a major fail. Insta is fine but not the same.
Reply  ·  
nerolak's avatar
nerolak|Hobbyist Digital Artist
...honestly, i noticed weekly updates are gone and it's kinda shit. i mean, for one, it'd be nice to get a weekly update to why there's been so many system maintenance read-only shutdowns lately. that'd be nice.
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ShadowRx's avatar
ShadowRx|Professional Digital Artist
So long as we don't lose our ability to view our watch BY Artist/Group AND retain the ability to sort Oldest/Newest AND have some way to track what we have/haven't VIEWED (as the inbox version allows us to do), I welcome the change.

But, if we lose those three key features of the existing system, then the watch becomes as CRAPPY as tumblr's/facebook's systems, where all you see is the latest posts with terrible navigation and infinite scrolling that just keeps eating memory until your browser crashes, and you're lucky to be able to go more than a week back before this happens if you have a busy feed.

The reason we LIKE the inbox system for notifications is as stated above, it allows us to SEE WHAT WE'VE MISSED on a per-artist basis instead of having low-frequency artists get swallowed up in all the noise from the busier ones.

If the notifications model is becoming burdensome to the database (as so many notices might well be), then perhaps a more efficient model would be to use a single DATE value to set the cutoff filter rather than per-item flags/records being added to the table for each deviation sent as an inbox notification item.

I'm not sure how we would update this per-artist date value for each user's watch, that merits further discussion.




On the subject of INFINITE SCROLLING. The REASON IT WORKS FOR NATIVE iPHONE APPS is Apple had to LIMIT THE AMOUNT OF MEMORY IT CONSUMED. To do this as you scroll down and load new things IT UNLOADS THE OLD ONES ABOVE. If, you would implement a similar memory-limited version of the scrolling that uses ajax to fetch new items, but also purges old items from the DOM (yes, you will have to adjust scrolling for this behavior) then the infinite scroll could work well. But, if you continue to use it as fake-book does, then it is little more than an infinite loop with a memory leak. Let go of the past items, embrace the new ones.
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