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Consider behavior of Reply Tool and New Discussion Tool on history/diff pages
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Description

This task is about deciding whether it makes sense for the Reply and New Discussion Tool to be visible and operable on history and diff pages.

Background

Currently, the Reply Tool, by way of [ reply ] links, and the New Discussion Tool, by way of the Add topic button, are visible and operable on history and diff pages. This task is about thinking through whether this current reality should be revised.

Considerations/open questions

  • How might the presence of append-only affordances, like the Reply and New Discussion Tool, impact peoples' understanding of pages like history and diffs?
  • What are cases where not having append-only affordances visible and operable could prevent people from making constructive edits?

References

Event Timeline

  • What are cases where not having append-only affordances visible and operable could prevent people from making constructive edits?

I mostly reply to discussions coming from my watchlist: I open the diff showing edits since my last visit, see what others wrote, and scroll down and reply if I have something to say. This means that most of the time I use the reply tool from diff pages. This applies to new discussions to a lesser extent, but I think the most confusing solution is to show one but not the other. Maybe they should be hidden on diffs where the new revision is not the latest one, just like section edit links are not available on those.

Quoting @Whatamidoing-WMF on https://www.mediawiki.org/w/index.php?title=Topic:Xpcppvvaa2oa4jmb&topic_showPostId=xqhb7p8bwai4pmoa#flow-post-xqhb7p8bwai4pmoa

I am often reading long pages in diff mode, and I particularly appreciate being able to post a Reply without having to leave the diff page.

Showing reply links on an old revision seems very confusing. What should the user expect to happen? How do you update the page after save?

Showing reply links on the current revision (even if it's viewed via history or a diff) seems useful, and it would be in sync with how section edit links are shown, which makes the UI less confusing.