Start a new topic

Alternate Avatars/User Pics

I couch this request with an acknowledgement that I understand this feature comes at a cost of disk space usage, but...!

I think it would be a neat idea for Cohost to store multiple avatars/pfps/user pics per page, and to give the page user the option of choosing an alternate avatar to post with.

I think it would be pretty neat for users to be able to switch to a different avatar that expresses the mood of the post they've written, for example. I have a page where I would like to switch between avatars so users can see at a visual glance when a certain other side of me has come out to play, and I do not doubt that plural systems and tulpas and in-character pages would LOVE to have alternate avatars for the various headmates and characters that they have.

This would probably also open the door for impersonation attempts, which is, yeah, kind of a big L for something like this, but I believe that the benefits and added flexibility outweigh the drawbacks.

17 people like this idea

Maybe potentially a cohost plus feature to help offset service space?

4 people like this

Miiverse had an interesting variation on this. Your avatar there was your Mii, and when making a post you got to pick which emotion to associate with it, and then it'd show up with your Mii making an appropriate face (smiling, frowning, etc). Perhaps it'll become a trend to pretend cohost is Miiverse, if this was implemented.

3 people like this

 @hikari That sounds hella cute, actually xD

I also realized that because of my fluid identity, a feature like this would also make it possible for me to put an icon showing my current eigenstate whenever I make a post as well, so people could see what I observe myself as at the time of posting.

4 people like this

this is a fun idea

i don't like that it would be harder to tell who's posting at a glance - i usually recognize the people i follow by the color scheme and general shapes in their pfp. however, maybe being forced to start paying more attention to people's @s would be a good thing so i don't get so discombobulated when people do change their pfp..... a compromise might be, always show the main pfp but also show a (smaller?) per-post pfp next to it? might be a bit much, though. another possible compromise is an "always show me the main pfp instead" setting, but i wouldn't want to use that for fear of missing context, tone, and joke set ups in the per-post pfp.

1 person likes this
I also rely on icons to recognize people a lot of the time so I get it, but at the same time there's really not anything stopping people from changing their icons every time they make a post. So I think if something basically discouraging that were to be implemented, it should be considered carefully; it would kind of officially establish avatars as being for identification, and it would then stand to reason that being fairly consistent with them is an expected courtesy (vs. something I think most people do just because they like their icons).

2 people like this

I'm another icon-pattern-recognizer, so completely swapping out avatars would make it very difficult for me to track who anyone is. I would almost certainly think one user with multiple avatars is multiple people, and the first time a new avatar popped up, I would be confused about who they are. (As noted, that already happens if people change their avatar normally, but that tends to happen fairly infrequently.)

Maybe some sort of supplementary, customizable status icons could be used in addition to the regular avatar?

2 people like this

i've got mixed thoughts here, because as mentioned, the way it can be used for plural systems (or the thing where multiple users can post on a single Page) would be really great, and as a brief user of livejournal back in the day, im also a fan of the way it was used to convey mood or used for funny visual gags.

but: the Recognizability aspect is also kinda its Own flavor of Visual Accessibility (maybe that's too strong a term), especially for visuals-oriented brains like mine..

like obviously folks can change avatars at any time, but even then, it's not a Super common occurrence, and when i see their new one enough times, it still helps like, 'ground' the posts as being from the same person..

the way miiverse handled it was honestly really hecking clever, since it retained that Recognizableness while still allowing for a lil extra flavor of Per-Post self-expression, but obviously that would be practically impossible to do without a mii-like system, lmao (and im definitely not gonna suggest implementing that, even if that would be Extremely funny)

still, maybe at least the Mood Conveyance aspect could be handled in a similar way, where you could set an Emoji or something to go Along with your avatar, on a per-post basis (see: attached image for basic mockup example), maybe something like that Combined with the option for multiple avatars for Other uses, could discourage folks from changing avatar's too much to retain Recognizability...? 

either that or maybe allow some alternative way for folks to give their posts a Visual Recognizability/Identity, like the little Post Themes folks are already doing manually with css crimes, but built-in?  

i've no idea what the ideal solution would be, so im just throwing ideas at the wall here, lmao

3 people like this

Possibly the recognisability could be kept for those who need it by having an option to only show one icon per user? So, someone who used multiple icons would show as multiple icons for most people, but they would still have a "default icon" that would show on all their posts for those who opt in to only seeing one per user.

2 people like this
Note: I'm only being long-winded here because I think this is the kind of situation that will come up with multiple features that involve conflicting needs, and i want to pull this thread a bit. I like all of the suggestions for more self-expression in posts without changing icons (or for flagging an icon as an alt) as long as they're options that can be chosen *by* users rather than *for* them. Where I get stuck on making them limitations on a feature or things you can add to/disable from other users is that right now, choosing an avatar is something you can do for any personal reason--including just expressing yourself. Discouraging changes by limiting a feature would establish it as something crucial to other people, making consistency a responsibility you have to other users in case your username is not enough. Saying this as someone who only remembers one of the users I've followed for months and like a lot as Entrapta She-Ra Laughing Icon unless I think real hard: I don't feel this is a compelling reason for a feature that could help people control their own visual presentation to have a built-in limitation, and I am very much in favor of more tools to help people visually mark their posts as uniquely theirs *if they want to be consistent* (like the post themes all-ice--whose name I had to check twice because I only remembered a cute eggbug doodle--mentioned). If someone is changing often enough that I'm disoriented and I can only recognize them by a consistent icon and I'm familiar enough with them as a person that it's reasonable for me to need to know if that funny/insightful poast crossing my TL was made by them, that seems like a thing I should discuss with them to find a mutually-agreeable solution. If they're a near-stranger I only know because we follow each other or chat in comments, I should decide whether I want to continue following them--but ultimately there is no safety issue or impersonation risk that makes how they handle that on their account my business. I think it's worth emphasizing that a plural system using a feature like this may very well want posts on a single blog to be recognized as coming from different people. But as noted, people tend to be very consistent with their icons, and in my experience that's true whether they have this option or not. Even on LiveJournal folks would typically theme their icons around a single character emoting (almost like visual novel sprites), or they'd have a recognizable set because uploading new ones takes work. But most people just used one thing for months or years.

1 person likes this
(I have no idea why that posted as a single block; apologies for the eye crime.)

i was just thinking of something like this and would love love love to have the option for multiple icons!  being able to be more expressive in user interactions would be great and nostalgic for those of us who grew up using livejournal, be a good visual shorthand for the tone of a comment, etc. i also understand the use case for multiple systems (i hope i termed that correctly) who may want to use a certain pfp to show which facet of theirs is posting as well! the ability to purchase more icon slots, gift icon slots to friends, etc would also help support the site!  as well as any artists in the cohost ecosystem who could get an opportunity to take commissions for customized icon sets for their fellow chosters! 

i think to get around the same icon accessibility issue some folks have brought up, it could possibly be something that can be toggled for replies/comments only (while showing default on the main feed pages), and/or a "default icon only" toggle under user settings for those who need it. i hope that makes sense haha... anyway this is just me being a nuisance and bumping this thread in support.

Login or Signup to post a comment