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:iconheidi: More from Heidi

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Submitted on
October 1, 2013
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With 13,000 new deviants joining deviantART each day, we want to ensure everyone's user experience is seamless. A common question from new and old deviants alike is: "What do username symbols mean?" Over the years, as we’ve surveyed deviants, we’ve found that very few understand symbols.

As part of our ongoing process to make the user experience cleaner and more intuitive, we've launched a new set of username symbols designed to help easily identify deviant-types.

Easily Identifiable

At a glance, the new symbols are quickly recognizable. When hovering over a username symbol, a tooltip appears, providing a brief explanation of that user's deviant-type. If clicked, a modal appears, giving a brief explanation for each username symbol, with "Learn more" links that lead to more detailed explanations.

A word from Heidi:

Over the years, a few things have come to seem like deviantART mainstays. Deviant green, intricate art categorization, colorful avatars, symbols next to usernames. In our constant re-evaluation of what's best for longtime deviants and new users alike, we do sometimes need to stop and ask ourselves if a makeover for some aspect isn't overdue. Changing username symbols was one of the harder things we evaluated.

I've been testing the new symbols for a few months now, and while I love its sleekness, its clear message, I do occasionally find myself missing my old symbol. Symbols have permeated into deviants’ minds, made their way into works of art, and sometimes defined how deviants thought of their front-facing persona on the site. But I can honestly say in good faith, I think this new design will permeate the community just as the original system did. It beautifully aligns with the design direction we’ll be traveling moving forward, and, perhaps best of all, it doesn't require insider knowledge for understanding.

I invite you all to memorialize the old symbols and commemorate their meaning from ages past in any expression that inspires you. But I know these new symbols will usher in a new era with just as much meaning and visual attachment as ever.

Heidi, VP of Marketing

Looking Ahead

We appreciate that the previous username symbols have a long history and have become ingrained in the deviantART community, and we want to assure the community that this change was not one that was made lightly. Many factors were taken into consideration, most notably that removal of the old symbols allows us to implement more technological advancements in the future, including Mentions. Given time, it’s our hope that the new username symbols will become an emblem of deviantART culture.

As part of our ongoing process to make the user experience cleaner and more intuitive, we've launched a new set of username symbols designed to help easily identify deviant-types.
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MjaxMajoran Feb 28, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Once upon a time, things could be given for the sake of giving.... now its all about $
*wonders why a new faq & hover html couldn't be made rather than such a drastic visual change that people feel so personal about..*
...& please don't look, I'm naked :blush:
AuzloPup Jan 1, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I never really minded the "~" symbol, but it would be appropriate if the non-premium members had a symbol of their own. And many people agree to this. I personally think a smilyface or the deviantART mascot is okay. It's all up to the staff.
Basement-Aviator Dec 29, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Joined fairly recently, so I have no idea about the "old" symbols, but I'll say the star ones are a bit too big. :P
Other than that, great.
Kninjasticks Dec 13, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I have calmed down now.

I guess they look okay on the deviant's page (if you're going for "only for mobile users"), they look like utter crap in the comments section, tough.

They seem out of place with the rest of deviantart being more square (besides boxes that contain information, but it looks tidy because of the size) they seem like you guys (despite good intentions) decided:

 "Hey! let's make all the non-premium members feel lesser than anyone else so they will try to squeeze out every last penny for something that should be free anyway!"
"Swell idea, Jim! and let's make sure to do it completely out of the blue without a message or a definitive poll or anything to see how our followers feel!"
At this point, I would actually dread a new design on the ~ i used to have.

Seriously, though. how does the change benefit anyone? if you were to go around in public wearing a shirt with one of these symbols on it, no one would understand it unless there was an explanation on the back! it would look okay on the shirt itself, but add your username and it looks like you're an advertising attention hog.
Kninjasticks Dec 13, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I still miss the old symbols. It sort of made me exited when I started off on the site seeing new symbols and searching around to find out what they meant! The new symbols still seem to be a paint-by-numbers inside the lines sort of style. this is an art website for Pete's sake! A place for creativity and ideas! Not a toddler's art lesson! You seriously could have just made the popup to show the meaning of the symbols ON THE OLD SYMBOLS. Again, I feel like I'm pressing buttons on a fisher price toy when I navigate now!

What's next? The infamous 9gag Twitter and Facebook buttons all over our art?? 
xemnas-reshiram-fan Dec 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm not entirely biased on the whole username symbol thing like most deviants below my comment. However, the new symbols tend to be more distracting than the old ones.

So, a thought: how about you (as in the admins as a whole) create a system where we (the deviants) choose which symbols we want to see (i.e. one deviant chooses to see the old symbols while a different deviant chooses to see the new ones)?
It's been made clear that the majority of dA doesn't approve of the changes. You shouldn't fight it any longer; You should change them back.
IHamby Nov 17, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
So, when are you going to change them back?
darkmoonphoto Nov 15, 2013  Student Photographer
Cool. Good job. I think I can remember them all.
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