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Yoke Progress, Ravelry Sadness

I knew when I dreamed up making a sweater based on the “Late Bloomer” mittens from Making magazine that it would be a labor of love. It’s slow-going, but with a bit of embroidery each evening, I’ve now got flowers completely encircling the yoke! I just need to embroider them a bit further down on one side and then I’ll be ready to make decisions about how much deeper to make the yoke before splitting for body and sleeves. I just want to make sure that I account for any change in fit that results from the density of the flowers before I do that!

Embroidered Yoke Progress!

I only wish that the Ravelry team had applied such care and thoughtfulness to the way they approached the redesign of the website last year. Today is the day that they are eliminating the “Classic View”, and it may well be the last day I can use Ravelry. If you are a Ravelry user who has not been negatively impacted by the redesign, can you please stand in solidarity with those of us who are by logging out today through April 2nd?

As I’ve mentioned here on this blog before, I am one of the people who was negatively impacted by the redesign. I’ve always known that I have somewhat atypical visual processing issues (in terms of visual attention, I filter out peripheral information less effectively; in terms of stereo vision, mine is wonky; I get motion sick; I have an incredibly low flicker-detection threshold; I have high myopia as well as astigmatism, and wear progressive lenses because I struggle to shift from near-focus to far; etc) and that I am migraine-prone, but for the most part, these have not caused problems for me on other websites. (I mean, obviously staring at any backlit screen for an extended period isn’t great, but that’s a more general issue.) With the Ravelry redesign, however, I get immediate eye-strain and migraines, and to the extent I’ve been able to test it, this is true with all of the available “modes” for the new site. Making these matters worse, the Ravelry team has been incredibly dismissive about these issues, and has frankly behaved abusively towards those who have tried to raise issues. And look, I get it. I get how hard it is to put a lot of work into something that you think is awesome and then get critical feedback on it (but: if it’s not working, fix it!), and I know they’ve dealt with a lot of harassment and pushback about other decisions they’ve made and I think it’s led, not entirely unreasonably, to paranoia that the folks raising these issues are just “trying to bring them down”. Nothing could be further from the truth for me; I loved Ravelry, at one point considered the folks on the Rav team to be friends, and have frankly kind of forgotten how to be a knitter without Ravelry!

I think the website they created provides incredible infrastructure for the knitting world (and they should remember that it was the knitting community itself that built upon that infrastructure to make the site what it is today). I want the site to keep existing. I just want them to actually listen and to take responsibility, apologize for how they’ve treated the folks who have tried to raise issues, and truly fix the problems.

And if they can’t do that, then I guess I’ll be relearning how to be a knitter without Ravelry.

5 thoughts on “Yoke Progress, Ravelry Sadness”

  1. I have the same visual issues as you. I immediately switched back to the original platform when the new design was introduced. I am so disappointed with Ravelry! Time will tell, I suppose, as the need to access Ravelry and the need to avoid Ravelry will collide with each other.

  2. I feel so disappointed with Ravelry. Personally, I don’t have many problems with the new design beyond finding it eye-wateringly bright. I really didn’t like the style of the new design, but would have been prepared to live with it – I don’t like the design of many sites, but I still use them! When I started reading about so many people who were having very real problems with the design, I really expected Ravelry to be a lot more responsive than they have been. I at least expected them to regress to the old design while issues with the new design were addressed. If Google or Facebook had behaved like this, I wouldn’t have expected any better from them, but given how Ravelry trumpets it’s inclusivity, their reaction feels like a real betrayal. They’ve shut down any and all discussion about it, and seem to be gaslighting people reporting problems, implying they’re imagining it, or being hysterical, or have some other axe to grind. I’m sorry the new design has caused you such difficulties. And, yes, that yoke is stunning!

  3. I haven’t been using Rav for a while, but I made sure to log out everywhere on March 30. I’m so sorry you’ve been affected. I haven’t been physically affected but I hate how they’ve handled everything and I just don’t want to be a part of that anymore. I hope we’re able to build a new and better community over time!

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