[Done] Post-install page improvements (was: Some feedback..)

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[Done] Post-install page improvements (was: Some feedback..)

Postby DaveR » Sun Aug 02, 2009 12:26 pm

Hi.

I'm a member of a forum that caters for people of 50-plus. Many are in their 60's and 70's and are using computers for the first time. They have lots of problems, especially with malware. I and others who have spent a lifetime in IT try to help them out - and often to convert them to Firefox.

ABP often comes up in help threads. Some people install and use it with no problem. Others say it doesn't work or get into terrible muddles. What I've found is that the most common cause of these problems is that they fail to subscribe to a filter during installation.

One said me that when they saw the word 'subscribe' they thought they'd have to pay.

When I and others ask them 'did you subscribe to easylist?' they've no idea. So we describe how to find out - but it's often too complicated for them to discover the absence of filter subscription.

So I suggest that the installation process be changed to make it more obvious the the filter subscription webpage is part of the installation, and that you should normally do it.

And secondly, perhaps a more obvious indicator to show that no filter has been subscribed to.

Here is a recent thread on this forum. (Happy ending: the OP ended up reinstalling ABP following some off-list tutoring. She said that she saw the filter subscription page - "all those words" - but didn't think it applied to her.)

I hope you find this feedback useful. Thanks for a great add-on.

Dave
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Postby mrbene » Sun Aug 02, 2009 10:36 pm

I remember Wladimir saying he wasn't fully happy with the current Subscription user experience. It works - but it can work better. Any thoughts on how it could be made easier to find and use?
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Postby asdf » Mon Aug 03, 2009 2:03 am

I thought DaveR made some pretty clear points to improve upon right in his post.

* "Subscribe" is a poor term for naming how we access filter lists. I'm having trouble finding a better word off the top of my head, but I do know that it should change.

* It may not be a bad idea to include the anti-malware list 'subscribed to' and enabled as a default for new ABP installtion.

* People of retirement age I think are probably either more accustomed to, or more amenable to, a wizard-style installation. Something with block lettering, big buttons, as few words to each step as possible, useful icons/pictures, and for each step that requires a choice to be made be binary as much as possible.

* Would it be insulting to make a version of ABP that comes with this wizard and one does not, with one marked for users who are novices to computers, and one for others? There are several well-known firefox extensions that have 'lite' versions at least partly for this very reason.

Alternatively, there could be a version of ABP that has as little a GUI as other adblocking extensions, that comes with easylist and anti-malware. Just install and go. "adblock plus lite" seems a pretty confusing name. So it could be called something like "adblock express."
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Postby Wisdom » Mon Aug 03, 2009 5:52 am

* If you don't like the word "subscribe" use "add". But I think "subscribe" is not a bad word. There are situations where the word "subscribe" is used but has nothing to do with payment. For example, "subscribe to rss feeds", "subscribe to blogs". Learn the fact that "subscribe" isn't equivalent to "paid".

* The best way to solve the problem that people for get to subscribe anything is to subscribe it for them. Nothing else can stop this from happening and happening again.

* It would be how Adblock Plus does when it first starts:

Installation Wizard

(o) Default. Install a set of default filter lists
( ) Custom. Install only with no filter list

The filter list would be EasyList. Even if they are blind and keep pressing next AdBlock Plus will still work fine with EasyList. Problems solved! :D
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Postby fanboy » Mon Aug 03, 2009 9:12 am

"the default" I would find hard to swallow, there are many lists available, Easylist isn't the only one.
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Postby Wisdom » Mon Aug 03, 2009 10:43 am

fanboy wrote:"the default" I would find hard to swallow, there are many lists available, Easylist isn't the only one.


Why is it hard to swallow? It doesn't take your right away. As a power user, you can always choose custom.

Don't forget we are trying to help the newbies who find it difficult to subscribe filters too. EasyList is chosen not because it's the king of filter list. We must find somewhere to start with. What would you suggest for as a start point for all the newbies to install by default?
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Postby Wisdom » Mon Aug 03, 2009 10:50 am

On second thoughts, I guess you hate "default" not because we don't offer other choices (custom in my example), but because you detest the word "default", or the way how we present to newbies Am I right?

Please calm down. Forget my approach if you hate it. The idea still holds. Let newbies a one-click install way to install both ABP and default filter lists as a starting point. Otherwise this problem will never come to an end.

Suggest a better approach if you don't like mine. ;)
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Postby Hubird » Mon Aug 03, 2009 10:59 am

Some people don't want any subscriptions. Some people also do not speak english as a first language (or at all) and as EasyList targets English sites it is not always the best option.

As it is though i'm pretty sure ABP asks you to choose a subscription when it is first installed.
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Postby DaveR » Mon Aug 03, 2009 12:05 pm

The current installation process does invite the user to subscribe to a filter, but in my experience with the users of that site - who are mostly newbies and really don't understand computers at all - they often fail to do that step. I don't really know why - you'd have to observe people doing it to find out - but I suspect that there are three reasons:

1 They get the "1 new add-on has been installed" message and think that's all they have to do.

2 They don't recognise the subscription webpage as part of the installation, or relevant - if they notice it at all! And if they read it, they don't understand it.

3 Many of them are fearful of installing things - and especially 'subscribing' - for fear of malware, so if in doubt they don't (which is not a bad principle!)

Here are the screenshots I did for users of that forum to help them, so you can remind yourself of how the install process works.

Here is another typical thread where someone failed to subscribe to a filter.

For many users of that forum - and some other forums I use - ABP is the reason they're installing Firefox in the first place. ABP is the first add-on they've ever installed; they just want to block the ads on the forum (usually prompted by a particularly irritating one). They're not only unfamiliar with the add-on installation process, they're unfamiliar with Firefox. And if ABP doesn't work first time, they've no reason to persevere: they give up and go back to IE.

Personally I think that subscribing to a filter by default is the way to go - experts can surely opt out. And obviously the localisation is important too.

Sorry to go on at such length, but I think this is important for Firefox - not just ABP.

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Postby fanboy » Mon Aug 03, 2009 12:42 pm

added */d.unanimis.co.uk/* :arrow: :arrow: :arrow:
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Postby Wisdom » Tue Aug 04, 2009 10:45 am

Hubird wrote:Some people don't want any subscriptions.

You can choose to not install any subscription so what's your problems with this approach?

Hubird wrote:Some people also do not speak english as a first language (or at all) and as EasyList targets English sites it is not always the best option.

Well EasyList has general filters plus English specific filters so it's not too bad.

Anyway could you suggest a better filter which can be installed by default?

Please note it isn't meant to be a perfect solution. It's a noobie way to help noobie users who even have problems installing filters themselves.

Do you still want them to pick the right filter list themselves when they have problems even with the subscription process? 8)

Hubird wrote:As it is though i'm pretty sure ABP asks you to choose a subscription when it is first installed.

The OP complain people who are not computer literate fail to subscribe anything and wonder why Adblock Plus doesn't work.

Rather than saying the obvious that no solution is perfect, do you have a better solution in mind which can help this group of people? ;)
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Postby rjwilmsi » Tue Aug 04, 2009 5:55 pm

Surely one simple change is to include the term "[free]" when inviting users to subscribe, so that they won't fear it costing money.
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Postby Wladimir Palant » Tue Aug 04, 2009 5:56 pm

DaveR, thanks a lot for bringing up these valid points. I have a similar impression about how computer novices perceive that page. Some thoughts:

1) The wording of the post-install page could certainly be improved. Maybe something along the lines "To complete your Adblock Plus installation, please choose a filter list to subscribe to. This will make sure that most advertising will be blocked automatically, you won't need to do anything."

2) Giving people a choice is great - but in this case we give them too much choice and often manage to confuse them. Rather than asking them to choose one filter subscription out of seven we should display only the best match (based on Firefox locale?) and give them some way to change the selection (as well as a checkbox: "No, I want to create all my filters myself").

3) We had already some discussion on the terms "subscribe" and "subscription" back when those were introduced. Some people certainly expect subscriptions to be paid. Unfortunately, nobody was able to suggest a better name for it. Maybe now somebody has a bright idea?
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Postby someone » Tue Aug 04, 2009 7:49 pm

Wladimir Palant wrote:3) We had already some discussion on the terms "subscribe" and "subscription" back when those were introduced. Some people certainly expect subscriptions to be paid. Unfortunately, nobody was able to suggest a better name for it. Maybe now somebody has a bright idea?

I think "subscription" is already widespread. I think, changing this term will cause confusion at present users. Also all instructions would become obsolete.
But perhaps you could write "free subscription", "subscription (free)", "subscribe for free" or something similar, to make it clear. riwilmsi already suggested something similar.


Perhaps a warning sign could overlay the ABP icon, if there are no filters (subscription/custom). And some explanatory text could show up in the preference window, with a link to the subscription page.
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Postby Wladimir Palant » Tue Aug 04, 2009 9:11 pm

The text "subscribe for free" would actually make me more suspicious than just "subscribe" - there is usually a catch.
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