Auto-generated Avatars

Oh there they are…
to be honest, I kinda got distracted and stopped looking. :o

Anyway, I agree that they aren’t quite as distinctive as user supplied avatars, but if you think about it, user submitted avatars aren’t all more distinctive… it’s just that some of them REALLY stand out. And everyone wants to be the one with the flashiest most memorable avatar. It’s this sort of distraction arms-race which craps all over any forum where it is allowed to take place.

Better for all the avatars to be somewhat unique, than to have most of them serve little purpose in the noise while others give everyone headaches.

Or better to not have them at all. :slight_smile:

Words, lets just stick to them.


OK, a few smilies, but mostly words.

Well, there’s an unlimited number of ways to make a “computer generated avatar.” Many sites use snowflake-like shapes, which I don’t find distinctive or attractive enough either. But that’s just one version.

To get an idea of what is possible, check out this site that uses monsters: WP_MonsterID :: Dammit Jim! Pretty great, if you ask me.

I fail to see how a feature that can be shut off will make the boards look like shit.

I personally find signatures annoying, pretentious and often repetitious so I have them shut off, but that does not stop other posters from using whatever signature they choose and visually recognizing each other by the uniqueness and familiarity of the signature itself.

Plenty of message boards use avatars to help define personality and individuality without being as obtuse as flashing penii or sparkly bung holes. Among adults and anyone else mature enough to hold more than a 2 minute conversation with other mature people they can be quite clever and definitely add depth of character to an anonymous poster on a message board.

Even the auto generated ones can add expressiveness to an otherwise bland post.

But the ability to shut them off for those who don’t want to be bombarded by Over Expressiveness is definitely an asset.

Well put, nd_n8.

Well I must admit that I just got very handily owned.

For honor’s sake though, I do hope another anti-avatar person comes to my rescue. :smiley:

If only this feature were available in real life for the vocalizations of physically present humans.

It’s called “a swift punch in the mouth.”

Generally frowned upon in polite circles, though.

For somewhere supposedly so Liberal, the SDMB sure is conservative. I still don’t really get the objection to avatars, as long as there’s a control panel option so people can turn them off if they don’t like seeing them.
I find the auto-generates icons interesting, but a bit soulless - a lot of them do look quite like the sort of thing an image consultant might produce if approached by white supremacists who wanted a makeover of the swastika.

I believe that the issue isn’t anything to do with the ability to turn them off; it’s the fact that we don’t want a Board that attracts the kind of posters who flock to boards that have things like avatars, cute smilies, pictures in the posts, etc. I’m not saying that avatars would necessarily change anything, but that is the argument. So the fact that a person who dislikes avatars can turn them off is not really relevant to the issue.

Most boards have avatars. In fact, I’m reasonably sure that every other board I’ve ever posted on later than, say, 1998 has had avatars. You know why? Because they’re useful for helping you identify and distinguish posters, especially in long threads.

You seriously think enabling avatars would cause great hordes of 14-year-old Myspace users to swarm the SDMB? :rolleyes:

It’s possible that the lack of avatars has made some younger people pass the message board up in favor of others because of the lack of avatars.

Turning avatars on won’t make hoards of tweens rush to the SDMB saying “OMG they finally added avvys! squeeeee!!!”

But it does open up the possibility of one such person finding their way here and deciding they like it because it will be like other messages boards, but with it’s fun sense of humor as opposed to someone finding their way here and not coming back due to the lack of avatars making this place “weird”.

Am I making sense? Or should I go have a can of Dr Pepper first? :stuck_out_tongue:

You’re making as much sense as anyone who disagrees with me. :smiley:

A lot of the anti-avatar talk just rubs me the wrong way as seeming really… I dunno, holier-than-thou elitist? Like anyone who wants avatars is some moronic child who can’t read and loves the bright shinies. Sounding like some kid who just discovered indie rock talking shit about the Beatles just to be iconoclastic.

I *like *giving people another avenue for creatively expressing their identity, and having avatars in addition to names is practical, too. Limit them to reasonable dimensions and filesizes, keep them static, and put reasonable rules in place to determine appropriateness–or utilize something randomly generated and assigned–and give people the option to disable them, but let us have 'em!

You say “Squeeeee!!!” like it’s a bad thing.

Yes, you are making sense, of course it is also possible that a young adult will amble by, have their attention caught by an avatar (as well as something light hearted and fun from MPSIMS), and thus be drawn into our dark realm of GQ and GD, as well as the dreaded Ignorance Fighting Tong.

If they are a troll, they are a troll without avatars as well. If they have something to contribute or something to learn here then to do so in an environment that also fosters individuality and expressiveness within the foray of debate can only serve our interests by growing the board and appealing to a broader base of members.

You are all whistling in the dark. Avatars have been mooted here since the Board opened up off of AOL back in '99. The response ever time is exactly the same: no, we are not doing the avatar thing. You might as well go find a nice brick wall to beat your head against. :wink:

I’m for avatars. I’m one of those “visual” people. I couldn’t for the life of me match “info/personality” with “usename” if you asked me. I feel almost as if I am on 4chan and you’re all just a bunch of Anon’s.

Avatars, please!..

Force us to use “3rd party” hosts - this eliminates you guys having to pay the extra hosting fees

Offer the option to hide avatars - for those who don’t want to see them

Only offer the avatar feature to subscribed members - Less dealing with randoms signing up and putting absurd images

Create rules and stand by them - In reality, anyone who subscribes wouldn’t be stupid to abuse the feature knowing they’d just be flushing their money down the toilet.
Honestly, after spending nearly a year on the Dope, and this being my most active forum account ever, I feel as if I know none of you, even in the slightest. I feel like I’ve been at a party wearing a blindfold.

As usual, put me down as a “No” for avatars.