I know for me, one of the biggest things holding me back from participating as much here is the interface, specifically as it relates to long threads. There are two main problems I see.
Suppose someone posts something sparking an interesting conversation. But maybe I haven’t been to the site in a few days. By the time I get back, there are dozens (or even hundreds) of posts. WAY too many to actually read in one quick sitting. I would love to re-load the page later and pickup where I left off. Well, if I’m 100 posts into a (then) 250 post thread, and I come back and it is now at 350 posts, rather than just clicking on the page I knew I was on to resume reading, I now have to scroll and scroll (and scroll) just to get to where I was. This is beyond annoying to me and makes me ready to just quit before I have even read anything.
The second issue I am finding is that, sometimes in the longer threads (which, let’s face it, are usually the best ones), there comes a point where, if you haven’t been keeping up, there really are just too many posts to read at this point. So what would I do? Scroll very quickly through the page, far faster than I could possibly read. Why? I was simply looking for large blocks of text and/or bursts of red or green. It made quick reading SO much easier. Here, there is no red (so I can’t easily notice the often ridiculous posts and the subsequently entertaining mocking), and I have to scroll slow enough to read words to determine things that were well liked. While I can still scan for the big blocks of text, it’s the red and green I found most helpful, typically. All my fast scanning is gone.
In my opinion, this has already created a problem for me with the millenials thread. It had an interesting discussion point and I really wanted to participate in the discussion. However, I couldn’t keep up with the thread, and didn’t want to post until I was caught up. Due to annoyance with the interface, that just never happened (despite multiple attempts). I gave up.