The new UI is most certainly not the greatest. While it does have a couple of helpful features, to a lot of users (including myself) they add clutter and make readability more difficult in the Cozy theme. The changes do at least compliment Compact, in my opinion, but this is not what this post is about. Let's break it down.
While I can see this being useful as an accessibility option, no reasonable chat client forces such a feature on its users because it can be an eyesore when scrolling with the mousewheel. The flashing is quite a bother, and should not be forced on all users.
Reaction Quick-Select and the new message options menu.
While I can see that this was geared towards certain kind of people, it also adds unnecessary clutter where there doesn't need to be. Maybe it'd be good as an optional kind of thing, but several users I have spoken to, as well as myself, are not a fan of it being always present.
The Removal of the Message Spacing Line
This is one thing that would be useful for compact mode, but Cozy was meant to be designed for comfortable readability and the removal of the spacing line between message of different users takes away said comfort. If it's insisted that this not be a toggle, then please re-implement the spacing lines in the cozy theme, at least.
Time Stamps on messages sent sequentially by the same user.
This is the one thing that doesn't seem to annoy everyone. A toggle would still be nice, but unlike the other changes I wouldn't say it's necessary.
New pinged message appearance.
I know some people don't like the changes made to pings, but I think this is alright. It's not an active hindrance like most of the other new features and changes.
These changes all add up to a radically different experience that many of us didn't sign up for. If you're going to change the core of your service so heavily, at least make the changes toggle-able. It's an eyesore and alienates several people with mental disabilities. Case-in-point, users with ADHD seem to have an especially hard time focusing now, and the message highlighter has a very small change of setting off epileptic episodes in certain situations.
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