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I find it confusing that, on ELL.SE, the links for questions visited are lighter color than those for unvisited questions. This feels backwards to me and I am constantly thinking "I never read that question, but it looks like I've clicked it before...". Can this be changed, and if so, does anyone else have this 'problem' with the current color scheme and want it changed?

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  • All design elements on Beta sites are identical; we don't get to change them until full launch. – StoneyB on hiatus Jan 6 '14 at 3:46
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    It's a good point, though. It's a little counterintuitive--maybe it could be changed on all beta sites. – snailplane Jan 6 '14 at 9:49
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    You might consider asking this on Meta Stack Exchange, since it pertains to all sites. When you ask there, though, you'd leave out the reference to ELL, and simply say "on beta sites" instead. – J.R. Jan 6 '14 at 10:55
  • @J.R.: It appears this was brought up before: <meta.stackexchange.com/questions/143809/…> I upvoted the question, but should I push harder somehow? – K.A.Monica Jan 6 '14 at 16:31
  • I suppose you could leave an answer there, and chime in with your opinion. An answer would "bump" the thread and perhaps give it more visibility. I wouldn't hold my breath for a change though; this seems like one of those issues like, "Which way should I put in a new roll of toilet paper?" Lots of folks have their own idea about the "correct" way to do it, but, in the end (no pun intended), it really comes down to personal preference. – J.R. Jan 7 '14 at 12:09
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The comments above cover the best course(s) of action, but I thought I'd supply some resources for you to cite in your quest.

  • The color for unvisited links should be more vivid, bright, and saturated than the color for visited links, which should look "used" (dull and washed out).
  • As always, when using color to signal information, you should provide redundant cues for color-blind users. Making unvisited links brighter and more luminous than visited links will usually accomplish this goal.
Source: Nielsen Group, via this UX Stack Exchange answer

  • Give visited links a darker shade of color, so that they stand out but aren’t as obvious as unvisited links.
Source: Smashing Magazine, via this UX Stack Exchange answer

It's worth noting that this Meta site uses the usual “lighter = unvisited, darker = visited” convention except for “Hot Network Questions” on the side, which, confusingly, reverses it.

Lastly, for your amusement: this.

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