Comments deleted when ID finally loads

Please fill out the following sections to the best of your ability, it will help us investigate bugs if we have this information at the outset. Screenshots are especially helpful, so please provide those if you can.

Platform (Android, iOS, Website): Website

App version number, if a mobile app issue (shown under Settings or About):

Browser, if a website issue (Firefox, Chrome, etc) : Chrome

URLs (aka web addresses) of any relevant observations or pages:

Screenshots of what you are seeing (instructions for taking a screenshot on computers and mobile devices:

Description of problem (please provide a set of steps we can use to replicate the issue, and make as many as you need.):

Step 1: Agree with an ID or add a more refined ID

Step 2: While the green circle is spinning on the ID, start typing a comment

Step 3: When the ID registers and circle stops spinning, comment disappears and you need to start over.

This changed over the past month or two and might just seem like impatience on my part, but if you are identifying many observations quickly, it wastes time and is frustrating.


Probably related to these two bugs
Comment duplicated for comment then ID in quick succession within one observation
Comment is duplicated for two IDs made in quick succession on two separate observations

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Thanks for reporting this issue, which I started to notice a few week ago. I never found the time to report it in detail as you did and hope it can be addressed.

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@kschnei can you please say where on the website this happens - on Identify, on the observation page, both?

on Identify for Firefox for sure

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Identify in Win10 Chrome for me. I haven’t commented enough on observation pages since it it started, to assess that.

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Observation page, all the time, on Chrome. Its fine if you add the comment in the ‘tell us why’ box. Same thing happens if any DQA box ticked and you start to add a comment.

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On Identify is where I’ve noticed it.

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Hi Tony, were the developers able to track down the bug? It’s still affecting me when first adding an ID (in the observation page) and subsequently typing in a separate comment (using Chrome). Pretty annoying to lose bits of comments all the time and having to start over…


I’m seeing this as well and it’s persistently annoying, enough so I eventually came and searched for this bug report on the forum.

As others have said, it happens on the identification page. If you have a slow enough connection / are far enough from the servers, then it takes many seconds for any change you make to be communicated back to the server, then trigger an update to the page. For example, when I add an ID which alters the community ID, it takes ~10 seconds for the name of the organism, displayed in the title at the top of the page (not the tab title), to update. The time required probably varies a lot for users around the world, and the developers may be a little too close to the servers to feel the full effect. (I’m in a rural part of Ontario.)

After adding an ID I sometimes want to write a comment about some other aspect of the observation than the identification (e.g. “The prey is probably species X”, "The behaviour seen here is really interesting: ", “Don’t worry, these are harmless.”), so it’s quite aggravating to have 5 to 10 seconds of writing erased if I don’t finish it before the page updates. So far I’ve only remembered to wait to start writing until after the update is complete when I’ve already lost a partial comment in the past hour or so.

This is definitely a new thing that began happening sometime late last year. (The erasure of comments in progress. The page updating a while after you do something has been going on for years.)


Only sort of a solution, but my technique is to comment first, then ID.


Hi Jane, happy New Year! Do you mean “comment first, ID later” in this sense?


In my weekly report this week I bumped this up in priority.


It looks to me like this bug is now fixed, sometime in the past couple of days?? I am not losing my comments when the ID kicks in, although my “n” is small at this point. Thanks so much to the iNat team for working on this!! :)

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still happens for me in Identify.

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I can’t replicate the bug in Identify in FF, Chrome, or Safari:

Looks like it’s fixed for me as well. Please pass our thanks on to the developer(s) who fixed this.


fixed for me too now. awesome.

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Great! I shall close.