Feature Request: Private Visualizations

As a visualization author, I want to make a visualization private, so that I can conceal it from the general public, and share it with only collaborators.

This could be useful for commercial work (e.g. freelancing), or for keeping visualizations in a “draft” state before public release.

I’ve started working on this, and here are the designs implemented so far (totally subject to change but wanted to share):

New settings menu on bottom of editor sidebar.

The dialog that pops up when you click “privacy”.

Notes for Design:

  • Two cases: user on free vs. paid plan
    • private option not available on free plan
    • upgrade call to action opportunity
  • List private visualizations in profile page. Different section?
  • Places to decide on public vs. private:
    • While forking
    • While editing

Tasks left here:

  • When looking at a private viz, somehow indicate that it is private. Maybe a lock icon?
  • Display private visualizations separately in a user’s profile page.
1 Like

Hi Curran, I second this motion … the private flag needs to be seen - as I outlined in my email.


Preliminary designs for these features:

Feedback welcome! Hoping to implement these very soon.


my thoughts:

  • great you are developing this!
  • I like the positioning of the badge in the first picture - the detail view.
  • pink, however, is a very bold color! :smiley: Maybe too bold?
  • and maybe the color along with the rounded-ness of the badge (it’s the only rounded item on the page apart from the circular user image) and the size of the badge (see point below) makes it a little jarring.
  • Along with the icon, it makes it look like a button to turn private back off. Is it?
  • The badge in the second picture - in the list view - looks alright in your example picture, it may however feel ‘in the way’ when there is a visualisation in the background being part-hidden by the badge.
  • That could be annoying, particualrly if it’s covering up some important piece of information - and interferes, in my opinion, with the main aim of vizhub: creating beautiful uncluttered visualizations.
  • I would suggest placing the badge in a similar place as in the detail view … in the space to the right of the date.
  • If the color remains so, er, extravagant it would probably be quite enough to JUST show the pink padlock.
  • The color, along with the padlock icon, will be more than enough to communicate the purpose to the users … and for newcomers a tooltip “private” would suffice.
  • Maybe to improve the consistency of the appearance in list view when both private and public vizzes are mixed up in the list … it could be an idea to just have an icon (somewhere unobtrusive) - open lock for public, closed lock for private.
  • I think, you need to make a mockup of the start page with mixed vizzez, in order to decide what’s best.

Hope that helps!

Thanks and have fun!

Another thought:

  • I’ve just noticed that one’s own private vizzez don’t appear in the main page, and are thus not searchable. => See my feedback on the search function
  • I’m not sure if private vizzez should be banned to a seperate area of your profile. … hm …
  • That COULD be useful, because you would then be able to present your own public stuff (by visiting your Profile) without having your private vizzez be seen by others.
  • ^^^^^ THAT ^^^^^, I think, is the argument for relegating private vizzez to a separate area of the profile
  1. Vizhub = List of public visualisations
  2. Vizhub > Profile = List of your public visualisations
  3. Vizhub > Profile > Private = List of your private visualisations
  • When you are working publicly, you can use the first two steps
  • When you are working privately, you would use all three steps to get to your private area.

I think there are currently two use cases for private vizzez.

  1. Working on your own private stuff (with sensitive data or trade secrets not for general consumption)
  2. Hiding drafts from public view until they are ready.

[Aside:] This second use case is probably an abuse of the privacy function, due to lack of any drafting facility.

=> Might be worth considering a separate feature allowing users to hide drafts until ready

  • Advantage of a drafts feature:
    • It would probably raise the overall quality of the vizzez in the main list
  • Disadvantage of a drafts feature:
    • It may drastically reduce the apparent activity of the platform

=> Separate Feature Request?

Amazing input! Thank you so much for taking the time to write up all of this. I will be combing through these comments again in the future, when I start implementing the feature.

I do agree with many of the points including

  • the flashiness of the design may be a bit too intense
  • should not cover up too much of the viz in the thumbnail
  • private viz section separate in profile view

Re: Drafts feature, I’m considering adding an “unlisted” option which would serve that purpose. Also I’ve wanted this when I fork someone’s thing just to fix a minor glitch and send them the link - I don’t really want that in my profile. That’s also an ideal case for Pull Requests, which is a whole other thing that I hope to make working eventually.

Here’s a preliminary design for the unlisted setting (also showcases some fancy new saving/saved indicator designs):

Consider: IF the private feature is going to be a selling point, the Unlisted option might undermine your income, since it could be used as an alternative to private.

In other words, any kind of “Unlisted” (or “Draft”) feature MUST NOT hide the page completely, rather there needs to be an option when viewing the home page to show/not show the Draft/Unlisted pages (whereby ‘unlisted’ is then the wrong word).

I think these should remain two separate dimensions:

  • (O) Public ( ) private
  • [X] Draft

Like that:

  • you could use the Draft function to hide your unfinished stuff - whether working in public or private areas.
  • In list view you could then select to view only published vizzez, or also drafts.

On the other hand, this might be making it all too complicated.

That’s a great point! This is all up in the air, so totally possible to pivot a bit. I do like the idea of a “Draft”. This is similar to Medium’s publishing flow, which is pretty solid IMO. Food for thought. Thanks for this input!