User Interview 8

jerrysarcastic: First off, before we get into the media library, how long have you been a WordPress user?  

user 8: 7-8-ish years.

jerrysarcastic: Right, so new user.  😉

user 8: 😛

jerrysarcastic: How often do you find yourself on the Media Library page in your dashboard?  Frequently, occasionally, almost never, or not at all?

user 8: Depends. But occassionally is the average.

jerrysarcastic: Gotcha.  When you do visit the Media Library, what are you trying to accomplish typically?

user 8: Uploading media in bulk, finding previously uploaded media, or editing media in batches.

jerrysarcastic: I’m curious, *why* are you usually trying to find media?

jerrysarcastic: Other than bulk editing

user 8: If I’ve uploaded an image before and can’t remember what post it’s in (if any). Usually applies to screenshots, for my own projects, or specific pieces of work for photography/artist clients.

user 8: e.g. they’ll upload a bunch of images and lose track of what they’ve already uploaded

user 8: so I have to dig through and figure out where the duplicates, if any, are

jerrysarcastic: Makes sense.  How do you locate things in the Media Library?

user 8: If it’s been named properly I’ll start with the search. Otherwise it’s tediously browsing.

user 8: I’ve used Media Library Assistant to apply taxonomies for some projects, which helps.

jerrysarcastic: Yeah, it can be tedious.  🙂

user 8: Also Media Grid plugin, whose functionality you guys seem to be possibly folding into core.

jerrysarcastic: How big a library are you managing, typically?

jerrysarcastic: Yes, well and that.  😉

user 8: On average probably 200-300 images? Media Library is basically a massive asset dump.

user 8: *not images, actually. 200-300 items. Documents in some cases.

jerrysarcastic: What type of media would you say makes up the majority of files in your library?

user 8: 90% images. 10% documents. PDFs, PPTs, CSVs, DOCs, etc.

jerrysarcastic: So really not to many audio files, video, etc?

user 8: Nah. I don’t like hosting rich media in an install. That usually goes to a 3rd party service.

user 8: Actually audio files for some projects *are* the bulk of the media

user 8: but never video

jerrysarcastic: How do you manage a library full of audio I wonder?

user 8: Poorly.

user 8: In a nutshell: We have a product that uses WordPress as the back-end. CPT with mp3 attachments via custom meta.

user 8: We don’t go into the Media Library because it’s too difficult to find things. So we find the audio files we need via the CPT.

jerrysarcastic: If I can ask a bit about that specifically, what would make it easier to deal with audio in the library?

user 8: Hard to say off the top of my head. Haven’t really tried or put much thought into it.

jerrysarcastic: Yeah, I ask because it doesn’t come up a lot, but what you describe is a common use case

jerrysarcastic: Podcasters face similar challenges I imagine

jerrysarcastic: So one thing I wanted to follow up on…

user 8: Ah, very true. Off the top of my head a different view, with different columns in the Media Library screen dependent on the type of media you’re viewing, would be handy.

jerrysarcastic: Yeah I can see how a “modal” view for just audio would be helpful

jerrysarcastic: OK You mentioned bulk editing as a reason to come to the library

user 8: Yep

jerrysarcastic: What are you editing?

user 8: Usually the name and description. Ocassionally caption.

user 8: I use the description as an internal reference for things like original source.

jerrysarcastic: Do you do that in the library, or in the post editor modal, or both?

user 8: Depends on the activity. If I’m uploading something for a specific post I’ll do it in the post editor modal.

user 8: If I’m bulk uploading straight to the Media Library I’ll do the bulk editing there.

jerrysarcastic: Gotcha

jerrysarcastic: So I’m curious, are there any tasks you find difficult to accomplish in the library currently?

user 8: Not being able to organize media without using a 3rd party plugin is a frustration

user 8: and not being able to unattach media is another.

jerrysarcastic: About organizing, when you install a plugin, how do you use that feature to help you?

user 8: Specific use case here: Working with several photographers and bloggers who have a *lot* of images.

user 8: Dumping them all into a single area (media library) isn’t practical when they need to find images down the road and add them to a gallery on the site, for example

user 8: So we’ll use Media Library Assistant, set up categories that match their galleries, then organize their images accordingly

user 8: then when they upload images in bulk, say from a photo shoot or something, they can go through and categorize their image uploads

user 8: Originally we were trying to do this via attaching images to pages or posts, but there was no way to un-attach