Would it be possible to change the color of visited links in main-site questions and answers from the current blackish purple to some color that is more clearly distinguishable from the surrounding black of regular text?

I spent five minutes or so earlier today looking up the source of a quotation in an old answer of mine because I thought I had failed to include a link for it—not realizing that the link (involving an article called "Dig It") was already there but that I had previously viewed it, which had caused the link to recede into near color uniformity with the surrounding text.

As an example, here is the “before”

enter image description here

and the “after”

enter image description here

  • @Mari-LouA If it's posted on the main meta, it will either be closed or migrated back here. The right course of action was to ask a question here with the [design] tag (which I just added).
    – Laurel Mod
    Dec 12, 2018 at 20:53
  • @Laurel we'll see. If anyone stops by and posts something. Now, unless you can drum up support from more than four or five users on EL&U why should the team care about making changes. And where are the mods? They've all vanished, even MetaEd is quiet these days.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Dec 12, 2018 at 20:56
  • FWIW, I believe the current "visited" link color is #601F1F (and "fresh" links are #AE3737)
    – 1006a
    Dec 12, 2018 at 22:10
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    @Mari-LouA Laurel is right. It's not about who can make the change, it's about which sites are impacted. Requesting single-site design changes is off topic on MSE. There's a close reason specifically for questions that pertain to a single site, advising the poster to ask it on that site's child meta.
    – Catija
    Dec 13, 2018 at 6:54
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    We'll be reviewing all of the link colors for accessibility in the near future and we'll be sure to review the visited color here when we do that. Thanks for letting us know. :)
    – Catija
    Dec 13, 2018 at 6:55
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    @Catija I am more concerned about attracting attention and consensus, so for me posting on MSE might be more effective. EL&U was already on a slow decline before the new design was finally pushed through, so I am not blaming it on that but the horrible theme we are left with will be its death knell. I am convinced of it because it means regular users will stop contributing and standards will slide even further.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Dec 13, 2018 at 7:14
  • @Laurel I don't recall this color difference when I tested the theme in its beta phase, do you? However, there's another reason for posting feature requests or discussion topics on meta, very often someone will explain why a certain decision was made. There is no one on EL&U who can give us this type of information and it might be of interest to other users from different sites to hear how and why this decision was arrived at.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Dec 13, 2018 at 12:21
  • @Mari-LouA For what it’s worth, the phone version of the main site looks better than before. The text looks bigger, and the title is actually centred. The app version (different from the phone-browser version) hasn’t been updated, so it still has the old look. I think the phone-browser version now looks at least as good as the app version. This is just a comment on the small-screen versions. The skinny-window view on a PC sounds interesting. Maybe they’re focusing first on mobile phone screen (tall and narrow) formats and just didn’t say so.
    – Lawrence
    Dec 13, 2018 at 15:22
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    @Mari-LouA: Thank you for adding the visual examples to this question. It is much clearer now.
    – Sven Yargs
    Dec 29, 2018 at 18:57

1 Answer 1


This problem is even more apparent if you look at the colours used in the list of questions itself.

Here are two questions on ELU:

ELU—visited links

I've already visited "Irreponsible person" but I've yet to visit "why the use' much of which ' in the following sentence is incorrect?"

My normal routine is to copy the title of the question I know I've last visited, refresh the page, and then search for the title of that question. Either that or try to remember its title myself.

The differentiation between the two colours is so minimal, I doubt I'd ever spot it based on colour alone.

On the other hand, compare the difference in colours used at ELL:

ELL—visited links

On ELL, I can spot the difference and not worry about losing track of what questions I have and haven't already looked at.

I'm not certain if this needs to be broken down into visited versus non-visited link-text colours in different areas, but I'm hoping a single feature request can cover a review of the colours used in all areas.

Update: I finally got so tired of this, I implemented a workaround of my own.

I installed the Firefox extension Stylus. (It is also available for Chrome.)

I then created the following style:

Stylus style

In text, that is:

a.question-hyperlink:visited {
      color: grey !important

Applies to:
URLs matching the regexp: https://.*.stackexchange.com/questions
URLs matching the regexp: https://.*.stackexchange.com/questions\?sort=newest&page=\d*

Now, on those Stack Exchange pages that list questions, every link to the questions I've visited are in grey text. I no longer have a problem knowing where to start looking when I review new questions.

  • 7
    Wow, I think I had forgotten that "questions you've already visited look different" was even a feature. I can't see any difference at all on my screen (I also usually can't find the dark gray-on-charcoal-on-black search box on this screen...I just have to know where it is).
    – 1006a
    Feb 4, 2019 at 21:51
  • Thanks Jason for the excellent workaround. That issue of differentiating unread from read questions has been driving me spare for years! Mar 7, 2019 at 11:33
  • Thanks Jason for the excellent workaround. That issue of differentiating unread from read questions has been driving me spare for years! Mar 7, 2019 at 11:34

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