Dear Skype: Please revert the new group name and topic behaviour

So for most of Skype’s existence, a Skype group had a group name and a group topic that could be changed individually of each other.

With the later versions (it started after 6.21) this was changed so now groups only have one option: “Rename group”, which actually does not rename the group locally you, yet changes the topic of the conversation, which is a global action that changes the name it is shown as for everyone in that group.

On mobile (Android/iOS) this was changed before it happened in the Desktop clients which lead to confusing interop between users because on mobile you clicked “rename” yet it changed the “topic” for everyone.

Community Manager Claudius pointed out here (… that the base behaviour change, going from two options for “topic” and “name” to only “name” (that actually changes “topic”) was done because it was too confusing for users.

I can understand that if those confusions got reported by mobile users, because their button was actually always called “rename”, yet changed the topic. On Desktop it all made sense and I hereby plead to get the option to rename groups locally back.

My favorite example on why this new behaviour is bad is the following: It means that instead of showing a familiar, easy to remember and recognizable name, the contact list now shows the topic, a often (maybe?) changing text that is not representing the members of said conversation, as the name.

Let’s say you have more than one group of friends (hey, it happens) on Skype to talk about different things. One is your football club and the others are the chess dudes. You obviously name those groups “The sports guys” and “The chess guys” for your own sanity and ease of use in identifying them in your list. Both groups often have a similar topic set, mostly the date of the next meeting.

Now, with the new design, you are left with two entries in your contact list, both conveniently named “Next meeting at 5pm”. Now what? Which one is which? No way to know at a simple glance. You really have to open the group and look at the members list to really know.

As a person who has been using Skype for group conversations for years and years, this really grinds my gears and I have been trying to get the developers attentions in varius threads on this forum (… once in the Android section ( where this problem has existed for a looong time and was probably the root cause of user confusion, and over more private channels and the app feedback page.

With Skype getting more and more competition via Discord, Curse Voice and Slack etc, it would be a shame if removing instead of adding customization features is the future for it.