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We're building a website for a startup and we encourage using the "timeago" format for displaying dates (i.e. less than a minute ago, about 5 minutes ago, about a month ago, etc.) but the client argues that it's not used in the US, that people are just not used to it. I can make a list of hundreds of sites using it, but of course, I'm a geek. So in adition to the main question, what are the pros and cons of the "timeago" date format?

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PRO: Human-friendly relative format. People won't need to figure out how long ago it was.

CON: People may have trouble thinking about /when/ it actually occurred.

Recommendation: Use 'timeago' for your main date format, but include the timestamp somewhere.

  • We're using the jQuery timeago plugin wich can display the timestamp as a tooltip also. – Eduardo Campañó Feb 20 '11 at 0:00
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I guess they ever heard of Facebook or Twitter? Wait, nobody uses those.

If that's not good enough for them then it's a losing battle. Let them have their way on move on.

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