Disable 'observe' mode

because it’s a big privacy concern/issue?

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I’m a dev. I implement the designs created by our designers.
There is not a single valid scenario where anyone would need to see my cursor.
I can turn it off, although it will only turn it off on my side, others will still see my cursor and also turning it off will only work for a limited time (until i log back in again or refresh the page).

Makes me hate your product.

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you’ll have my vote should you bring this topic up in #product-ideas

I moved the topic. Thanks for your input!

thanks. I think @Dave2 has already created a topic for this in “Share Feedback” back in February with 80+ votes. But apparently there has been no action taken since.

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Moved everything to one topic, not sure why we had two.

Two ideas that are related/similar:

  1. Incognito mode
    I work at a design agency where on most projects, each designer has their own working file. It would be great to have an incognito mode to be able to view others’ files without distracting them or being distracted by them browsing my file. I feel pressure when I see their cursor flying around in my file unexpectedly.
    Also when someone chooses to work late hours and it is visible to the rest of the team, it puts pressure on the rest of the team to feel like we need to work late as well. Incognito would allow those who choose to, to work late without showing up for others and impacting them in that way as well.

  2. A way to lock the “show/hide multiple cursors” option
    If incognito is not viable, having a way to lock the “show/hide multiple cursors” option would be a great alternative. Currently, I can set the cursors to hide but if I close figma and return later, the option is set back to “show”. Further, it would be great if hiding multiple cursors also hid the user’s profile up in the top right of the UI. All of this would be for the same reasons mentioned for incognito above - to reduce distraction and pressure.

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Drafts don’t work when you have components set in your file. I learned the hard way: Transferring those files reverts variants to the original, it opens up your designs for loads of errors and is just, plain inconvenient.

As a file owner, I don’t see why I wouldn’t have that functionality.

It’s an inhibitor for workflow because it’s uncomfortable. As many Figma users stated, when someone sits and watches you work, it feels like micromanaging. Rather than have an uncomfortable conversation with someone about how they are a micromanager and you want it to stop, simply removing their ability to observe, until deemed appropriate, would be ideal.

Luckily not many people deal with this issue, but for those who do, it is a very real and painful problem.

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All of the above replies are resonating with me on the topic. Several different problems exist to me, and many if not all can be solved by several of the ideas above. In my mind, the biggest issue is a client overlooking the designer’s live-work process (when a presentation is not ongoing), and another is simply preventing team members from getting pressured or distracted by other team members.

Designers shouldn’t have to have multiple files or work from their drafts to copy-paste things in just because we want to avoid the looking over your shoulder issue. It’s possible we can work around it by using branches, but as far as I know, we can’t work alongside team members while within a branch. Workarounds should be temporary solutions, and it’s not intuitive to work in the ways mentioned above, nor is it good to have someone micromanaging you, which we all agree happens in our lines of work.

File owners/managers should be able to disable observing and team cursours and I think even temporary revoke of viewing files altogether, without having to remove a viewer off of the file. One way of implementing it would be offering to disable observing and/or viewing for specific viewers, or all viewers. In the case of viewing revocation, anytime the person tries viewing the file, they could be given a single frame with the purpose of serving the viewer a locked splash that can be custom designed by the team saying something like “please wait this file is under construction any questions can be sent to X”. Going even further the locked viewing could be implemented through scheduling and set for automatic on/off by certain days or hours.

All this to say, everyone deserves a healthy work environment and we should be able to have oversight of what people can do when in our workspace.

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I would like to see this feature implemented. As a developer it’s super annoying to see other people’s cursors moving over the stuff I’m looking at too.
And hence it’s great that I can turn this off, I’d rather be in incognito mode myself.
It’s just odd that you don’t know when other people are looking at what you are doing :eyes: makes me feel watched
Cheers

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@Dave2 I relate to what you’re saying, and have upvoted.

Also, to revive the topic a bit, as I feel it’s an important feature missing…

Could something like this work?

  1. create a new page
  2. right click on it in the Pages list
  3. select “Run Privacy Mode”

Page would then not be visible to other file members.

This page would be always there for you, to work in it, and when done, move the frame to the page you were designing for.

ghost-mode

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Hi @Darko_Atanasov, I think you are describing another idea that is on the forum: Giving unique access to specific pages.

Hey @tank666 , thanks for sharing, I looked into it. Actually, that’s a more advanced way for handling this “private space” issue. I was going for a quick fix idea here :slight_smile:

I have an idea for a simple fix for addressing the most disruptive/anxiety-inducing aspects of the current behavior:

It’s not as far-reaching as this idea of allowing “Observe” mode to be disabled – just a way to cut down the visual distraction alluded to by some of these comments.

This is an accessibility issue and I wish Figma would prioritize this.

I am a designer working on big projects with other designers and engineers (i.e. in the same file) at the same time. I just wish there was a way to HIDE who else is in the file at the same time as me, or hide myself from the other people, in the top bar. I don’t want to see their avatar/initial icon and don’t want them to see my avatar/initial icon. I find it incredibly distracting and anxiety-inducing.

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PLEASE put this in the next update. I can’t stand seeing when people are following me in Figma while I’m working

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Really hoping for this. It’s distracting for me as a developer referencing designer files to see the multiplayer cursors, so at the very least, wish the option to disable them was persistent. But really, I’d like to be able to just disable completely/be invisible from a user account level so others aren’t distracted by my cursor, which they never need to see.

Done, thank you! Really an important feature in my opinion.

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What a toxic feature!! This is not healthy for designers or developers… zero usefulness for ones who are actually doing the work when not needed. I want to be able to turn on and off this feature just like I can do with the inverse (Multiplayer cursors). Since the inverse feature is available, it seems the groundwork to toggle this feature is there but probably managers inside and outside of Figma are pushing to force this feature.

Creepy and big brother’s watching vibes. Total disregard for privacy. It makes me avoid working in Figma and keep my interactions with Figma to a minimum. It also provides indicators to others to bother me because I’m online working when in fact I’m in focus-mode… the complete opposite signal I want to provide to others. Instead of the freedom to work how I want, I have the anxieties that it’s being watched and being judged. I think if you literally ask any designer or developer in Figma they will tell you the same, you’re probably just asking managers.

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who ever suggested this feature should be fired, and his/her manager to

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