There is a list of user in a Gridview and there is a column for each row to suspend and reinstate a suspended user. What should be a good icon for this ?
closed as off topic by Rahul♦ May 19 '12 at 12:29
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It depends on the context of your form. A bit of a sit-on-the-fence answer, but it's true for all questions about user interfaces. You can't design a table like this without knowing:
It might be that your context makes it imperative that browsing administrators must see who's suspended very quickly. In that case, you'd rely not just on a column icon, but on row formatting - perhaps making the whole entry for the suspended person grey or red. Or, it could be that the field 'suspended' is of equal weight to others - for example, if an auditor just wants to check a series of non-exclusive registration states. In such a case, it makes sense to use the same for 'withdrawn' as other, equally weighted, similar columns ('details approved', 'paid user', etc.)
If it's difficult to judge the context of use, you may need to spend more time on user research. Failing that, look at the rest of the application to see where users will be coming from, and see if you can garner metrics on the most common tasks associated with people viewing this data.
How about these icons below - the icon without the tick means not suspended, and the icon with the tick means suspended. When you click on the icon it toggles to the other.
OK - so I'm being slightly facetious here, because these are obviously checkboxes - not exactly true icons as such (although that's all they are here!).
The advantage of the checkbox over some alternatives is that there is no confusion over how it gets used. People are familiar with checkboxes and know how to interact with them.
If you had icons which toggle state, you may get users who are confused about whether the displayed state is meant to indicate the current state of the item or the state that will result if the user clicks on the icon. Bear this in mind when you consider what icons to use.
Additionally, when you have whole columns of icons, it adds to the distracting clutter on the screen. So if you do go with real icons - keep it simple.