Change label to checkboxes in menus

Peter Penz peter.penz at
Fri Jun 13 08:59:42 BST 2008

> If I have a checkbox for enable/disable a feature into a menu, for example
> for showing/hiding something, shouldn't the label be always the same?
> Actually there are some programs (I've found some konqueror menu action
> and one juk menu action, for example) which do this:
> - when option is not checked: 
> [   ]  Show something
> when is checked:
> [X] Hide something
> This is a bit confusing because when I read a checked checkbox with a 
> description, I think that description is valid, instead that is the action
> which will be activated if the checkbox is de-activated. This is different
> from the common behaviour of checkboxes.
> This problem affect only a small subset of menu actions, the most of them 
> doesn't do that.
> What is the current policy about this issue? What should do developers?
> Change the labels or not?  Actually it seems that the majority prefer to
> use only a label.

There was a long discussion on this topic on kde-usability some time ago. If I remember correctly the outcome was like this:

Either use (A):
[x] Show Something
[ ] Show Something

or (B):
Show Something
Hide Something

but never (C):
[ ] Show Something
[x] Hide Something

I think A should be preferred to B if the opposite of the text ("Show Something") is clear without any doubt. B might make sense for things like:
[x] Open each folder in the same window (what's the opposite action?)

Maybe Ellen (see CC) could make an official response before a long discussions is ongoing :-) I'd add the outcome of this to to have an official guideline.

Best regards,

> Regards.
> -- 
> by FiNeX
> finex (@) finex (.) org
> Linux Registered User #306523

More information about the kde-core-devel mailing list