We're debuting a new notifications feature on Comic Vine and Giant Bomb. What we've done is split up notifications and private messages into two separate systems. As such, you'll now have a notifications indicator and a PM inbox in the upper right corner of your screen. Notifications will still let you know when another user follows you, comments on your content, posts on your wall, and so forth, whereas the PM inbox is now exclusively for your private messages. This should reduce inbox clutter for the most active members of our community.
In addition, we've simplified the large number of notification options that we used to feature on your Settings page into a smaller group of options to choose from. You should check your settings page to ensure that these options are up to date. (To do so, hover over your avatar in the upper right corner of the screen and select the Settings button.) We'll also soon be adding the option to get email notifications as a weekly digest if you prefer not to get individual emails for each notification.
Notifications are marked as read when you view them, but you can always view older notifications by visiting the Notifications tab of your profile.
Let us know what you think, and feel free to post any feedback on these new features in this thread.
Also, as a note: we know you guys miss the icon that used to show which of your friends were currently online. We're looking into a system that should be launching next week that will hopefully replicate some of that functionality. I can't guarantee it'll work exactly the same, but you should notice it pretty quickly when it goes up.