Agnostic Invite Link

(Matt Palmer) #10

If you’re referring to the scraping of address books, I don’t think Discourse should be associated with it at all. It’s a scummy practice. At any rate, it’s easy enough to write some third-party thing that accepts creds or a token, hoovers up the addresses, then presents them as a CSV for the mass-invite mechanism, so if someone wants it, they can go write it.

1 Like


I agree, which is why my original comments had the :nauseated_face: mention in them. There’s got to be a 3rd option… but, I’m unsure of what that might be. So, of course, I wondered if it was an active convo within the discourse walls.


(Jay Pfaffman) #12

My use case, from a former life, is to be able to email (or post on a learning management system) a link that will allow anyone with the link to be able to create an account with whatever email address they want.

It would be a just like the current invite links (with a long unguessable url) except it would let the user choose any address and many people use it. It could have a user - chosen timeout (like a week).


(Matt Palmer) #13

So this is on an invite-only site, where anonymous signups aren’t allowed, but you need people to be able to signup without administrator intervention for a limited period of time?


(Jay Pfaffman) #14

That’s pretty much it. It’s a class. A professor wants to be able to send an email with a link and have students register (perhaps being added to a group). It’s usually easy to post a link that everyone in the class (and only those people) can see.
I think it’s exactly like the current invite, but you want anyone with the link to be able to to register.

Just like Dropbox (or gist) let’s anyone with the link see the file.


(Carson) #15

Here are some other use cases:

  1. Running a VIP conference (Presidents of large organizations). Want to provide notes, videos, and key details in a conference Category that is restricted to one group’s access - the VIPs. Place a ‘password’ or a ‘code’ or provide a link that they can use to access the group. Low risk anyone shares the link beyond conference participants.
  2. Running a registered conference for paid participants. After registration, send them an email saying, “Please access conference materials at our online community.” They click the link, added to the conference group, shown the conference welcome Topic, and have access to the conference materials. Enables us to do customer service through Discourse, engage our participants as superfans, etc.
  3. Onboarding employees. Want employees to join and see a private community just for them (A department group, a topic group). Easier to send them an email and say, click this link, you’ll be automagically added to the group and category where this conversation is taking place.

(Jay Pfaffman) #16

I know that I pushing for this feature but…

Case two is fairly well handled with the existing bulk invite.

Case three is well handled by settings allowing you to assign groups by an email domain.


(Carson) #17

Good points, interesting to consider it from different angles.

For case 2, if they don’t accept the bulk invite in time, you have to keep re-inviting them. It would be easier to just give them a link that will work anytime before the end of the conference.

For case 3, if you only want to invite 65 out of 400 employees to a topic group, that won’t work?


(Christoph) #18

Similar issues have been discussed here:

1 Like


I’ve got a use case related to trust levels and Discourse Meta itself.

In one of my communities, we are using Trust Level 3 as a way to identify those who want to help improve our product and community, which includes our own usage of Discourse. It’s like our own version of Discourse Meta. Naturally, I find myself frequently quoting conversations that I find here.

That is, by discussing Discourse Meta’s topics about the Discourse software, my community is having conversations about conversations about conversations. We are all indeed a strange loop. :thinking:

Anyway, I see value in inviting the smart people from my community to meet the smart people in this community — all of you fine people reading this. However, because T3 is dynamic, email invites won’t work. Although I could simply invite all of my users with a link here to /signup, it’s only the T3 people who have really proven to have interest in community introspection and curiosity about the software we use. Plus, I feel that having my T3 users discover such an invite as a reward would have a stronger impact and motivate them to really get involved with the larger Discourse world. After all, by helping Discourse, we are also helping ourselves.

If I had an email agnostic link that all my T3 peeps would see the first time they visit our Lounge, I’d have a practical way to bring more people here and also get myself that Champion badge on Discourse Meta. :sunglasses:

I suspect I do not have the only Discourse community that could do such a thing. Also, while this specific example would benefit Discourse Meta, obviously I would also want to use it within my own community so that my own members could more easily become Champions themselves.


(Jeff Atwood) #20

You can lock someone at TL3 any time you like via the admin page for that user.



Setting/keeping them at T3 isn’t an issue; we prefer to let the trust levels do their thing.

It’s more that I can’t know ahead of time who will prove themselves via the T3 criteria, but I would still like to invite them here as a reward once they do so.


(Stephen) #22

If you can figure that one out a number of us would appreciate access to that particular crystal ball. Suffice to say that even with the best intentions there are a multitude of reasons that people who should make great community members and contributors can turn out to be… less so.

1 Like


Oh I believe it lol. The community in question for me has been online for 18 years. I’ve definitely learned that age does not indicate trust.

I should clarify though, it’s not that crystal ball I want. T3 does what I need there just fine, but I would like a means to invite them here automatically after they meet that threshold. An invite link as described by @8BIT that doesn’t require an email address to generate would provide this.

1 Like

(Stephen) #24

So by community you don’t mean a discourse community?



It is one now, but only as of 2017. I wouldn’t say that we primarily identify as one though; more that Discourse is the latest and most successful tool we’ve used to wrangle ourselves.


(Lydia) #26

Hi - has there been any movement on an agnostic invite link? Let me give you my scenario, similar to one of the above:

I run an online coding school that uses an LMS to store onboarding material and curriculum for our students. We’re constantly enrolling students on an ongoing basis, and this is where the agnostic invite link comes into play.

In order for us to scale and be more efficient in our processes, it would be very beneficial for us to have 1 invite link that we post in our LMS for our students to join, rather than having to invite them by email (even in bulk, with ongoing enrollment periods this is not sustainable). This is an area/platform that only our enrolled students would have access to. We do this for ALL of our other tools, such as Zoom, Google Meet, Pathwright courses, Clockify, etc.

Any idea if/when this feature will become available?

1 Like

(Jay Pfaffman) #27

The best solution would be to use the LMS as an SSO master or have the LMS add the user via the API.

(But I lamented the same thing when I was using Discourse to teach online classes.)


(Stephen) #28

Yep, this is precisely what SSO is for. Invites are only really necessary for decoupled communities, if you have any kind of existing user identities I would strongly recommend you integrate with that.


(Lydia) #29

Thanks to both of you! I passed this on to our software developer and we figured out a way to implement it. :slight_smile:

1 Like