"Block" renamed to "Silence"

We’ve heard feedback over the years that “block”, the staff tool to prevent users from posting on the site was unclear. Without knowing what “block” meant in a Discourse sense, one could just as easily infer that it mean block the user from using the site (which is a suspension).

As such, we’ve renamed block to “silence” in Rename "Blocked" to "Silenced" · discourse/discourse@1f14350 · GitHub

Over the next few days we’ll be working our way through Meta to update documentation and other discussions that refer to “blocking”.


Was it just a “rename” or a change in functionality has been done?

Just a rename. There should be no change in functionality. If there is, please report it as a #bug

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That sounds like a good time! Good luck with that. :slight_smile:


Thanks for the announce!

Check the setting, example key: system_messages.user_automatically_silenced.text_body_template at server.en.yml (transifex).


This threshold can be changed via the block_new_user site settings.

That setting will be renamed too?
Something like silence_new_user ? :thinking:

Site settings have all been changed. I’ll double check the translation files, they should have all been updated as well.

Block was a rare state to be in and only recently was an explicit button added for mods to put users in it. So I don’t expect much pain from the rename.

Agree @jomaxro, I mean if “block_new_user” does not exist anymore, need to be renamed too :wink:




Can you expand on specifically what “Silence” does? Does it prevent replying to PMs?

I would like to be able to use “silence” or a similar too to prevent a person from creating threads, but allow them to respond to private messages. This would allow moderators to work with members to correct problems, rather than just banning someone.

I’m unclear on whether “Silence” allows people to reply to messages.

I just tested this in my dev environment. A silenced user can’t create a topic, post, or message, but they can reply to PMs.


Thanks for checking that!

Are you sure those PMs were from a regular user, not staff? There might be a staff-specific override on that area. Or the rule might simply be, they can reply to PMs – but never send a new PM.

I tried both with staff and a regular user. In both cases a silenced user can reply to PMs. I can test this on https://try.discourse.org/ if this isn’t the expected behaviour.


Totally fine, I couldn’t remember the specifics, but I should have mentioned that PMs with staff were always intended to work for the exact reason described.


Thanks @codinghorror and @Simon_Cossar. That was exactly what I needed to know.

I needed to get a user to change his username (because he used our forum’s name as his user name), and he hasn’t replied. I wanted to make sure he CAN reply.