What is an Activity Summary email?
The Discourse “Activity Summary” (formerly known as the digest email) is an email sent out to members of a forum who haven’t visited in a specific period with a collection of the most popular content since their last visit.
Summary Email Contents
The email includes the following, automatically:
- Some activity statistics to emphasise activity levels
- A list of the most popular topics
- A selection of the most popular posts
- Links of topics that are “New for you”
The intention is to entice inactive members to come back and become engaged as readers or contributors by reminding them of their membership and showing them the most relevant content.
The Activity Summary is sent only when the member has not visited for a minimum period of time. The community’s default interval is set by the admin, but can be customized by users. The system default is weekly.
The Activity Summary is not sent to members who have been Silenced or Suspended
Summary frequency options are:
- every 30 minutes
- every hour
- every month
- every six months
If an individual member has not visited the forum in the selected period, then the system will send them a summary of activity in that period. This countdown is reset every time a user visits again, so regular members may rarely receive an Activity Summary email
What gets included?
Popular topics for digests are extracted from /top topics with certain rules:
- individual user permissions to view that topic
- topics from private categories the user does not have access to will not be sent
- topic notification level
- the topic shouldn’t be muted for that user
- user who created that topic must have trust level greater than 0
- this default can be overridden (see below)
- topic must be created after the user was last emailed
- topic should not be from a muted category
- topic should not be closed
- topic should not be archived
User OptionsIndividual users have the ability to determine some of what is included and how often they receive it.
A user can go to
Preferences and do the following:
- change the mailing frequency
- uncheck the box to set the frequency to
- to allow content from new users to be included
- add a category or tag to
Mutedto stop that content appearing in the Activity Summary, but also on the Latest page
Default User Digest Settings
Admins can configure the
default email digest frequency and
default include tl0 in digests settings for all new users on the site. Users can override these settings on their preferences page.
default email digest frequency to a frequency that will be comfortable for your particular users and community. A very busy, active community will create lots of content, so staying on top of it might mean encouraging daily visits with summaries. A less active community might be quite happy with weekly summaries. Keep in mind that this email will be sent every interval period, and could become annoying if it is not received as useful.
Site Digest Settings
To see a list of all the digest settings, go to your Admin / Settings page and enter ‘digest’ into the search box.
digest logo url: customise your digest email logo (leave blank to use default)
digest min excerpt length: how much content you share of each post (defaults to 100)
digest topics: the maximum number of popular topics to display (defaults to 5)
digest posts: the maximum number of popular posts to display (defaults to 5)
digest other topics: the maximum number of topics to show in the ‘New in topics and categories you follow’ section (defaults to 5)
suppress digest email after days: suppress summary emails for users not seen on the site for more than (n) days (defaults to 365)
digest suppress categories: prevent topics in specific categories from being included in the digest
show topic featured link in digest: show featured links in digest (defaults to no)
disable digest emails: disable summary emails for all users
While Activity Summary emails are generated automatically, it is possible to customise the email’s colors and also to add additional text to the digest.
The digest’s header color is set by the
email accent bg color site setting. The text color of the header is set by the
email accent fg color site setting.
To add text to the digest, go to your Admin / Customize / Text Content page and search for
user_notifications.digest.custom. A list of the available customizations will be displayed. The key for each customization tells you where the text will be added to the digest.
At any time, admins can go to the Admin dashboard, under
Emails to preview the content of a digest email to any given user using
This can be viewed on the site or sent to a custom email address for review.