Gmail mute not working

The Vancouver Hack Space is rolling out Discourse as a replacement for a mailiong list and many users have it set to email every message and still use it like they did the old mailing list. I’ve noticed that when I mute a conversation in gmail’s web client, the conversation doesn’t get muted; you have to follow the link to the discourse interface and mute the thread from there. I don’t have the background or time to track this down, but thought someone may want to look into it if it is not a “feature”.



Wait, how the heck is Discourse supposed to know that you ‘muted’ a thread in your email client?

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I think he’s referring to mute by subject of email, or email headers.

Right now the list-related email headers include the category, as suggested by @downey, although they used to include the specific topic ID.

We’d need a bit more detail on how GMail handles mutes though; what fields / headers does it look at?

Here’s the gmail help page about muting conversations:

Not much information in there. I use gmail, but have never used this feature. I suspect the “conversation” is identified by subject… which is also how gmail organizes emails into threads. If I change the subject line in a reply email it starts a new thread.

Well, the subject should be stable, if you are being notified to a reply on a topic it’ll be the title of the topic.

Yes, looks that way.

I haven’t tested it, but I don’t think muting will work here anyway since the recipients email address is used in the To header.

But maybe changing the List-Unsubscribe header would be an option?
Currently it (always?) links to Discourse Meta - The Official Support Forum for Discourse which isn’t really helpful if I just want to stop tracking a specific topic.

Feature request: When a mail is sent because I’m watching a topic the List-Unsubscribe header should link directly to (the bottom of) the topic so that I can easily change the tracking state of the topic. When a mail is sent because I’m watching a category the link to the preferences is fine.


That reminds me of this idea:


As @tobiaseigen pointed out, Google tells us exactly what causes a message to be “un-muted” in the conversation:

Muted conversations will only pop back into your inbox ready for your attention if a new message in the conversation is addressed to you and no one else, or if you’re added to the “To” or “Cc” line in a new message.

(emphasis added)

… both of which are currently true for Discourse topic notifications.

See also this feature request, which could “fix” this issue:


The way Github makes this work is by including the user’s email in the Cc instead of To.

Other mailing lists seem to use an alias instead, so the To address doesn’t look like it’s to you specifically.


This is a good idea and a better default, @techapj can you add it to your list?

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To be consistent with mailing lists, it’d be nice if the “To” address was the same as the email-in address for the relevant category, if one exists.


I don’t know all the places that this may touch, nor how to write tests for this, but I’m posting here so that someone who is more familiar may be able to make this work?

In the user notifications, an argument would be needed to be added that the user’s email should be used in the cc field, instead of to, and set to to some other bucket. The argument would need to be looked for in the message builder to do this.

I think that only adding this argument on L143 of the user notifications would mean this would only affect mailing-list-like emails, and not any other notification, which should still be use the to address.

@zogstrip implemented something even better via:

The link will redirect to preferences page where user will be able to select notification level for that particular topic.