Highlight parts of a post that have been quoted in a reply

Really? I disagree. Notice the reply indicator in your post(s), above.

You should know that the first post in a topic behaves a bit differently than replies do in this regard.

You should also know about the suppression of this indicator that we do for posts directly under or above. Adjust your site settings to taste, but the goal is to keep the metadata noise down, since so many posts are replies to the things directly under or above them.

This sounds familiar to the “most highlighted” background color on Medium articles.

I think it’s a great idea.


Yes, this is very medium-esque and could be cool in some types of community.

Of course, implementing is a bit trick, since you can’t just Yolo highlight all the quotes and need to highlight relatively to the amount of quotes and replies.

Yeah if this is a secret annotations request, I don’t know that I’m in support of it.

Seeing which individual lines were quoted the most in each reply is just TMI. Maybe for a book?

Anyway you do know how many people quoted your post since a posted quote is by definition a reply so when you see

3 replies

at the bottom, you know that’s 3 quotes or direct replies.


I guess they are talking about this:

Look at the paragraph with the green background. It becomes highlighted because was quoted the most.

It’s really not a thing most communities would use, but for political and science discussion that would be a cool feature.


Such as a post that requires a table of contents? :wink:

I agree in general it’s not a feature that would be useful in most forums. Maybe a reply as new topic to discuss specific sections of the text in digest would work for this case.

We already have reply tracking, just not granular to the word or sentence on one side.

You get a count at the bottom of each reply that shows reply count. That can be expanded. On the other side, you can expand the source quote by tapping/clicking on it to see which sentence or word was highlighted.

It’s a very narrow request, and I haaaate annotation systems. I think they’re :garbage: garbage.


I still “like” the idea of “highlighting” a sentence and liking it, it gives me the ability to “like” part of a reply, but the cost for such a system is too high, cause now you are forced to make a decision when quoting text which can get confusing.

I guess it could be implemented completely unobtrusively by checking currently highlighted text when you click heart. Then when you hover over the avatar on expanded likes it highlight the part that was liked.

Its such a ninja feature I don’t feel its worth the effort of building. Highlight word, fix typo, is 10 times more useful really.


This really a really useful feature for serious discourse.
Highlighting a really verbose post with interesting points is essential for some forums.
I want to run a writer’s forum where we collaborate and discuss our work.
Many of us are writers on Medium and are used to their excellent tool.
Where the widespread use of highlighting is a massive indication of its usefulness.

Highlighting creates a social interaction. Notifications are sent. It’s one of the most common interactions on Medium. It creates contact between new users … possible friendships, collaborations. It’s a very social way of liking but liking in particular.
If clicking the heart is liking without writing, this is more of an unwritten “Hell Yeah” and is far more rewarding and satisfying to receive.
It creates links in profiles, email digests. So highlighting makes people read new posts. Creating a large amount of discourse.
If I arrive at a post someone I follow has previously visited, I see their highlight and name. I pay particular attention to that part. I click the same highlight to agree. You get to spot like minded people to read, see what they are reading etc. It’s impact on encouraging reading and use of Medium is vital.
People just highlight one line in a poem because it’s beautiful.
This equates to any line in any post that is the most salient. It helps reading and comprehension.
Massive for internal business users of Discourse. Teams collaborating using Discourse. Universities, schools … endless just endless usage.

I’m sorry to see you are so against this.
But It can be seen working well in another fairly similar situation. So perhaps not the massive leap in the dark it could have been?

If you are ever going to give something a serious rethink can I suggest this is it.
I’ve used both Discourse and Medium this will work and everyone will use it and love it.


I agree, having something along these lines would add another dimension to an already great discussion tool.


Any thoughts … I posted at Easter guess it got missed?

@codinghorror @eviltrout @sam

In general, if you cannot convince us on meta the best approach is to get a plugin together to demonstrate the functionality. If the community starts using it a lot, that will definitely get our attention :slight_smile:


I am already not loving the way you are interacting with us about this feature, which further dims its prospects in my view. Although, to be fair, its prospects were quite dim to start with.

Not everyone, I fear, as I suspect I would hate it (unless I’ve misunderstood how this would work, which is entirely possible.)

Having quoted text marked as such within the post where it was quoted makes sense; it’s necessary to distinguish it from the rest of the reply.

Having text marked within a post because somebody has quoted it further on in the discussion would make no sense to me in most situations. It would add visual clutter and (speaking entirely personally here) would make the post harder to read.

Given the rather random and inaccurate manner in which many of our members use quotes at the moment, I can’t see this adding any value at all in our instance. Yes, it may well work for a literary community - and perhaps others, too - but it doesn’t seem to me that it will improve communication and understanding in the average forum.


Took a reasonable amount of time to write and post … it was a direct reply to you.

It was Easter I reposted … after six days had passed?

Hilarious that you have a problem with the way I am interacting, that is possibly one of the most hypocritical things ever written.

Your train set … I’ll leave you to play.

Wish you all well though.


Have fun highlighting stuff elsewhere! I look forward to seeing how “massive” it becomes!

I love that I had this same idea today, search here and find an interesting discussion about it :wink:

I see this would makes sense for a plugin initially, as a way to perform more actions to highlighted text on top of the current “quote reply”.

Like or share a portion of a message can be useful in some contexts, I see the value of having a non-visual-intrusive way (yeah maybe green is too much) to identify a portion of a long text that the community has identified as interesting or quoted a lot.

Medium’s take on highlights

The way I see it, as a user I would be interested when reading a post to read comments related with a specific portion of the text without having to jump down and up, in context. But, maybe this is more annotations than just highlights.

As a plugin this is fine, but we have no plans to work on it


Keep us up to date, if someone writes a plugin :slight_smile:

I could imagine lots of benefits. But the highlighting should be possible outside the composer and has to be in first place user specific, so anyone will be able to use Discourse as real (user specific) knowledge base :wink:

And in second place the author should have another color for global highlightings exclusively for his/her posts.

PS: It would be stupid, if highlights would affect the version history of an post.

1 Like

I’m very interested in a highlighting feature à la medium, though more basic. Could you clarify whether the team has any interest in adding any of the following features into core (whether as PR or from the team itself) and if not, whether you’d be willing to support a plugin in core should it be required:

  1. Adding a “Highlight” button next to the “Quote” button. Pressing this button would add a very light yellow background to the selected text. Every time another user presses the button for the same text, the yellow background becomes a bit more saturated.
  2. Making it so the pressing the quote button also does what the highlight button does (in addition to its core function).
  3. Adding “Highlights” as a tab to user activities, listing links to all posts a user highlighted
  4. Adding a user setting that hides all highlights by other users (this could probably be done via a custom theme, if the necessary classes are provided in #1 above)
  5. Making it so that clicking into a highlighted text gives you a popup listing the avatars of all users who highlighted that text segment.
  6. Add an admin settng that disallows highlighting on a per topic and per category basis. (Or, perhaps better, which hides other users’ highlights permanently while still allowing users tho add highlights for themselves.)

I would not want to notify anyone about highlights and neither should highlighting count as a revision of the post. Any logged in user can highlight anything.