How to get notification of all new topics of a category?


(Nowindlee) #1

Can we subscribe a category, that when there is a new topic, we will get a notification here ?


Can watching a category watch all its subcategories as well?
(rwdaigle) #2

I agree completely on this. Seems like category-level notifications is a great way to pull readers back to the board on a more granular and user-specified level than the digest (the only other non topic-specific, push-based mechanism).

This would also be a great feature to support category-specific moderators – knowing when there’s a new post in their category.

We have both needs at Heroku.


(Brentley Jones) #3

I believe this is on the roadmap.


(Sam Saffron) #4

See:


(JP Gordon) #5

I’d like to 2nd this request. We have a requirement to be notified whenever a new topic is added to a category as well as when a new response has been added to a topic. We’d also like to set up a notification scheme for topic posts that have not had a response for more than X days. Can we get this one on the roadmap?


(Jeff Atwood) #6

Ah, I am glad you bumped this topic, @sam just implemented the feature. Check on your user page in the category preferences and you can set an entire category to “watched” for example.


(JP Gordon) #7

Yes, we’re getting there…however, it appears you only get notifications for anything added to currently existing topics. It would be good to get notifications for any activity under a category - whether it’s a new topic or a response to a current one.

Thanks for the quick response!


(Sam Saffron) #8

I have been spending a lot of time thinking about this. It does get complex on a few fronts.

For example:

  • I have it set so I automatically track topics after spending 3 minutes on them
  • I spend 3 minutes on the topic
  • I start automatically tracking it
  • I later set default “watch” on that category
  • Should this topic be watched or tracked?

Example 2:

  • I mute a topic
  • I later set default “watch” on that category
  • Should this topic be watched or muted?

I am tending towards - category prefs always override “automatic” actions but do not override manual actions.

@codinghorror thoughts?


(Jeff Atwood) #9

For older topics, I think we need a way to select a bunch of topics and take an action on them – whether that action is “mute” or “watch” or “delete” or “change to category X”.

Seems sane.


(mojzis) #10

This is great news and IMHO a giant step towards discourse being a replacement for mailing lists ! I think it would be great to also

  • allow one to only receive a notification about new topics in a category (if i get it right this is not in the current options ?)
  • allow users to set / see this setting on the category page - i guess it would be way more convenient for them ?

thanks !


(JP Gordon) #11

I 2nd that category prefs always override manual actions. That seems intuitive.

Our use case is that we have groups of support engineers, each of whom support a given set of products. Each of our products will be its own category. We would like our engineers to effectively subscribe interest in one or more categories such that whenever anyone adds or comments on a topic in that category, they would be notified (by email or better yet, by IM). Does that make sense?


(Erlend Sogge Heggen) #12

They’re saying it should override automatic actions, but not manual ones.


(Jeff Atwood) #13

Mixing a couple things here, I am unclear. Do you mean category or sub category? As in “they get notified of any new topics in the category and all its subcategories, too?”


Can watching a category watch all its subcategories as well?
(JP Gordon) #14

Yes, I mean both. Whatever activity occurs within a category (and/or subcat) generates a notification to anyone “watching” it. I say “it” because I envision a user requesting a “watch” on an entire category (including all of its subcategories). I.e. if there’re any new topics or new responses, they would be notified.


(Mike Harris) #15

Hi Everyone. I just recently started using discourse and came across this topic. I have been searching for a way to have my forum users receive notifications of new topics posted in the categories they have been set to “watch”, but have been unsuccessful in doing so. Has there been any development toward having e-mails sent when a new topic is posted in a category someone is “watching”

I’ve read differing accounts as to whether this functionality is present or not, so I was hoping someone could clarify if it’s possible, and if not, at least direct me to the .rb file that contains the code I might need to alter to get this functionality. Thank you in advance!


(Jeff Atwood) #16

Depends what the email settings are. Out of the box, Discourse won’t mail you if it has seen you on the website in the last 10 minutes.

But yes, watching the category will work, provided you are nowhere near the website when the topic is posted in that category, or have turned off the above setting in your user preferences.


(Mike Harris) #17

Hi Jeff, thanks for updating the thread! I haven’t seen that functionality working thus far, but it may be because of the email setting. I’ll give it a try.


(Collin Donahue Oponski) #18

I had the same question as @MHarris. I can’t seem to get an email notification about new topics in a category I’m watching. I have the preferences set to email me even if I’m actively using the site.

Second question: If a topic is moved into a category I’m watching, will I get an email notification about it? I have it set to consider a topic new if I’ve never read it.


(Tobias Eigen) #19

Watching categories works for me on my site and here on meta. When you post yourself you are not going to be notified, though.

Your second question is answered here:


(Collin Donahue Oponski) #20

Thank you for the link to the other post. I suppose I’ll wait with you for a proper response there.

To test watching a category, I logged-in under a second account and created a new topic in the category. The first account did not receive an email. Maybe your personal settings are different.

Can someone explain under what circumstances I should or shouldn’t receive an email notification when a new topic is posted under a category I’m watching? Are there other settings or details that affect this? Being active on the site? Not having a verified email? Sidekiq being down?