I can't get the welcome message to display


(Makary Gołosz) #21

It seems a bit cold in terms of civilized discourse, in my humble opinion. And yet, not all communities are 1k+ users big, and it seems to me that people replying to a welcome message en masse wasn’t reported as a problem this far…

(Sam Saffron) #22

The problem is that this causes huge clutter

It is somewhat contained but still very hacky, cause then search needs to be much smarter as well to deal with this giant edge case.

  • How do you browse your archive?
  • How do you search your messages when you have 10,000 dupes, any text in the dupes will drown your search. You need to know fancy hacks to get around.

Overall as a solution it just does not scale to when your community grows.

I am sort of open to having a “group” send the welcome PM, cause then it would be contained in one non-destructive spot and the actual replies can be properly triaged by multiple people.

(Makary Gołosz) #23

In my opinion (and maybe mine only) the solution that existed previously was good enough. If you didn’t want to get your MB cluttered by responses, you would simply set WM sender as ‘system’ (that was the default, as far as I remember). So now, you could set it as if the plugin were enabled, I don’t see huge problem here, but I may be mistaken, if so correct me please.


This is not what I expected when I read about narrative bot.
If the bot is optional, the welcome message must be sent with the user account (or system) as before the bot exists.

Conceptually it’s a welcome message, but if a robot sent it, the person can’t talk freely with it.

If the forum setting has set TL2 to send PM to other members, the new users and TL1 can’t contact via PM a member from staff.

Before narrative bot, when a user registered in my forum, I send them a welcome message and they could talk freely with me. Now., they can’t. :sob:

(cpradio) #25

That isn’t true. Sending to Staff is an exception to that setting. Any new user, even with PMs set to TL 2, can send a PM to staff.


Excuse me.
Can you tell me how a new user must send a PM to a staff member?
Right now, I registered a test user, with this user I visited the admin for my forum, and I can’t see the bottom for send new PM :neutral_face:

(cpradio) #27

Welp, seems I may have mis-spoke, the only form I see is the email address on the /about page.


Apologies accepted @cpradio :wink:

So, with the narrative bot, we have collateral damage to those who sent personalized welcome message to our users to talk directly with them and give them a more familiar and warm treatment.

Everything good with the bot, but for my community would not serve the concept.
It would only be useful for people to “certify” new users and learn to use the forum.
But in my opinion the welcome message should be kept as it always was.

(Jeff Atwood) #29

You can still do this, visit admin, user, new and send messages to your new users as you see fit.


Really? Are you telling me that I need to send a new user a new PM for each one manually?

Before narrative bot, that message was automatic :neutral_face:

(Christoph) #31

I think this is worth emphasizing: nobody really complains about the bot itself. Where the trouble is coming from is that the bot has taken over the welcome message. And I think there is a strong point there. I remember reading in one of those evidence-based-online-community-management books that a personal welcome message is an important predictor of the new users future engagement in the community (sorry, can’t find the exact reference now).

My suggestion has been to acknowledge the fundamentally different purposes of the bot (teaching form functions) and the welcome message (welcoming people) and to allow both to be used in parallel (which sort of implies that the welcome message should either come from system or a human account):

As far as I can see, the argument against implementing this is that

This is a fair point but could the team explain this a bit more so that we might find another solution to avoid these problems?

(Jeff Atwood) #32

The automated messages aren’t real, though. They “come” from you but are auto generated and identical messages to each user – they are not even form letters, they are literally identical. We’ve covered this at quite some length. If you want to send personalized messages to each new user, do so by visiting admin, users, new and composing a real personalized message to each user.

The use of discobot – and you can customize the name, avatar, full name etc of this user – makes it more clear that this is an automated message (now with an optional interactive tutorial!) and where users can go if they want to talk to a real user.

So many instances had users “sending” this message with zero responses to any replies. Sometimes the user who set it up is long long gone.


Hello Jeff.
Can you tell me how a new user could send a PM to a staff member?

(Jeff Atwood) #34

They don’t – you send one to them, personalized with their name and what you know about them.

If it is a generic contact that info is on the /about page, and this is covered by discobot.

(Jay Pfaffman) #35

Users can pm staff members.

(Joshua Rosenfeld) #36

TL0 users cannot create any PMs…

(Christoph) #37

If this is an issue for you, you could take a look at this plugin

(Allen - Watchman Monitoring) #38

If there isn’t a plugin to do this already, I’m pretty sure a zapier could send an automated welcome message to each new member.

That message could be customized with any of the data in the discourse webhook.

(Christoph) #39

Not quite, from what I can see:

(Allen - Watchman Monitoring) #40

Try it out? Start a new thread if it has problems?

Zapier has awesome filters, once you see the difference between hook payloads, I bet you can act only on the first one. (Zapier doesn’t even count the hooks which it filters out.