Invite tokens without email?

(Christoph) #1

Is there any way of creating “anonymous” invite tokens? I would like to be able to hand out invite links that grants access to specific groups to people whose email I don’t have. (Obviously, I’m talking about people who are not already users on the forum.)

The point is to make sure that these new users have access to those groups right away, without having to apply for access.

(Jay Pfaffman) #2

This comes up with some frequency. A single link that you could share at a conference or on a protected web page, for example, to let many people get logged in quickly would be quite useful.

I made GitHub - pfaffman/discourse-user-creator: Create an activated user, optionally assigning to group, though. You can use it to create accounts that are activated and have passwords assigned and are in a group. You could create them with bogus e mail addresses. That would get people in. They’d then need to change their email address and password, and perhaps their username, which is a fairly complex set of steps

But you can configure a group to let people join freely, so maybe that would solve your problem.

(Christoph) #3

Hm, thanks for sharing this. But my sense is that it makes things more complicated rather than simpler. It’s much easier to explain: “… and when you’re logged in, you just need to go to groups, find group xyz and click <whatever it says on the button>” than making them change emails. And more fail-proof too.

But although that is easier, there are still enough people around for whom “go to groups, find group xyz” constitutes a significant challenge.

Couldn’t find any previous topic when I searched earlier… But I’ll convert this topic into a feature request and we’ll see.

I didn’t even dare to think beyond the one-token-per-new-user principle, I was still assuming separate tokens for each invitee, but yes, a single token would to the trick for me too.

(Rafael dos Santos Silva) #4

(Christoph) #5

But that requires the invitee’s email address, or am I misunderstanding something:

(Jay Pfaffman) #6

Yeah. I think you’re right.

I agree. Perhaps a pinned topic could make the join-a-group process a bit easier, or one that you direct people to the way you’d send the URL that you can’t have.

It comes up in different ways, I think, that may make searching difficult. I remember several such topics, but I can’t find them either.

Plenty of use cases, but the two most obvious ones for me are sharing a link on a Learning Management System or email list to get everyone in a class connected to a particular group in an invite-only forum, and using Discourse for a conference where lots of people might show up to a room and want to get logged in to a shared category in Discourse quickly. It’d be good if it either had a pre-set timeout (I bet invites have that already) or could be disabled easily.

Arguably you could get a mailing list’s user list and create bulk invites, but that’s cumbersome for a normal person and perhaps not everyone on the mailing list wants to play the Discourse game.

(Christoph) #7

Yes, great examples. Another one is a neighbourhood forum where you want to invite people living in a particular area by dropping a note in their letterbox.

(Arpit Jalan) #8

Nope, you just hand them over the pre-formatted Invite link and ask them to fill in the email themselves.

(Christoph) #9

Okay, that could be a workaround for me, though I’m sure some people won’t manage to add their email-address to the url. What happens if you use the url without an email address?

Wouldn’t it make sense to allow users to enter their email on the invitation page just like they can add/modify the username (assuming it works the same way as with ordinary invite links)? If people can modify the email in the url, there isn’t really any reason to make it a required field, is there?