First off, I love discourse so much, kudos to all of you, etc.
Here’s my thought: I find the way to access the messaging system pretty obscure. Unless I’m missing something, the flow goes:
- Open user icon
- Click the envelope
- Click the envelope again
There’s no visual indication whatsoever that you can get to the messages interface after you’ve clicked the envelope once.
I’m pretty sure that none of the users on my site (unless they knew about the discourse messaging system from elsewhere) were aware that there is a messaging system at all until they received a message from me (or if they went through the tutorial, of course).
I suppose this could be by design, to encourage people to post rather than private message? But in my case I have found that new topics spin off of group discussions in the messaging system (which is amazing and I love it).
Could there be a compose/new button above the list of recent mails when you click on the envelope the first time?