Newly-created "unlisted" Topics send "new topic" Notifications

Perhaps the title is rather verbose, but I am assuming that this is unintended. As a staff member (or a TL4 user), I can create topics as unlisted by default (rather than having to create the topic and then unlist it).

Since this is available prior to posting, I would imagine that the intended usage (when doing prior to topic creation) would perhaps be rough drafting, or having the opportunity to double-check markdown prior to public viewing. Perhaps an intended usage would be for the topic itself being intended to as direct-link–only.

To clarify on the bug: if a user has set their Preferences to give them automatic notifications for new topics created in a category, and staff then create a new topic (manually set to “unlisted” prior to posting), those users will receive a direct notification about the new topic being posted (and the “unlisted” aspect is nearly redundant, in some situations).

This is a minor (perhaps cosmetic, in some situations) inconvenience that can affect some users. Or, if a site has set default notification settings for certain categories (e.g., announcements, updates, events), then it can affect everyone who has an account and hasn’t chosen to change their default notification preferences.

If this is the intended functionality (that newly-created unlisted topics still send out “new topic” notifications), then my suggestion would be to have it not do that. While it would make sense to send out notifications for other things happening with the topic (e.g., replies, likes), I don’t think it makes sense for “new topic” notifications to be sent.

EDIT: It’s quite possible that this is intended and that instead of fulfilling my suggestion / bug report, that a more appropriate action would be to direct me to use the “shared drafts” functionality.

I don’t think that “shared drafts” cover every use-case for unlisted topics though, so perhaps I’m trying overthinking the functionality of unlisted topics and everything is functioning as intended. But if that’s the case, then it seems a bit “meh” to have the ability to toggle unlisted/listed prior to topic creation, besides for consistency, if it doesn’t offer any extended use-cases.


I guess this explains why I just got a like from a TL2 user on a new, unlisted post (which I’ve just deleted because… no one was supposed to see it, and that’s obviously not the case).

(At least he gave us a 10)


ok reiterating the need for this to be a feature / fix. there is no way an unlisted topic should be viewable until it is listed by staff so the unlisted status should always override the user category tracking settings.

i would also argue that unlisting an existing topic should override anyone’s category tracking. my view is that an unlisted topic is akin to a whisper post (they even use the same icons) and whispers certainly are not viewable by regular users watching topics. it should be unlisted for any user notification list as well as topic lists.


I agree, although this isn’t a feature I need personally today. Just saying I agree that the word “unlisted” used on other platforms such as youtube is specific in not sending out notifications about a post to subscribers of a channel, so seems like this can definitely be a problem for people thinking they’re writing a private message then to find out it may be out in the public realm what they wrote or posted.

I agree with your points. Not sure why it would be ‘by design’ that a topic you don’t want being viewed is sent to everyone watching a category. I understand that unlisting a topic was

But all that is needed is when a new topic is toggled unlisted in the composer, when its created no notification of generated. Only for staff.

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So if a user happens to watch every category on a forum and is involved in a topic that gets unlisted, they should stop being notified for it, even though they would expect to know what happens (since they were involved)? That seems like it could create lots of edge cases.

We’re not discussing unlisting that happens when people are participating in a topic as users already have the topic link. We’re discussing new topics that are unlisted before publishing. So if a topic is unlisted before publishing by rights, it would make sense that users are not notified of its existence even if they track the category until it has been listed.


This has never made sense to me either, and in my experience severely restricts the utility of unlisted posts.

I work around this by putting the post in an appropriately secure Category (or do it as a Personal Message), but these are suboptimal as they require quite a bit of work to get access / notifications right.

I’d like category and tag watching to be ignored for unlisted posts, but respected as per usual for the specific topic/user e.g. if they are the author or have specifically watched it.