[PAID] Turning Discourse Forum to Messenger App


I want my users to have (1) A forum (2) A personal messenger.

For personal messenger, can we use extensively the private messaging feature with discourse API for cool UX?

The final website should have two choices on top: Forums and Chats. When user clicks on chat, all private messages should display just like they do on web.whatsapp.com. Is this possible? If yes, it could be best of both worlds of a forum+messenger.

I can pay $1000 upwards. Please send me DM with budget.

Just to make things more clear - I am Admin of a telegram channel which has 50K+ members. I plan to bring them all on discourse with a content plan for forums. But to make the community a hit, I need to provide them personal messaging also.

In private messages, the topic will need to be hidden (it can auto populate from the message). The display of private messages should be as per first fixed characters. Like whatsapp displays the initial part of message. The listing of DMs need to be made really cool like whatsapp of telegram displays a list of chats.

FYI, Discourse can integrate with Telegram through the Chatroom Integration Plugin (discourse-chat-integration) :speech_balloon:

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What’s the purpose of migrating my users from telegram if they still have to use telegram :smiley:

My community is niche. I want to give them messaging service with custom smileys, custom stickers, GIFs etc. Discourse is open source and provides opportunity for such customization.

I dont want my users to be distracted by general purpose chat. Mine is a niche lifestyle community, and its better that users keep focused on the community itself.

So you don’t want the home page to display content just links to categories and personal messages?

You don’t like how personal messages are presented?

Do you have a set deadline?

Hi, I have attached screenshots of both desktop view and mobile view. Thanks for your patience. I am a non-technical business person, so here’s why I prefer the PM system of Discourse over a Messenger like Telegram:

  1. Good for niche community with custom smileys, custom stickers, custom GIFs
  2. Messenger app waste a lot of time because people tend to write short, irrelevant messages. In PM system they will write stuff which is more thoughtful. I personally consider whatsapp/snapchat a huge distraction and time waste.
  3. The default view of my site will be forums, with an option for chatting. So I want to promote forum-based civilized discussions, while allowing chats as much as necessary.
    I am going to take it slow, its not urgent. I will be using my personal savings, can spend $ 1-2K on the entire project. This community that I plan to build by migrating users from telegram is based on personal passion rather than a commercial reason.

I will seek feedback for couple of weeks, or until satisfied, then start work on this. It is important for me to understand from others whether I am taking the right approach for community building.

Okay, that’s understandable.

Thank you all for your responses in this thread or via PMs. I have talked to few friends; and demand for such community seems to be HUGE. We are planning to pool money for developing a highly scalable good quality app.

I am open to use any other app for chat which allows customization of smileys and GIF. For forums we can use Discourse, for chat any messenger which allows SSO with Discourse and customization for community. The chat messenger should allow communication between my community users only.

Please give your suggestions for developing a community app which has both forums + messenger.

Have you looked at the Babble plugin?

Btw this has rather turned into a Support Topic.

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Yes I have looked at Babble plugin earlier. But I am seeking something much more convenient; like web.whatsapp.com

Why should you say its a support thread when someone has budget for a custom project.

Developing something like Babble from scratch alone would cost thousands of dollars if directly commissioned due to the complexity of the interface customisations. Even more if it were standalone and required user account admin. If you have that kind of budget then great, but it’s a big project.

Babble is pretty convenient? It’s sitting in the discourse app itself. No need to administrate a separate set of user accounts because it is fully integrated. Don’t underestimate how annoying that would be.

You could look at Mattermost or any of the usual chat services. Mattermost is a good choice as it is open source and easily self hosted. Separate app on phone homepage too.

Look at something like Auth0 to maintain a single source of user account so you are not having to administrate in two places. Pavilion could help you with that.

Another good option is Discord. There are existing plugins to permit Discord logins and sync user roles. Those could be customised.

Support topic because a lot of this discussion is talking about existing alternative solutions as opposed to a clear specification. Don’t worry about it. The mods can move it if they decide to.


It’s more of a public scoping conversation, in my opinion, so if @saura901 decides to go existing integrations versus trying to build something custom (which I agree would be extremely costly to do), we’ll move somewhere else.


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