Unlisted category possible?


I need to create an ‘UNLISTED category’ for special purpose.
Is it possible?
I need this function to receive private messages BUT it does not provide functionalities such as bookmark, tagging, assign, mention, etc.

Thank you.

(Stephen Chung) #2

Remove everybody from the Security settings?

(Jay Pfaffman) #3

You can configure a restricted category that accepts submissions via email.


What I want is

a category that is set UNLISTED by default so that only the inquirer and the staff can read it


(Stephen Chung) #5

What you need to do is:

  1. Create a category
  2. Press Edit and go into Security
  3. Remove Everyone ==> Create/Reply/See
  4. Add Staff ==>< Create/Reply/See
  5. Save

This makes the category invisible to everybody except staff.

You can put an email account on it so email in topics will appear in this category. Then you and your staff can reply to it etc.

(Jay Pfaffman) #6

There have been calls for such a category that allows write but not read access several times. It doesn’t seem to be on the roadmap.

You can’t have that right now. The email-in solution for a staff-only category is the closest you can come.

(Stephen Chung) #7

Well, that is the huge thread on Create and Create/Reply permissions.

However, the OP has a conflicting requirement – if a category is UNLISTED, then obviously nobody should be able to see it in order to post something in there in the first place. Even if they get something in there (via email in), they shouldn’t be able to see/find it because the category is supposed to be UNLISTED.

So, in other words, it is exactly what you mentioned: a staff-only category with email in.

(Jay Pfaffman) #8

It’s not quite it, but it’s reasonably close.

It’d be cool if one could post in a category and be able to read their message but no others. The email-in solution won’t let them participate in the conversation except through email, I think.

(Michael Brown) #9

We already have that, it’s a private message addressed to a group.


Thank you all, I will investigate more time to play around with the functions as suggested.

(Jay Pfaffman) #11

Yeah, that’s pretty close. If someone is added to the group later, do they gain access to the old conversations? Also, stuff in PMs is harder to find to catch up on institutional memory (e.g., for a new person joining an organization).

(Michael Brown) #12

They do (we use this all the time for customer and some other incoming communication).

I can certainly see the utility of having certain categories where global users can only see topics if they created it.

(Jeff Atwood) #13

It is never going to happen, though. Because adding arbitrary per topic permissions does not exist in any form in our codebase and never has. Would be months to a year of work, and hard, break-everything work.

Tl;dr if this is a requirement, switch to some other software, or be prepared to wait 3-4 years.

(Stephen) #14

Would a creator group for ACLs still be considered a per-topic permission? Still haven’t dug into that side of the code to fully understand how it’s structured.

That way staff could see all posts in a category, whereas creator could only see their posts?

(Makary Gołosz) #15

Huh, I’m not a JS dev, unfortunately, but it seems that creating a plugin that would hide all posts in given category, showing only those, let’s say, with class=group-team and those where data-user-id equals current user.


I have one more question :

We have set an email in the category, but we are experiencing receiving only CURRENT email topics EXCLUDING all previous email conversations between the creator and the staff-members. Any idea how to fix to include all previous conversations?

(Stephen Chung) #17

You need a custom load then, I suppose.

Discourse won’t have topics before it can receive them. If you want it to look into your email archive to create topics, then it is a separate load.