Use invite system to invite course participants to topic in secure category

Continuing the discussion from How to send, configure, and accept invites to a Discourse site:


Hi - thanks!
Actually, the forum is not an invite only site; however, there are categories which are invite only because they are dedicated for course participants. Each course has a private category where participants are invited to join the forum discussions. The courses are on a different platform than discourse; however, the idea is to use invitation links when inviting users to join the discussion forum and discuss the course related topic.

One issue when creating the invitation link is that it must have a limited number of uses, but in this use case, we need to create the invite links to work indefinitely because there is no limit to the number of participants who will enroll in the course; moreover, it has been the best way to ensure that the participant will have an account, be added to the private category, and redirected to the related topic post. Great features!! :blush::+1:

  1. Student enrolls in the course
  2. In course intro, they are introduced to the forum (invite link for them to join the forum)
  3. After joining using the invite link they are added to the course specific private category ‘group’ (to be able to see the private category for discussion topics) and are redirected to the discussion topic related to the course
  4. Chapter 2, Chapter 3…etc each has invitation links which will direct participants to a related topic in the private category. If they don’t have an account or are signed out, it will ask them to join/login first i.e. the way invite links works, and this is good because we can’t assume that all participants will necessarily join from intro but this method ensures that the process to join the discussion forum is possible at any stage during the course which is why invite links are used all over the course.

Then have that platform add them to the group when they pay our whatever makes them join.


I think this would mean using the API, right?

When I tried to test the API request PUT ‘{{base-url}}/groups/{{groupName}}/members.json’ with the request:

"emails": "email1,email2",
"notify": "true"

Assuming email1 is already a registered user then email1 will successfully receive a notification and be added to the private group; however, assuming email2 is not a registered user then an invitation email is sent, but when email2 signs up for an account the account is not added to the group.

However, even if we say that this step worked perfectly it doesn’t redirect these users to the specified topic. Invitation links features are great:

  1. Course participant is in Chapter 3 but has not registered in the forum.
  2. Clicks on the invitation link, sent to the registration page,
  3. After participant signups or logs in, invitee added to private group & redirected to related topic (Chapter 3). [we want to make it easier for participants to join the discussion forum and it’s not compulsory which means not all participants will necessarily join from intro or chapter 1; however, if they decide to join later on during the course, it’s supposed to be easy]

Invitation links are a perfect solution if they worked! I don’t know how come they work fine for @JammyDodger but @tobiaseigen and I are facing an issue when reproducing the steps that new users are not redirected to the topic post (


Hi Gassim,

This is an interesting way to use the invite system. I changed the topic title to reflect the contents, to hopefully attract more people here who might be trying to do the same thing.

@dan will take a look at this. I agree we should not have a max number of redemptions allowed. Though the default should still be 1.

This is a bug @dan is working on too. Stay tuned over in that topic.


Thanks! I’m glad the bug has been fixed! :+1:


Hello! I found this topic based on this, so thank you :slight_smile:

I am looking to use my forum in basically the same way. It’s a public forum, but there’s a category (and sub-categories) that is private for people that are in an online course/subscription that is hosted on my site proper.

This use of the invite link system seems to work for my needs, but in theory, I will run into the issue of the maximum number of usages/redemptions.

Has there been any movement on no longer having a max number of redemptions @tobiaseigen @dan?

1 Like

I had the same answer and found a solution here on meta. 1000000 can be used max and if you have a million use for the link maybe it’ll be time to update the links?