Visibility of topics when Muted from tags

Tags are becoming more and more popular. And think in the future, with are possible the emergence of describe to them, they will more enjoy the demand. At the moment there is no possibility to mute a topic using tags.

Topic, has 2 tags. I disable these tags.

I found this old topic from 3 years ago.

Thank you.

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I agree with the OP. If we’re trying to sell tags as being powerful alternatives to categories, they need to be able to more fully mute.

What I’m observing is that mute on categories removes it from new and latest, but mute on tags only removes it from notifications?

This seems entirely insufficient for my users being able to exclude unwanted content as is being discussed here.

I don’t even think they should show up in Latest either, but both muted categories and tags seem to. I thought Latest was supposed to be the default work flow, but if so I feel like [tags] should support these negative filters.

Without this functionality, I don’t think I’ll be able to win the tag vs category war. Will have to setup all the categories so they can click into them and browse just what they want the old school way.

Open to all input and advice. Thanks!


Agreed. If we’re selling tags as the solution to a high performing, robust IA then this seems like a fair enough request.

@neil thoughts?

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Did you test this yourself @hawk? Are we sure that’s the current behavior, verified?

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Yes. Muted tags still appear in latest here on Meta.


Are we verifying the “new topic created with muted tag” versus “muted tag edited into the first post later” scenario?


Both scenarios tested. Neither are blocked from latest.


Hmm this used to work. First is to make sure you enable that behaviour by going to Admin > Settings > Tags and check “remove muted tags from latest”.

However it does nothing now. I’ll fix.

Wait, it does work. My mistake was that my topics had two tags, one that was muted and one that wasn’t muted. In that case, the topics will show.

So @hawk @John_Lehmann did you enable “remove muted tags from latest”?


Nope! First I’ve heard of it. Sorry for the runaround.


Didn’t know about that, great! However, it doesn’t seem to be working for me. First, while the setting says “latest”, the mute option itself doesn’t mention latest, which is suspect:

Second, muting the tag doesn’t remove from my latest for either my admin or TL1 accounts. It doesn’t remove it from unread for my admin account (my TL1 account doesn’t have an Unread button at the moment).

Can anyone else confirm this behavior?

@neil I re-read what you wrote and now I can affirm that it’s working as you said. Sorry for not being more careful.

However, this behavior renders the feature nearly useless at least for my use cases. My users want to avoid certain content, and what this does is to filter topics out only IF they have not added any additional tags. But most our topics are going to have multiple tags, so it will rarely filter anything out.

(If there was such a thing as tag whitelists and a topic had both, then I could one making the argument that the tiebreak should be on the inclusive side. But we have no such positive evidence.)

Additionally I think it’s counter-intuitive. That’s why both you and then I misunderstood how it was supposed to be working. My users will be confused, and then disappointed.


I tend to agree @neil that the “any muted tag mutes the topic” behavior aligns better with people’s expectations here.

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It really depends on why tagging was implemented and the needs of the specific community.

If you’re working with a flat taxonomy categories work well, posts exist in a single category or category.

Deeper and more complex taxonomies require content be available into two or more places, potentially at different levels within the taxonomy. In that case it would be totally unexpected for you to lose access to a post because it was also tagged with a subject area you don’t have any interest in.

I see this quite a lot with clients who use Discourse for knowledge management, particularly in legal circles. Managing content in this way is the crux of certain practice management standards such as Lexcel. Lawyers occupy one or more subject areas, and follow those areas almost exclusively. If the behavior above is changed, then tags effectively become mutually exclusive, and as limiting as categories.


We’re going to be coming up against this soon as well actually, through happenstance on launch our community is UK/Eire centric but we’re getting a lot more US/EU interest now and we’re international by intent. The relevancy of the category hasn’t changed for anyone, but the topics will. It was my anticipation (should have checked) that people from Italy could choose to ignore US tagged topics and vice versa if they so wished and nearly all our stuff is tagged with 2-3 others.

The alternative at a glance is having US/EU/ETC as parent cats then duplicating all the existing parent cats into subcats for the territories or similar which isn’t going to work.

If a topic is tagged “Italy” and “USA”, don’t people who follow Italy topics want to see that topic? Now a topic tagged for them is invisible.

Another example which was the model for this feature: a content creator on Envato only makes video content, so has muted topics tagged for audio. Then someone posts a topic in the marketplace because they want to hire someone to create video for them with music, so has tagged it “video” and “audio”. The video creator wants to see it so they can bid to work on the video. Any topics only tagged “audio” are not relevant to them.

I guess we’ll need a site setting to control how this works.


I still think “I hate this tag with the fire of a thousand suns and never ever want to see it” has a clear and rather unambiguous meaning to the average person…


Precisely, sometimes you filter to reduce noise - so seeing overlapping tags is desirable. Sometimes you filter out of a dislike and it isn’t.

Let’s not kill the first with the second.

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Conditional values for it would be great, but if it’s one or the other then “NSFW” tag muted shouldn’t be ignored simply because it’s “NSFW + Italy”. I’ve gone for a low fruit there I admit but it’s a good example I think, topics that are NSFW are a mainstay of almost every community and can be in almost any topic category.

Then you get into types of tag. That sounds like hell.

Happy to take the lead from other products here and flag audience-related stuff like age rating to categories.

I don’t think that solves the problem. NSFW may not have much to do with age related content, it’s just not suitable for work, I’m thinking something as benign as Veterinary footage. That’s fine for 13+ generally speaking to watch but you’d usually not allow it in the office.

Once that footage has been flagged as being “NSFW”, how does the mod tag it? It’s not offensive, it could be in the “Vet practice” category so nothing can be done with it other than to say “Never post these kinds of things in the correct category” or, the mod tags it as NSFW putting us back to square one.

NSFW markers exist outside of mostly every “flag” mechanism whether that’s FB/IG/Reddit and the like, it’s a cross-category tag isn’t presumed to be inherently flag worthy. In practice though I do see this both ways, I’ve a couple of people who have “gambling” muted, but if it had been “Gambling + support” then they’d miss it.

Sorry for my formatting I have issues with the nerves.