Visibility of topics when Muted from tags

I think we can all agree that both types of use cases apply.

While some of us think the “hard mute” option is more intuitive, we have to consider the forums @Stephen cites which are already expecting the “soft mute” behavior.

Given that different kinds of tags or mutes is complicated, the best compromise IMO is a global checkbox, like the one which dictates if tag mute affects Latest or not.


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It needs some control, how much fine control we expect users to exercise with multi-variant conditions is a harder one to see working well…

I think “NSFW” should be determined by each community’s guidelines and be separated away from tags into a checkbox when submitting a topic. Then people can enable/disable NSFW from the hamburger menu. If that idea has merit then that umbrella is possibly removed from this topic’s scope at least. In that scenario NSFW can be flagged so a mod can do something with it at least and the exclusionary default for it is a more plainly obvious case.

If we are talking about specialized behavior for nsfw I think that should go into a different topic so as to not get us off track of the more general changes proposed.

My primary use case is for fostering an environment that is favorable to our senior members who are interested in having valuable high level dialogues with each other, but aren’t interested in new user questions. A common example would be “What kind of reptile is this” #identification, and there are at least a handful of basic questions like this. So if they can’t hard-mute the tags then mute just doesn’t work, and I have to create many “user user” subcategories categories. In addition, with a few lines of plugin code, the system could auto tag topics with tl1 and they could ignore posts from an entire group. More on that here.

In Information Retrieval terms, if you want precision, you hard mute. If you want recall, you soft mute. The quick fix is a global setting that suits your forum.

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I think the best to do here is create another field to list all tags that you want that any topics that have ANY of them be muted and filtered out so that they don’t show in the latest.

The field that already exists would mute and don’t show in the latest tab any topics that have ALL tags listed there.


Current field (filter out if all) has tags a, b and c. Topics with tags a and c wouldn’t show in latest while topics that have tags b and d would show.

New field (filter out if any) has tags a, b and c. Topics with tags a and c wouldn’t show in latest and topics that have tags b and d also wouldn’t show. But topics with tag d only would show, as well as topics with tags d, e and f.

It could also have a checkbox to filter out (mute) all topics without tags.

So you’re suggesting another field in user prefs like so:

with sensible names, or it could be done with a global site setting and users only have one Muted input. I’m not sure the complexity of another field with a subtle difference from the other field is worth the potential for confusion.

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No we definitely do not want to do that.


Then how about a new setting like “Mute even if other tags are present”, default enabled? Then @Stephen and @John_Lehmann can each get the behaviour they need.


I am mixed on this being a visible site setting think it should be hidden default on, but support adding this knob


@neil I would be totally satisfied.

@sam so by default on you mean hard mute as default, changing existing behavior?

Yes, default should be a hard mute, it is far easier to explain, we still need to grandfather the old behavior for some customers, so we can add a hidden site setting for it.


I’m really curious to see how this change goes over.

If the toggle isn’t in /admin then any hosted community who uses tags inclusively is going to hit a wall here.


I don’t see why the legitimate use case is being hidden, removed for anyone who hasn’t read this topic. Watching tag A and muting tag B means the watched topics get muted, which isn’t intuitive.

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It’s like mathematical operator precedence. Mute should override because it’s more extreme and indicates a stronger preference.


I think there is very little argument about changing the default behavior, but some question around if we make this new site setting visible or hidden. I am on the fence.

There are lots of settings around tags so I am not certain if one more setting would be the end of the world. I guess since Neil feels pretty strongly about this being configurable we can keep the setting? Jeff?

@dan can you sort this out?


Just curious about this task. Is it in someone’s queue? Thanks!

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This is in my queue. I will get to it this week.

EDIT: I submitted a pull request to implement the new site setting mute_other_present_tags (default: true)


I merged the site settings related to muted tags (remove muted tags from latest and mute other present tags) into setting remove muted tags from latest with 3 options never , when used alone or with other muted tags or always. The new default value is always.

Previously, mute other present tags had no effect unless remove muted tags from latest was also enabled. The new changes should clear up the confusion.

Thanks @Stranik for pointing this out.