While discussions are a great place to ask your own questions, they also give you an opportunity to share your knowledge, provide helpful advice, and answer questions posted by others. In discussions, you can do all of this and more. You can participate in discussions online and via email.
Watch the video
Watch the Higher Logic Academy video that covers how to start a discussion, as well as how to reply to discussion posts, publicly in the community and privately to just the author of the post.
NOTE: Also check out our Community Essentials for Members Learning Path page which has a collection of videos on site design, community management, and other aspects of Community Essentials. The videos are presented in topic-based paths.
Post a message online
NOTE: You must be a member of a community to post to it, unless it's a public community.
- Click Open Forum in your site's top navigation to access your community.
- Click the Discussion tab.
- Click Post New Message.
NOTE: From your community site's Home page, you can also quickly post a message via the widget:
- On the resulting page, write and format your message using the available options.
Indicates the community discussion to which you're posting your message. If you're an admin and belong to an additional community, you can select which one to post to from this menu.
|From||Indicates the author of the message; your name is automatically selected and cannot be changed.|
All content in your community must belong to a Topic (think of these as tags that have been curated by your association); this ensures community content remains organized and easier to find.
From this menu, select one or more Topics with which to tag your message.
|Subject||Provide a clear subject so other members can easily understand what your message is about.|
|Automatically insert content preview for links||
If you paste a link to a web page in the editor, the system attempts to capture a relevant image and promotional text for that web page. This is then used by the editor to create a preview for the content in your message.
If you don't want to use this feature, you have two options:
Write your message here, along with any formatting, images, videos.
TIP: See Content Editor to learn more about its features.
|Signature||This field displays your default signature, which will be added to the bottom of your message. Click Edit Your Default Signature to edit your signature prior to posting.|
If you'd like to include attachments with your message, click Attach and browse for your file(s) via the available options.
NOTE: Files attached via this method are automatically added to the community's library.
- When finished, you have a few options:
- Click Send to post your message. Any community members who subscribe to receive daily digests and/or real-time emails will also receive your message via email.
NOTE: If the community's Discussion is moderated, an administrator will need to approve your message before it posts.
- Click Schedule to schedule your post to release at a future date and time.
- Click Save as Draft to save your post as a draft you can finish later. As an additional safety net, your work is also automatically saved as a draft any time you're idle for 10 seconds.
NOTE: See Schedule & Draft Content to learn more about scheduling and drafting messages.
Post a message via email
If you're subscribed to a community's Discussion, you'll receive email notifications about new posts per your subscription type (e.g., Real Time, Daily Digest). It's from these emails, like the one below, that you can participate in a variety of ways.
NOTE: The default subscription email template configuration is shown and discussed below, so the available buttons and links in your emails may be different. Super Admins can update these templates on the Admin > Communities > Digest Configuration > Discussion Template page. See Manage Email Digests for more information.
- These options allow you to reply via your email client without going online. You can either post a new, standalone message to the Discussion OR send a reply to the entire Discussion group. As long as the system recognizes your email address as belonging to a Higher Logic account, your message will post.
- Clicking these options takes you to the Discussion to reply online. You can reply to either the message's author directly OR the entire Discussion group.
NOTE: Refer to the How to Subscribe to Discussions page to learn more about Discussion subscriptions and how to manage them.
Real-time participation emails
If you're opted-in to real-time participation emails, you'll be notified via email when someone:
- replies to one of your discussion posts
- leaves a comment on one of your news articles or library uploads.
These participation emails ensure you're immediately aware of the latest developments related to the content you've contributed.
See Real-time Participation Emails to learn more about this feature, including how to manually follow content and unsubscribe from participation emails.
Editing a message you've posted
Whether you've posted your own message or replied to someone's, you're free to edit your messages at any time. To do so, navigate to one of your messages and select Edit from the menu on the right.
You can also access all of your Discussion posts (and all your other contributions) right from your profile. Just click My Contributions > List of Contributions.
Replying to a message
If you read a thread and want to contribute to the conversation, there are two ways to do so:
1 - Reply to the entire Discussion
Click Reply to post your response inline to the entire discussion group. This will likely be your default response method much of the time to ensure the entire community can view it and engage with you.
When replying this way, you'll use the Basic editor, with a limited set of options. Click the ellipsis (...) button to expand the Basic Plus editor with additional formatting options.
2 - Reply only to poster
Select Reply Privately from the menu to respond only to the post's author. This is a great way to keep your response hidden from the rest of the community and only reply to the author of the post.
NOTE: You can't reply privately if the author posted anonymously.
TIP: When replying to a message via either of these methods, click the Original Message button to view the original message and all associated replies in the thread. This is helpful when replying to long or complicated messages that you want to reference as you draft your reply, and when a thread contains numerous posts.
Marking a post as the Best Answer
When someone starts a thread asking a question, there's generally a reply that offers the best answer. If the Best Answer feature is enabled for your community, Super Admins, Community Admins, and the thread's original poster can mark a reply in a discussion as the Best Answer by selecting Make Best Answer from a post's menu.
NOTE: You can clear a best answer post at any time by selecting Clear Best Answer from the menu. Only one post can be flagged as the Best Answer at a time.
The post is then visually highlighted to indicate this, ensuring other users know.
In addition, threads with a reply marked as the Best Answer include a Jump To Best Answer link at the top right, making it easy for users to quickly see the best content.
See the Make Best Answer section of the Post Management article to learn how to enable this feature.