Direct Messages and Private Discussions

Document created by Candida Rodriguez-Lee on Apr 10, 2014Last modified by Makenna.Brei on Sep 1, 2017
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Using direct messages and private discussions limits your audience to only the people you want. Direct messages and private discussions show up in the Inbox of only the people you send them to.

Note: While direct messages and private discussions are useful features, nearly all topics in your community can be useful to others, so keep things public whenever possible.

To send a direct message:

  1. You must first establish a Connection with a community member (this is an enhanced security feature to prevent spammers from sending Direct Messages)
    1. Follow the community member you would like to Direct Message
    2. They must follow you back to create the Connection
  2. Click the Send Message button on the Inbox page. Or, you can hover over someone’s name in your Activity stream and click the Message button on their pop-up profile box. The Send Message pop-up box opens.
  3. You can add additional people to your direct message by clicking on the Select People link and clicking the check boxes next to the names of the people you’d like to add.
  4. Type your message in the Message field. You can upload a photo or @mention people in your community.
  5. Click the Send button. Your message will appear in the Communications stream of the person or people you selected.


To start a private discussion:


  1. Click Create > Discussion
  2. Enter a title for your discussion in the field at the top.
  3. Your discussion can be marked as a question to encourage people to answer for points. If your goal is to start a discussion but not look for a correct answer, leave the Mark this discussion as a question box unchecked.
  4. Write your discussion in the content field. You can format your text however you’d like, insert videos, images, hyperlinks, emoticons, or tables.
  5. Spellcheck your discussion or view your content in HTML by clicking the icons in the upper right corner of the content field.
  6. To attach files, click the Browse button beneath the content field and select the files you want to upload.
  7. Add participants to your discussion by clicking the Specific People radio button and choosing people you’d like to include.
  8. Click the Post Message button to post your discussion.
  9. People can respond to your discussion by clicking the Reply button in the lower right corner of the content field.


Note: Sometimes after you’ve discussed an idea or question as a private discussion with a small group of people, you’ll want to make it available to a larger audience. You can do this by sharing the discussion or by moving it to a place with a wider audience.

To share your discussion with others:

  1. Click the Share button found in the top right corner of the page.
  2. Select additional people who you would like to be able to view your discussion.
  3. Click Share in the pop-up box. (The system will prompt a message letting you know that by adding participants to the discussion means they will now have access to this piece of content.)


To move your discussion to another place:

  1. Click the Move link in the right menu.
  2. Choose a new location for your discussion in the Choose Location pop-up box by entering a place in the Search field, or by choosing a space, social group, or project from the options listed.


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