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What you need to know about private messages (PMs): please read!

(4 posts)
  1. Nobugsonme

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    Joined: Mar '07
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    Posted 5 years ago
    Sat May 25 2013 20:23:40
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    Here are some things you need to know about private messages:


    While most seasoned users will know most of this, they will probably learn something new also. I welcome your comments and additional questions at the end.

    Do I read your private messages?

      * Admin is not routinely monitoring private messages. I have no interest in reading them and it's actually technically difficult for me to do so.
      * However, if another user claims you are harrassing them or otherwise violating the violates the forum rules), or Terms and Conditions of Site Use, I may be reading your messages in attempts to check on their concerns. I may accidentally see other messages when searching for the reported ones (that relates to the technical difficulty noted above).
      * There is currently one additional moderator who can send forum posts to spam, but this user has no ability to see or read others' private messages.

    How you can tell if mail has been opened by the recipient or not:

      * Mail showing a small envelope symbol before the title has not been opened by recipient.
      * Mail showing an envelope with no title cannot be opened by the recipient (because it has no title). Well, there's actually a workaround where the recipient can read it, but it's a lot of hassle.

    What will happen to mail if it is deleted, at different times, by sender or recipient:

    This is important.


      *If sender deletes message BEFORE recipient reads it, it's gone. The recipient will no longer have it in their mailbox, and the sender will no longer have it in their sent messages.
      * If recipient deletes message BEFORE reading it, , it's gone. The recipient will no longer have it in their mailbox, and the sender will no longer have it in their sent messages.
      * If recipient keeps message AFTER reading it, it stays in the recipient's messages and can't be deleted from sender's sent messages (it shows "n/a" instead of a check box for deleting).
      * If recipient deletes message AFTER reading it, it disappears from the recipient's messages and sender's sent messages.

    And now, you say, those are some crazy functions there!

    That may be, but this is the PM system available to use with this software right now. I am very likely to change the software in the near future, and will try to provide you with more interesting and better functionality.

    Given the way the software works, you should adjust how you use it accordingly.

    These, I would suggest, as best practices:


      * The private messaging system is -- like the rest of the website, per the Terms and Conditions -- provided as is and services may be changed or terminated at any time. In other words, you should not be archiving anything in there that you need for the future.
      * Don't delete sent mail, but understand it will disappear if the recipient deletes it. If you delete sent mail before the user reads it, they won't see it.
      In most cases, do delete received messages which you have read! Take a screen capture or copy and paste content for archiving on your computer if you want a copy.
      * The exception is if you have a concern about a message or user (for example, you receive a PM that you think violates the forum rules or Terms and Conditions of Site Use), do not delete it. Save it in your PMs inbox, and contact admin so I can have a look. If you do not retain the message, I can't check on it or take action.
      * If you want to copy messages you have sent, do this when you send them (by clicking the link in sent mail and taking a screen capture or copying and pasting), or you may lose your chance.
      * If you have to send an important message and want a record of the sent and received message, and feel you trust the person you will be contacting, ask the user if you can use email and exchange emails via PM. Be very careful if you choose to do this-- you are giving out personal information at your own risk, as is always the case online.
      * Due to the limitations of private messages, please note that if you need to contact admin (nobugsonme) you should send email. This is especially necessary for any important messages (including those relating to the website or your account). You can email admin via the contact form, and I will email you back at the email address in your profile (and please click the link in the sidebar to view your profile, and ensure that email address is correct).

    How do I send a private message?

    That question is answered here. And if you're asking, you may also need the FAQs about the Forums.

    I hope this is helpful. Please respond below if you have additional questions or comments or other suggested best practices!

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  2. Nobugsonme

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    Joined: Mar '07
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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Dec 10 2014 18:55:42
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    I am removing this from the green stickies because it is covered in the FAQS About the Forums (How to use the forums), itself a green sticky.

    Fewer stickies makes it easier for people to find information. People are more likely to see and read a few stickies (and thus find more) if there are not so many. Also, for stickies that get updated, updates are more likely to be seen if they are in "Latest Discussions".

    I am tagging this thread “former stickies”, so you can find it again easily. You should also subscribe to this or other threads you want to follow. You can do this at the top of any thread.

  3. loubugs

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    Joined: Mar '07
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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Dec 10 2014 19:04:26
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    * Mail showing an envelope with no title cannot be opened by the recipient (because it has no title). Well, there's actually a workaround where the recipient can read it, but it's a lot of hassle.

    Very important. I have messages that can never be read. I don't know the workaround.

    Professional entomologist/arachnologist. I consult on all matters dealing with insects and arachnids, including those of natural history and biology to pest management and forensic entomology investigations.
  4. Nobugsonme

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    Joined: Mar '07
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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Dec 10 2014 20:13:33
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    There isn't one. However, we should have a new system soon.


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