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[Comments Threads] email subscriptions are useless

The current system of emailing to say "someone just made a comment" and nothing else does not scale at all. Currently, this is what I do when someone posts in the Hunger Games Competition thread:

  • Click the link to go to the thread
  • Click "newest" to see if the new post wasn't a reply
  • If I don't see the new post, click the "Discussions" link at the top to get to the discussions main page
  • Look at the "recent posts" box on the right to see if the post is recent enough to be linked there
  • If not, give up because I am not sifting through 300 posts most of which I've already read just to look for it

Note that this means that even if someone directly asks me a question I may never see it. In fact, I'm more likely to miss posts directed at me than posts that aren't because of the "Newest" feature not allowing me to see newest replies as well as newest posts.

I see two immediately obvious (and not mutually exclusive) fixes:

  • Include the actual text of the comment in the notification email
  • Include a link to the comment in the notification email

Note by Chad Miller
3 years, 2 months ago

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Yes, the lack of a direct link from the email, is more than a bit woeful. Especially, when things get upward and beyond 20 comments. Redoing the subscription system is high priority on our agenda, because as you point out it doesn't scale well. Peter Taylor Staff · 3 years, 2 months ago

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We are working on extensive fixes to our email notification and subscription system. The Hunger Games Competition thread in particular is absolutely not usable right now. We will be including the text of the comment and a direct link to the comment in future notification emails. We expect to implement these changes some time in the next few weeks. Thanks for the feedback! Suyeon Khim Staff · 3 years, 2 months ago

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Haha, this is so true. Whenever someone commented on a post with already lots of comments, I click the link in the mail, then just go the general Discussions page because there it's easier to find. Tim Vermeulen · 3 years, 2 months ago

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