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What are Private Messages?

The Private Messaging system allows established, registered members to send each other individualized messages. Private messages are not a substitute for the public forums and are highly discouraged for use when discussing on-topic subject matter. Private two-way conversations are possible using private messaging and we expect that all personal exchanges be conducted over private messaging.

See also: Community participation and inclusion and Anonymity and disclosure

Sending Private Messages

Private messages work a little like e-mail, but are limited to established members of this forum. You may include BB Code and smilies in private messages that you send.

You may send a private message to a member of this forum by clicking the 'Send A Private Message' link in the private messaging section of your user control panel, or by clicking the Send Private Message button in a member's posts. This button will only appear if the member has enabled the private messaging system and has access to send and receive private messages.

When you send a message, you have the option to save a copy of the message in your Sent Items folder.

Private Message Folders

By default, you will have two folders in your private message area. These are the Inbox and the Sent Items folders.

The Inbox folder contains any new messages you receive, and allows you to view all the messages you have received, along with the name of the person who sent the message to you, and the date and time the message was sent.

The Sent Items folder contains a copy of any messages that you have sent, where you have specified that you wish to keep a copy of the message for future reference.

You may create additional folders for your messages by clicking the 'Edit Folders' link.

Each folder has a set of message controls which allow you to select messages, then either move them to one of your custom folders, or delete them completely. You may also have a button which allows you to forward multiple messages from a folder to another member of the forum.

You will need to periodically delete old messages, as there is a set limit to the number of private messages you can have in your folders. If you exceed the number of messages allotted to your account, you will not be able to send or receive new messages until you delete some old messages.

Whenever you read a message, you will have the option to reply to the message, or forward that message to another member of the forum. You may also have the ability to forward that message to multiple members of your buddy list.

Message Tracking

When you send a new private message, you may have the option to request a read-receipt for that message. This will allow you to check whether or not a message has been read by its recipient by viewing the Private Message Tracking page.

This page is divided into two sections: unread messages and read messages.

The unread messages section shows all messages that you have sent with a read-receipt request, that have not yet been read by their recipient. The time of the last activity of the message recipient is also shown. Messages in this section can be cancelled if you decide that their contents are no longer relevant, or for any other reason. Cancelled messages can also be restored to active status if the administrator has enabled this feature.

The read messages section shows all messages you have sent with a receipt request that have been read and acknowledged by their recipient. The time that the message was read is also shown.

You may choose to end the tracking on any message you choose by selecting the message and clicking the [end tracking] button.

When you receive a message with a read-receipt request, you may have the option to read the message while denying the read-receipt request. To do this, simply click the 'deny receipt' link rather than the title of the message, if it appears.


How do I enable/disable Private Messages?

You may enable and disable the use of private messaging via your account options accessible through the "My Profile / CP" link at the top of the forum pages.


I'm a new member. Why don't I have access to Private Messages?

In an effort to prevent accounts being registered for the sole purpose of sending spam and as a way of clarifying the role of private messages on our site, we have elected to disable the use of private messages for members who have not established a presence on the site by participating in the public forums over an extended period of time. Access to the private messaging facilities of the site are determined based on the length of membership and the number of posts contributed to the public forums.

We believe that the power of our site lies in the vast array of opinions and insights received from many different people and feel that private messaging regarding interpersonal relationships does not have a place in that formula. We strongly discourage the use of private messages and remind all of our members that there are genuine safety and privacy concerns when contacting someone privately off and on our site.

See also: Community Participation and Inclusion


Can I send an e-mail to other members?

No. For safety and privacy reasons, we do not permit members to e-mail each other. Established members can contact each other privately using the Private Messaging system.

See also: Anonymity and disclosure



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