denise: Image: Me, facing away from camera, on top of the Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome (Default)
Denise ([staff profile] denise) wrote in [site community profile] dw_maintenance2013-04-20 11:46 am

Heads up: Replying from comment notification emails will be changing with next code push

Monday night/Tuesday morning's code push will include a change to comment email notifications designed to make it much (much!) easier to reply to comments from the email notification. I wanted to give everyone a heads up ahead of time so y'all don't worry when you see the change!

As it stands now, replying to a comment email notification requires you to a) have HTML emails enabled, b) be able to load a Dreamwidth web page by submitting the form (so it doesn't work if you read the email while you're at work if your work has Dreamwidth blocked, for instance) and c) be logged in as the account you're trying to reply as. This causes problems and annoyance for people who use text-only emails (like me!), for people who are trying to reply somewhere that they can't load Dreamwidth itself (which kind of defeats the purpose of comment notification emails in some cases), and -- most often -- for people who have multiple Dreamwidth accounts, who have to log in and out of different accounts all day. People have developed all kinds of workarounds, including browser extensions that will do the logging in and out for you, but not only is that still kind of annoying, those browser extensions have a really annoying habit of losing your login cookies, and of course they don't work if you're not on your own computer.

So [staff profile] fu has completely overhauled the process of replying by email. After our next code push, the reply form will be removed from notification emails entirely. Instead, you'll be able to reply to a notification email inside your mail client, just like you'd reply to any other email, and your reply will be posted to the site.

You can read the FAQ -- How do I reply to comments from email notifications? -- before the feature goes live, but some questions I anticipate:

Do I have to do anything special in my email reply?

Just reply to it the way you'd reply to any other email. The only requirement is that the text of your reply must come before all the quoted material. (In other words, you need to "top-post" your reply text.)

Do I have to set anything up first to make it work?

If your email client is set up to send emails from the same email address you've confirmed for your Dreamwidth account, you don't have to do anything special to set things up ahead of time. If your email client is set up to use a different email address -- maybe you forward your Dreamwidth comment notifications to a different address than your confirmed email address, or are using the example+foo@example.org email format as your confirmed email address (to sort your emails locally) but send email from example@example.org instead -- you'll need to set whatever email address you send email from as an authorized email address for email posting/commenting.

How do I set the subject for my comment?

To change a comment's subject, change the subject of the email. If you leave the subject alone, the comment will have the same subject as the comment you're replying to (or no subject if the comment you're replying to didn't have one).

How do I set an icon for my comment?

To pick an icon other than your default, add "post-icon: keyword" as the first line of your reply. For instance, if the text of my comment is "I am happy!" and I want to use the icon keyworded "happy", the text of my reply email would be:
post-icon: happy
I am happy!
> Quoted text appears here

What if I have multiple accounts with the same confirmed email address?

Replying to a comment notification email will always post the comment as the account the notification was sent to. For instance, even if [personal profile] username and [personal profile] username2 have the same confirmed email address, if I receive a notification email to [personal profile] username and reply to it, the comment will appear from [personal profile] username -- even if my browser is logged in as [personal profile] username2 at the time.

Can I reply to a comment email as an account other than the account that received the notification?

No. For security, the reply will always be posted as the account that received the notification. If you need or want to reply as another user (or anonymously), you'll have to follow the link to reply at the website, same as before.

So how does it work?

After the code push, each comment notification email will have a unique reply-to address that includes information about what comment it's replying to, plus a secret authorization token to identify you. When you hit 'reply', your email client should use the reply-to address, which will make sure the email gets to where it's going. (If your email client isn't set up to use the reply-to address rather than the 'from' address automatically, you'll need to either change that setting, or remember to always use the reply-to address instead.)

If you ever accidentally share the reply-to address with someone else, that person might be able to reply as you under some (rare) circumstances, so it's important to keep the reply-to address secret. If you ever accidentally share it with someone, you'll be able to reset the secret authorization token on the Mobile tab of Account Settings. Resetting the token will mean you won't be able to reply to old comment emails anymore, but new comment emails will generate a new secret authorization token for future use.


Again, this will not be live until the next code push, but if you've got any other questions in advance, let me know! I think that as soon as you see it, you'll fall in love with it as much as I have -- especially if you're trying to juggle multiple accounts. :)
alexseanchai: quill, ink bottle, and calligraphy (Default)

[personal profile] alexseanchai 2013-04-20 04:34 pm (UTC)(link)
AWESOME.
lavendertook: (annamaria cheers)

[personal profile] lavendertook 2013-04-21 03:31 am (UTC)(link)
Way cool! Thank you, bb! (-:
anatsuno: a women reads, skeptically (drawing by Kate Beaton) (Default)

[personal profile] anatsuno 2013-04-20 04:39 pm (UTC)(link)
AWESOME! this will solve replying-from-email issues I've had on mobile devices in the past! I am ecstatic. GREAT JOB [staff profile] fu, YOU ROCK! Thanks a LOT. :D
random_xtras: The words Tam I am on a purple background (OOC)

[personal profile] random_xtras 2013-04-20 04:42 pm (UTC)(link)
So "post icon:" with quotes or without?

Right now my brain thinks this is complicated. But I don't even know where I left my brain right now, so...
alierak: (Default)

[personal profile] alierak 2013-04-20 04:50 pm (UTC)(link)
Without. There's an example right below that sentence.

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darkicedragon: Kenshin resting on top of Arctic Fox, a red heart in the top left corner (Default)

[personal profile] darkicedragon 2013-04-20 04:44 pm (UTC)(link)
OH MY GOD, THIS IS AMAZING. Thank you, [staff profile] fu! :D
lannamichaels: Astronaut Dale Gardner holds up For Sale sign after EVA. (Default)

[personal profile] lannamichaels 2013-04-20 04:44 pm (UTC)(link)
Oooh, I like. For some reason, my phone browser recently decided it hates letting the replies go through. Now (okay, soon) I can reply from e-mail again! :D
lannamichaels: Astronaut Dale Gardner holds up For Sale sign after EVA. (Default)

[personal profile] lannamichaels 2013-04-20 05:14 pm (UTC)(link)
Btw, how will this work on accounts that require captchas for all comments? I haven't encountered this when commenting by email here, but have on LJ.

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msilverstar: (Default)

[personal profile] msilverstar 2013-04-20 04:46 pm (UTC)(link)
way cool!
omggirlonthenet: (gigglefit)

[personal profile] omggirlonthenet 2013-04-20 04:54 pm (UTC)(link)
This is the best thing! Seriously. I have a 9-5 deskmonkey job, and with some other journal sites who will remain nameless, I was able to post replies on break via email, as I am one of those people with multiple accounts for joint/round-robin writing purposes and I was disheartened when I found it didn't work here.

I could still type up my replies at work, but I had to save them and/or email them to myself so I could post them when I got home, but now? Ohh the glorious freedom that comes with being able to post right from my email again!

And as long as I remember my keywords, I can change the icons too! I think that part's what I'm most excited about.

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finch: (Default)

[personal profile] finch 2013-04-20 04:54 pm (UTC)(link)
Yay I can reply to comments on my phone without waiting a million years for firefox to load! [staff profile] fu is my hero.
februaryfour: (Default)

[personal profile] februaryfour 2013-04-20 04:54 pm (UTC)(link)
YESYESYESYESYES! <3 Now I can reply from my phone instead of waiting until I get to a computer!
trobadora: (Default)

[personal profile] trobadora 2013-04-20 04:55 pm (UTC)(link)
This looks awesome!
got_swagger: (BDS:  Connor & Murphy - Awesome)

[personal profile] got_swagger 2013-04-20 05:00 pm (UTC)(link)
This. Is. Awesome!

This is going to be so convenient and efficient.

Thank you for all the hard work.
jjhunter: multiple watercolor butterflies flying (butterfly flock)

[personal profile] jjhunter 2013-04-20 05:03 pm (UTC)(link)
I anticipate a learning curve, but am very excited about the possibilities.
pocketmouse: Dalek war poster, says 'To Victory' (dalek_victory)

[personal profile] pocketmouse 2013-04-20 05:08 pm (UTC)(link)
I don't have multiple accounts, but I do keep forgetting that I have to go to the websites to reply instead of replying to the email, so this is awesome!
yubsie: (Default)

[personal profile] yubsie 2013-04-20 05:08 pm (UTC)(link)
Yeeeeees! Being able to reply from email no matter what account I'm logged in as has been the feature I missed most from Livejournal.

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lbilover: (Default)

[personal profile] lbilover 2013-04-20 05:32 pm (UTC)(link)
Oh yay! That's awesome!
scribblesinink: Fireworks (emo celebration!)

[personal profile] scribblesinink 2013-04-20 05:34 pm (UTC)(link)
This couldn't have come at a better time! Starting next weekend, I'll be in a position where I can post by e-mail but not use the website. I'd already resigned myself to being able to post updates and read comments, but not reply to those comments until I got access to a proper computer again. In other words: this is awesome!
green: text icon that says 'hell yeah' (stock: hell yeah)

[personal profile] green 2013-04-20 06:02 pm (UTC)(link)
This will take some getting used to, but it sounds awesome. \o/
brisus: (Default)

[personal profile] brisus 2013-04-20 06:05 pm (UTC)(link)
That is a really cool feature! Good luck!
phoebe_zeitgeist: (Default)

[personal profile] phoebe_zeitgeist 2013-04-20 06:14 pm (UTC)(link)
Just for the sake of clarity, does this mean that notification emails will no longer have the "view all comments to this entry," "go to the top of the thread," or "view the thread" links? Because those are useful, at least for those of us without impeccable memories. I rarely use the reply button in the existing notification form, but I use the others routinely.

If they won't be there any more it's not a catastrophe; I'll be able to work around it. But it will make the site less functional for me, without adding anything I personally will use (though I understand that the majority will find this a huge improvement, and respect the need to do what works for that vast majority of users).

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roga: (Default)

[personal profile] roga 2013-04-20 06:20 pm (UTC)(link)
That is amazing! Wow. Looking forward to it :-)
subluxate: Sophia Bush leaning against a piano (Default)

[personal profile] subluxate 2013-04-20 06:27 pm (UTC)(link)
Oh, this is SO cool. Definitely making sure my circle sees this!
caput_mortuum: (Default)

[personal profile] caput_mortuum 2013-04-20 06:32 pm (UTC)(link)
This sounds fantastic! Thank you, fu!
uncurse: 1.07 (Default)

[personal profile] uncurse 2013-04-20 06:33 pm (UTC)(link)
Okay, so the composition of the notifications won't be changing, just the method of email replying? I just wanna know so I can make sure whether or not I'll have to adjust my gmail filters that sort comment notifs by RP character, which search for the community names in the subjects and such.

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vae: silhouetted jump for joy (gen: jump for joy)

[personal profile] vae 2013-04-20 06:34 pm (UTC)(link)
BRILLIANT.
sperrywink: (Default)

[personal profile] sperrywink 2013-04-20 06:35 pm (UTC)(link)
Go [staff profile] fu!!!

I've been waiting for this for years.

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