PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

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hollies
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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by hollies » Tue Oct 29, 2013 5:43 pm

Sorry to drag this out but me too. Just spent a lot of time trying to work out why the pm had not sent like all other progs do, and moved it to the sent folder.

Good job I found this thread or I would still be trying!!

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by smokinjo » Sun Jan 26, 2014 10:22 pm

I read this string of message with keen interest.

The term outbox (6 years after this string of posts was written) still sits as outbox.

Outbox, in my mind, is where the message sits while the mail server sends it. In my mind.

Sent just means that the sender was able to send it off. This has nothing to do if the receiver actually read it. It just means it arrived with out bouncing.

I find the term "outbox" unclear. You could have:

Inbox - mail you received
Outbox - not needed, as all PMs are internal, and one can not add an addressee to the message if the person is not active in the system
Sent - mail you sent, as an archive.

There might be a way to have a note in the sent box as to if the person(persons) read your message. A receipt type of system.

Maybe this can be added as a feature. Or, maybe there might be a way that this can be an option in the configuration that can be changed, as per one groups personal taste/preference.

My 2 cents worth.

Joseph

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Lumpy Burgertushie » Sun Jan 26, 2014 11:29 pm

there is no email involved here.

if you wish to receive an email when you have a new pm then you set that in your profile and you will get an email.

this process seems to work without confusion for most of the many thousands of phpbb users our there for many years. I seriously doubt it is going to be changed this close to the the end of the phpbb 3.0 version. I am not sure how the PM system in the new 3.1 version works.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Brf » Sun Jan 26, 2014 11:30 pm

You are welcome to change the names of the folders of they confuse you. Simply change the Outbox to Unread, and the Sent box to Read.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Pony99CA » Tue Jan 28, 2014 2:54 am

Lumpy Burgertushie wrote:there is no email involved here.
I think that he knows that, which is why he said "mail", not "email". It would have been clearer had he said "PM" where he said "mail", but PMs are a form of "mail".
Lumpy Burgertushie wrote:this process seems to work without confusion for most of the many thousands of phpbb users our there for many years.
Prove that. This topic demonstrates that there is some confusion. The fact that more people haven't complained could be attributable to factors other than understanding how it works, like:
  • Some users may not have noticed PMs sitting in their Outbox.
  • Some users may have been confused, but figured it out on their own, but didn't know where to complain or decided not to complain (maybe they liked the feature after realizing how it worked or didn't want to waste their time on a relatively minor issue).
  • Some users may simply not use PMs.
The fact is that the terms used in phpBB had well-defined meanings in the world of E-mail (and even physical mail) and phpBB took a little liberty with those terms.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Lumpy Burgertushie » Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:16 am

notice I said "most of the many..." not all.

how about you prove that what I assume is any less likely than what you assume.

I "assumed" that he meant email when he said mail. I never have considered a PM as any type of "mail".

It is a private message. the private message system of phpbb does not involve email or mail of any kind unless the user has requested to be notified by email when they have a PM waiting in their inbox.

I understand that many people will equate the PM system with email. I understand that for some it is confusing, expecially when the PM just sits in the outbox and they dont understand how that works.

However, I believe that changing the name of the folders like brf suggested, would solve all the problems with that.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Pony99CA » Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:39 am

Lumpy Burgertushie wrote:notice I said "most of the many..." not all.

how about you prove that what I assume is any less likely than what you assume.
Fortunately, I don't have to prove anything as I'm not the one who made such a broad assertion. :D I was just suggesting examples as to why people may not have complained.
Lumpy Burgertushie wrote: I "assumed" that he meant email when he said mail. I never have considered a PM as any type of "mail".
It's as much a type of "mail" as E-mail is. You can send it from one user to one or more users. The fact that it doesn't use traditional mail servers is not very relevant. Or look at it the other way around -- most people consider mail (and even E-mail) to be "private messages", so calling PMs "mail" shouldn't be that surprising.

And that's where the problem comes in -- phpBB took liberties with well-defined terms. In the physical world, I would put a letter in my Outbox to have somebody pick it up and deliver it. It hasn't really been sent yet and I can still remove it (and, in that case, the phpBB Outbox does function like a real Outbox -- you can still edit or delete the PM). After it gets picked up and delivered, it's in the other person's Inbox. (The Sent Items folder could be considered the mail person's bag or cart. In the electronic world, though, Sent Items is used slightly differently, of course, becauase you still have a copy of the original, but it has nothing to do with whether the message has been read or not.)
Lumpy Burgertushie wrote:However, I believe that changing the name of the folders like brf suggested, would solve all the problems with that.
Yes, it probably would. And I think that this topic is asking the phpBB team to make that change, not all of the admins. As you said, it probably won't be done in phpBB 3.0.x, but it could be done in phpBB 3.1.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by jhebbel » Sat Mar 21, 2015 4:20 pm

OP is 100% correct on this matter, while having the ability to edit messages prior to them being red is handy, the issue at hand is more than simply terminology. There is no reason to separate what is essentially read and unread messages into 2 separate folders when a simple status icon will do. This is contrary to what has been accepted as the normal behavior for messaging systems the most popular being email. And it seems some people are confused between intuitive and useful. The current implementation is useful, but not at all intuitive. To be intuitive no explanation should be needed to anybody.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Lumpy Burgertushie » Sat Mar 21, 2015 5:41 pm

actually, the PM is only in one place. the folder representation is just that. it is really just a status icon as you suggest.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by drkent3 » Tue Feb 23, 2016 10:46 pm

Egads...

I'll first say that I only registered because of this thread. I have been a software developer since 1977, starting with mainframes of course...

If you do a Google search using the terms 'outbox' and 'phpBB', you will clearly see numerous message boards that have this question asked, and numerous replies. Claiming that 'most of the thousands' find this behavior intuitive is, I must say, a typical software developer's mentality. Because *you* have not personally heard about it means that there is no issue. If I had a nickle for every time a developer said something wasn't a problem because there were only a few complaints I would not still be working...

Inbox is 'intuitive' for a PM system, because it is a message sent to you. Outbox is not. Neither is Sent. What might be intuitive is 'Received' or 'Read'. I send a PM using this software once in a great while - sometimes it gets 'sent' quickly, sometimes it sits in the 'outbox'. I couldn't figure out why until I finally did a Google search. I never complained, I never asked - I just figured there was some trigger that I was unaware of that caused it to become 'sent'. I finally decided to find out today after sending a message to someone and wondering why it was not 'sent' several hours later.

OK - now I know and I will never ask again... but there are hundreds of users who ask - once (want proof? Do a Google search). It is not intuitive. So, you, as a developer, can be lazy (that isn't derogatory, it is simply the nature of developers) and claim that as long as someone isn't hounding you it isn't a bug - but that doesn't mean it isn't actually annoying to users. Perhaps users don't complain to *you* because they are not *your* direct customers - and those who are have taken the easy route and posted an explanation... because they know *you* don't care.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Piscator » Wed Feb 24, 2016 5:52 pm

Techie-Micheal wrote:It is just like your email. The outbox in your email is for pending emails that have not yet been sent. PM's are pending in the outbox because the recipient hasn't picked them up yet. Before the email leaves the outbox, you can still edit it or cancel it altogether. The same holds for private messages.
It's nothing like your email not even close wich is why so many struggle with it. email outbox are ones in the process of being sent. not sent and awaiting for someone to read them.

This is what people asume what an outbox is/does and why I also get confused posts from members asking why it hasnt been sent yet as its still sitting in their outbox. They quite rightly believe it to go to "sent" when they hit submit.

PM's need a bit of reworking, you cant even search them (3.0 anyway, I havnt checked on 3.1) trying to find a message from last month is torture and dont even remind me about trying to find one from last year :x too late ive been reminded.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by AmigoJack » Thu Feb 25, 2016 9:00 am

Piscator wrote:It's nothing like your email not even close wich is why so many struggle with it. email outbox are ones in the process of being sent. not sent and awaiting for someone to read them.
Depends on your view and your understanding on how e-mail actually works: clients also do have an "outbox" and sending its content comes afterwards. If you're at work and use clients like Outlook then chances are everytime you click "Send" it goes to the outbox and then is immediately flushed to be sent. However, at home where you use other clients or have a slower connection you might want to write/answer several e-mails and collect them all in the outbox before sending all its content at once (in contrast to send each e-mail separately ASAP). There you have you "outbox" versus "sent" scenario. Going more into technical details you always only "try" to send e-mails, when in fact the mail transfer agent (MTA) actually deals with being able to send or failing at this.
Piscator wrote:They quite rightly believe it to go to "sent" when they hit submit
That's why I modified the board to display status (New versus Old) and activity (Unread versus Read) next to each recipient. It not only helps to identify who has read the PM and who didn't, it also makes it more obvious that with the first recipient having read the PM it is also moved to the "Sent" folder. One could also argue that a PM still in the outbox can be edited, whereas "sent" PMs can't be edited anymore (which resembles very much to e-mails).

In overall this is the most logical approach. To me. But I know logic is rarily a thing for the masses.
Piscator wrote:you cant even search them
Modified my board to have a keyword and recipient/sender search ages ago. Proposed 2 years ago (and 4 years ago) to detach the whole search system, so you can use it on several more placed throughout the board, but I guess 3.1.8 is still not able to search in any of the places I've listed.
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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Piscator » Mon Feb 29, 2016 6:14 pm

AmigoJack wrote:
Piscator wrote:It's nothing like your email not even close wich is why so many struggle with it. email outbox are ones in the process of being sent. not sent and awaiting for someone to read them.
Depends on your view and your understanding on how e-mail actually works: clients also do have an "outbox" and sending its content comes afterwards. If you're at work and use clients like Outlook then chances are everytime you click "Send" it goes to the outbox and then is immediately flushed to be sent. However, at home where you use other clients or have a slower connection you might want to write/answer several e-mails and collect them all in the outbox before sending all its content at once (in contrast to send each e-mail separately ASAP). There you have you "outbox" versus "sent" scenario. Going more into technical details you always only "try" to send e-mails, when in fact the mail transfer agent (MTA) actually deals with being able to send or failing at this.
Piscator wrote:They quite rightly believe it to go to "sent" when they hit submit
That's why I modified the board to display status (New versus Old) and activity (Unread versus Read) next to each recipient. It not only helps to identify who has read the PM and who didn't, it also makes it more obvious that with the first recipient having read the PM it is also moved to the "Sent" folder. One could also argue that a PM still in the outbox can be edited, whereas "sent" PMs can't be edited anymore (which resembles very much to e-mails).

In overall this is the most logical approach. To me. But I know logic is rarily a thing for the masses.
Piscator wrote:you cant even search them
Modified my board to have a keyword and recipient/sender search ages ago. Proposed 2 years ago (and 4 years ago) to detach the whole search system, so you can use it on several more placed throughout the board, but I guess 3.1.8 is still not able to search in any of the places I've listed.
Thanks for the lengthy Reply ;)

its all very odd indeed as outbox seems to be both sent and pending read reciept with the option to edit before read all wrapped up in one feature..... not that im complaining but PM's seems to be a bit of an after thought of the whole system or devs dragging their feet with it and confuses the hell out of many of my members.

I like how IP Board handle their private messages. each PM acts as a thread/topic (no more 20+ odd seperate messages cluttering the inbox just for the same private discussion) and tells you on the lef thand side if its been read or not. theres inbox and drafts and thats its.

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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Lumpy Burgertushie » Mon Feb 29, 2016 8:50 pm

and many, if not most, people that have been using the very simple phpbb PM setup for years would probably find IPs system clunky and hard to figure out.

it is all in what you are used to. I would not say that the PM system was an afterthought or that anyone has been dragging their feet about anything.

remember, IP is not a volunteer projcect like phpbb is.

If you have suggestions for how to make phpbb easier to use etc. then I am sure that the developers would be more than happy to hear what you have to say. however, remember that any changes made will not be in the next update since everything has a time schedule for development and I think that 3.2 might even be feature frozen at this time.


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Re: PM Outbox/Sent Suggestion

Post by Piscator » Mon Feb 29, 2016 9:49 pm

Lumpy Burgertushie wrote:and many, if not most, people that have been using the very simple phpbb PM setup for years would probably find IPs system clunky and hard to figure out.

it is all in what you are used to. I would not say that the PM system was an afterthought or that anyone has been dragging their feet about anything.

remember, IP is not a volunteer projcect like phpbb is.

If you have suggestions for how to make phpbb easier to use etc. then I am sure that the developers would be more than happy to hear what you have to say. however, remember that any changes made will not be in the next update since everything has a time schedule for development and I think that 3.2 might even be feature frozen at this time.


robert
I appreciate that. perhaps not the best choice of words ill admit. what is probably more fitting is "dated" ? yeah thats it. it feels a little dated imo but please dont take any of this as criticism. ill say though that my first ever venture in to forums in general was with phpbb2 and found that when I used IP for the first time the PM system was anything but clunky and was very intuative. Though I still do prefer phpbb over IP I find the whole IP a bit bloated but I do like how they display PM's

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