What, there's a MeMail? August 18, 2011 6:51 PM   Subscribe

MeMail interface?

I was flabbergasted to learn, the first time I was inclined to memail another mefite, that I'd been memailed myself dozens of times before, and had no notification and no idea that it had happened. Further, having sent that memail I can't figure out how to send another without clicking on the user's nick link in a post first. It's incredibly frustrating and obscure, and it's not obvious that the functionality even exists.
posted by localroger to Feature Requests at 6:51 PM (47 comments total)

Do you not see the little envelope in the upper righthand corner? That will show up differently when you have a message unless you've somehow disabled it with Greasemonkey or something. We send people a "Welcome to MetaFilter" MeMail and it's one of the things that's configurable on your profile page. Maybe we should make it somehow more prominent in the intro signup text.

It's mainly supposed to be a member-messaging system for people who don't want to be contactable in other ways and we use it for a very small number of admin things [notification of local IRL events and notification that a post you've made has gone live with a link to it]. And yeah there isn't a way to MeMail people without either going to the MeMail page

http://www.metafilter.com/contribute/messages.mefi


and replying to a message, or clicking a link from a user's profile pages. People can opt out of MeMail entirely so some people aren't contactable in this way. You can also opt to have MeMail sent to the email address that is in your profile page, though you do have to go into the MeMail system to reply. We've resisted making it more functional [reinventing the email wheel basically] so it's likely going to stay a small type of thing, though we might build more notification-type stuff into it in the future.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:57 PM on August 18, 2011


Man, metatalk is on fiyah!
posted by phunniemee at 7:01 PM on August 18, 2011


I JUST LOGGED INTO MY ME MAIL INBOX AND I CANNOT FIND REPLY TO ALL BUTTON> THIS IS OUTRAGENOUS
posted by odinsdream at 7:14 PM on August 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


I agree that it isn't obvious enough when you get new MeMail. Some sort of notification at the top of the page (maybe something similar in concept to the red flash of doom that appears when a post is deleted) would be very helpful in exposing the feature a little better.
posted by killdevil at 7:17 PM on August 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


There's an option in your site preferences that says, "Forward MeFi Mail to email?" that is checked by default. It should send any new MeFi Mail directly to your email inbox. I always see them right away that way.
posted by pb (staff) at 7:23 PM on August 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm usually pretty crushed when I see the little envelope, because it's either a spam from matt telling me about a meetup I have no intention of attending, or it's someone telling me what an asshole I am.
posted by crunchland at 7:37 PM on August 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


crunchland, you know you can opt out of IRL reminders, right?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:46 PM on August 18, 2011


hug it out, bro!
posted by mlis at 7:49 PM on August 18, 2011


I like that jessamyn didn't tell you that you could opt out of being told you're an asshole. I don't know if I'd ever get MeMail if I checked that box.
posted by Errant at 7:54 PM on August 18, 2011 [18 favorites]


I like that jessamyn didn't tell you that you could opt out of being told you're an asshole.

That's only available on Metafilter+
posted by vidur at 8:04 PM on August 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


I'm usually pretty crushed when I see the little envelope, because it's either a spam from matt telling me about a meetup I have no intention of attending

That's because Matt has 10,000 email addresses that he has been collecting since 1995, and no one has told him he's not allowed to spam them. He should ask about it on AskMe.
posted by lollusc at 8:13 PM on August 18, 2011 [18 favorites]


Vidur = funny
posted by josher71 at 8:14 PM on August 18, 2011


He should ask about it on AskMe.

He did, but he used a sockpuppet.
posted by pompomtom at 9:12 PM on August 18, 2011 [5 favorites]


I'm envisaging Matt and the other mods re-enacting memorable MeTa threads with socks on their hands.
posted by arcticseal at 10:20 PM on August 18, 2011 [4 favorites]


other mods re-enacting memorable MeTa threads with socks on their hands

Been there, done that - sorry but I only have the "nude" version available online.
posted by Meatbomb at 11:20 PM on August 18, 2011


Somebody once memailed me.

/wistful look

I think this was back in the year that Standing Stone won the Derby.
posted by Jofus at 12:10 AM on August 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


There's an option in your site preferences that says, "Forward MeFi Mail to email?" that is checked by default. It should send any new MeFi Mail directly to your email inbox.

I use this feature to automatically sort MeFi Mail into a folder. Another benefit of the forwarding is that one can use the search feature of your email client to to search MeFi Mail.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:07 AM on August 19, 2011


I look forward excitedly to my once-a-year memail message.

Without the option to forward the mail checked, it's incredibly easy to miss the change in the envelope symbol if, like me, you get a memail message once a year (did I mention that?), because you're not accustomed to looking at it.

I think I'd prefer to see something more prominent, like maybe a separate line under the 'welcome back le morte de bea arthur' that says 'you have unread mail' in a fairly prominent colour. At present it sort of sits quietly up in the corner saying ahem... excuse me a little too quietly to be heard.
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 3:56 AM on August 19, 2011


If you want MeFi Mail, you gotta send MeFi Mail. Can't get nothing out of the system if you don't put something in.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:22 AM on August 19, 2011


Thanks everyone. I've turned on the forwarding function. I guess I was expecting a function like that to turn on a blinking notifier like, say, the one at DemocraticUnderground (although 90% of the time that just means they are hitting me up for another donation.)
posted by localroger at 5:10 AM on August 19, 2011


MEMAIL! YOUMAIL! SHEMAIL! HEMAIL!

hut hut hut



I'm not sure where I was going to go with that, now.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:17 AM on August 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


I've never had any trouble with MeMail but I'm not surprised that more casual users would. (Not saying localroger is, just that that's my expectation.) Metafilter is retro and old-skool and all that, not fancied up like FB with chat whose head you have to cut off to get it to go away, and I like it that way.
posted by immlass at 5:56 AM on August 19, 2011


My memail is about 40/60 people telling me I'm an asshole and people telling me that other people are assholes (usually crunchland).
posted by empath at 6:41 AM on August 19, 2011


I use the simple expedient of always using the top navigation bar to go to MetaTalk (first link of the day!) and the envelope is right above it, so I always notice if there is new mail.

It doesn't happen often that I get new messages, but when it does, I'm rarely more than a day or so out in reading it.
posted by quin at 7:37 AM on August 19, 2011


What's the other end of forwarding mefimail to email? How does replying work? I've assumed it involves visiting the user's profile and clicking 'memail'; that there's no way to do it from the email client. Is that right?
posted by carsonb at 7:37 AM on August 19, 2011


Also, what's the New User memail/intro text read like? Heck, maybe it's time for a new sockpuppet. Hm, where's my list?
posted by carsonb at 7:38 AM on August 19, 2011


How does replying work?

You're right, you can't reply via email. You visit the message within MeFi Mail and click the Reply button to respond.
posted by pb (staff) at 7:56 AM on August 19, 2011


Here's what a MeFi Mail received in my email looks like. Evertyhing between starts has been changed, for obvious reasons.
[MeFi Mail] Re: ** Message title**
From:
mefimaildontreply@metafilter.com Add to Contacts
Sent:
Fri, Aug 19, 2011 at 9:21 am
To:
**my email address**

You have a new message from MeFi member **member name**:

** Contect of message here **
--
** MeFi name of member who sent the message**
http://www.metafilter.com/user/** member number of Mefite who sent the message**

This message was sent via MeFi Mail. Read all your messages:
http://www.metafilter.com/contribute/messages.mefi
I've assumed it involves visiting the user's profile and clicking 'memail'; that there's no way to do it from the email client. Is that right?

Yep, there's no way to reply to MeFi Mail in an email client.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:57 AM on August 19, 2011


killdevil writes "I agree that it isn't obvious enough when you get new MeMail. Some sort of notification at the top of the page (maybe something similar in concept to the red flash of doom that appears when a post is deleted) would be very helpful in exposing the feature a little better."

I get memail forwarded and only go into to the interface when I need to reply to someone (rather than just read my message from matt). Any kind of flashing notification would persist for days maybe even weeks and be very annoying.

So I'm voting to not make the notification more irritating.

carsonb writes "what's the New User memail/intro text read like? "

This would be a good addition to the wiki if someone has a copy floating around. Being pre new user email I haven't actually seen it.
posted by Mitheral at 8:01 AM on August 19, 2011


I use me mail pretty much exactly like how you use the little clearing behind the gym.
posted by The Whelk at 8:41 AM on August 19, 2011


You get blowjobs in memail?
posted by klangklangston at 8:42 AM on August 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


Yes.


Yes I do.
posted by The Whelk at 8:43 AM on August 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Memail: fist and lips.
posted by clavdivs at 9:45 AM on August 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's mainly supposed to be a member-messaging system for people who don't want to be contactable in other ways

Is there a way to disable MeMail? My email is in my profile, and I'd rather receive things there than have to work with the MeMail interface. I want to get the email, though, so I'd want to have the "This user has disabled MeMail message" point folks to my actual email. (Some people seem to think it's somehow more intrusive to send email, while I find that MeMail is more frustrating to work with, and thus more "intrusive".)

Maybe if it were possible to respond to the forwarded message, like you can do on Facebook?
posted by anotherpanacea at 11:40 AM on August 19, 2011


Maybe if it were possible to respond to the forwarded message, like you can do on Facebook?

No, sorry, we're not going to make the system more like email. This is designed to be a very lightweight messaging system. If you need a full-featured email client, it's better to hop over to email. You can disable MeFi Mail in your account and email will probably be someone's next best option to contact you.
posted by pb (staff) at 11:51 AM on August 19, 2011


Is there a way to disable MeMail? My email is in my profile, and I'd rather receive things there than have to work with the MeMail interface.

On your Preferences page, make sure you have "Display email to other members?" checked and "Opt-out of MeFi Mail?" checked. Note that this means you don't get mefimails period, including system-generated stuff like the new post heads up or IRL alerts. If you want those but not mefimail, probably better to just make sure you get mefimail forwarded to email for the folks who choose to contact you that way and navigate an "email is better for me..." conversation with them if you think you will exchange more correspondence in the future.

I want to get the email, though, so I'd want to have the "This user has disabled MeMail message" point folks to my actual email.

You're on your own there; stick a note in your profile saying HEY, IT'S TOTALLY COOL TO EMAIL ME, I JUST DON'T LIKE MEFIMAIL or whatever if you like.

Maybe if it were possible to respond to the forwarded message, like you can do on Facebook?

We don't have any plans to do this, no. The forwarding option is more an alert for folks who don't want to check for new mefimail on the site manually than an attempt to externalize mefimail interactions to other email clients.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:51 AM on August 19, 2011


My only gripe about memail is that the text doesn't wrap when I resize my browser like it does throughout the rest of the site. I always have to maximize my window to read my messages. :(
posted by phunniemee at 11:58 AM on August 19, 2011


Also, what's the New User memail/intro text read like?

Here's what it says:
From :
mathowie
Date :
Aug 28, 2011 5:28 AM
Subject :
Welcome to MeFi Mail
Message :
MeFi Mail is a private messaging system for Metafilter members. To send a message to another member, visit their profile and click "Send MeFi Mail". From there you can compose a message, and it will appear in their MeFi Mail inbox. (And your MeFi Mail "Sent Mail" page.)

If you'd like to receive your MeFi mail at your email address, click "Preferences" at the top of the page, and check the box next to "Forward MeFi Mail to your address?" (You might have to verify your email address first so we know you're the owner of the address.) Once checked, click "Save your Preferences" and future MeFi Mail will show up in your email inbox.

If you'd rather not have other members sending you MeFi mail, head to "Preferences", check the box next to "Opt-out of MeFi Mail?", click "Save your Preferences", and the "Send MeFi Mail" option will be removed from your Metafilter profile.

Thanks for checking out MeFi Mail, and welcome to the site.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:06 PM on August 19, 2011


My only gripe about memail is that the text doesn't wrap when I resize my browser like it does throughout the rest of the site.

It's already pinned to a relatively thin column -- I think from the left margin of the window out to the right margin on mefimail is maybe 800px, and for the mobile stylesheet its significantly narrower. What's the context where you're running into this being problematic?
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:11 PM on August 19, 2011


I usually have metafilter shrunk to less than half of my screen width (15"...maybe? laptop screen). I don't know what that equals in pixels, sorry. I don't have smartphone, so I don't know what it looks like on the mobile site.

Here's what memail usually looks like for me: skinny
I have to resize it to at least here to see the whole message in one shot, otherwise it scoots off the edge and I have to side scroll: full

This is only a "problem" in the way that having to walk over to the sink to refill my glass is a problem. (Which is to say, it's not even remotely a Big Deal.) If I'm the only one bugged by it, don't worry about it.
posted by phunniemee at 12:30 PM on August 19, 2011


Is there a way to disable MeMail?

You're more than welcome to turn it off the way cortex explains. I turn mine off whenever I'm traveling and leave a note in my profile that I've turned it off for just this reason, so that people don't send me mod requests when I'm not going to be around much.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:36 PM on August 19, 2011


I'd turn it off but I'm not sure I'd be able to tell the difference.
posted by desjardins at 12:42 PM on August 19, 2011


Thanks for the screenshot, phunniemee. Unfortunately you're in a very small group of people looking at the site at such a narrow width in a standard browser. The site isn't designed to scale down that small. I can see in your screenshot that the header links are breaking in odd places too.

One option is to view the mobile site in your standard browser. That should make things look much better for you at that size. To activate the mobile style just visit mobile.metafilter.com in your browser. It'll bounce you to the site with the mobile style set. You can click "Switch to Standard Site" at the bottom of the page to return to the normal site view.
posted by pb (staff) at 1:14 PM on August 19, 2011


The site isn't designed to scale down that small.

But what if I write everything like this?

Yeah, it's really not a big deal. Thanks for looking into it, though! I'll try out the mobile site for a bit and see how it goes.
posted by phunniemee at 3:42 PM on August 19, 2011


I know how to do the small but what phunniemee just did, what is that? I tried extra small and tiny but they don't work. **





**not an html guru and the last programmable interface used was a TRS 80
posted by infini at 3:28 AM on August 20, 2011


Nested small tags.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 3:54 AM on August 20, 2011


if then, so
posted by infini at 3:58 AM on August 20, 2011


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