We're making some adjustments to the emails we're sending out notifying of activity.
One question we're having is whether it's actually a good thing to send the entire private message in the email.
On the one hand having the message right there in the email is handy to quickly see what it says without having to log onto the site.
On the other hand, by including the full message in the email, people sometimes end up just responding to the notification email rather than going to Travellerspoint. Or they might put off responding because there's less immediacy. If they were logged in to Travellerspoint and in their message centre then it's much easier to just click the Reply button there. And finally, sometimes (rather rarely) spammers send private messages. Having these delivered by email makes some people think that Travellerspoint is sending those.
So, in short the proposal is to not show the full private message in the emails anymore and instead show a link to the message on Travellerspoint.
Let me know what you all think!
I think the big risk with not including the message text is that the emails become very generic - and people new / irregular to the site won't actually realize they're real. There's an active subset of spammers who try to lure people to random sites with "You have X new messages" spam. How would google e.a. distinguish between those and our PMs if not through the included text?
I don't know if that argument is very strong, though. Lots of other forums don't include the PM text either, and that still works fine (afaik - though I don't use gmail, of course, so maybe it doesn't actually). Beyond that, I do have a strong personal preference to keep the current situation, though; unread PMs are a bit of a todo list for me - I already know what they say because of emails, but sometimes I just don't have an answer yet, or need to research a bit, or am just out of time - and then the unread count works as a reminder on further visits.
So... maybe a preference, defaulting to not including the text of the message, but with an option for those of us too set in our ways to want change, to get the current behaviour back?
[ Edit: Edited on 15-May-2013, at 01:43 by Sander ]
Hehe, my unread count just gets stuck at 20 and never whittles down. Obviously they are read, but in my email. Actually, that's another reason to require the click - so that the number there is a real number.
Preferences suggestion taken on board though. I think it might actually be time for an email preferences page on the site in any case. There's so many different ones going out now.