Feature request, private messages

Support area for phpBB's mChat extension
Posts: 63
Joined: 28 Nov 2018, 15:57

Feature request, private messages

Post by Bgagger »

I have a suggestion for a possible mChat feature, perhaps as a separate add-on, like Broadcast, or Infinite Scroll.

Just for consideration. If something like this could be explored, we would be very thankful. But I understand if it might be too time consuming or problematic to implement.

On our forum, users miss a feature from our old chat client 'Blueimps Ajax chat'. That had a private message feature. So that you could send a message to another user in chat that was not public, but only visible to the recipient.

The only way to do this presently is via regular forum PMs. But that is a very roundabout way of sending someone a quick poke while chatting.
You have to open a separate webpage (leaving the existing chat page), enter recipient name, write a subject and fill in the body field, both required. Then click send. the recipient then has to go to their PM inbox to notice the message and open the message (again still in a separate page and entirely separate interface from the actual chat).

This process used to be a simple line command directly entered into the chat message field of the old chat client:
"/msg Lisa I think Jack is full of shit..."
press Enter, and bam! the message would instantly appear in the chat flow, but ONLY visible to Lisa.

Now CLI type commands are not really possible with the way phpBB and mChat is constructed. But there could still be several ways to implement a private message feature.

For entering and sending:
Using the thee dots menu next to a user post in chat, you could for example set up a new 'private message' icon. That opens up a modal (similar to a room invite) where you fill in your message and send. This connects the command to the recipient user by use of the established three dots menu.

Or, you could implement a new button, perhaps next to the existing send, BBcode and Smiley buttons. Press this to open up a modal (again, could be similar to the new room or invite to room pop-ups). In the new window you enter recipient and message, then click send.

Or, and I don't think this is really technically possible with phpBBs current BBcode enguine, you could try to find some way of using a custom BBcode to pick a recipient and enter a message. (So yeah, just throwing that one in there for shits and giggles)

For delivery:
To not reinvent the wheel, you could make use of the existing Notifications flow already built into phpBB. The same way PM notices or room invites work now. But just a simple notice that contains the senders username and a message. Nothing more, no link to open anything further. The entire point just being that the message is received by a specific user only. Without leaving the chat and not publicly visible. To send short, private messages.
We currently make use of the 'phpBB 3.2 Active Notifications' extension:
Which has so far worked out perfectly! This means you don't have to reload the entire page for notifications to update. You can have the chat page open and nothing else, and still receive notifications seamlessly.

Another variant, that would be preferable but perhaps more complex to implement is if the message would be delivered in the regular chat flow. Just like a normal chat post, but directed to a recipient user, so not loaded nor displayed for anyone else.
Posts: 4
Joined: 23 Mar 2019, 08:49

Re: Feature request, private messages

Post by Onki »

Would be great to get this feature to work. :)
Rooms is just too much for me and my users want to follow the chat while they can use the private message system.
Wouldnt mind to pay a small fee.
Posts: 14
Joined: 07 Aug 2019, 14:15

Re: Feature request, private messages

Post by br0nks »

yes, idea is good.

sending private message in chat window!

cannot wait that update!
Posts: 1
Joined: 09 Mar 2017, 07:43

Re: Feature request, private messages

Post by doomyboy »

Same here. :)
Posts: 7
Joined: 13 Oct 2018, 07:25

Re: Feature request, private messages

Post by roury »

please Kasimi, this will be great!!!
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mChat developer
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Joined: 06 Oct 2016, 09:56
Location: Germany

Re: Feature request, private messages

Post by kasimi »

As already pointed out, this is a complex feature which is why it hasn't been on my radar.
Bgagger wrote: 26 Feb 2019, 22:51 Now CLI type commands are not really possible with the way phpBB and mChat is constructed. But there could still be several ways to implement a private message feature.
What makes you say that commands aren't possible? They are, it's been done before: https://www.phpbb.com/community/viewtop ... &t=2392166

The problem with private messages, as in 1-to-1 communication, is storing them: mChat wasn't designed for messages to be displayed only to certain users. Rooms is a monstrosity of an add-on that uses numerous workarounds to allow private rooms, something which I won't be doing again in a future Private Messages add-on because it was a pain to develop and test.

If there will be such a Private Messages add-on, I will need to find a better solution. Don't hold your breath. :|
Posts: 14
Joined: 07 Aug 2019, 14:15

Re: Feature request, private messages

Post by br0nks »

ok than, but what about that if its difficult to make it like this in main window, lets make an option that by clicking on special image next to user, automatically will open a 'room' which is only for those two chatters open for a time limit? so if its inactive it gonna close and remove for user all private messages. (of course in database that data will stay for admin to have log)

maybe that is more possible to do because of room extensions?

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