Getting Started 9: Chat Rooms

This section will cover how to create, join, and manage chat rooms. All of the private chat features specific to sending and receiving messages, saving messages as Consol items, and sharing files and images are also applicable to chat rooms. It’s recommended you read through Getting Started: 7. Chat and Saving Chat Messages first.

The Chat Room List

The Chat Room panel is located on the right. You will see two default chat rooms, Announcements and Public. Announcements is a read-only chat room and is used by Consol Operators to post announcements related to Consol, including updates, fixes, etc. You may view the messages in this chat room, but only Consol Operators can post messages.

Public is available to all users and anyone can read and post messages there. The conversation in this chat room will be moderated and in general, the topics should relate to the usage of Consol, how people work, ideas and suggestions, and things that are generally related to productivity. Once the user base grows to a yet-to-be-specified number, this chat room will likely be locked to a member cap. Please keep the conversations safe for work or we will ban you from the chat room. 🙂

As you create and/or join other chat rooms, they will will appear in this list.

Create New Chat Room

Anyone can create a chat room and by creating a chat room, you become its owner.

  1. Click Add link at the top right of the chat room panel. A modal lightbox will appear giving you two options, 1) Create a chat room or 2) Join a chat room. Click Create.
  2. A new modal lightbox will appear. Enter the details for the new chat room.

    In the example above, I have specified the name, description and some branding colors associated with the project. By default, the usage limit is set to unlimited, but you may cap the number of users who can join. For example, a usage limit of 10 will allow 10 other users to join the chat room, not counting the owner. You may optionally set a password for an extra layer of security / privacy.

  3. Once you are finished, click the Create Chat Room button. You will see a confirmation message that displays the unique chat room link. Giving this link to other people will allow them to join your chat room, even if they are not Consol subscribers (more on this later). You can access this link in the chat room settings page, which will also be covered later.

    Close the window when finished. You will then see the chat room in the chat room panel.
  4. Click on the chat room name to open the chat room. You will also see the current list of members expand underneath the chat room name. In this example, there is currently only one user, the owner. If the list gets long, the entire chat room panel will scroll and if it gets very long, anyone will be able to see the user list under settings (covered later).

Join an Existing Chat Room as a Consol User

  1. Click Add link at the top right of the chat room panel, like before, but this time click the Join a chat room button in the modal lightbox.
  2. Enter the chat room code and password, if applicable, then click Join Chat Room.

    The chat room will now appear in the chat rooms list.

Add or Invite a User to a Chat Room

Anyone that is a member of the chat room or has the chat room link can invite anyone else to the chat room.

  1. Click on the chat room name in the chat room panel on the right to open the chat room. At the top, you will see the chat room header, which shows the title, description, and a few options:

    Click the Invite button.

  2. A modal lightbox will appear that explains the different methods for adding or inviting users to the chat room.

    Non Consol users can use chat rooms. In essence, you can enter Consol display names or emails associated with Consol accounts to immediately add Consol users to your chat room. If they are not a Consol user, you can enter their email address and click send invite and they will receive an email with instructions for joining the chat room.

    You can also give the chat room link to anyone. Consol users will need to use the Add link in the chat rooms panel to add the chat room themselves. Non Consol users can enter the link in their browser and follow the instructions on the page.

Editing a Chat Room

As the owner of a chat room, you have some options to help you manage the chat room. Currently these features are minimal, but they will be expanded in the future.

  1. Click on the chat room name in the chat room panel on the right to open the chat room. At the top, you will see the chat room header, which shows the title, description, and a few options:
  2. Click the settings button to bring up the settings page. Note: Any member can view the settings page, but theirs will be read-only.

    As the owner, you can change every aspect of the chat room if you like. Don’t forget to click Save Changes when you’re done.

Managing Chat Room Members

  1. Keep in mind that any member can view the chat room link and password. If you are concerned about unwanted users gaining access, the most effective way to keep unwanted users out is to apply a usage limit. If you only want 5 specific people, besides yourself, in the chat room, set the usage limit to 5. When you are ready to invite a new person, increase it to 6. If you want a large, open-access chat room, you can keep the usage limit to unlimited (-1). You can then kick or block unwanted users whenever you need.
  2. To view the available user-specific actions, click on their name in the member list:
  3. You and other users may not necessarily be connections, but belong to the same chat room. If you want to chat privately and share items with a user directly, you will need to be connections. The option to request a connection is available here. Click the Request Connection button:

    Alternatively, you can request a connection by clicking on their name from the chat rooms panel:

    If they are already a connection, clicking their name from the chat rooms panel will open a private chat with that user. If they are not a connection, you will be presented with this modal lightbox:

  4. Removing a user from a chat room will not permanently prevent them from rejoining. However, there may be scenarios where you want to do this, e.g. a team member leaves your team, but then rejoins your team later. You can also remove a user and then reduce the usage limit by one to effectively prevent the user from rejoining without actively blocking them. To remove a user, click the Remove User button:

    They will be immediately removed from the members list:

  5. As a last resort, you can block a user. Blocking a user will immediately prevent them from typing in the chat room if they have the chat room open at the moment you block them. In addition, the room will be removed from their chat rooms list and they will not be able to open it again or rejoin, even if they have the link. To block a user, click the Block User button:

    Upon blocking the user, the button will change to “unblock” in case you want to unblock them in the future.