Organizing Your Conversations With Topics

Organizing Your Conversations With Topics

The Topics mini-app helps team discuss work more asynchronously. Think of topics as threads that are more structured, more organized, and make it easier to document important conversations.

Why were Topics added to Rock?

Messaging is great for short, ad-hoc, and more urgent conversations, but if you don't follow along with these messages in real-time they can quickly become chaotic and distracting.

The Topics mini-app solves these issues by enabling more structured discussions, providing a better way of documenting information, and preventing notification overload.

More structured discussions 📂

Having long threads in spaces about different things can quickly get confusing. especially in bigger spaces with lots of members and even more messages. If you don't follow along in real-time, keeping track of what's being discussed can become time consuming and unproductive.

Topics allow you to organize your discussions in individual & standalone topics with a title, description, and follow up posts added underneath each topic.

Documenting information 📔

Most teams discuss a lot of different things in one space. This can range from very specific discussions about a feature to decisions on what to do next. All of this information is then hidden away in a very long list of other messages.

Topics solve this issue by providing a place where team members can discuss a specific topic in a single place. As the entire discussion is stored at the topic level, all of this information is documented so anyone can read up on this in a very organized and centralized manner.

Notification overload 🔔

When you send a message in a space, this message might not be relevant to everyone and has the potential to distract. Muting the space can be a tricky solution for this as you might miss important messages relating to your own project.

By organizing specific conversations into topics, notifications will only come to those who are following the discussion. While you can still read up on the different messages sent in a topic, you won't receive notifications from topics unless you are involved in a conversation as a follower.

How to use Topics in Rock

Creating new topics

You can create a new topic by going to Topics. Topics are composed of three elements: titles, descriptions and messages:

  • Title: Shortly describe what your topic is about with a title.
  • Description: Add a description to any topic to kick off the conversation. You can also add relevant attachments to the description if needed.
  • Messages: Anyone in the space is welcome to join the discussion in topics. In addition to all the functionality you typically find in comments, messages in topics also allow for threads, and audio messages.
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Tap to Organize for Topics

It is also possible to convert existing chat messages into new topics. This can come in handy if you want to move a conversation into a topic so it doesn't get lost in the long wall of other messages in a space.

Use Tap to Organize, by double clicking the first message, and then individually select other messages that you want to add or move to a topic.

Messages will be added into the topic, and you can change the title and description to what best describes it. Everyone in the conversation is added as a follower in the topic so they receive notifications for any new messages.

How are topics different from Notes?

Notes are useful when you want to keep important information at hand within Rock such as meeting minutes, FAQs, or team guidelines.

While some of the features overlap between Notes and Topics, they serve different purposes for your team. Notes are for longer form content with fewer messaging features while Topics are intended to organize conversations and reduce the message overload in large group spaces.

You can see the difference in functionality by the richness in messages under topics compared to comments under notes. In addition to the features in Notes, Topics allow you to create threads of messages or add audio messages to the discussion.

Questions about Topics? Reach out to us in the Rock Customer Support Space for any questions or feedback you might have.