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From Ethan Jewett <>
Subject Re: Actions, tags, and the public timeline
Date Thu, 29 Oct 2009 16:38:06 GMT
On Tue, Oct 27, 2009 at 11:55 AM, Vassil Dichev <> wrote:
> Actions don't explicitly tag the messages. The problem is the
> long-standing bug ESME-26- URLs are parsed incorrectly (hash sign
> breaks the url), so the anchor is interpreted as a hashtag. I had some
> doubts if hashes would clash with URL parsing, but since this bug
> seems to be popular lately and pops up in all places, I think it's
> high time for me to try to fix it. (I'm aware I've promised other
> stuff but not delivered yet...)

Ahhh... yes, I see. Looks like you've fixed it too? Thanks!

> Should we eliminate the public timeline altogether? I don't find much
> use of it either on Twitter or in ESME.

I think we should seriously de-emphasize it in the UI. Possibly
eliminate it entirely. For a small instance it is a decent discovery
mechanism, but in a large instance it will quickly become useless.

> I think we must be careful with adding too many concepts or things
> will become too brittle. For instance, imagine that we turn generated
> actions into some other type of message and we're suddenly not able to
> filter them from the personal timeline, which benefits keeping the
> personal timeline nice and clean.

Agreed, I don't really want another concept, but there is an issue (see below)

> What you're offering actually sounds a lot like having the message
> generated by the action put in a specific pool. This is the only type
> of message which does not show in the public timeline. Then your
> followers will not be able to see these messages, though.
> And by the way the RSS action *is* "owned by a particular user" and
> "pulls in external events from RSS feeds" (did you mean entries
> instead of events?). I don't see what is the difference from what you
> want to promote- an action which is not an action? Would it be
> created/edited in the normal actions page or on a separate page?

Yes, it is like having an action put a message in a particular pool.
Actually, this is probably exactly what is needed. Basically, some
types of action-generated-messages (my Twitter RSS feed, for example)
I want in my main timeline, displayed to my followers. Other types of
actions (the Jira RSS feed, for example), I'll not want displayed to
my followers.

Dick's solution to this problem was to set up another user for the
Jira RSS action, so people could follow that user if they wanted. But
the items still polluted the public timeline. Plus, it was another
user for him to manage, and we all know how that ended ;-)

It seems like the correct solution is exactly what you proposed: Allow
the creator of an action to specify what pool the action's messages go
into. The default should be the public pool. This way, Dick could have
just created a "JIRA" pool and people could join that pool to get the

Brings up the question of how to let people join a pool without being
added. Maybe a pool could be marked as "Public" and anyone could join?


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