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If you’ve ever used Twitter or Facebook, or if you used SCN before we moved to this new platform, you’re probably familiar with a feature known as @mention (“at-mention”). @mentioning another user allows you to include a link to that user’s profile in your post and notify the user that you mentioned them, without you having to send them an email yourself. The system notifies the user for you, automatically.

When we moved from SCN to SAP Community and switched platforms, we lost @mention functionality, and it’s been one of the most highly demanded features. There were two ideas in Idea Place related to it: Restore ‘mention’ functionality in submitting question/answer/comment, Title of link when paste into message, and several questions in Q&A.

Well, today I’m excited to share with you that we have rolled out @mention functionality here in the new community. We’re hoping this will help restore some of the lost feelings of connectedness among our members, and that it’s a step in the right direction towards returning the community to its former glory.

You can use the @mention functionality in any community content type, including blog posts and blog comments; questions and answers, and comments on questions and answers; and Coffee Corner discussions and comments. (The only exception is in editorial comments that moderators use to provide feedback about content—at mention does not work in any editorial or hidden comments at the moment.)

How to @mention Members

There are two ways to @mention members in the community: you can use the @ symbol or you can enter a profile URL as a link.

To use the @ symbol to @mention someone:

  1. In edit mode in a new post, type “@” and one or more characters of the name of the member you want to @mention. You can look them up either by their display name (in the example below: sajidamir2016) or their username (in the example below: Sajid Amir).

    The member lookup function will begin displaying the list of results, first from your list of connections (following/followers) only, and once you’ve typed at least two characters, from the list of all members.

  2. Select the member from the list of results.

    (If you don’t see the member you’re looking for in the 20 results displayed, it’s possible there were more than 20 resulting matches. In that case, continue typing characters to narrow the list dynamically until the one you want appears in the list.)The system changes the @mention into a link to the member’s profile in your post, with the member’s display name as the link text.

  3. When you’re finished typing your post and you publish or submit it, the system sends an online notification to the member(s) you @mentioned.

    If an @mentioned member has their email notifications for @mentions turned on (more about that below), they will also receive an email telling them you mentioned them, and in which post.

To use a profile URL to @mention someone:

  1. Copy the profile URL of the member you want to @mention.

    (See this blog if you’re not sure how to find it: https://blogs.sap.com/2017/05/26/finding-your-user-profile-or-the-profile-of-another-user-in-the-sap-community/)

  2. In edit mode in a new post, paste the profile URL where you want the @mention to occur.

  3. Select Submit (or in some cases Publish) to publish the post.

    The system automatically replaces the link you entered with the member’s linked display name and sends that member an @mention notification.

    If the @mentioned member has their email notifications for @mentions turned on (more about that below), they will also receive an email telling them you mentioned them, and in which post.

You can also use the link tool in the editor to add a profile URL to your post. Note that if you do this, however, the system changes the link text to the mentioned member’s username even if you’ve already changed the link text to something else (it does the conversion upon Publish or Submit).

If you save a post in draft mode with an @mention in it, no notification is sent. The @mention notification is only sent when the post is published/submitted.

Also, if you go back and update an already-published post that has an @mention in it, no @mention notification will be sent when that post is updated. However, if you edit an already-published post and add a new @mention into it, when you update that post, a notification will be sent for the newly added @mention.

What Happens When Someone @mentions You

If another member @mentions you, you will receive a notification in your online notifications.

If you have your email notifications for @mentions turned on, you will also receive an email telling you that another member mentioned you, with a link to the relevant content.

If you do not have your email notifications turned on yet for @mention email notifications, and you want to turn them on, follow these steps:

  1. From the avatar drop-down menu, select “Account Settings”

  2. In the Email Notifications Settings section on the Account Settings page, select “Edit Email Notification Settings”

  3. For “Content I was mentioned in”, click on the green Subscribe button.

  4. After the Subscribe button has changed to a red Unsubscribe button, click on the Close button.

    You will now receive email notifications whenever another member @mentions you in a post.

We hope to see this feature get extensive use and contribute to bringing back that community feeling. Ready, set, @mention someone!

I’d love to give a shout-out to all of the team members involved in bringing you this feature, but the list would be too long and I’d probably inadvertently leave someone out. So I will limit it to the Community Team members who helped me drive this: Caroleigh Deneen and Moshe Naveh, and the dev team leaders whose teams worked on implementation: Michael BraunGabriella Gogl-Gyorgy, and Mirko Friedrich. And of course Gali Kling Schneider and Oliver Kohl.

Another set of people who were involved in helping us make sure we were rolling out something that would work for the community and that was rollout-ready were some of the Strategic Advisory Council members, namely Colleen HebbertJitendra Kansal  Jürgen L, Michael ApplebySamuli Kaski, Tammy PowlasVeselina Peykova.

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32 Comments

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    1. Steffi Warnecke

      Caroleigh Deneen

      It’s like Christmas came early! *_*

      Buuut it seems like the mention thingy ignores my followers. I don’t get a result if I just post 1 or 2 letters. I need to get a bit more detailed.

      And I can only find Jürgen L via “@Jrgen”, when I type in “@Jü” nothing comes up.  :/

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  1. Paul Hardy

    This is fantastic news.

    I noticed that as the seasons roll by, every time a missing bit of functionality is restored the amount of activity on the SAP Community (views on blogs posts and the like) increases.

    The community engagement is still a small fraction of what is was before the migration, but nonetheless it is increasing , and that has to be a positive thing.

    What still catches me out every day is that I log in, have a look at the list of blogs and at the top right hand corner is a picture of me with a little ball saying the number of new notifications I have. The fact I am getting notifications again is a good thing.

    Anyway I click on the picture of myself, choose “notifications” and I am taken to a page showing people sitting round a desk and laughing, overlaid with text saying I need to log in.

    I am not sure that is supposed to happen.

    Cheersy Cheers

    Paul

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    1. Jelena Perfiljeva

      I’m pretty sure it’s NOT supposed to happen because the URL is for the notifications and without logging in it’s impossible to even get there through navigation. One would have to deliberately type in that URL without logging in to trigger a legitimate error.

      But, unfortunately, SCN login still suffers from the “Dory syndrome”. “Welcome to SCN! Here is your stuff …<click>… Who are you?”. Maybe in 2018 it’ll be fixed. Baby steps!

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  2. Steve Rumsby

    It is handy that I don’t have to figure out how to type that funny umlaut thing to @mention Jürgen L 🙂 Also nice that you don’t have to turn a ” ” into a “_” to match multiple words.

    Thanks everyone.

    Steve.

     

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    1. Michael Appleby

      Hi Denis,

      Thanks, I did do some of the testing and I agree Search is a bit weird.  The actual navigation needs some tweaking, but I had practice with the first using Chat.  Starting to memorize the main folks’ handles for which I will use the @mention functionality.  Juergen’s is a case in point Jürgen L can be found easily if you type the umlaut (which I never do).  Otherwise just remember to type Jrgen after the @ symbol.

      All in all, a welcome improvement to the Community.

      Cheers, Mike

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  3. Audrey Stevenson Post author

    So it turns out I had to update the blog post because I got some of the details wrong and things are actually better even than I had described them. I’m surprised my community has not already chastised me for this! LOL

    Anyway, here are the two things that I updated:

    Turns out that you can paste in a profile URL just like that into the text, without using the link tool, and upon Publish, the system converts it into the member’s display name and sends a notification.

    And if you update a post, and it has an existing @mention in it and you add a new @mention in it, when you publish the update, the originally mentioned member does NOT get a (second) notification, but the newly mentioned member DOES.

    Sorry for the confusion! I’m just glad that the correction was due to a better experience, not an issue!

     

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    1. Lars Breddemann

      I just tried using both types of @-mentioning in the Q&A answer area (https://answers.sap.com/questions/325063/view-existing-calculation-views-in-the-new-web-ide.html?childToView=324445#answer-324445) and it did not work at all.

      Nothing got replaced, I got no popup (here in the comments section I do!) and all links have to be manually turned into hyperlinks.

      Regression? Oversight?

      I also noted, that there is a common theme that users who post questions are simply not aware of the @-mention feature and put usernames into the “user tag” area, hoping this would lead to some sort of notification.

      There needs to be some better guidance for that when users post questions. Alternatively, it would be an option to actually make it work, that the “user tag” section accepts usernames and turns those into “mentions”. Either way, the current situation is useless.

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      1. Audrey Stevenson Post author

        Hi Lars,

        We did have an issue earlier today with @mention functionality not working properly. It has since been fixed and is working as expected again. Sorry that you tried it just at the time it was down.

        If you’re willing, please give it another try and let us know what you think. It’s not useless because it is getting used in both blogs and Q&A now. Does it need more visibility? Certainly. But I think the more people use it the more others will see it and use it as well.

        Interesting observation about the names in user tags. Maybe we’ll take a closer look at that behavior.

        Regards,

        Audrey

         

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        1. Lars Breddemann

          I wrote a nice reply with more ideas on how to improve the answer editing in the Q&A section, but this frustrating piece of a platform “ate it”. This time around at least the embarrassing typo about “securty” was fixed. Looks like progress really is in the eye of the beholder…

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  4. Jelena Perfiljeva

    Well, finally, almost a year later we have something that actually works better than before. Previously, at-mentioning Juergen took some jumping through the hoops because of the umlaut. But now I can just do @l and there he is, on top of the list. 🙂

    And this should come in handy for the upcoming TechEd blogs where we can now annoy the heck out of everyone by at-mentioning the people we met there. Yay!

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