Microsoft Tech Community Live:  Microsoft Teams Edition
November 09, 2021, 08:00 AM - 12:00 PM (PST)

Why is new "include chat history" only applicable to conversations with 3+ participants?

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Contributor

Hi,

 

It seems we are only prompted with the option to include some or all chat history when adding someone to a chat already containing 3+ participants. It doesn't seem to work when adding a 3rd to a private 1:1 chat. Why draw the line there?

18 Replies

The question is related to this UserVoice topic which has already been closed for comments by @Warren Wright

This feature is appliciable for group chats in Teams, not 1:1 chat. And this option is shown with more than 1 user in the chat. If it is not shown for group chat with 2 users, please share the screen-shot or raise the support ticket from Teams itself using Feedback option.

Hence my question of “Why draw the line there?”

This is absolutely related to 1:1 expectations around privacy and intimacy. This feature is not dependant on the number of participants, but the context of the conversation; You're either chatting in a Team / Group where there is already an understanding that anything you publish will be viewable by everyone in the Team, and potentially more people as they're added OR you're chatting in a 1:1 session outside any Team / Group where there is an understanding that the conversation is private and restricted to just the two parties.

 

My point is this; in a 1:1 chat between two people, neither one has the right to say whether a third person should have the right to read what's been said by the other, because that conversation was considered to be private... through the expectation of what a 1:1 chat is. Granted, in some scenarios both users might find that useful because the conversation might go somewhere they didn't expect, and they need to pull someone in. But if the conversation might go there then start the chat as group / meeting rather than 1:1.

 

I think they've got this right personally, because of the expectation around what a 1:1 chat should be... private. Very conscious that it's completely debatable, and already thought about various scenarios, but I'm happy with how it is personally.

 

The official content here uses the word 'currently' so I guess there may already be plans or potential to change how it behaves. Thoughts?

 

Kind regards
Ben

Have you never been in a 1:1 professional discussion to which you wanted to add a third? We can't start it as a group discussion if we don't know we'll want to loop that person in. It's an optional feature yet they forced the decision. A good design would be making it default to no history for 1:1 so someone would have to explicitly decide otherwise.

 

Thoughts from whom? I came here wanting to know Microsoft's.

I've been in that position plenty of times on Skype, which is why I said I'm very conscious of how debatable it is.  The difference though between skype and Teams is your 1:1 chat is persistent in Teams and will have EVERYTHING you've ever talked about with that person...... consider that.

 

I talk to user A every day for a year. Then one day I need to loop user B in on a 1:1 I'm having with user A. You're suggesting that its ok for user B to see everything I ever talked about with user A for the entire year?

 

To do what you're asking you'd also need to be able to filter how much of the history you want to share with the person you loop in. That's why I think this is privacy related. I think that's why it didn't drop with the same time as groups.

 

Thoughts from the community btw, being a community driven discussion forum and all... 

 

Kind regards
Ben


@Ben Donaldson wrote:

I've been in that position plenty of times on Skype, which is why I said I'm very conscious of how debatable it is.  The difference though between skype and Teams is your 1:1 chat is persistent in Teams and will have EVERYTHING you've ever talked about with that person...... consider that.

 

I talk to user A every day for a year. Then one day I need to loop user B in on a 1:1 I'm having with user A. You're suggesting that its ok for user B to see everything I ever talked about with user A for the entire year?

 

To do what you're asking you'd also need to be able to filter how much of the history you want to share with the person you loop in. That's why I think this is privacy related. I think that's why it didn't drop with the same time as groups.

 

Thoughts from the community btw, being a community driven discussion forum and all... 

 

Kind regards
Ben


I'm suggesting I'm an adult that can decide whether to include the history or not. The new option already allows us to choose how much history to include instead of forcing a binary decision.

Is there somewhere a place with official documentation on how this is supposed to work?

@Ben Donaldson interesting point about the "everything you've ever talked about" side effect. Coming from an internal IM app that was thread-based and had this feature, the MS Teams distinction between 1:1 conversations and "group messages" felt stupid to me, but then I realized private 1:1 messages were always treated as a separate thread, and we'd start separate conversations that might end up looping other people in.

 

I think this would be a better way of solving this problem--allow a user to have multiple threads with the same person--that way you're not limited to one conversation with a given person and an all-or-nothing approach to sharing history when adding a third person to a given conversation.

@Ben Donaldson : I just encountered this feature limitation today and it bothered me so much I registered in order to reply to your justification.

 

FWIW, I think the expectation of privacy is quite low in many organizations that might use MS Teams, especially where the IT shop provides and administers assets. For instance, every State of California employee signs a piece of paper that disclaims all rights to privacy in the use of State-provisioned IT, including emails and all Internet traffic. It was the same story when I worked at HP, and when I worked with the State of Oklahoma. Most IT administrators and divisional managers I know don't want their staff using these things frivolously, and many employee handbooks/agreements prohibit such waste.

 

Although I recognize this design decision comes from a good place, I believe it is misinformed. The affordance that currently exists when adding someone to group chat (include history from x days) solves this perceived problem. Please let adults in the workplace be adults. This isn't just hugely inconvenient and detrimental to Teams' intent to empower business collaborations; it's insulting. I hope Teams has a change of heart.

 

This is a personal opinion and does not necessarily represent the position of the State of California or the California Department of Developmental Services.

@Ben DonaldsonSo you do realize that someone can just take a screenshot of a private chat, then post that publicly, thereby defeating any fake privacy.  Also, if I have a chat with 2 other people (3 people total) ... what makes you think the other 2 people have given their consent for an additional person to see the chat history?  It's bizarre that the moment you go from 1 to 2 people you automatically lose any expectation of privacy.

 

No, this un-feature is more of a nuisance than anything; it's a horrible gotcha trap that people fall into all the time.  It's not obvious, it's not discoverable (MSFT never really did UI/UX well) and it leaves a person in a socially awkward position ... because looping other people in by re-creating the chat as a group chat is embarrassing.  I guess I'll just email the other participants ... argh.

 

Also, it should be noted that competitor Slack (which MSFT blatently ripped off) doesn't appear to have this limitation):

 

 

@sha1sum 

I just read this entire thread, and I can plainly see that there are more solid, and valid points for removing the limitation than there are for keeping it! Especially since you get prompted for the option to "include chat history" before adding a new member to the chat. To me, not removing this limitation is pure laziness on the Microsoft side.  

Not always true. Our company deletes teams chats after 1 or 2 days. Special group chats can live for a month. Bringing another into a business conversation is essential. Now I copy past all of one chat into another with the added person(s).
These are business chats, not personal chats. Items 'that' personal are best left out of retained email and chats. Kind of like don't click on a link in an unknown email.
I agree .... it is quite inconvenient to not be able to invite in a 3rd person. Especially when there are multiple documents and other files included in a chat ... it becomes impossible to bring a 3rd person completely up to speed with the content .... even if you cut and paste the conversation you lose all the files. The convenience of IM is lost and it seems there is more versatility in just sticking to email threads instead of using Teams. The name "Teams" implies that it is designed for teams not on private 1 to 1 correspondence. MS, if you insist in keeping this privacy feature, perhaps you could add a prompt that would require the other person your talking to to approve the inclusion of a third person with entire chat history. The current limitation is a conspicuous flaw, I think most people would agree (do a survey, you'll see).

@Ben Donaldson who's privacy and who should be concerned about it? does app have any existence or say in the decision if I as a user decide to share that content with 1, 2, 3, 4, 5..... as a ux designer we should facilitate the process of sharing and not eliminate or overlook a use case scenario, we can introduce a step where both give consent and the content is shared. It is not about 'privacy' rather consent which can be obtained if needed.

@John Shkolnik 

 

if I can do for email where I can add another person to a 1:1 email then why not for a chat ?

@Ben Donaldson While I understand the privacy perspective, I'm not sure its up to Microsoft to police this on behalf of organizations.  This seems like managing another organization's culture or processes.  I think MS's role is to provide a flexible tool and allow the flow of communication and process to be on the organization.  In addition, perhaps this could improve communication for organizations, understanding that their chat could be shared with others so "please communicate appropriately and with maturity".  Before I send any communication, I consider if it were to be shared, how would that look for me, am I following the correct compliance protocols (like HR related), and how would a receiver feel.  Also, adding other people to a group chat in Teams is a pretty intentional and deliberate process, so it would be hard to add someone by accident to a 1:1, for example.