Open Bug 1602901 Opened 8 months ago Updated 2 months ago

Single left-click on single selected pill should edit


(Thunderbird :: Message Compose Window, enhancement)



(Not tracked)


(Reporter: bugzilla2007, Unassigned)



User Story

In short (from bug 440377, comment 22 by Geert Poels):
"I'd expect a single click to fully select, a second click to edit"

In reply to Alessandro (:aleca), bug 440377 comment 115:
"I was also thinking, would it be worth considering showing a pencil icon on hover? So the user can click that to edit the address? More discoverable than a double or right click."

I am looking at the latest available iteration of bug 440377: 73.0a1 (2019-12-10) (64-bit).*

Those pills can be stubborn when you don't know them yet and are trying to edit...
Let's make it as easy as possible for users to break that resistance of pills so that they can start to love them... ;-)


  1. Compose new msg with recipient pills: (John Doe <>)(Jane Doe <>)
  2. Try the most intuitive way of editing an existing pill (John):
    Click once on pill (oh, that selects it, ok).
    Single-left-click again on selected pill, trying to break the selection (which is a common use pattern, see below).

Actual result

  • Nothing

Expected result

  • Single left-click on a single selected pill should edit that pill
  • Perhaps change the mouse pointer into a small pencil on hover (morphing :aleca's idea of showing a floating pencil icon as a click target)


  • intuitive and discoverable
  • complementary mouse method of editing pill (in addition to double-click and context menu)
  • make "slow" double-clicks succeed
  • Note that this must only work on a single selected pill (not for multiple selected pills), and prior focus is NOT required (as it comes with that second click). Cf. Windows Explorer behaviour.


  • I think this could significantly ease the transition from the current "editable text" recipients, because it would mimick the currently available click pattern exactly:
    • Since Bug 1527547, TB helpfully auto-selects recipients when clicked or cursored into.
    • So first click selects (pill-style), and next click edits.
  • Clicking on selected things to edit their text is a common click pattern not only in current TB:
    • edit name of selected item in Windows Explorer
    • edit URL in FF
    • collapse selection to edit text in any application


Summary: Single left click on single selected pill should edit pill → Single left-click on single selected pill should edit

OTOH, it's not the normal case that you want to edit.
Maybe we want to instead look ahead: maybe there should be a nice popup showing everything we know about that contact, and there there would be an edit button too.

Yes, like the popup we have for the addresses in the message header in main window.

Mass-changing bugs around the new recipient area (pills) from product/component MailNews Core/Composition to Thunderbird/Message Compose Window, because composition frontend code is not shared with SM. Mostly cloned from Bug 440377 which started out in MailNews Core long back.


Severity: normal → N/A
Component: Composition → Message Compose Window
Product: MailNews Core → Thunderbird
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