Open Bug 207124 Opened 19 years ago Updated 12 years ago

Auto-labelling of messages by inheritance; auto-marking of own posts; 'next unread with Label'


(SeaMonkey :: MailNews: Message Display, enhancement)

Not set


(Not tracked)


(Reporter: gerv, Unassigned)


This is a description of a feature from the client for Cix
(, a conferencing system in the UK. Cix has the notion of
"Important" messages, just as Mozilla does with its Labels, but it also
automatically marks any messages you post, and their descendants, as
"Important". In addition, it has a "Next Important Message" button.

This is fab, because it means that if you are short of time, you can read just
the messages in threads you are involved in, without having to search through
for them, and without fear that you've missed one. I think this would be a great
feature to implement for Mozilla Mail/News or Thunderbird.

I envisage it working like this:

The Labels preferences panel acquires an extra column of checkboxes marked
"inherit from parent", or some better label. If this was checked for a
particular label, then new messages would acquire that label if the immediately
previous message in a thread had it. This allows you easily to turn off the
auto-labelling if the thread gets off-topic; just unlabel the current message.

In addition, there would be an extra piece of UI underneath:

Label my news posts as [ Important |V]

To complete the enhancement, the key combinations Alt-1 through Alt-5 would mean
"Go to next unread of this Label". For consistency, Alt-0 would probably be "go
to next unlabelled unread."

The results would be that:

- The work pattern outlined above would be possible, e.g. by labelling news
posts as Important and turning on inheritance, then using Alt-1.
- Mozilla could auto-classify a lot of your messages once you'd classified the
first one in a thread.

I have the nagging "This UI could be better" feeling, but I don't know why -
perhaps someone else can tell me.

This is IMO sufficiently achieved with "Threads with Unread" (just press "Next"
to go to the "next "important" post), and will be further enhanced once bug
11054 is fixed.

This bug is still nice though, because it adds an even finer level of control
(like "watch this thread's branch" <-- add to summary?).

Yes, the suggested UI sounds ... clunky.
> This is IMO sufficiently achieved with "Threads with Unread" (just press "Next"
> to go to the "next "important" post)

Absolutely not. The point is to extract the threads in which I am already
participating from the 500 unread news messages I have, if I don't have time to
read every new message. You can't say that all unread posts are important,
because that means that all posts are important, and your definition of
"important" is somewhat weird. :-)

Yes, of course you are right. I should have said "WATCHED Threads with Unread".

My comment in bug may shed some light here too:

- This bug is like:  Watch this thread's branch
- Bug 11054 is like: Ignore this thread's branch
> - This bug is like:  Watch this thread's branch

Except that this bug requests that threads you take part in become automatically

Yes, we could implement this on top of watching, if it were possible to watch
only part of a thread.

"Watch this thread's branch" suggested shortcut key: SHIFT-w
("Ignore this thread's branch" suggested shortcut key: SHIFT-k)

> this bug requests that threads you take part in become automatically watched.

I would suggest that this (Watch this thread's branch) just be a filter item. On
or off by default (i.e., filter is set automatically whenever you post)? Your
call. Perhaps setable via pref. My suggestion: off by default, no UI preference
(hidden pref?), filter easily settable via right-click on posters e-mail address
(i haven't thought this through completely: "watch this poster's threads" and
"watch this poster's branches").
Automatically watch threads you've posted to: bug 11048

Watching is not the same as labeling; however, if inheritance of labels were 
implemented, watching could be a special case of labeling.
Product: Browser → Seamonkey
Assignee: sspitzer → mail
QA Contact: esther
This bug report is registered in the SeaMonkey product, but has been without a comment since the inception of the SeaMonkey project. This means that it was logged against the old Mozilla suite and we cannot determine that it's still valid for the current SeaMonkey suite. Because of this, we are setting it to an UNCONFIRMED state.

If you can confirm that this report still applies to current SeaMonkey 2.x nightly builds, please set it back to the NEW state along with a comment on how you reproduced it on what Build ID, or if it's an enhancement request, why it's still worth implementing and in what way.
If you can confirm that the report doesn't apply to current SeaMonkey 2.x nightly builds, please set it to the appropriate RESOLVED state (WORKSFORME, INVALID, WONTFIX, or similar).
If no action happens within the next few months, we move this bug report to an EXPIRED state.

Query tag for this change: mass-UNCONFIRM-20090614
This is an enhancement, and is still unimplemented in either Thunderbird or SeaMonkey.

Ever confirmed: true
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