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vrs07nl
Community Contributor

out of office messages

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Is it possibe to create an out of office notificaton for messaging? It has become apprant this something we need to be able to do withlin canvas

If not - is it the case that if X messages Y in canvas and Y is away, an out of office notificaton from Ys associated default email account will be sent to X?

1 Solution
KristinL
Community Team
Community Team

Hi vrs07nl~

Right now, that is not something that Canvas has built into its Inbox. I believe that this question has been raised in the past and a few Community members have actually created Feature Ideas because of it. 

https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/3963 (cold storage)

https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/7342 (cold storage)

https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/4430?commentID=35054 (cold storage)

In each case, voting scores were rather low. However, I encourage you to check out Canvas Studio‌ and submit the idea again. You never know when a new idea will catch on in the Canvas Community!

In the meantime, you are able to kind of workaround the issue by setting your notifications to send to your email. (https://community.canvaslms.com/docs/DOC-10029-4152719738?sr=search&searchId=0c291aa9-69ac-4a3c-9674...‌) That way, you can use your email client to create those auto-reply emails. Anyone who uses the Canvas Conversations Inbox would have their message immediately forwarded to your email, and your email would automatically send a reply back to Canvas.

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13 Replies
KristinL
Community Team
Community Team

Hi vrs07nl~

Right now, that is not something that Canvas has built into its Inbox. I believe that this question has been raised in the past and a few Community members have actually created Feature Ideas because of it. 

https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/3963 (cold storage)

https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/7342 (cold storage)

https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/4430?commentID=35054 (cold storage)

In each case, voting scores were rather low. However, I encourage you to check out Canvas Studio‌ and submit the idea again. You never know when a new idea will catch on in the Canvas Community!

In the meantime, you are able to kind of workaround the issue by setting your notifications to send to your email. (https://community.canvaslms.com/docs/DOC-10029-4152719738?sr=search&searchId=0c291aa9-69ac-4a3c-9674...‌) That way, you can use your email client to create those auto-reply emails. Anyone who uses the Canvas Conversations Inbox would have their message immediately forwarded to your email, and your email would automatically send a reply back to Canvas.

vrs07nl
Community Contributor

Thanks  @KristinL 

the work around is what i had suggested.

I will review the old ideas and raise a new geature request

vrs07nl
Community Contributor

 @KristinL ‌

sadly not working for us - have raised a ticket ...  issues with inbox messaging and email - Case #02194476

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Dear Nicola & Kristin,

Thank you for bringing up this issue. We have done some extensive testing last week and found out that the out of office functionality within Outlook and Gmail, automatically takes the 'from' email adress (notifications@instructure.cominstead of the 'reply-to' email adress (with all the weird signs, which is linked to the message in the inbox). 

The solution for this problem seems to be very simple. Canvas needs to stop with adding the notifications@instructure.com as the from email adress. Instead they should just use the long and ugly reply-to email adress, which is linked to the inbox message within Canvas. 

Please do not hesitate to contact me, if you know a workaround for this problem. And vote for the idea and my possible solutions:

https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/11199 

vrs07nl
Community Contributor

Dear Matthew

thanks for looking into this

i had given up on this as no real quick solution so i will support your odea and get toher in my netwerork to do so to

Nicola

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vrs07nl
Community Contributor

but sadly your idea has been archived already !!

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vrs07nl‌, Matthew's idea was archived as a duplicate of https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/10404-out-of-office-reply , which at this writing is open for voting.

This work around solution of setting auto reply in Outlook does NOT work because the forwarded message from Canvas has a different address than the reply-to address with all of the characters.  Your auto replies goes to notifications@instructure.com, not the thread of the student who messaged you.   

jwhalen
Community Participant

Hi Kristin L, 

The solution of having Canvas inbox messages forwarded to one’s institutional email, and then creating an out of office reply in that institutional email, does not work. I am grateful for the idea, but regrettably, students do not receive the automatic reply. We do not know this unless we poll students. This is a significant problem that Canvas should recognize as a high priority. 

Instructors often do not work in a twelve month contract, yet do regularly receive emails from students during the winter and summer breaks. For myself, these emails often come when I am in the field and unreachable by email, and when a simple auto reply can redirect students to resources that they need to get their questions answered. Students are sometimes trying to set up disability accommodations for the upcoming semester, at times eight weeks before the semester begins. It is our institutional policy to have something that replies to them- this is necessary for the operation of our institutions, for our student’s wellbeing, and also for the mental health of instructors. It is absolutely essential. 

This desperately needs to be fixed, and every six months or so I log in to this site to try to follow all of the myriad posts etc. only to find that Canvas has closed the issue, again and again, and I have to conclude that it will never be fixed. Some of the requests for a solution are time stamped to seven years prior. I am not a programmer; I am an anthropologist. I have no idea what fix a computer will need to solve this, and I cannot follow the issue, complicated releases, or make suggestions as to what to do in the programming of the system to amend it. However I do know that it is a vital service that desperately needs to be fixed. 

Canvas received the contract to be the only CMS for all schools of the California Community College system- an enormous contract. I feel that it is absolutely the responsibility of the company to solve this issue, as it is of immense importance to the operation of the very institutions who rely upon it. This should matter to Canvas.

With all due respect, there are some issues that simply cannot be relegated to a voting system that is only maintained by folks who already have other jobs to do. The issue does not suffer from lack of interest. Rather, instructors are unable to constantly follow it, as there are already too many things to handle. The vast majority of instructors that I interact with do not interact with the voting and campaigning system at all, simply because there is no time to do so. It is also unclear how we would campaign for more votes for an issue anyway- I humbly suggest that the votes and suggestions posted here are from folks who are desperate enough for a solution that they log on and jump through all of the hoops, but then need to go on to other things-and quickly. The votes on here are not an accurate count of the severity of the issue. Rather, they reflect the amount of times that a person has found the issue dire enough to call for help. 

This issue simply needs to be recognized as a necessity, and addressed.

I wish to add my voice to the list here asking for this issue to be fixed. I also request that this message be forwarded to community leaders or other organizational team leaders within Canvas who will recognize the importance of this issue, and ensure that it remains on a list of high priority items. I look forward to the day when it will be solved. 

 

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Hi @jwhalen ...

I don't necessarily have a solution for you one way or another, but I wanted to provide you with some resources that may not have been posted to this particular thread...

  • Auto-reply for Canvas messages -- This is the Feature Idea that you should post your comments to.  Your feedback you've provided above would be great to copy/paste into that Feature Idea thread so that Instructure can learn from your own struggles and situations with the Canvas Inbox and the need for an OoO reply.
  • Kristin's response from back in 2017 is when the Canvas Community was running under a different platform.  A couple Summers ago, Instructure moved to the Community platform that you see today.  One of the things that was changed was the previous voting system.  That system in no more, and it has now been replaced with a star rating system...which you can read more about here: How do idea conversations work in the Instructure ... - Instructure Community (canvaslms.com)
  • I know it can be hard to wait for things to get developed.  I've submitted many Feature Ideas myself that I thought would be great additions/enhancements to Canvas, but they still haven't been implemented.  So, as it relates to the Feature Idea in question...I get it.  You might want to look at this document: What is the feature development process for Instru... - Instructure Community (canvaslms.com) ... in particular, I would suggest reading through the section on "If my idea doesn't align with a priority..."  (Also, on this same page, there is a section under "Discover" that details other ways that Instructure gathers feedback...it's not just our comments here in the Community.)  Finally, as I've alluded to at the start of this bullet point, it can be hard to be patient.  Instructure has a section on that within this document: How do I create a new idea conversation in the Ins... - Instructure Community (canvaslms.com)

I hope this information will be of help to you in some way.  Take care...be well.

jwhalen
Community Participant

Thank you so very, very much, chofer. I would never have found the current feature board without your help. 
Thank you for your empathy, too, and for reading what I wrote. I am sorry that my message reflects how upset I am! I recently found a message of a student trying to reach me through a reply to an old message when they were my student, more than a semester ago. Because the auto reply didn’t get to them, it caused a bit of trouble for them. I so look forward to seeing this issue resolved in future. 
Thank you again, and be well, 
Jwhalen 

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Robbie_Grant
Community Coach
Community Coach

vrs07nl,

Were you able to find an answer to your question? I am going to go ahead and mark this question as answered because there hasn't been any more activity in a while so I assume that you have the information that you need. If you still have a question about this or if you have information that you would like to share with the community, by all means, please do come back and leave a comment.  Also, if this question has been answered by one of the previous replies, please feel free to mark that answer as correct.

 

Robbie

vrs07nl
Community Contributor

 @Robbie_Grant ‌

did not do much more on this as was unable to white list some domains our end - so work around still not an option 

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