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Community Member

Conversations' send to "All in" behavior change for large-enrollment courses?

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An instructor asked about the behavior documented here: How do I send a message to an entire class as an instructor?​, specifically "By default, the Send individual messages checkbox will be selected and cannot be deselected for courses with over 100 students."

He noted that in his previous large-enrollment courses he didn't see this - his messages weren't sent individually. I took a look at his Sent messages and can confirm that up to April 2015 he was sending messages to 174 students in his course and the message sent as one bulk, but as of May 2015 his messages were sent individually. I was digging around the Release Notes for something documenting this change that I could provide to him (he wants to know why) but I couldn't find anything. Am I missing something? Thanks!

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Community Team
Community Team

Hi Emily,

Looks like this change was ultimately made because of a performance issue. Large group conversations were sending identical queries to the server, causing delayed processing and sometimes completely locking up connections. This is one of those changes that unfortunately didn't make the release notes and was actually implemented at the end of April, which was before anyone became aware of the UI change. We're doing a lot better to try and catch changes like this (we aren't a huge fan of surprises either!) so we apologize for the confusion.

Thanks,

Erin

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Surveyor

Hello there,

I poked around and have some ideas why this might happen. The first one is, might the instructor have the "send individual emails" box checked (see image)?

sendindiv.png

If that is not the case, I did a quick search through the release notes and didn't see a specific change either. Therefore, I wonder if your institution restricted this feature somehow? I recommend asking your local Canvas administrator to see if it is something to that effect.

Best of luck.

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Community Coach
Community Coach

emihunt@iu.edu, if you look at the revisions history for How do I send a message to an entire class as an instructor? you can see that the change was made on Version 7 and was done 2 weeks and 4 days ago - https://community.canvaslms.com/docs/DOC-2674/diff

I'm not sure as to why this change was made and when it was announced, but I'll share this question with a couple of people and see if we can get you an answer!

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Community Member

Well that's nifty! I didn't realize it was possible to look at the revision history. Thanks for your help, kona@richland.edu​!

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Community Team
Community Team

Hi Emily,

Looks like this change was ultimately made because of a performance issue. Large group conversations were sending identical queries to the server, causing delayed processing and sometimes completely locking up connections. This is one of those changes that unfortunately didn't make the release notes and was actually implemented at the end of April, which was before anyone became aware of the UI change. We're doing a lot better to try and catch changes like this (we aren't a huge fan of surprises either!) so we apologize for the confusion.

Thanks,

Erin

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Thanks erinhallmark​! I'm really happy about the change! In the past I've accidentally forgotten to check that box and sent out a mass message to over 2500 students - who were then responding to EVERYONE. It was a crazy mess to clean up and I appreciate that I won't be able to make that mistake again!

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I suspected as much (that the change was made for performance reasons) - thanks so much for the explanation Erin!

Emily

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