We are improving the usability of discussions by modifying where you can post them. At the bottom of the create discussion page, "The GeoNet Community" and "Specific People" options will be disabled. This will enable all content to be posted to a specific place in GeoNet.
When content is created, you are given an option near the bottom to select where to put your content. You can choose a specific place (group or space), a private discussion between certain individuals, or The GeoNet Community. The GeoNet Community option is misleading as it says your content will be visible to everyone in the community. The problem is that no one is notified of the discussion because it is posted in the user's own place instead of an actual group or space. Other users only see the content on the activity stream of the home page, and once other content is posted it is pushed further down the page. Posting to an actual group or space will notify everyone that follows it. This gets your content in front of the right people who may be best to answer your question.
Thursday, March 5, 2015 @ 5pm PDT - "The GeoNet Community" and "Specific People" option will be disabled.
Thursday, March 5, 2015 5pm PDT - Friday March 6, 2015 8am PDT - "The GeoNet Community" (aka: User Container) content will be moved to the Discussions Lobby. There will be no expected downtime.
Friday March 6, 2015 8am PDT - Moderators will begin moving content to related places on GeoNet.
Why is posting in a group or space better than the whole community? Isn't that the best way to reach the most people?
Posting content to the whole community essentially makes the content visible to everyone. Others can see it in the activity stream on the home page and in search results. The problem with this is that no one is notified when the content is posted. It is visible on the home page until other content pushes it down the list until it is buried. When content is posted to a group or space, members that follow groups and spaces are notified in their Activity Stream or Inbox when content is posted. This allows you to get your question in front of those that are most familiar with the subject. This visibility helps you get an answer more quickly.
Can I move my user content myself?
Yes, you may move your content anytime to a specific place. See Moving Content for more information.
What places can I post to?
How can I tell if my discussion is posted to "The GeoNet Community"?
Each content item under your authored content (Profile > Content) will show where it is posted. If you see a name then it is posted to a user container.
You can also look at the bread crumbs are the top of a discussions to see where it is posted. The "Visibility" under the discussion title will also show "Open to anyone".
Why are you removing "Specific People?
The GeoNet Community and Specific People areas are similar in functionality, and removing one also removes the other. A few people have used private discussions, however, more people are affected by unanswered posts to "The GeoNet Community" (user container).
Will I be able to access my private discussion content (Specific People)?
As the original poster of the private discussion you will still be able to access existing private discussions. You will just not be able to create new private discussions.
Are there other options for private discussions?
You will have the ability to send private messages (Create > Message). Just know that you can only send messages to your Connections (people following you). See Creating and Sending Messages to Other Members for more information.