Understanding when email replies become public or private comments

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54 Comments

  • Brett Bowser
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hey Ben,

    Thanks for testing this! I'm going to create a ticket on your behalf so we can dig into this further and determine the expected behavior.

    You'll receive an email shortly stating your ticket has been created.

    Cheers!

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  • Claudia Araujo

    Hello, 

    Any plans on finding a solution to this? When an end user (that is not an agent nor follower) hits reply instead of reply all requester should not be removed and comment should be public.

    If a solution is not planned, is there a workaround other than manually copy-pasting the end user comment and re-seding to the requester?

    Many thanks,

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  • Brett Bowser
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hey Claudia,

    I can confirm that it's expected behavior that the update would then show up as a private comment if the end-user does not reply-all. I wasn't able to track down a work-around other than copying and pasting which is what you're already doing.

    Hopefully, other users can chime in here and offer up some advice for you.

    I'll also pass your feedback along to the appropriate team so they're aware if the roadblocks you've run into.

    Cheers!

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  • Mike Schepker

    Brett Bowser that makes no sense. If an end-user, that is not an agent or follower, replies (as opposed to reply all) the comment should be public as they are an end-user and not in any position to add internal notes to tickets. 

    Someone at Zendesk needs to rethink this whole process and sort it all out. There has been nothing but conflicting information from Zendesk on this post and in tickets about this feature. It is obviously very poorly thought out and implemented. 

    1
  • Ian Morgan

    Like others I do not understand why this is so difficult. If a person is either an end-user or not recognised by the Zendesk account it should be treated as public. Only agents who are registered on that Zendesk account should be internal.

    Is it possible to give a use case where my simplified idea above would not work or why it is so difficult to do from the Zendesk setup end?

    I have always found Zendesk explanations to be very easy to follow in the past but I (like others) am really struggling with this one. 

    1
  • Hope Notz

    Ian Morgan, I think the idea behind this makes more sense if you think about it from the original requester's perspective. When they log in to see their Activities, they see all public comments. If someone on the ticket replies and does not include the original requester, it's as if the didn't want them to see the email. So, the way Zendesk is handling this is to make the comment internal so the original requester does not see it in their activities. 

    That being said, not one time have a seen this be the case. I have not seen an internal comment come in where the sender intentionally did not want the original requester to see the comment and were grateful it came through internal. Quite the opposite - 100% of the time it has been frustrating and annoying for customers and agents. 

    I can see why this was a consideration, but I don't believe it should have ever been implemented. 

    2
  • Ben Ballard

    There are plenty of use cases where a requester CC's an employee who is not an agent, where that employee may want to reply privately to the agents. This is practically the norm for B2B, the customer often CCs the sales rep, and sometimes will CC an executive. Even in B2C, a customer may CC the CEO, thinking that will get them greater attention, and the CEO or their team might not be agents, and may need to reply privately to the agents.

    People are generally pretty careful about who they add or remove when they reply, and when Zendesk is in between the agents and the non-agents on the email thread, it should be as close as possible to how email works.

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  • Hope Notz

    Thank you for the explaination, Ben Ballard. That is understandable. 

    However, it would be nice to at least have the option to turn this off for organizations where this is not applicable. 

    2
  • Ian Morgan

    Thank you Ben Ballard and Hope Notz for those explanations. This does not apply in our use of Zendesk as we are a small company. Everyone in the company is a light agent so that we can call on help from all areas within a ticket. They are obviously restricted to private messages so an external user who manages to create a private message is more difficult to control. As Hope said it would be great to be able to turn this off. 

    1
  • Steven Aranaga

    I have a new issue and I wonder if it is due to something in this...  We are a small company and all of our employees are light agents.  If an employee receives an email and then, in their reply, cc's our support address to spawn a ticket, the entire email comes in as a private comment.

    The issue is that this prevents the triggers on notifying of a new ticket being created!

    Was there a change recently that caused this?  And yes, this is set...

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  • Nicole S.
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hi Steven - 

    This is expected behavior, as light agents cannot make public comments on tickets. The checkbox in your screenshot means that all full agent comments are public by default, but does not apply to light agents. 

    This is outlined in the section of the article above titled When replies become private comments: 

    "If the agent is a light agent or an agent with custom role that only allows them to make private comments, the reply becomes a private comment."

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  • Ryan Boyer

    When a support agent links an internal article via knowledge capture in the "Internal Note," does the requester get sent a public reply with a link to that internal article even though he/she does not have permission to view the article?

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  • Gail L
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hi Ryan,

    No, internal notes do not trigger email updates to end users. The Knowledge Capture app also doesn't suggest agent restricted content if you're searching while the comment is toggled to public, the restricted content is only available to search/link in internal notes (something I've seen myself when searching our internal KB here at Zendesk with the app). 

    Cheers,

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  • Ryan Boyer

    Gail L Thanks for the response, Gail. My follow-up question is when I link to "internal" article in the internal notes, then the link shows up in the public reply. So, even though it shows up in the public reply note, it will not be sent?

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  • Gail L
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hi Ryan, 

    This sounds like something where we need to look at specific examples. I'm creating a ticket for you so that our team can dig into this with you. Keep an eye out for an email.

    0
  • Niclas Kårlin

    Had to read through the whole comment section to understand what's going on here... Now I finally understand the use case thanks to Ben Ballard's comment.

    Have someone made a ticket for this:

    "End user (not being the requester) clicking Reply (instead of Reply All) will generate comment: Public / Internal"

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  • Niclas Kårlin

    Changing the text is not possible since it's language specific, can we discuss a new phrasing?

    ##- Please type your reply above this line -##
    Your request (25002) has been updated. To add additional comments, reply to this email or visit #25002

    PS. I recently had a customer responding between the ##- please line and the email header! DS.

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  • Fallon Albrecht

    Dear Zendesk, 

     

    We had to implement the new CC and followers because we had some issues with the old system. 

     

    However, we are not very happy with this change most of the time people will use the "reply" instead of "reply all". That because of this all CC's are removed is ridiculous. As an agent, you need to manually add them again resend the reply because none of them received it. This is a lot of work and agents can forget to check if CC's were removed.

    Also, a reply from our clients should be public and not internal, this will cause a lot of confusion, there should be an option in Zendesk that you can make all replies that are external are showing as public and not an internal note. 

    It would be nice, that if you are introducing big changes, that you first hear out your users and not make changes like this just because you think this will work better. 

    5
  • Niclas Kårlin

    I'm not sure this has been noted here earlier? There is a (I guess it's new) setting in https://yoursubdomain.zendesk.com/agent/admin/tickets

    Make email comments from CCed end users public (not recommended)

    When an email is sent only to a Zendesk support address by a CCed end user, the comment created will be public. This isn't recommended because a requester might see content not intended for them.
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  • Niclas Kårlin

    Also on a side note, and it has probably been discussed elsewhere, but I miss it from what's available in Salesforce: 
    The possibility to edit and delete comments, and also to swap them as internal/external.

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  • Fallon Albrecht

    Hey Niclas Kårlin 

    Regarding the above is correct, however, in some cases, the new CC and Followers feature overrides the below: 

    - When the person in CC use the "reply only" instead of the "reply all" the email will show as in internal note

    - Someone that was not part of the email uses the "reply only" instead of the "reply all" the email will show as in internal note

     

    Also, Zendesk stated in the documentation that when the requester uses the "reply only" instead of the "reply all" the email will show as an internal note, I tested this multiple times but all the tests I did the reply was a public reply, however, everyone who was in the CC is removed from the ticket.

     

    This creates more work for the agents, as they need to double-check each and every reply in a ticket they received. 

    As Mike P suggest there is a need to make a difference in public reply, external private reply and internal note. 

    Also using the "reply all" is causing a lot of work for the agents, they need to tell our costumers please use the "reply all" otherwise the people in CC will be removed, don't see your reply and also when you add them again to the ticket, they don't see the history so the whole communication for them is a puzzle as they miss some of the email conversation. 

    So to avoid this an agent nowadays needs to do:

     

    1. Check who replied is it the person in CC or the requester or is it another agent that left an internal note 

    2. Did they use the reply only or reply all

    3. If they used the reply only, add everyone again to the ticket

    4. Copy and paste the reply we received and comment on the reply 

     

    Clearly, this is not how a ticketing system should work, a ticketing system should be very easy in use and not give agents more work and more security checking. 

     

     

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  • Brett Bowser
    Zendesk Community Team

    Hey everyone,

    I just wanted to say thanks for taking the time to share all of this amazing feedback with us around CC's. I have a ticket that contains the feedback you've graciously shared with us and I'll be sure to mark appropriately so our Product Managers can take a look.

    Thanks again!

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  • Daniel Schmidt

    With the new CCs and followers experience, what do the email notifications to requesters and CCs look like in their email client? Are the To: and CC: headers populated as they normally would be when receiving a standard email that includes CCs?

    Or do CCs have to be explicitly enumerated in the body of the message via placeholders, as with the old CC behavior? If this is the case, what would motivate usage of 'Reply All' instead of Reply?

    A screenshot or two would be appreciated.

    Thanks.

     

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  • Chris Bulin
    Community Moderator

    Thank you for posting @Daniel Schmidt. This functionality mimics regular email much more closely. The requester will see CCs in the CC field of their email. Here's what it looks like in Gmail:

    Hope that helps answer your question, but please let me know if I can provide any other info.

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