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How it works: Topics

What are topics?

Securepub topics are the entrypoints to the engagement content. Topics identify a specific URL in the engagement containing something worth discussing with other members.

Each topic specifies

  • some text explaining what is to be discussed
  • the URL of the content to discuss
  • one or more bundles containing the content and
  • the members invited to share in the discussion

Who can create topics?

The host and all members who have accepted their invitation can create topics.

Who can share topics?

Only a topic's creator can share a topic.

Who can discuss a topic?

The host and all members who have accepted their invitation can discuss topics.

Who can review topics?

Only a topic's members may see the subjects and comments of the topic.

Topics not shared with a member won't appear in the members' topic list. Such members won't be able to read the topic's comments, add their own comments or see which other members were shared the topic.

What can a member who hasn't accepted their invitation do?

Members who have not accepted their invitation can only review topics referencing unrestricted bundles shared with them.

What can members without any bundles do?

Members without any bundles shared with them can do very little because they cannot create any topics or be invited to any topics. However members without any bundles may exchange comments with the host from their member page to request access to some.

What does it mean to "review" a topic?

When a topic is reviewed, Securepub navigates to the topic's URL and the service worker serves the corresponding content effectively taking the member "into" the content at the point identified by the URL. Members can open the content in a small "preview frame" on the topic page or in a separate top-level window.

While each topic has a "path" which acts as the starting point into the topic's content bundles, this path does not restrict access to the underlying content. If a bundle is shared with a member then that member can navigate to any URL in the bundle content regardless of the topic path.

What if a member does not want to interact with the content?

A topic's members can read and exchange comments without reviewing the underlying content. Some members may decide to defer reviewing content until others have done so.

To review a topic members must include at least one of a topic's bundles. When the topic is reviewed only the included subset of bundles will be loaded into the browser. This can be useful when a member only wishes to look at a small portion of the content without downloading everything.

Members can review topic bundle metadata whenever they like and add comments expressing any concerns they have. Members are free to exclude any bundles that seem inappropriate, suspicious or too large.

Securepub provides no guarantees about the usefullness of reviewing any subset of topic content. Poorly organized topics may not work well if their bundles are excluded. It is up to the host and topic creator to organize useful subsets to include for topics with multiple bundles.