There are three types of groups on the Commons, and each has differing levels of privacy. As the needs of a group change and evolve, they may want to adjust their group settings from private to public, or vice versa. There are a few things that group admins should keep in mind before they change their group settings from private to public.
- Public Groups: Public groups are open to all members of the Commons, and their content can be viewed by everyone on the internet. Members of the Commons can request to join groups and are automatically added. Group members can be notified whenever new forum posts are published. Non-group members who are members of the Commons may may comment on group forums, but they cannot start new topics.
- Private Groups: Non-members cannot view Private groups forums. Commons members may request membership, but group admins must grant access. All content is private.
- Hidden Groups: Hidden groups are invisible to non-members. These are open by invitation only. Once membership is granted, the group will become visible on the new member’s profile page. All content is private.
Is there anything that can’t be public?
Once a group is public, all docs, files, and forum threads will be visible to members outside of the group. The Commons team recommends looking over these areas for files or threads that the group may not deem appropriate for public consumption and either editing or deleting accordingly.
It’s also important to note that announcements posted by admins before the group became public will no longer by accessible to group members. Old announcements aren’t permanently deleted and will reappear if the group becomes private again.
Lastly, if you have the group blog enabled, changing your group from private to public won’t automatically change the privacy settings of your blog. To update the settings of your group blog, please visit the “Group Blog” setting of the Admin panel.