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Live Topics

Live Topics is a hosted live chat and question-and-answer event that is converted into a forum topic upon completion. It combines the fun and togetherness of a live event with the permanence of a forum topic allowing you to continue the conversation long after the event has ended. 

This guide shows the setup and usage of Live Topics on your community.



Live topics can be used by any moderator that has the relevant moderator permissions set. These can be set in the following location, on the live topic tab, by selecting the relevant option. Note, if a moderator is set to "Unrestricted" they will already have this permission

Members -> Staff -> Moderators

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Creating Live Topics

Creating a live topic is as simple as visiting your ModeratorCP and visiting the "Live Topics" section, as shown in the image below.

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Once you have clicked to schedule a new live topic, you can configure the following options

  • Duration - This is the scheduled duration that attendees will see before the event. This sets expectations of time for your community.
  • Add To Events - This option creates a new Calendar Event in your Community. This allows the live topic to be searched, viewed, and promoted like other event within your community.
  • Live Video URL - This is the URL of a YouTube embed. You can also add this after starting the live session. 
  • Attendees - This option specifies who can attend the live topic. Leaving as "Recommended" allows any registered member to join.
  • Staff - The staff are responsible for moderating user generated content as it comes in. The default setting will add all groups that are allowed to moderate live topics. You can adjust this default in the AdminCP using moderator permissions.
  • Additional Hosts - Hosts have the highest level of permission in the live topic. They create questions, update the video URL, and guide the discussion. By scheduling the Live Topic, you are automatically a host but you can add more hands to help. All hosts get a reminder notification close to when the event is due to start.
  • Require Approval for question replies/chat messages - During the live session, you may wish to control the rate of incoming content (especially questions). Chat Message creation can be locked during the live session.

Hosting a Live Topic

To start a live topic, you need to click into it from the ModeratorCP. Alternatively, if it was added to an Event you can click into it from there. Then just click start, it's as simple as that. Your attendees will see a waiting page with a countdown.

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It is worth mentioning that the live topic cannot

  • Run without any hosts in attendance - When hosts abandon a live session, it will automatically end within a few minutes
  • Run longer than 6 hours - The aim of Live Topics is to accompany a live event and to be short-term compared to regular forum topics. The live session will also end automatically in this case

Once a live topic is started, the screen is divided into have 2 main areas: One for Main Questions and another for Chat. Any video streams you embed are shown in the top right and automatically started.

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Main Questions/Replies

On the left, you will see Main Questions that have either been added by a member of staff or moved to the main questions area from a chat channel. There are important items to note about the main questions area

  • Main Questions and their replies are what will be preserved when the topic is converted into a forum topic. 
  • For each question, you can also configure if the replies are "locked". A main question can be unlocked, locked to all members, or locked to non-staff. When a question is locked, new replies cannot be created.

Chat Channels

For each Live Topic, there is a General Chat and a Staff Chat Channel. If a member is non-staff, instead of the Channel selector tabs, they will see only "Chat".

When a non-staff attendee creates a chat message, it can be marked as a "question". This lets the host know that the question was intended for others to respond to. Optionally, the host can even convert the message into a question so it's integrated into the standard topic post-conversion (moved to the Main Questions area mentioned above)

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Live Stream Tools

Hosts can select a time in the live feed a main question was answered by selecting the time on the video, then hitting the "Use current player time" button. This will then timestamp the answer to show the location on the video.

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You can change the video embed at any time mid-session if required.

Moderation tools

Staff can hide or delete questions, chat messages and replies. The reply and chat feeds can also be set to automatically hide new items on creation, if required. 

Non-staff attendees can report content, the same as they would in any other area of the community.

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Reports for live topics show within the staff area of chat, rather than in the main reports area. This is so they can be quickly dealt with during the live session.

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  Report Guide

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