There are two kinds of replies you can make in discussion threads: a general reply to no one in particular, or a specific reply to one or more people in that discussion. Additionally, you may address someone who’s not in the discussion in order to bring their attention to it.
You make a general reply when contributing to the conversation but not speaking to any one person directly. Participants in a discussion understand this as you speaking to everybody, thus anyone can reply to you. There are two convenient ways to make a general reply.
One way is from anywhere in a discussion (i.e. from at top of a thread, at bottom, or anywhere in the middle) by clicking the Reply button in the right side of the screen (desktop).
This will open the reply editor, where you type your reply text, then click the Post reply button when done.
Alternatively, you can scroll to the bottom of the discussion thread and begin typing in the Write a reply… field. This will trigger the reply editor just like when clicking the Reply button.
Specific replies are those made to another discussion participant who posted earlier in the discussion thread. There are two ways to do this depending on the specificity you want.
Reply to another poster
To reply to a previous poster but not to something specific they said, scroll up to their post and click the Reply link in the lower-right corner of the post.
Again, this will open the reply editor, but this time with the poster’s username and post box ID already referenced.
Reply to the specific text of another poster
Sometimes you don’t want to reply in general terms, but want to address something a poster said specifically, especially if their post was long and covered a lot of points. To reply to a specific part of something another participant posted, highlight the text you’re quoting/replying to, then click the Quote button that appears to the right of it.
As before, this opens the reply editor with the poster’s username and post ID in context, but also the text you’re replying to already formatted as a blockquote.
Addressing members not already in a discussion
There are times you might like to share what your saying with someone else who’s not yet participating in the discussion. Do this by @-replying their username (i.e.
@username). This will send the mentioned members an email notification (if they have such notices turned on in their settings) with a link back to the conversation.