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Feedback on the New Message System



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    I agree with nearly all the complaints above, and let me add one more: The new message system blocks recipients from seeing any message with an email address or link. However, it doesn’t inform the sender that this message was blocked—it appears as normal in the sender’s message system, but the recipient sees nothing. (Note: The recipient cannot see ANY part of the message, not simply the link/email address.) I’ve had several enormously frustrating conversations with students, full of miscommunications, until we discovered that our messages were being filtered and blocked without our knowledge. I understand that iTalki wants to block users from sharing outside contact information with each other. However, I am a writing teacher, and it is essential that I receive students’ writing before our lesson. To do this, I need to share a link to a Google Doc or my email address. I’m frustrated that the new system hinders me from teaching effectively by blocking these messages. What’s even more frustrating, though, is that the system doesn’t tell students/teachers that their messages aren’t being sent. Please fix these issues!

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    Is anybody from italki actually reading this feedback?

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    Thanks, Richard.  I think they did make a mistake taking your post down. And now I understand why I was no longer seeing a reference, at the bottom of my profile, to my comment on your post.

    I have received a response to my e-mail from a real person -- one of the staff who has helped me before with more routine questions -- stating that he is forwarding my letter to someone who can help.

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    Mark Wickham

    I"m sorry, italki, but I have to agree with everyone here... I love teaching on italki, but the new system is very messy and disorganised. 

    I won't give reasons because the other teachers have already expressed my thoughts. 

    Please make changes your users request, not new changes that have no relevance and are just simply confusing. 

    I really hope that italki reverts back to the older system, it was much more organised and user-friendly. 

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    Eliaquim Sousa 易尚明

    I didn't like the update at all.

    Most of my students have two or three lessons every week with me. For each lesson, I usually send a message with links to videos and articles that will be used. I send those messages on Sundays when I don't teach, and I send all the messages for the following week. Before, both I and the student knew what topic would be covered on what day. Now, with this system, I have to send messages every day, not only on Sundays. I need to send them on italki, Skype, wechat, Hangouts, QQ, and every other conceivable app because I cannot trust Italki's messaging system.

    I understand this change may be useful for a student who has one or two teachers, although I don't see the point of it. But for teachers who communicate with ten, twenty students a week, this was a most unwelcome update.

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    Professor Anna

    The update is a plain disaster and horrible mess. 


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    Richard's post says it all.

    1. It's very difficult to find messages students have sent, especially since now we don't even get an e-mail notification about them, even if we have set our account to be notified by e-mail when people send us messages on italki.
    2. The reason it's so hard to find are the other useless notifications that show a red dot above the message/chat icon on the dashboard. The red dot is almost always there because I get notifications when a lesson is upcoming, when the time has passed , and when it has been confirmed. When the message icon is shown as having new notifications for these pointless things, I have no idea when I should check that a student has actually sent me a message. I've almost missed important messages about rescheduling due to this.
    3. Students have complained that they too have stopped receiving e-mail notifications and missed links that I sent them. They have stated it's confusing that links I used to send attached to a specific upcoming lesson are now all sent as "general" messages. This is frustrating for students.
    4. Some messages I've exchanged with students, less than six months old have completely disappeared and I have no idea why.
    5. Spam messages I had deleted have reappeared.
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    Marienma Ramos

    La nueva actualización de Italki es un desastre. No paro de recibir mensajes estúpidos que sólo dicen "hi" y  ni siquiera puedo borrarlos. Recibo mensajes de cada acción que hago (completar, aceptar, comentar una lección) mezclado con notificaciones de petición de lección. En fin, no lo entiendo. Es caótico, frustrante, poco útil y poco práctico. Si no lo cambian, todos acabaremos perdiendo dinero: Italki y los profesores. Con lo bien que funcionaba esta página... ¿Se trata de un experimento? Es muy arriesgado, se exponen a perder alumnos, profesores, dinero, la buena reputación que tienen (o tenían). Un negocio se debe llevar con inteligencia y sabiduría y rectificar es de sabios. ¡Que vuelva el sistema anterior de notificaciones y mensajería!. PLEASE, THE PREVIOUS MESSAGING SYSTEM AGAIN!!!!

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    Richard (Edited )

    Just a minute ago I left my computer to go to the kitchen to get a cup of coffee.
    When I returned, the following Notification was waiting for me:

    "Richard has just returned from getting a cup of coffee"


    OK... maybe a bit of an exaggeration, but getting a Notification informing me that I had just left Feedback (after I had just left Feedback) is simply unnecessary and frankly ludicrous.

    Just a little jocular break from all the serious feedback.
    Nonetheless, these problems need to be fixed.

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    Евгений (Eugene) (Edited )

    I totally agree with other teachers, who find the new system extremely incovenient.

    Not only the new system is inconvenient, but it sinply doesn't work. I can't send messages to one of my regular students anymore, because "he is not added to my friends", that's ridiculous. Please, reverse it to what it was before.
    With all due respect, if you want to make the interface more convenient, add the "subtract" button to the calendar instead. It would really make things easier.

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    Charlotte (Edited )

    At the risk of echoing everyone else, may I just say that the new messaging system is a nightmare. A lot of communication between existing students and myself has been missed, as have enquiries from potential students. Why is Italki sabotaging their own business like this? I'm actually asking my existing students to contact me through Skype directly, which defeats the purpose of having a messaging system at all.

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    I'm seeing the same word wrap problem as others.  I also regularly see that I have a message (the little red notification dot appears) but I can't actually see the messages themselves.  I've twice now had tutors tell me that they sent me messages, I see the notification dot, but can't actually find the message anywhere.  The new system is terrible.  Please revert!!!

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    I agree with all the negative comments already posted.

    Messages I have previously deleted have come back.  So now I have to scroll through many many messages I don't want to keep to find ones I do.

    No email notification has meant I have missed several messages that I was waiting for.

    I am fairly new to italki and was really enjoying how easy it was to use and manage.  I have paid for lessons and found language partners.  Now I have to close down new friend requests and language partners as I can't organise the message board.  As my message board is so big and messy I will have to take screen shots  of messages I want and keep them offline.  Or create a new email account for myself to communicate. 

    Please return to the previous system.  It was good. 


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    The new message system is really annoying. I used to be able to delete messages with people I no longer want to talk to, but now I only have the option to block them or report them. And even if I block them it doesn't delete the message thread. So I have to scroll through loads of unwanted messages to find the people that I regularly chat with.

    Like many people here, I was very happy with the old system. Whoever decided to change it needs to be told to put it back the way it was before.


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    Hi everyone - the italki iOs app has now been updated with this terrible messaging system - and I have encountered a further problem. On the app, you can see that your student has sent a message, but you cannot access the message. Online, you cannot even see that the student has sent a message. What on earth is going on here? It feels like the system is being sabotaged.

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    So, still no reaction from support at all. That's really customer support of the worst kind. And we are customers here. There's no need for begging which I have seen in several posts. italki makes money through us. So they should listen.

    There is another bug on the message board. I click on a request and after a few seconds the page jumps to another request.

    When I receive a request, I put it in my offline calendar before accepting it. Now with the page jumping to a completely different request in these few seconds, the chances for mistakes are big.

    What is going on? Has the italki site been hacked or are we truly to believe these changes are for anybody's good?????

    And when are we going to receive the overdue reply???

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    Since the new update, I've now switched to messaging students 100% through Skype chat. I used to use iTalki messenger to communicate with students about lessons, but the new messaging system is so useless and frustrating that both my students and I have given up on it. The fact that links can't be shared, messages are buried under pointless notifications, and messages can't be attached to specific lessons makes the new system impossible to use as a communication tool with students.

    I would imagine creating a system that encourages teachers & students to communicate OFF the iTalki platform is 100% not what iTalki wants for its business model or intended with this update. Why wasn't this update beta tested? Why weren't teachers and students asked for their input first? 

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    Barbara Still

    Oh no!! This new message system is absolutely awful. I can't see messages that pertain to a certain lesson without going to my message inbox, which is a complete mess of random people who aren't my students sending me stupid flirtatious messages I don't have time to bother with. What a complete disaster!

    Please return to the previous system ASAP! I've been on italki for many years and have plenty of loyal students. I might have to find another way to teach them if the italki website and app become any more difficult to use and navigate. I remember when the calendar system was changed so that the lessons stack up on top of each other instead of sitting on the time line. That in itself caused confusion and misunderstandings, missed lessons, inaccurately read times. Terrible! Just terrible! And now this? What are you thinking italki? I'm incredibly frustrated and annoyed. Awful!


    Useless and unnecessary! Don't fix what isn't broken!

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    I would like to read old messages. Why have you deleted them?

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    I agree that the new messaging system has problems. I no longer receive e-mails about new messages. I also found it useful to see the number of new messages in the icon on the website, as opposed to just a dot indicating unread messages.

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    No longer getting a notice that there is a message waiting is a significant downgrade that severely limits communication on a site that should promote safe and reliable interaction. Users should feel secure when using the site and the new system only promotes alternative messaging which may lead to unwanted contact such as direct email or texting.

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    I missed notifications for messages from potential students.

    I received notifications for superficial things like my own actions (feedback). The new messaging system is hindering my lessons' management. I find it really low quality.

    1. I'd like to be notified about requests and inquiries.
    2. I'd like to stop being notified about my own activity (I know I accepted the lesson, thank you!)



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    What is happening to you italki? Seriously, this new message system it's crazy, pretty confusing! I just accepted one friend request, and the message it contained it's gone! You don't have to mix the notifications. 

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    Julia B

    I came to leave a comment about the new system and am so relieved I am not the only one flabbergasted by the new layout.  I am logging in to my account and am shocked to have 24 missed messages - only to learn they are only notifications of completed lessons with regular students.  I too get lots of random messages just saying 'hi', and though they have been deleted in the past, now I have a huge list of messages, some marked as 'unread', from random men saying 'hi pretty lady' nearly a year ago.  I find the layout very hard to read.  Please revert back to the old system!

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    Richard (Edited )

    Let me share a Notification I received today:

    10:09 - italki member X commented on your discussion entitled "blah blah blah..."   --- OK, thanks

    10:14 - italki member X commented on your discussion entitled "blah blah blah..."   --- OK, thanks

    10:15 - italki member X commented on your discussion entitled "blah blah blah..."   --- OK, thanks

     10:52 - italki member X commented on your discussion entitled "blah blah blah..."   --- OK, thanks

    OK... OK... OK... enough already :)


    Just a simple example of what needs to be fixed, along with all the other deficiencies noted in all the comments above.

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    Luciana Pegoraro

    I don't know why but there is a new thread explaining how this horrible new message system works:

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    The new messaging system is TERRIBLE!! Please change back to the way it was. I have the same concerns as everyone else, #1 you have to login to find out you have received a message. I used to get email notifications of new messages. I checked my settings and I still have it set to receive notifications....#2 Also online version it does cut off words like others mentioned. #3. I can’t copy messages anymore either. Sometimes I used Google Translate to help out....

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    Andrew B (Edited )

    The new messaging system is awful. It is both unnecessarily confusing and inconvenient for students and teachers. I've not been able to work as efficiently and effectively as usual as students and teachers no longer receive email notifications. Italki's answer instead of fixing the problem: you and your students can you use the app in the meantime. Yeah, good one. And inconvenience the students even more?! Just fix it italki! Better still, bring back the old system, which worked absolutely fine. If it's not broke, don't fix it. Italki was a great platform but has been suffering anyway of late. I and others have seen a huge decline in lesson numbers, and now you are just killing the platform altogether italki. In competitive times like these, you need to be at your best italki. This is just pure stupidity what you've done. If you're not going to revert back to the old system, at least let us, the teachers and students, receive our email notifications. It's not a big ask. If it is, then you should be asking questions about who you have hired to implement the new system. Also, why can't we see old messages anymore?! Maybe they were important, but don't worry about it italki: just delete them! Shocking! I could rant on and on about other stuff, but I need my time to try and somehow find/read my student messages, and the more time you spend reading our complaints, the less time you'll have to fix the problem. Be great once again italki!

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    Has anyone else noticed this ironic aspect?  As many have pointed out, the "improved" messaging system






    up words at the end of a line.

    This part of the website, on the other hand, not only moves whole words to the next line, it correctly hyphenates words at the end of a line by syllableTake a look at some of the posts above mine.

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    Tom Stotesbury

    I second (or 60th...) everything that has been said about this update. Today I missed a message from my student saying that he couldn't attend the class. Not only did iTalki not send me an email, as they did in the past - on the dashboard it told me there was a message from the student - but surprise surprise when I went to the messages centre there was no message, just more pointless notifications. iTalki you really need to sort this out. I feel that as we pay a substantial fee to use the iTalki service, our voices should be heard, this has made it a LOT more difficult to operate on iTalki. What a shame.

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