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We seem to be getting a lot of new members, which is great, but even some of the "old timers" do not seem to be aware of the mechanics of sending private messages on this forum, so here's a tutorial.

First, get used to looking at your avatar at the upper right of the screen. If a small dot is present on the upper right corner of your avatar, that means you have alerts, messages, or both.

One thing that is confusing about the customizations done to the XenForo software on this particular forum is that if you hover over the user name of any given member you will get a pop-up that shows the "Message" button at the lower right, which is what you hit to initiate sending a private message to that member. But, XenForo calls this system Conversations by default, and that terminology has been maintained in the dropdown that you get if you click on your avatar when it has a dot on it and you have a new private message/conversation. So know that private message and conversation are one and the same.

So, with that intro out of the way, to send a private message:

1. Hover over the user name of the individual you wish to send your private message to that's on the left side of one of their posts. You will get a pop-up, and at the lower right of that pop-up is the Message button. Activate/click it.

2. The Start a Conversation window/tab will open. Note that just like e-mail you can add multiple addresses, and if you click after the member name that's already there, and start typing another, you will get a list of all member IDs that match the characters you've typed so far. You can select the correct one and "lather, rinse, repeat" this cycle as many times as you like if you want to send the same message to multiple people.

3. Type your title for your message in the Title box. It's analogous to Subject in an e-mail message.

4. Type your message in the Message box.

5. If any of the checkboxes at the bottom are something you want for this particular message, check 'em. They're very seldom used.

6. If you'd like to see exactly what your message will look like when sent, hit the Preview button. (Optional)

7. Hit the Start Conversation button and off your message goes to the recipients you've chosen.

All exchanges related to Conversations/Private Messages will occur out of the sight of anyone other than those initially invited to that conversation by its originator.
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