Discord is a multimedia realtime chat web service and application for desktop and mobile. It is comparable to Slack, with one major difference being that users identify against a central server rather than individual servers. This allows for user interaction (DMs) outside of the context of a particular server, and also discovery of what servers and friends you share with others.
- /API: writing software to interact with Discord
- /bots: there are a lot of bots available for extending Discord functionality
This applies only within Servers (Guilds); DMs, even when multiple people are included, have essentially no security controls.
The security management is fairly sophisticated. Channels can be restricted to selected individuals or "roles" (which are essentially security groups). Channels can also be grouped into "categories", which can be given their own security settings which then become defaults for the channels they contain. The permissions which are assignable to individuals or roles are quite fine-grained.
comparison to IRC
Discord is GUI-oriented rather than text-oriented; almost everything except actual messages is done via menus, icons, and other graphical interface elements, though there are a few text commands.
Some of the graphical elements supported:
- limited rich text formatting: bold, italics,
- avatars for users and servers/guilds
- emoji, both inline and as reactions to posts (aka reactji).
Other users can click on already-posted reactji, and Discord will display the number of people who clicked (and their usernames in the hover-over). This can be used for practical things like polling, as well as just expressing feelings about something without interrupting the conversation.
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