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Is there any documentation or details about the 'Subscribe' button in Panopto folders?

Hi all,

I've been wondering about this for a while and can't seem to find any detail about it. It appears in all Panopto folders and I'd like to know a few things about it if possible.

Specifically, I'd like to find out:

  • What's the purpose of it? I get that it could be useful to turn on certain folders outside of an LMS but on all folders by default?
  • Why does it appear in my My Folder where I presume I already own?
  • Why does it appear in LMS folders where students could gain access and circumvent teachers' ability to control the release of content?

I did find this request to allow the Ability to turn OFF subscriptions at the folder level — Panopto Community - I would argue maybe there should even be a site-wide option to disable it?

Many thanks,



  • Options
    Caitlin McCabeCaitlin McCabe Administrator

    Hi Paul,

    To answer your questions - the Subscription feature allows users to follow a specific Creator, Folder, or Tag on their Panopto site. This feature is enabled by default for all Panopto sites. The option to subscribe will appear in all folders; however, I understand your point about it appearing within your My Folder and will pass along that feedback accordingly.

    Regarding your question about course folders:  if a student subscribes to an instructor's folder, they will only be able to see videos that the instructor has made available. Hidden videos will not appear for students, even if they've subscribed to the folder. Instructors can set their video's availability using the steps in How to Publish Videos Using the Availability Workflow.

    I would recommend adding your request for a site-wide option to enable/disable the feature in the comments of the Feature Request you linked, and upvote the idea if you already haven't done so.

    If you have any more questions, please let me know.

    Best wishes,


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    Hi Cait,

    Thank you for your reply and input. I really appreciate it. I don't really have more questions but it's a bit of a headache thinking about all the potential problems with this. So I would like to respond to some of your points...

    "Subscription feature... on their Panopto site"

    It seems that it also allows users inside an LMS to "follow a specific Creator, Folder, or Tag" - not just on their Panopto site. Therein lie a number of issues. 

    Is there an actual support page documenting it? If subscribing makes permission changes of any sort, or other settings-related changes, it would be good to have them all spelled out so we can better understand how it works.

    "Enabled by default for all Panopto sites"

    Yes it is. And it is inside instances of all integrated LMS folders. To have the button enabled by default in LMS folders is, I believe, circumventing the very point of an LMS integration. 

    "Course folders... student subscribes to an instructor's folder"

    Does this mean that all videos in a folder become browse-able to the user who subscribes to a folder they have stumbled upon via a shared link? 

    If I understand subscription correctly, to me, it just seems inappropriate to apply the option to 'subscribe' to folders that are supposed to be reserved for 'Specific people and groups' - eg the default setting of folders in the LMS.

    "Hidden videos will not appear for students"

    Working around the issues caused by the subscribe button being everywhere by hiding videos using a share setting or date range etc seems time consuming and ineffectual. What if the group in next semester's class need to access those videos? Then you'd have to make duplicate videos - setting their availability dates etc. All of this on individual videos to bypass a folder option that can't be changed?

    Feature Request

    I've added my thoughts to the FR I linked previously. It now has 2 votes. I guess most users either are not aware or are not affected. It is a bit frustrating when what I see as fixing a functionality flaw is deemed a new feature. Or maybe I've got this completely wrong. 

    I hope my arguments and criticisms don't come across as overly negative. By and large, Panopto is a brilliant product and I'm its biggest promoter and supporter at our institute. But I've argued hard in the past and seen actual change come eventually so I will keep trying :)

  • Options
    Caitlin McCabeCaitlin McCabe Administrator

    Hi Paul,

    Thanks for your honest feedback - I will definitely let our team know about your concerns. To answer your follow-up questions, subscribing to content does not change any permissions. Users cannot subscribe to content that is not already made available to them. They can only subscribe to the content shared with them by the content's Creator. If sharing permissions are removed for the user from a folder, the content will disappear from the Subscription area for that user. I will work on adding information to our Subscription documentation that clarifies which content appears in Subscriptions.

    Best wishes,


  • Options

    Thanks for your time on this Cait.

    You mention the 'Subscription documentation'. Is that available to users or just internally? It would be good to be able to access these details without having to dig around in the forum for this post.

  • Options
    KathrynKathryn Administrator

    @Paul Douglas Here is the link to the article Cait is referencing:

    This article is available to everyone!

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