Slack Adds MSN-Style Custom Status Messages

Slack is making it easier for coworkers to see what other people in their organization are up to, thanks to a new status-message feature unveiled Thursday on the company’s blog.

These statuses will allow your teammates to keep track of what you’re up to at a glance. If you spent a lot of time with chat apps of ages gone by like MSN Messenger, then Slack‘s implementation should look fairly familiar.

“Now you can set a custom status in Slack to share what you’re up to, when you’ll be back, whom to contact in your place, or anything else that helps your team know when they can expect to hear from you,” reads the company’s blog.

“Pick from five default options for common scenarios when you’re away — like being out sick or working remotely. For anything else, create your own, more specific status that says exactly what you want your team to know. Each status can be up to 100 characters and illustrated with an emoji of your choice,” the blog continues.

Statuses will show up next to users’ names inside the team communication app‘s chat window, in their profiles, and next to their names in the Quick Switcher, which lets users easily switch between different chat channels and direct messages.

To set a custom status in Slack’s desktop app, users will need to click on their name in the upper-left-hand corner of the window, then click “Set a status” in the resulting drop-down menu. On mobile, users have to tap on the three dots icon in the upper-right-hand corner of the screen, then select “Edit status.”

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