Like anyone who deals with enterprise teams, I spend a lot of time on slack. But I am not a slack guru. I chat on channels assigned to me by clients and associates. Therefore, I have never paid much attention to the archiving and preservation of conversational knowledge. This is only a part of my work day.
But recently, one of the team members working with a client left the company. Today when I returned to our personal live news series on Slack, I found that it was gone. Since his account is not in Slack, his live message is gone without a trace.
But there is so much important information in this book that I must continue to provide services to the customer. My march orders for the next few months were in it. This includes discussions about useful resources and statistics I need to provide services. The subject matter experts in the project, their areas of expertise and their roles were also discussed. In other words, this news thread was valuable. There were even discussions about agreed fees.
Without thinking much about it, I generally thought that Slack’s news history would continue like the email archive. I always thought I could go back and look at things for reference when needed. But when I looked at the live news section on the left side of Slack’s screen, I saw that I could no longer see my history with that person.
How to find the archive of a message
There is a way to find news archives. If you click on the small clock icon at the top of your screen, you can see the history of recent conversations.
Unfortunately, these conversations are not permanently on this list. There are only recent conversations. Even if you tap Show more, the news history will be minimal. Also, old conversations with accounts that have not been on Slack for about a month are no longer available. I confirmed this for sure as the long conversation with another client team member who left the project six weeks ago has completely disappeared.
But, if you act quickly after deleting the account, you can find the archive to save it.
How to Backup a Slog News Archive
Allows you to export and back up archives of slack messages, but Only if you are a channel owner or administrator. Even if you are not a channel super user – there are ways to retrieve the entire history of a given news series. These approaches are not particularly elegant, but they work.
Save Archive Using Cut, Paste and Word:
The first approach is to capture the entire text of your news series as a Word document, which you can save, convert to PDF, or archive. Theoretically you could use another word processor, but I tested with Word. It is best to use software that stores the best text, so images, emojis and links are protected as well.
1. In Slack, select the newsletter you want to backup.
2. Go to the beginning and click the left mouse button on the first word of the text.
3. Scroll to the bottom of the thread, hold down the Shift key, and click after the last word.
4. Go to the Edit menu and select Copy.
5. Switch to a blank Word document and click Paste.
6. You have an archive that stores, edits, searches and clicks.
The only drawback of this approach is that the last saved archive may not be exactly as it was in Slack. To fix this, try the following approach.
Save the archive using the scrolling screen capture software
Even if you have to scroll through the pages one by one, this approach will take a screenshot of the entire news series. To do this, you need to use software that captures the scrolling page. There are some Chrome extensions that do this, but I recommend using the Slack app to catch up Cleanshot X. On Mac or Snackit! In Windows.
Both software allow you to select a window, scroll through all the windows, and then save the giant graphic in PNG, JPEG, or PDF format.
This approach delivers the conversation just like you did when you were in Slack. Without OCR tools, you would not be able to search or access basic data, but it would be a great resource if you ever had to prove that it was discussed with another party.
The main thing to remember
What you should take from this article is not the advice I said. It’s about understanding that slack is not email and that it does not automatically create an archive of your conversations. If your conversations are important to you, you should be diligent in backing them up.
If documenting conversation history is enough for you, archiving your slog conversations can be added to your routine tasks on a regular basis.
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