A simple guide to introduce Loomio and explain how the app works.
An introduction to Loomio, outlining key concepts of how your organization meet, discuss and make decisions together. If you are new to Loomio, start here.
Learn how to start, configure and administer a Loomio group or subgroup as an administrator.
Everything you need to know about starting discussions, notifiying people, and keeping everything organized.
Learn how to use Proposal and Poll decision-making tools to take a discussion through to a clear outcome.
Configure personal settings to suit the way you like to work.
Configure Loomio to send notifications to Slack, Microsoft Teams and Mattermost about new events.
Loomio is a collaborative working space where together you can progress discussions, make decisions and achieve outcomes.
A Loomio group is a safe place for your organization to meet, discuss and make decisions about work.
Your group home page is the first place you see when you arrive. It contains a title, an image to represent the group, and some text to introduce the group: its purpose, the work you will do, and any other information to help group members participate.
Threads are where you share information, discuss, and make decisions.
Threads are used for many purposes; to prepare for a meeting, discuss matters, share reports, ask questions, vote on proposals, approve actions, and so on. It's also where your group can develop a shared understanding of important issues.
Threads keep everything about a topic in one place. Over time you’ll create a useful archive of your organization’s discussions and decisions.
One of the best things about Loomio is its range of tools to progress a discussion to an outcome. Each tool has a slightly different purpose. The most common one is a proposal.
A proposal is for converting a discussion into a clear, practical outcome. Someone suggests a course of action and invites everyone to respond. For example, you might ask group members to either:
- abstain or
Importantly, as well as selecting a response, everyone can give a reason why they have voted this way. You can all see where everyone else stands on the matter, and why. And then, if you want, you can change your response.
A proposal, and associated discussion, creates its own record of how the decision came about.
A proposal is good for suggesting a particular path and gauging who wants to take it. But sometimes you might want group members to make a different kind of choice.
Loomio offers a range of other poll tools:
- Poll: to ask people which option/s they approve
- Check: think of it as asking everyone to (please) 'raise your hand if you…'
- Time poll: to find the best time for the group to do something
- Score poll: to ask people to express the strength of their preference for each option, on a numerical scale
- Dot vote: to ask people to express the strength of their preferences, with a constraint—a fixed number of ‘dots’ to allocate–you can put all your dots in one place or spread them out
- Ranked choice: to rank a subset of options—useful for elections when there are many candidates and few seats
The best way to learn what to use when is to have a go. Use your own group or start a demo group.
The first time you visit Loomio you will go through a short process to set up a Loomio user account.
You won’t need a password and your computer will remember you in future.
Loomio user accounts are identified by email address
You will need to provide an email address to make sure your Loomio user account is yours.
- Tip: Use an email address that is uniquely yours, so fellow group members will easily recognize you and know that your comments are from you. To avoid confusion, do not use shared and role based email addresses like info@... or ceo@... where more than one person can access the account.
If you have any problem signing in to Loomio, you can always regain access with the email address you used when you set up your Loomio account.
Invitation via email
You may receive an invitation to join a Loomio group via your email inbox:
Click the Accept invitation button at the centre of the email.
The link will take you to the internet browser on your computer, tablet or smartphone and open a page where you are invited to create an account.
On your computer you will see:
Click the CONTINUE WITH EMAIL button at the centre of the screen.
You will be taken to this page to create your Loomio user account.
Type in your name, so people in your group will recognise you.
Click the CREATE ACCOUNT button at the bottom right hand corner of the screen.
A Loomio user account will then be created for you.
You can add a picture of yourself, to display next to all the comments you make. That makes it easy for other group members to see who said what.
If you don’t want to add a photo now: Click 'Use initials'
Click Upload new photo.
Select a suitable photo file from your computer.
Click Open to upload your photo.
That's it! You should now have an active Loomio user account and able to participate in your Loomio group.
When you return to Loomio, in most cases you browser will remember you and automatically sign you in.
However if you have reset your computer or are accessing Loomio from another device, you will be need to sign in again. The simplest way to do this is to sign in via email and follow the prompts.
Loomio is a mobile optimized web app and you can add the Loomio icon to your Smartphone home screen.
Follow the instructions below to add a shortcut to Loomio on the home screen of your iPad, iPhone, or Android devices.
Launch “Safari” app. (This does not work from the “Chrome” app.)
Go to loomio.org/dashboard.
Tap the 'Share' icon (it has an arrow coming out of a box) to open the share menu.
Find and tap “Add to Home Screen.” The Add to Home box will appear, with Loomio icon and name.
Tap “Add.” Safari will close and the Loomio icon will appear on your home screen.
Launch “Chrome” app.
Go to loomio.org/dashboard.
Tap the menu icon (3 dots in upper right-hand corner) and tap Add to homescreen.
The Loomio icon will appear on your home screen.
The first time you do this, you will need to sign in to Loomio.
- Enter your email address and tap 'CONTINUE WITH EMAIL'
- Tap 'SIGN IN VIA EMAIL'
- Check your email and type in the 6 digit code. Tap 'SIGN IN'
You will be taken directly to Loomio where you can read and participate with your group as usual.
Loomio will remember you, so you will be automatically signed in the next time you visit.
You can write a Comment in a Thread, and people can reply, react or post their own comment to continue the discussion.
When you have written your text as a Comment in the thread, use Post Comment to instantly publish the comment. Your comment will be visible to anyone who has permission to see the thread. If you want to change anything you can edit the comment.
You can notify people when you write a comment.
You can reply to someone's comment. Your reply is published in the thread and an email is sent to the author of the comment.
Reacting to a comment is a great way to encourage and acknowledge a comment by letting the comment author know how you feel. It is a quick and light-weight way to participate that does not require any text, nor send an email.
You may receive an invitation to vote via email or by notification in Loomio. Click on the link to have your say.
Voting in a Proposal or Poll is easy, just click or tap on the icon of your choice.
You can vote to Agree, Abstain or Disagree to the proposal. Other options may be available.
When voting, you can also leave a Reason to say why you have voted this way. This is optional.
Up until the proposal closes, you can change your vote.
There are many reasons why you might want to change your vote. For example if new information emerges it may cause you to rethink your decision, and change your vote.
You can change your vote, up until the proposal closes.
There are many reasons why you might want to change your vote. For example if new information emerges it may cause you to rethink your decision, and change your vote.
Once again, you can leave a reason - to say why you have changed your vote.
Results of the proposal are updated as people vote, so you can see how a proposal is trending.
In a controversial proposal it is common to see mixed results, however this does not mean the proposal has failed.
Often the new information revealed during the proposal helps form a better proposal that is more likely to pass.
When the proposal closes, the author is prompted to state the Outcome.
This is an important final step to record the result of the decision and let everyone know what will happen next.
Lets take an orientation tour to help you quickly understand how to participate in discussions and decisions in your group.
Your group home page is the first place people see when they arrive. It contains a description of why the group exists, what you will use it for, and any other information that may help you participate.
You can add an image that represents something of your organization and place.
Under the group description you will see tabs. Clicking on each tab displays information about:
Threads - A list of discussion threads showing the author, the thread title, category tag, along with some other useful information about the recent activity in the thread.
Polls - A list of the polls and proposals active in your group.
Members - Where you can see a list of the people who are members of the group.
Files - Files and documents that have been uploaded to your group.
Subgroups - A list of subgroups that you are a member of. A subgroup is the collaborative space for a working team, project or event, a governance board, a subcommittee or stakeholders group.
Settings - Where administrators of the group can set and change group privacy and member permissions.
Below the tabs there is a search bar, with filters such as open or closed threads and category tags. The filters help you view a reduced set of information.
If the threads tab is selected, the thread list shows the title of the thread, author, number of replies, and when last active.
The sidebar menu is accessible from the (☰) menu icon at screen top left, where you can see:
- Dashboard - Open Polls and Proposals and recently active Threads.
- Unread threads - A list of Threads you have yet to read.
- Invite-only threads - Private Threads that do not belong to a group.
- Start a new thread - Where you can start a new private Thread.
- Your Loomio groups - Where you can easily find your Loomio groups and subgroups.
Click the down arrow ( ∨ ) to open your user settings.
The most useful settings when getting started are:
- Edit profile - Where you can edit name, email address, upload your photo, introduce yourself, add your location.
- Notification settings - Set what emails you want to receive from Loomio.
- Help - Access Loomio Help documentation.
- Contact support - Where you can connect with the Loomio customer support team.
The bell icon in the top-right is where notifications are accessed within Loomio.
Loomio sends emails to keep you updated on the activity in your groups.
Emails Loomio may send you include:
- Mention and Replies - When someone @mentions you in a comment or replies to you, you will receive a notification email.
- Subscribe on participation - If selected, when you participate in a thread you will receive emails for all further activity. Not recommended for most people.
- Catch-up summary email - The 'Yesterday on Loomio' email includes activity from all your groups and threads that you have not read yet.
- Invitations to threads, polls and proposals - You may receive an email when invited to a new thread, poll or proposal.
- Reminders and Outcomes - If you have not voted in a poll or proposal, you may receive a reminder 24 hours before close. You may also receive an email stating the outcome of a poll or proposal.
These emails are to help you participate effectively with your group. The default settings are to help you stay up to date with activity on Loomio but should not overload your email inbox.
If you are receiving too many emails from Loomio, you can change the default email settings. Talk to your group administrator to get the balance right for you.
When you receive an email from Loomio, you can reply directly from your email inbox and your reply will be posted into the Loomio thread. This works for everything except the Catch-up summary email.
There are several tools included within Loomio to help you find the information you are looking for quickly.
You can use the Search bar at the top of almost every page to search for content relevant to that page.
For example, on the Threads page typing 'decision' in the search bar brings up two threads with the work 'decision'.
Category Tags make it easy to find threads of a certain type or topic.
Tags can be applied when starting or editing a Thread, Poll or Proposal.
From your group page, click on a thread to read the thread.
The thread title is prominent, and you can see thread content and comments from other members.
The thread page includes everything you need to know about the thread;
- the group name, and subgroup name, that the thread belongs to
- category tags applied to the thread
- author and thread privacy
- Seen by to see who has seen the thread
- Notified to see who has been notified
- comments, replies, reactions and any polls
- timeline of key events in the thread, such as polls or proposals
The thread context is used to introduce the topic. It will often include background information, attached files or links to online documents, to help you participate in the discussion - just as you would attach a file to an email. The context always stays at the top of the thread.
Seen by shows who has read the thread, and when.
Notified shows who has been notified about the thread, and if read or email opened.
As you scroll down the thread page, you will see comments and replies from other group members.
The thread timeline builds with key activity in the threads. Use timeline to quickly go to decisions or important comments pinned to the timeline.
From your group page, select the POLLS tab to see your list of polls and proposals. Alongside the poll name, there is an active icon that changes as the poll progresses, and indicates your vote.
A Loomio group is a safe place for your organization to meet, have discussions and make decisions about work.
Your group home page is the first place people will see when they arrive to your group - make them welcome, and make it their home!
Design your Loomio group experience by adding a cover image and logo to help people feel at home.
Write a group description that clearly states why the group exists, what kind of work you are going to do, who the members of the group are, and how they can participate.
Your Loomio group page is a place to store all of the information, links and files, that everyone in your group needs.
If you are new to Loomio, you can start a group on a free trial at any time from the Loomio website.
For many organizations, a single Loomio group is sufficient. You can start as many subgroups as you need within the group. See Subgroups for more info.
If you already use Loomio and would like to start a new group for another organization or purpose, you can do this from the sidebar menu - click on New group.
A new Loomio group starts a new free trial and you will be invited to upgrade the trial to a paid subscription.
Pro plan customers have more than one group included with the Pro subscription. Contact us to connect your new group to your Pro plan subscription.
Type your group name. It's best to keep your group name short and concise.
Your group is automatically assigned a 'handle'. This provides a simplified url address for your group that can help you find your group, and that you can share with people to help them find your group.
The simplied url address for your group is loomio.org/your-group-handle.
You can edit the handle.
You may be asked to select a category that best describes your group. This helps us help you with relevant information.
When you click 'Start Group' your new group is automatically created!
Configuring your Loomio group.
In group settings you can change group name, add a group description, upload a photo or image for your group, change group privacy and member permissions, and set thread view default. Only people who are 'admin' can see and edit group settings.
On your group page, find and click on the Edit group settings cogwheel icon to open Group settings and use the form that appears (click save when done).
Uploading a photo or image that has some meaning to your group significantly improves the sense of belonging. You can also add a logo which will appear alongside your group name in the sidebar menu. Click on the image and logo to upload your file.
The ideal pixel resolution for the group image is 2048 x 512. But any image with aspect ratio of 4:1 will fit.
You can also upload your logo icon, which will appear alongside your organization or group name in the sidebar menu.
You can edit the name for your organization or group. We recommend short names, particularly if you plan to use subgroups.
Your group is automatically assigned a 'handle'. This provides a simplified url address for your group that can help you find your group, and that you can share with people to help them find your group.
The simplied url address for your group is loomio.org/your-group-handle.
You can edit the handle.
In the Group description box think about the people you are inviting and write something about:
What you will use Loomio for.
- The purpose of the group.
- The work you are going to do.
- What you hope to achieve.
Why this work is important.
- Why people should participate.
Who is invited into this work.
How to participate.
- What you expect of group members.
- How you see Loomio will complement your usual processes.
- An outline or attach the Terms of Reference, Code of Conduct or other doc that governs the group.
We use Loomio to discuss and make decisions about issues, work priorities and plans, prepare for meetings, and collaborate on strategic documents.
We need a safe and private space for discussion, to share knowledge, perspective and wisdom, and to help us make good decisions together. Loomio will help us stay up to date, be involved and work together more effectively to achieve our objectives.
This is a private group for our working team. You are invited to contribute in threads, vote in proposals and raise new topics by starting a new thread.
We will use Loomio to prepare for meetings and agree agenda items, upload draft papers and documents, agree actions, approve minutes, and progress discussions on issues we do not have time to cover during meetings."
Use the formatting tools to format text, attach documents, add hyperlinks, and embed a video.
Go to the Settings tab on your group page. Click Edit Group Settings and go to the Privacy tab. Click Update Settings when done.
Your privacy settings determine who can find your group, who can see the threads in your group, and how people join.
The recommended privacy setting for new groups is Secret. This means everything is private to those invited members of the group. No one will know about this group (or subgroup) unless you invite them.
If you want the content of your discussions and decisions to be public, change your group privacy to Open. The members list will only be visible to other members.
Many groups also use Closed, to allow people to find your group and ask to join. The Name and Group description as well as links and attached files are publicly accessible in Closed groups.
NOTE: If you have a Closed or Secret group and change it to Open, all threads will become public. Changing an Open group to Closed or Secret will make all threads private.
Open groups may contain secret and closed subgroups.
A member of an open group can see the closed subgroup but not the secret ones.
Most of the permissions settings only affect what members can do. Members are the users in your group who are not Admins.
In open groups you can use the option, Anyone can join, in order for the public to be able to join without any action by any member of the group.
If you select this option, rather than letting people walk in the door voluntarily (self-select to join your group), then admin will have the option to approve or ignore people's requests to join.
- You can also give group members the permission to approve requests, also in the Permissions tab of Group Settings.
In closed subgroups you can allow members of the parent group to see discussions within the subgroup. Select, Members of [parent group] can see private threads to enable this feature. This feature is off by default. For more on subgroups, see here.
This allows everyone in your group to invite new people in, and approve any membership requests. When it is deselected only group admin will be able to invite and approve new members.
When ticked, any Member will be able to use notify and invite people, sending notifications immediately to some, or all, of the group. Unless your group is very big, Loomio recommends you leave this on.
This allows everyone in your group to create subgroups. When it is deselected only group admin will be able to create subgroups.
This allows everyone in your group to start new threads. When it is deselected only group admin will be able to start discussions.
This allows everyone in your group to edit the context of any thread. When it is deselected only group admin and the thread author will be able to edit the thread context.
This allows everyone in your group to edit their comments at any time. When it is deselected, a comment can only be edited until someone else participates in the thread.
This allows anyone in your group to start a proposal within a thread. When this box is deselected only group admin will be able to raise proposals and polls.
This allows everyone in your group to state their position on proposals. When it is deselected only group admin will be able to state their position on proposals and polls.
Thread activity is comprised of all the comments, replies, proposals, polls, votes and other notable things that happen within the thread. You can alter how that activity is displayed in order to optimize the experience for your group. These settings change the default layout for everyone in your group, but can be adjusted for each thread to serve a specific purpose:
By default, threads are set to Oldest listed with the oldest activity nearest the top. You can change the thread flow by switching to Newest so that the newest activity is at the top of the thread.
The thread can also be set to display chronologically, as a flat list, where all activity is displayed in the order that it happened, or as nested replies of one or two levels.
Nested replies keeps replies to comments together, and is very helpful to easily see mini-discussions within an overall thread.
Click Save to exit.
How to invite people and manage group membership.
Inviting people to join your Loomio group is a critical step to success - however everyone is busy; many people are reluctant to try a new tool and can be slow to respond to your invitation.
Loomio includes tools to help you invite people; but you may also need to reach out to members by phone, text, chat or in a meeting, to tell them why you are using Loomio. If your group members resonate with this, it will encourage them to give it a go.
For example, your group might need:
- a safe space where members can find all the info they need and participate in their own time
- to stay in touch and respond to issues that come up between meetings
- to progress discussions and make decisions as needed
- to have better meetings and focus precious meeting time on issues that matter
If you're still having trouble with people not accepting your invitation:
- Re-send your invitation.
- Invite them to a particular thread or poll using their email address (so they can see that things are happening). Their email reply or vote will appear in Loomio.
- Record a short video of yourself on your phone, Zoom or Loom and send this with your invitation; so people can see that you're a real person, the importance of the work, your enthusiasm and passion, and to encourage them to join in :-)
Go to your group page and click the Members tab to access member management
You can Invite particular people to your group with their email address or Share a link to your group via email, newsletter, chat or from your website.
Click Invite on the Member tab of your group page to send an email invitation with a single-use link to a person's email address. The recipient is invited to create a Loomio user account and join your group.
If the recipient already has a Loomio user account they can still accept the invitation to join your group with their existing account.
If your group's privacy is closed then you can share your group URL ie:
www.loomio.org/group-name. When people arrive at your group page, they will see the group title and description, and a button Join group where they can request membership. Group admins will receive an email where you can approve or deny the request to join.
You can send invitations by email to up to 100 people at a time by entering (or copy/pasting) multiple email addresses into the "Who would you like to invite" box. Separate email addresses by comma or space.
- Tip: Copy email addresses from a column in a Google or Excel spreadsheet, and paste into the invitation box.
When you submit the form (ie, click Send) an email will be sent to each of the email addresses you supplied, containing a unique invitation link that can only be used once. This email will be sent in your current language.
You will follow the same process as above.
You can invite people to a 'parent' group, and one or more subgroups simultaneously when you invite them with the Invite people button. Tick the boxes next to the subgroups you want them to immediately be a part of when they join the group. See it demonstrated in the video clip just above.
If people join but don't begin to participate right away, you might like to welcome them to the group with an @mention, for example:
“Welcome to the group @Jane :) It's great to have you here! Would you saying a little bit about your work in this space?”
To manage invitations, open the filter/ drop down from the Members tab of your Group page and select Invitations; click on the three dot menu to the right of the member invitation.
You can also make people administrators or set their title (eg, "IT Support") within the group before they accept their invitation.
Follow up on people who don't make it into the group and give them a nudge. If someone has lost or forgotten about their invitation email, you can re-send it from the dropdown menu beside their name on the Members page.
Click on the three dots (⋮) next to the person you want to resend the invitation to, and then choose Resend invitation.
If you entered the wrong email address, or have changed your mind about inviting someone, you can cancel an invitation from the Members tab on your Group page. Select Cancel Invitation from the drop down menu to the right of the member invitation (⋮).
Manage members from the Members tab on your Group page.
Click on the three dots (⋮) to the right of the group member you wish to Set title, Make admin or Demote admin, or Remove from group.
There are only two user types in a Loomio group; member and admin.
Admins perform administrative tasks for your group including; add and remove members, grant and remove admin permissions, change group privacy and member permission settings, upgrade and manage subscription plans.
The person creating a new Loomio group is made admin by default. We recommend to make at least one other person in your group admin, to insure someone can always administer your group.
Admins are people you trust to administer your group. You can have as many admins in your group as you wish.
To make a member admin, go to the Members tab, find the member and click on the three dots (⋮) next to their name. Choose Make admin. An
Admin tag will appear beside their name.
If you are the admin of a parent group, or organization, you have additional permissions with regards to any closed subgroups.
You will be able to join any closed subgroup by clicking the "Join Group" button on the left of the Subgroup page in question (just under the tabs).
Once you have joined the subgroup, you will also be able to make yourself the admin of that subgroup, just as you would promote anyone to admin (see above).
Note: these permissions do not extend to secret subgroups.
When you click Remove from group you'll be asked to confirm the removal. Upon removal, this user will no longer have access to the group's pages, threads, polls, or proposals. They will receive no further emails or notifications of group activity. However, any comments and votes written by the user will remain untouched.
After you have removed someone from the group, you can add them back to the group later if you wish.
To leave a group go to the Group page's Settings tab and click Leave group.
You can name the role someone has within the group, or identify which organization they represent using the title feature. You or an admin can change yours by clicking set title from the dropdown near your name in the desired group's Members tab.
You can even have different titles in different subgroups.
If your group's advanced settings allow people to join your group by request, an admin will need to approve each membership request. Group coordinators will receive an email each time there is a new membership request. The link in the notification email will take you to the Requests page, where you can approve or decline the request.
To find pending requests for memberships, navigate to the Members tab of your Group page and click the Requests button on the right.
Category tags make it easy to find threads of a certain type or topic.
On your group page, click on tags to see the category tags used in your group. Note that alongside each tag name is the number of threads or polls with this tag.
Tags can be applied when starting or editing a Thread, Poll or Proposal.
When creating tags, use familiar category names.
Clicking the add tag button allows you to edit, order, color, and add new tags.
Edit threads to add or remove tags after they're started.
Subgroups help you organize in teams.
Subgroups help you organize your communications and members so that the right people are engaged in their work together.
For example, you can use subgroups for your organization's
- governance board
- working team or a project working group
- a topic (such as 'strategy' or 'learning')
Unlike tags, subgroups create a separate space for a specific group of people. Tags are a way to organize your threads. Subgroups allows you to change the permissions, notifications, and more for a set of threads and people.
Subgroups work just like groups do, but are located within your group/organization, which we call the "parent group". Most of the features and settings are the same as what you encounter in your parent group. This also means that someone can be part of your subgroup (eg, your board) but not your parent group.
To add a subgroup in your group, go to the Subgroups tab.
Click the New subgroup button, give it a meaningful title and decide on the desired privacy) setting, and click Start subgroup. You can now start threads and invite people in.
However, similar to starting a group, you may want to 'prepare the space,' so to speak, for those you will soon invite. A group description, and adjusting any settings including the banner image, can help people feel comfortable in the Loomio group and with the others who will be participating here. Again, this supports psychological safety – proven to improve performance.
Invite people just like you would in a group.
The privacy settings for subgroups follow the same logic as that of any group. A secret subgroup will not be visible to group members who are not invited to the subgroup.
Closed subgroups will be listed in the Subgroups tab of the relevant parent group, and, by default, members of the parent group can request and – upon approval by an admin – join them.
See below for more on privacy.
Subgroups can operate independently of the main group. For example, if the subgroup privacy setting is set to Secret, then only invited members can find this subgroup, see who is in it, and see threads.
Subgroups can have their own coordinators, and, thus, the coordinators of a subgroup may not be the same as the coordinators of the parent group.
Any coordinator of the parent group may independently make themselves coordinator of any subgroups therein.
Closed subgroups have an additional Advanced setting that allow members of its parent group to see private threads, or not.
Otherwise, the privacy settings are the same as those for groups; learn anything else you need to know here.
Invite people just like you would invite them into a group. If they're already in your parent group you can just type their name. You can also quickly select everyone from the parent group.
If you use the Invite people button from your parent group's Members tab, you can invite people to multiple subgroups at the same time by ticking the boxes of those you would like them to join immediately.
Coordinators can deactivate a subgroup in the same way they would a group. Learn how to deactivate groups.
Export data, set up your Slack integration, and in all other ways use this subgroup just like you would a group; check our help articles on groups for more.
Does your organization have a number of working groups, committees, or task forces? Are there times when you want to alert or ask a question of a department or specific set of people who have responsibility, or are experts, in a certain area?
If you answered yes, then you probably will find subgroups useful.
Subgroups help if you want to…
- Keep a conversation private to a smaller number of people in your group
- Keep people from being bothered by conversations that don't matter to them; bonus: subgroups have their own notification settings
- Make sure to notify all the people related to a specific topic, project, expertise… every time
By default, when you go to your parent group you will see a list of its threads and the threads of its subgroups that you are in.
If you wish to see only threads that were started or belong to the parent group, click the Subgroups tab and select the first option (…without subgroups).
With the group data export feature you can:
- Open poll results in a spreadsheet or scripting language
- Print or save PDF's of a thread or poll for archival purposes
- Move you group, including all users, threads, polls, and files to another Loomio server.
If you ever want to move from Loomio managed servers to your own, you can use this feature.
If you're running your own Loomio server, and would rather not anymore, Loomio offer managed hosting in USA, EU and Australia. If you'd like to migrate your group to one of these servers, please contact us.
Contact us if you would like to transfer your Loomio group from Loomio's global hosted service at loomio.org to one of our regional services; loomio.eu for Europe or loomio.nz for Australia and New Zealand.
Open the group drop down menu by clicking on the three dots, and select Export group data.
For working with the group data in a spreadsheet, such as with MS Excel or Google Sheets.
You'll be prompted to choose a destination on your computer for the CSV file.
For when you want to save the data for archival purposes.
This will open the HTML file in another tab in your browser. If you want to save the file, right-click anywhere on the page and click "Save as".
For when you want to move your group data to a self-hosted Loomio instance.
You'll shortly receive an email with a link to downloading the JSON file.
For instructions on setting up your own Loomio server, visit: https://github.com/loomio/loomio-deploy
If you are hosting your own Loomio deployment, and would like to import your exported data:
Copy the .json file to the container instance's
scp your-group-data.json firstname.lastname@example.org:loomio-deploy/import
Access the running Rails console:
docker exec -ti loomio-app rails console
Call the service:
Deleting your Loomio group initiates a process to permanently delete all group data.
If there is any data you wish to retain, make sure you export group data and manually download any important files you have uploaded before you continue.
Open the group drop down menu by clicking on the three dots, and select the Delete group option to remove access to the group and to initiate deletion of all group data from our records. You must be an admin to delete a group.
When you delete a group, it will be archived from view immediately and scheduled for permanent deletion in 2 weeks. You and group members will immediately lose access to the group. If a mistake was made, you can contact us within two weeks of deleting your group to request restoration.
Deleting your group will also cancel your Loomio subscription.
You will be invited to type the name of your group (case sensitive) to confirm you wish to delete your group.
Two weeks after you use Delete group, all the threads, polls, files and other group content will be permanently deleted. This is non-reversible!
We recommend that you export the group data and manually download any important files you have uploaded before you continue.
Get a discussion or decision going.
Threads are where you discuss topics. Group members respond in the thread by posting comments and replies. Threads can also contain polls and proposals to help progress a discussion to an outcome. As people comment in the thread and vote in polls, the thread timeline builds so you can easily find key milestones.
Here are some examples of topics you might use in threads:
- Draft and approve a strategic document
- Plan and deliver an event
- Seek advice and prepare a recommendation to stakeholders
- Submit a proposal to a customer, or to seek funding
See Guides - Success on Loomio for more tips and examples of how to use threads.
You can start a thread by clicking New thread from a group page. When you start the thread, it will be visible to all members of your group.
Give your thread a title; try to keep it short and to the point. You can always update the title of the thread later.
Use the thread context to introduce the topic and frame the conversation or decision to make. Include background information, attach files, link to online documents and embed a video. Let people know what you expect.
The context will always stay at the top of the thread and you can update it at any time as the discussion progresses. When the discussion ends, update the context with the outcome.
If your group privacy is Closed or Secret then your threads will be private. Private means that only members of the group are able to view the threads started in this group (except when you invite people such as an expert or any guest not currently part of your group).
If your group is "Open" then all your threads will be public, meaning that anyone with the URL can view the thread.
See Group privacy for more info.
Effective use of Loomio means knowing how and when to get attention from the group, group members, and even external people your group wants to engage in Loomio to keep everything in one place.
If you ask for attention when it's really important, and avoid it when it's not, people will keep paying attention.
If you want to get the attention of a specific person, type @, start typing their name, and then select the user you want to mention. Click post or start. You can mention people in comments, threads, or even decisions. They will be notified that you’ve mentioned them.
When you reply to a comment, you will notify the user you replied to. Find the reply button on the bottom of the comment to which you wish to associate your reply (it will indented or nested under the comment you replied to, by default).
Note: You can also reply to yourself, but it does not send a notification.
On any comment or thread's context you can react to quickly respond with an apt emoji.
Reactions send a notification within Loomio, but do not send an email.
The most powerful way to get attention from your group. Ensure that you have a clear decision description so people know how to participate. Loomio will notify everyone you choose (the whole group, everyone in the thread, or selected individuals) about new decisions, although you can choose not to notify people and let them find it on their own time.
When you start a discussion, you can choose to select all members of a group, or a select number of them. When you select the whole group, you can assume it will get everyone's attention. People you invite will get a notification immediately.
You can also invite guests now (or later, as described just below).
When you start a thread, your whole group can access it immediately. If you want more people's participation, or want their participation sooner, you can additionally send them an alert via the box that immediately appears when you start the thread. You can also alert people in this way later on via the members button at the thread context's bottom. Exactly like notify, invited parties will immediately receive a notification.
If, for example, the thread is an important announcement and contains information that's ready for the whole group to take notice of, then notify them when you start the thread.
Tip: We've made it quick to select all of the members of the relevant group; click the link with your group's name.
Use invite people to invite guests or experts from outside your group to a specific thread; learn more.
Subgroups are a great way to make it simple to send notifications to a specific set of people. If I click invite people from a thread in a subgroup, I can simply select Members of
It's great to remind your working group when there hasn't been much interaction with a thread. To increase the chances of good engagement, check that the thread context and title include a clear invitation, specifying how to participate.
Comments and tools such as thread translation and thread emails.
The thread context has special status within a thread. It's always at the top, and it's always visible on the page.
Like a comment, you can format your text and attach files or images. Unlike a comment, anyone in the group can update the context (and the title of the thread) by default. This means you can enable anyone to pitch in and help keep things easy to understand and easy to find.
Tip: As the thread grows, update the context with key understandings and information so new people can catch up and participate easily.
The context is like the whiteboard in your meeting room, where you can write the agenda, the hopeful outcomes and how you aim to get there, and take group notes. Learn more about preparing threads and groups for success in our Facilitator's Guide.
Use the paper clip icon, just below the text form, to add attachments from your computer.
While editing the context, click the X to the right of the attachment's name.
Use the formatting tools underneath the space in which you write (any form). Hover the mouse/cursor over each item to know what it is. There's a number of format options listed below, and a few are explained in more detail further down.
- stylize (bold, italics, code block…)
- create lists (eg, checklists)
- turn text into hyperlinks - links icon
- add attachments (from your device) - paper clip icon
- embed video - play button icon
- create and modify tables - icon with four squares.
You can add a link to a Google doc in Loomio anywhere there is a text space; when starting a thread or poll, writing a comment, or updating your group description. The link icon is one of the formatting tools under the space you can write text in Loomio.
To use the link feature,
- Select the text you want to link to - say the name of a document
- Click the link icon
- Find the document link - go to your Google drive and ‘Get link’, or go to the Google doc and ‘Share link’. Check the link permissions so members can open the link - usually ‘Anyone with the link’. Copy the link to your clipboard.
- Now, go back to Loomio and paste the link.
A preview of the doc will appear under the text space. You can remove this if you want.
Now, anyone with access to your Loomio thread and permission to view the doc can open and read it.
You can embed a video from popular video platforms like Youtube and Vimeo into Loomio anywhere there is a text space; when starting a thread or poll, writing a comment, or updating your group description. The embed video icon is one of the formatting tools, under the space where you write text in Loomio.
To use the embed video feature,
- Click the embed video icon
- Go to the video you want to embed, find and copy the shareable link
- Now, go back to Loomio and paste the link
A preview of the video will appear.
Now, anyone with access to your Loomio thread and permission to view the video can play it from within Loomio.
Tip: Make sure you set the visibility of the video in Youtube or Vimeo so that the people you want to can view it. In Youtube 'Unlisted' is a good option if you do not want to make the video public.
To revert to markdown editing, click M↓. If you click this while there is text in the form, some formatting may be lost upon conversion.
Click WYSIWYG to return to the formatting tools. This will convert any text and markdown formatting to display how it will appear when posted. PREVIEW also shows you how your text will appear, but without converting.
From the lists dropdown, choose Checklist.
Click on the checklist/ tick boxes in order to cross out that to-do from the edit form of any context or thread you have permission to edit. I.e., you cannot tick boxes in someone elses comment.
The most common activity in a thread is commenting. Comments are shared with everyone in the thread – usually this is just the members of your group. First look for Comment and your user photo (or initials).
Make sure that Comment is highlighted, not Proposal or Poll.
Write your comment and press Post to have your say.
Replies are like comments except in that the author of the original comment will be notified of your reply. Click reply on the comment you would like to associate your comment with, as it will be nested underneath theirs – by default – in the thread in which you replied.
You can reply to your own comment in order to nest your reply underneath the comment. Click the three horizontal dots (⋯) to find reply in this case.
If Loomio has emailed you a comment and says you can reply to the email, you can reply directly from your email and your message will appear in the thread.
If you've made a typo, or want to add a bit more information to your comment shortly after you've posted it, click edit on your comment. Editing does not take anyone else's attention with notifications nor unread signals.
Changes you've made will be visible to others via the edited button, so you can see what people have changed in their comment.
If you have new information or are coming back after an extended period of time, just make a new comment, then people who have already read your comment will see that there is new information.
Click react on any thread context or comment to share how a comment made you feel, or acknowledge something someone has said, without writing a comment. They're a light-weight way to participate without interrupting the conversation, and they only send a notification within the app (not by email).
Loomio can translate user content (eg, votes, comments…) from one language into another automatically (with the help of Google Translate). If the author of a comment uses a language other than yours, Translate comment will be available in the drop-down options of the comment in question, from the three horizontal dots (⋯).
There are a selection of facilitation tools and decision tools available to you from within the thread.
- Proposals are there to help you see if there is agreement about a statement or course of action, and surface the disagreement if that's what needs to happen. Often, you can use proposals to bring the discussion to conclusion.
- Polls are useful to understand preferences of the group.
- Use a time poll if you need to get everyone together, and want to find the best time for that meeting to happen.
Find out more about decision tools.
- you will receive an email with everything you missed the day before as a daily digest
- you will receive immediately emails for all activity in threads in which you have participated
To change these defaults and more… → Notifications
You can adjust your email settings per thread, so that you can mute conversations that will never matter to you and get all activity immediately for those critical to you (and everything in between).
To do this, use the subscribe button at the bottom of the thread's context. If you want to see this or learn more about email settings… → Thread email settings & Subscribe
Find what you need, when you need it, in a thread.
The thread context is always at the top of the thread. Use it to frame the context for your discussion or decision. Learn more about engaging with the thread context here.
The timeline helps you quickly access content in the thread such as comments, polls, decisions and outcomes. It is a visual, interactive history of key events, milestones and decision processes where you can see how a conversation evolved over time and the discussion that led to a decision.
Comments formatted with a header, proposals and polls are automatically added to the timeline as links. Click the timeline text to go directly to the thread item.
You can pin or unpin any comment to the timeline, and edit the text displayed on the timeline. See more at Thread admin: Pin to Timeline.
Jump to the top of the thread by clicking on "Context".
By default comments in threads are listed one after the other as you scroll down the thread page - oldest comments first. However you can change the thread order so that newest comments are listed at the top of the thread. Seeing the latest comments first is useful for threads used for reporting or threads that have been active for some time.
The grey text just under the context will indicate in which order the activity is being listed, along with the number of replies.
To change this setting, click that grey text, choose your preference, and save. This changes the layout for everyone, not just you.
When you open a thread, Loomio will first show you new comments.
Unread comments are shown with a yellow line on the left side.
If you are a coordinator, you can pin comments to order them and make them easier to find. Pinned threads will appear above your other threads on your group page and will be ordered by the most recently pinned item at the top. You can change position of the pinned thread by pinning and unpinning threads.
You can easily pin or un-pin from the thread preview options, but only from the Group page.
To keep the list of discussions on your group page relevant, you can close threads which people don't need to see.
To view closed threads, first navigate to the relevant group page. You will need to use the drop-down just under the Threads tab to change the thread filter from its default of open.
Choose "closed" to view all your closed threads in the thread filter.
Re-opening a closed thread is done from within the thread's page – again, the three horizontal dots (⋯). See organizing threads for a depiction.
Threads are easily updated and edited by those with permission to by clicking edit.
Tip: Double-clicking a thread context also opens the context editor.
Learn more about thread contexts here.
The following administrative actions may be taken from within the thread, and in some cases from pages that list threads (thread preview options). To find these options, go to the page of the thread in question and use the ⋯ three horizontal dots to the right of the basic thread actions at the bottom of the context.
You may want to move threads between groups and subgroups to keep things organised. To do this, select move to group from the additional options
If you're the admin of a group you can delete any thread – or comments in any of the threads – in the group.
If you started a thread, you can delete that thread, but only your comments within it.
Consult an expert or external party while keeping relevant communications all in one place: Invite them to a specific thread by clicking members, at the bottom of the thread's context. They won't get access to any other threads in your group, just this one. They do not need to already have a Loomio account, and they can participate by email just like all Loomio users. If you do want them to be in the group, then invite them to join from the group page.
You can remove them (or give them permissions) by clicking the dots to the right of their name, again from the context's members button.
The following are achieved from any comment by first clicking on the three horizontal dots (⋯) at the bottom-right of the comment, proposal, or poll in question.
You can delete your own comments at any time.
Again, an admin can delete any comment.
Select delete from the comment's options (⋯).
Sometimes a comment is useful, but off-topic for the thread; it may be a short conversation took place that would have been better held in another thread or subgroup. In this case you will want to move one or more related comment(s) and replies by selecting move item in the comment's options (⋯). This will allow you to select any number of thread items, including polls or proposals. You can then add them to a pre-existing thread of your choice, or start a new thread.
The thread timeline helps you quickly access comments and decisions in a thread. It is a visual, interactive history building with important comments, decisions and thread milestones.
Comments that include a header (H2 or H3), polls and proposals are automatically pinned to the timeline.
Click on the item in the timeline to go directly to the comment or poll in the thread.
To add, remove, or edit timeline items, either click the word pin or unpin at the bottom-right of any comment, proposal, or poll.
To edit the words used in the timeline: unpin and then pin it again; this will give you the opportunity to reword the text that appears as a link in the timeline.
Tip: Highlight the words that you would like to use as the text in the timeline
In the thread menu click on the 3 dots menu (⋯) and choose Print. Then use your browser's ability to "save to pdf", or copy and paste it into the file or repository of your choosing.
Click Seen by to see who has or has not seen the thread.
You can check if someone has been sent an email notification about a thread, decision, or comment. Additionally, you can see if they have opened this notification email or if they saw it on Loomio.
In the extra options you find from the three horizontal dots (⋯), click See notifications.
Click on the dots (⋯) under the Results section of your proposal or poll, and then click See notifications to see who has been invited to – and who has viewed the notification of – your proposal or poll.
Here's how it looks if you sent some notifications:
Tasks are a new feature of Loomio. The intention is to add support within threads to name and assign actions (or tasks) to people, and track their progress.
When you are writing a comment or thread on Loomio click the "Task list" button from the text editor toolbar to add a task.
From here you can name the task, assign someone with the standard @mention feature, and even set a due date with a reminder notification.
When you have assigned task to someone, or a task is assigned to you, the task will appear on your Tasks page so you can easily keep track of the tasks you’re responsible for.
If you click "Add due date", you'll be asked when the task is due, and when to send a reminder to person assigned to the task. The "Task due" notification is sent via email.
The primary action for a task is to mark it as “done” by clicking the checkbox at the beginning of the task. This can be done while you’re editing the text, or when you’re reading the text if you’re the assignee of the task, and also from the Tasks page.
Turn a conversation into an action.
Loomio includes a number of tools to help you progress a discussion to an outcome.
A proposal is for converting a discussion into a clear, practical outcome. Someone suggests a course of action and invites everyone to respond. For example, you might ask group members to agree, abstain or disagree. Other proposal options are available to suit common decision-making processes.
As people vote, they can give a reason why they have voted this way. You can all see where everyone else stands on the matter, and why. And then, if the proposal is still open, you can change your response.
In this way you can use proposals to prompt people for a response, uncover new information, and build shared understanding - to help your group make a better, more informed decision.
A proposal and associated discussion, creates its own record of how the decision came about.
Poll: to ask people which option/s they approve.
Check: think of it as asking everyone to (please) 'raise your hand if you…'
Time poll: to find the best time for the group meet.
Score poll: to ask people to express the strength of their preference for each option, on a numerical scale.
Dot vote: to ask people to express the strength of their preferences, with a constraint—a fixed number of ‘dots’ to allocate–you can put all your dots in one place or spread them out.
Ranked choice: to rank a subset of options—useful for elections when there are many candidates and few seats.
There are a number of types of proposals, but the basics remain the same for all of them.
- You choose to use a poll or proposal (within a thread)
- You name it, describe the question or proposal it represents, and set its duration
- You notify group members (typically all, but you may select none or specific...)
- Group members participate and share a tweet-length message with their selection
- They can change their minds as understanding develops; live results are available
- A reminder is sent out the day before closing
- The poll closes, and everyone can see the results
- The author sets an outcome, notifying everyone of what will happen next.
Include enough details so everyone knows what it means to agree or disagree.
Avoid combining a range of ideas in one proposal, because people might agree to some aspects but not others and be unsure how to respond. You can break complex decisions down into multiple proposals.
When making a proposal, state your expectations and describe the impact the proposal will have if adopted. If it's a formal or binding proposal it's often worth describing what a 'disagree' or 'block' means.
You might want to explore a few ways of using proposals, for some guidance and inspiration.
You can attach files to decisions using the paperclip icon, just underneath the details form. You will be prompted to select a file from your device.
When you choose a Closing time, Loomio will let you know the length of time in which participants will be able to participate in the proposal or poll. During this window, people can submit their position or choice and leave a reason, and they can also edit these if they think on it again or receive new information or ideas, perhaps from others' votes.
Consider how the proposal closing time will affect engagement from your group members, and choose accordingly. You might want to time the proposal so it closes before a meeting, or avoid closing over a weekend.
Beyond considerations of inclusion (enough time) and urgency (deadlines), you may want to give additional consideration to the date and time the poll closes, as Loomio will send a reminder
24 hours before it closes. You can sometimes improve engagement if your group members receive this at a time when they can respond right away.
You can extend the deadline of an open proposal. This can be a good idea if engagement is active and people are working through the issue, or if engagement has been sparse and you'd like to prompt more participation before concluding. To do so, edit the poll or proposal to change the closing time.
It's good to let people know when you're taking a poll or a vote. After you start your proposal you will see a box allowing you to Invite to vote, where you will have the opportunity to select Members of group or Members of thread, or input the names of some of your group. You can select all and then remove some people from the list. This will send a notification to all those listed.
Similar to the invite people feature, if you input the email of someone outside your group in the invite people to vote form they will be given permission to participate in only that proposal or poll; however, they will be able to see the whole thread in which their participation has been invited (but not any of the group's content beyond that). They will not be able to comment or participate in other proposals or polls even though they can see those that are in the same thread.
If a poll closes earlier than what is ideal for your group arriving to a clear shared outcome, you might want to reopen it, setting a new closing time.
Similarly, if you no longer need to let the poll or proposal continue, you can choose close to end it before its closing date. Don't forget to set an outcome so everyone is clear on where you got to and/or what's next!
There are some universal options that apply to most of the proposals and polls that Loomio offers. If you're interested in a specific tool's options (eg, the time poll's if need be option) see the section on the relevant tool… → Types of proposals and polls
If you tick the Anonymous voters box, participant information will not be recorded with each response. This means that you will never know who chose which positions or shared which responses.
You can be certain the box was ticked by you, or the person who started it, when you see the text, "Votes are anonymous".
When selected, you will be notified whenever someone participates – within the app, and by email (by default).
For all polls except the Count. When selected, participants may add their own options when voting.
When users add options the person who created the poll will be notified.
Select this option if you want results to be hidden until the poll or proposal closes.
The poll will appear as below until the poll closes.
Once the poll is closed, you will see the results and be invited to leave an outcome as normal.
Export the stances and outcome of a poll as a spreadsheet (.csv) file. Click the three horizontal dots (⋯) at the bottom of the poll or proposal – you will find it to the right of invite people to vote – and click Export.
Don't hesitate to start a proposal just because you're not sure everyone will agree - proposals are not only for when you have consensus, they're designed to surface issues that need resolving and are useful for clarifying disagreements. We have identified a number of ways to take advantage and step towards clear, shared outcomes, from a 'series of small yeses' to 'temperature checks'… → Ways of using proposals
To keep learning how to best use proposals and polls, read on…
Loomio's proposals and polls are desgined to help you move a discussion through to clear outcomes
There are a number of different types of polls. Below the thread context, switch from the Comment box to the Poll to see the variety of unique ways to get your group's input and/or visualise where the group stands on a given topic or question.
The Proposal tool also has a variety of options that allow you to run a number of distinct processes (eg, a 'questions & comments round'), as covered below.
Find a time to meet
Time poll makes it easy to identify when is the best time to meet.
Enter a selection of times and share the poll with the people involved. Participants tick the times they can attend and the result is a table showing who is available when, so you're able to pick the best time for the group.
So that you can arrange calls with people in other parts of the world, Loomio adjusts times so they are correct when displayed for each participant.
When you are selecting your times, Loomio will display your team’s most used time zones so you can quickly propose times that suit most members.
If the times don't work, participants can suggest alternatives using the message field. You can then update the poll with new times.
Count how many people have completed a task, or ask for volunteers
Make an offer or ask people to take some action. Think of it as the online equivalent of asking a room of people "Please raise your hand if you…".
There are many ways you can use a check, but only one or two ways to respond: a Tick (✔), meaning affirmative, or an X mark (✘) meaning no or unsure.
You can choose to use just one or the other if that makes more sense; eg, it may not help to receive No responses for an opt-in or volunteer opportunity, in which case you will select the Yes option only
- I've checked my contact details are correct
- I've read the document and left my feedback
- I'm coming to the event
- I'll join the working group.
A benefit of Count is that it automatically notifies those people who forget to participate, giving people a little encouragement to get the job done.
Measure popularity or offer a choice
Enter a question and provide some options for people to choose from. People vote for one or more options - depending on if you allow single or multiple choice.
Write any details about the options all together in the details field, then just enter the name of the option in each poll option field.
- Where should we have our Christmas party?
- Which catering company should we use?
- What size t-shirt would you like?
- If we ran a workshop, how likely are you to attend?
Select the tick box, Multiple choice, if you wish for people to be able to choose multiple options rather than just a single choice off of the list of options.
Express the degree of preference for each option
The score poll is commonly used for general surveys or 'temperature checks', in which electing a single 'winning' option is not necessarily the point.
People get to express their desire, preference or interest in each option. The poll produces more granular results than a simple majority vote.
- How would you rate your interest in these topics for the next meeting agenda?
- How important is each of these principles to you when considering our team vision?
- How much would you like to see each of the following speakers at the next conference?
Prioritise options together by allocating a 'budget' of points
This style of poll is useful for groups trying to allocate a limited resource (even time) to a number of options (eg, agenda items, or budget line-items)
Everyone gets a number of dots to allocate against a set of options to represent their priorities. This can build a more detailed picture than a simple poll.
- You're given $100 to spend on the business; how would you spend it?
See dotmocracy.org for more tips and resources about this voting method.
Rank options in the order of preference.
Offers a series of options for people to vote in their preferred order. You can choose the number of votes people can give and rank. This decision-making type allows people to express their opinion in more detail than traditional polls.
Ranked choice is particularly useful when you have a large number of options or an election setting, where you are concerned with two somewhat similar options 'stealing' votes from one another, resulting in a less popular option gaining the plurality.
- What would you like to eat at the company summer party?
- Who should be our next deputy mayor?
Seek collective agreement
Proposals are great for bringing a discussion to a clear outcome, developing or adopting policy, approving applications, and making decisions with input from others.
With good participation, a proposal creates support within the group to take action.
Participants can indicate their position and give a statement to explain why they chose it.
You can change the positions, or options, that proposal participants will have to choose from. There are several configurations for you to choose from.
For example, you might decide to take a period of time for 'questions & comments' before you ask people to respond to the final proposal. In this case, you may even choose to have No voting. While you could invite questions & comments without a proposal, the proposal can be a useful way to create a very clear time box and invitation to comment on this proposal. Using a proposal for questions & comments can also help remind people to participate with the notification sends 24 hours before the poll closes.
Another example: If your group doesn't use a variant of consent-based decision making then you may choose to use a configuration without the "block" or "objection".
Don't hesitate to start a proposal just because you're not sure everyone will agree - proposals are not only for when you have consensus, they're designed to surface issues that need resolving and are useful for clarifying disagreements.
E.g. Let's put a bike stand next to the front desk
If there are two or more competing ideas, propose supporting one. Controversial topics might require a series of proposals to build shared understanding.
E.g. We host the conference; dates and venue to be confirmed later
Break down a complex issue into smaller parts and agree on them piece by piece.
E.g. Share our pay rates publicly
Sometimes loud voices can seem like they are representing more of the group than they really are. Raise a proposal to put their views in perspective.
A temperature check is a way to test how the group feels without concluding a fully realized proposal. Use it when you want to survey opinions, or test a hunch, rather than advocate for a particular position.
'Disagree' and 'block' are often controversial positions to take. We encourage you to see them as opportunities to understand where communication has been inadequate, points of view are under-represented, or as a source of valuable insight.
If things feel tense on a personal level, we recommend that you talk (one-on-one) with the person to hear their concerns.
Record your decisions and share what's next by setting outcomes.
When your proposal closes, you’ll be prompted to set a proposal outcome.
In Loomio, it's not assumed that majority wins - the outcome or conclusion of a decision is up to you to define on behalf of the group. Sometimes it makes sense to go with the majority, but sometimes even one dissenting voice means it's a no.
Group members can be notified of the outcome—see how in the screenshot below—so it's a very useful tool for keeping people in the loop. You can clearly define next steps and name specific actions, or summarize what was learned from the process.
To give a poll or proposal some closure with Share outcome, click on the decision in Previous decisions or from the Decisions page, or when prompted.
This proposal did not reach consensus because several people were concerned about budget impacts. George and Jimena will do some financial modelling and raise a new proposal next week.
I've taken on board everyone's input. As the project manager, this is my call to make and I've decided we are going to extend the timeline by 10 days.
Setting outcomes makes your decision archive easy to search, because you have a succinct statement for each proposal.
After you select Share outcome, you will have the ability to alert group members and/or voters as depicted below.
You can always click on the X, if you are happy for people to encounter the outcome on their own time. Outcomes, like comments, will cause a thread to indicate it is unread.
To keep learning how to best use proposals and polls, read on… → Types of proposals and polls
Creating an Account, signing in, and troubleshooting.
Creating a new user account and signing into an existing account both start from the sign-in form:
Loomio user accounts are identified by an email address. If you sign in via a third party such as Google, we'll use the email address of your Google account.
This means you can login via email even if you login via a third party to begin with.
If using a third party sign in isn't right for you, signing in via email is well supported too. Use the email address that you want to receive Loomio notifications with.
When you sign in via email, you'll be sent an email with a link (or a code) to sign in.
- Go to the sign-in, put in your email address.
- Click Sign in with email
- Click Send sign in email
- Retrieve the code that Loomio sends to your email (Subject, "Sign in to Loomio") and paste that into the form that appeared.
- Go to edit profile and reset your password.
If you don't want to check your email to sign in, you can easily set a password. To do this, take the same steps you would to change your password.
Remember to use the same email address each time you login, or you may end up with two user accounts, which will cause permission errors when you're checking notifications.
Sometimes people think they need two Loomio accounts because they have two groups and they want to keep things separated; However, Loomio is designed to support belonging to multiple groups with one user account.
If you do find yourself with more than one user account, you can merge them.
Invitations are not tied to the email they are sent to. If someone sends you an invitation to an email address other than the one you use for your Loomio user account, you do not need to create a new user account or get the invitation re-sent.
Just click the invitation link and replace the text in the email form with the email address you would like to use, or the email address of your existing account, as you proceed.
After creating an account via a third party (eg: Google), you can still sign in with email. Just enter the email address associated with your Google account into the Email address field and Sign in with email.
If you want to sign in with a third party (eg: Google) but you already have a Loomio account with another email address, you can link your accounts. To do this, just sign in via your preferred third party, Loomio will recognize it's your first time using that sign-in method. Enter the email address of your existing account and Link accounts when you have the choice between this (don't click Create account).
To fix this: Sign out then sign in again with the email address you normally use Loomio with.
Why does this happen? This can happen because you participated in a poll when you were not signed in; Loomio creates a guest user, so you can participate without signing in. When you sign in later, we confirm the authenticity of your vote and connect it to your registered user.
Ensure your browser is not deleting cookies. If you find that you're logged out of Loomio every time you visit, your browser may be configured to delete cookies when you close the browser window. Cookies are the way we recognize you when you use Loomio, so deleting them means you need to identify yourself (ie: sign in) every time you visit.
Here are screenshots of what correct cookie settings look like:
Chrome cookie settings
Firefox cookie settings
Safari cookie settings
Configuring your online appearance and profile in Loomio.
Your profile page lets you customize your Loomio identity. To visit your profile page select the Edit profile option in the user menu, which is found by clicking on your name at the top of the sidebar; if sidebar is closed, click on the menu icon (☰) to open it.
When you first create a Loomio account, your initials will be the default image associated with your profile. You can upload a profile photo by clicking on your picture on the profile page. If you have a Gravatar you can set that as your profile picture by selecting Use Gravatar. You can also choose for Loomio to use the photo you use for other common platforms/tools.
You can update your personal info by changing any of the following fields:
- Your name
- Your email address - this is the email address associated with your Loomio account, and where you will receive notifications from Loomio.
- Your username - your username is a name people can recognize and alert you using @mention.
- Your introduction - a few lines to tell others in your group know something about you.
- Your location - useful for distributed or remote groups so people can get an idea of where you are located.
Loomio is developed in English, but is translated by volunteers into many languages.
Loomio will detect your browser’s language settings, but you can manually set your preferred language from the profile page.
You can change your password by visiting your profile page and clicking Reset Password.
If you no longer want to receive notifications from Loomio, but think that you may want to access your account again some time in the future, you can deactivate your account.
To deactivate your account
- Login to loomio with the email address of the account you wish to deactivate
- Visit the "Edit profile" page from the user menu (top right corner of the screen).
- Scroll to the bottom of the page and click "Deactivate account"
- Confirm you wish to deactivate.
Once your account has been deactivated:
- you will no longer be listed as a member of any groups
- comments, proposals and discussions you’ve made will remain but your name will be removed from them
- you will no longer receive Loomio-related emails
If you login to your account with your email address you'll reactivate your account and regain access to your groups.
Go to the section on Deleting Your Loomio Account
How to merge two accounts together
I have two Loomio accounts under two different email addresses, and I would like to merge them into a single account
- Login to Loomio on the account you wish to replace
- Open the sidebar > Click your name > Edit profile
- Enter in your preferred email address, i.e. the email address corresponding with the account you want to keep
- A verification email will be sent to your preferred email address, and all you need to do is follow the prompts from there
This action is irreversible, but you will have the opportunity to make a final confirmation before it occurs
Loomio supports mutliple languages with these two features:
- Application translation - Change the language of the user interface, IE: the buttons and application text.
- Content translation - Translate comments, discussions and proposals into your preferred language.
Loomio will automatically detect what your preferred language is when you visit the app with your browser. If you want to change the preferred language, you can do so from the "Edit profile" page.
When someone in your group writes their message in a language that is different to your preferred language, a "translate" button will appear below the message. You can click this button to automatically translate the message into your preferred language.
Translation of the user content is provided by Google Translate, and done automatically when requested by users.
We depend on the support of our user community to help translate Loomio (the app) into other languages.
If you would like to help translate Loomio..
Visit the Loomio Transifex page, and select your language
Select the resource you want to translate
- Client is the front end code that your browser runs.
- Server is the backend server code, which is mostly notification emails.
Begin translating the strings
- Click on a phrase
- Read the english text
- Enter your translation
- Save and repeat
- Enable notifications for Loomio, so that when new strings are introduced, you can be notified and easily translate them. We've found that the secret to successful translation is consistency over time :)
If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me, email@example.com and I'll be delighted to help you with any translation issues or questions you may have.
You can use a demo to see Loomio in action, this can help provide contexts for strings when you see them via Transifex.
If your language distinguishes between personal and impersonal, use the more personal!
Make sure that you understand the different type of polls and activities that groups can do and that these are translated in way that is logical in your language.
How to delete your user account.
- Login to Loomio, and click on your account avatar or initials, at the top right of your screen.
- Scroll to the bottom, and click on DELETE ACCOUNT.
- A pop up will appear - click on YES, DELETE MY ACCOUNT.
Deleting your account will not cancel your subscription; to stop your payments see Subscriptions.
When your account is deleted, we remove all of your personal information, permanently. Comments, proposals and discussions you’ve made will remain but your name will be removed from them. We do this because we have an obligation to groups to keep threads and proposals coherent.
It is important that you understand that copies of the data you have generated on Loomio have likely been emailed to everyone in the group - Loomio has no ability to delete those.
How to configure your email notification settings.
When you are notified, Loomio will send a notification within the app and, by default, to your email.
The bell icon in the top-right is where notifications are accessed within the app; a prominent number will display the number of notifications you have yet to read.
Loomio sends emails to keep you updated on the activity in your groups. The default settings assume that you don't have a habit of using Loomio regularly so are designed to ensure you can stay up to date by checking your emails.
Emails we send out include:
A daily summary called Yesterday on Loomio. This includes activity from all your groups and threads, but only content which you have not read yet.
Mention and Reply notifications. If someone replies to a comment you wrote, or they write a comment and mention you in it, you'll get an email with what they wrote.
Invitations to threads and notification of polls or proposals. If someone wants to notify the group about a new decision or discussion thread, they can select everyone or just some people in the group to notify. Also be aware of poll closing soon and outcome notifications.
Thread updates. If subscribe on participation is checked, then after you comment or vote within a thread, you'll be emailed any further activity.
For any thread-specific email (that's most except the Yesterday on Loomio email) you can reply directly from your email and your replies will be posted into the Loomio thread.
There are three settings that apply to every group you belong to.
Enabling this setting means when someone wants to get your attention, they can @mention your name in a comment, which will notify you. We recommend you leave this setting on, so you'll get an email when this happens. The default setting is 'on'.
Enabling this setting means when you participate in a thread, all further activity will be emailed to you immediately. If it is an active thread, you may receive many emails. The default setting is 'off'.
Enabling this setting means you will get an email with any activity that you missed the day, or week, before. This provides an easy routine for staying up to date with Loomio activity. You can choose:
- 'Off' to not receive this email.
- 'Every day' to receive the email daily.
- 'Every second day' to receive the email every second day.
- 'Monday', 'Tuesday'...'Sunday' to receive the email once a week on a particular day.
To change these settings, go to Notification settings in the user menu (click your name at the top of the sidebar if it is closed, click on the menu icon (☰) to open it. Then click the cog icon or Notification settings.
From Notification settings you can also change all of your group email preferences at once.
You can configure what notification emails you get for each group you belong to.
Notification settings for each specific group are found in your Loomio group. To find them
- Click on your group page
- Click on the letter envelope icon to open, Notifications for [group name]
When do you want to be notified?
- whenever there is activity (subscribed)
- If you want the experience of a traditional email mailing list, where you are emailed everything as it happens. You will be emailed whenever there is activity (comments, votes, new threads, proposals, and proposal outcomes) in this group.
- when someone asks for your attention (normal)
- When someone invites you to vote or participate in a thread you'll get an email. In these cases someone in your group is choosing to notify you. This is the default setting.
- no notifications (ignore)
- You won't get notification emails about this group. You will need to sign in to Loomio regularly or read your catch-up summary email to stay updated.
You can apply a particular setting to all of your groups by checking Apply to all groups.
To mute a thread, use the no notifications (ignore) option.
To keep up-to-date with all activity by email, tick the (subscribe) option.
Note that the subscribe on participation setting affects your thread email settings. If subscribe on participation is enabled, when you participate in a thread your email settings will change to "All activity" for that thread.
To turn off all email notifications go to Notification settings. First, untick all the boxes and Save changes. Lastly, choose no notifications and then Update.
How to find what you're looking for in Loomio.
There are 4 top level navigation tools within Loomio.
- User menu
When you first arrive or log in you will arrive to your Group page, or – if you are a member of multiple groups or subgroups – you will arrive to the Recent threads page described below.
The search field is easy to find above the list of discussion threads where you first arrive or on most pages. It will display threads containing your keyword(s) in their context, comments or decisions.
From a Group page: If you are on your group or subgroup's page, you can search within that group. The search will exclude results from other groups or subgroups. _If you are unsure how to get to your Group page
From Recent threads: You can search for comments, decisions, or threads from any group or subgroup. Enter one or more key words to find the information you're looking for. If you are unsure how to get to this page, see the video above or Recent threads, below.
The 🔔 bell icon, which lives on the top-right, will show all activities in threads you've started or participated in and all @mentions. Just click on one of them to see details or participate. If you check only one thing, check this.
When someone wants to get your attention, they'll send you a notification. This could be via an @mention or an invitation to participate in a thread or poll. More on notifying people here.
If you have unread notifications we'll display the number that are unread over the top of the bell-shaped notifications menu button.
The sidebar is where you find your discussions, groups, and User menu. It will be collapsed by default, but can be opened or closed via the using the ☰ horizontal bars icon in the top-left of the screen.
If you pin the sidebar open, then it will be open when you first arrive to any Loomio page, and will reopen (if you have closed it) upon navigation to any other page or tab.
Pin sidebar can be toggled on or off from the User menu (you will see the pushpin icon).
The User menu is where you can access your user profile page, change your email preferences, find a link to this help manual, and sign out. Find it by clicking your name in the sidebar (see video above for reference, you may have to first open the sidebar by clicking the ☰ icon in the top-left).
You can view and update your user profile via Edit profile. Read the User profile page for more information.
You can change your email preferences via Email settings. Read the Email settings page to find out how to set things up to your liking.
You'll also find a link to all our help resources, including this user manual.
You can log out of Loomio, which is recommended if you're not using a personal device to access it.
While search can be a quick way to navigate directly to something, there's a number of pages that will make it easy to navigate all of your threads, groups, and information
- Recent threads
- Unread threads
- Group pages
These can all be accessed from the sidebar, and each display a different list of threads, or more specifically, Thread previews; learn more about the previews and high-level actions you can use to manage these below, as it's important to first understand the different pages that help with navigation:
The Recent threads page gives you an overview of the most recent activity happening in your groups. You can access this page via the sidebar. If you are a member of multiple groups, the Recent threads page will be your landing page when you sign into Loomio unless you are only a member of a single group.
The Recent Threads page displays content from your groups in an ordered list. Open proposals are at the top, followed by all of the threads from your groups, sorted by most recent activity (Today, Yesterday, This week, This month, Older than a month).
If a thread or proposal title is highlighted with a yellow line along its left border, then new activity has taken place since you last visited and this thread is considered unread.
The Unread threads page shows all threads and proposals that have new content since you last visited, sorted by group. You can access this page via the sidebar. You can clear unread items without reading them by hovering over the thread preview and clicking mark as read.
Because Loomio is a place for your group, we have designed the Group page to be the hub and dashboard for your group.
Group pages are where you start threads, where most of the action happens.
By default, your group page lists all of the open threads in your group. You can use the thread filter on the left to show…
- threads that are archived or closed
- only the unread threads
- all of the threads, open or closed.
View all the threads that belong to a category by using the other thread filter. These options are created when people tag threads.
You can also access this filtered view from within any tagged thread; simply click the tag (the category you're interested in) from the thread's page.
You can always select All tags to exit the filtered view you accessed by choosing a tag from the filter menu.
Loomio can send notifications to your chatroom!
Chat tools and Loomio work well together. Chat is like an open or 1:1 conversation in your office, and Loomio is like getting people together in a meeting room to discuss a particular topic and make a decision.
Loomio supports Slack, Discord, Microsoft Teams, Matrix and Mattermost.
You can send notifications to your chatroom any time you like, just the same way you would invite individual people to vote, or to join a thread.
You can also configure notifications to always happen when a specific event happens, like someone starting a thread.
We've prepared step by step walk-throughs for each service we support. Follow the right one for your service to obtain the webhook URL you'll need to add the chatbot in Loomio.
Our webhook based system can also be used to support other systems that support incoming webhooks with either HTML or Markdown formatting. This could be something like Zapier or Rocketchat. Just select the mattermost bot, but use a custom webhook URL.
After configuring your chosen service (see above), you'll have a webhook URL. Open the chatbot settings to pop it into a new chatbot for your group.
You probably don't want to click any of the checkboxes for now. Just enter the name (such as "Discord #general") and the URL and click the save button at the bottom of the form.
If you decide later on you want the chatbot to be notified every time something happens, you can come back and check some boxes.
This is how to send a notification to your chatroom inviting people to vote in a proposal. It's the same process for Share outcome, Invite to thread, Remind to vote, Poll edited etc.
If you want the chatbot to be notified every time a specific event happens, edit the settings and tick which events you want to notify the chatbot about.
Connecting your Loomio group notifications to your Discord team chat.
Loomio can send notifications into your Discord channels when new discussions, proposals, comments, votes, and outcomes occur. You can also manually notify the chatroom when you need to remind people about a decision.
Open your Discord server and find the server settings menu.
Then click "Add Webhook" and give it a name, like "Loomio bot"
Make sure you have copied the Webhook URL to your clipboard and follow the link below.
Loomio can send notifications into your Matrix channels when new discussions, proposals, comments, votes, and outcomes occur.
Matrix is nice because it allows some HTML in the chatroom, and Loomio takes advantage of this.
Our Matrix integration is a little different to our other chat integrations - it does not use a webhook - we've built a custom bot client for this one.
You will need to create a matrix user for the bot to login as.
Once you've created a user for the bot, sign in at that user to obtain the following information.
We're using Element for this guide.
From your loomio group, add a Matrix Chatbot
Here's the form to complete
Here's where you start to find your access token
Here's the settings page
Here's the access token itself
Now you need the room id..
Here it is.
Connecting your Loomio group notifications to your Mattermost team chat.
Loomio can send notifications into your Mattermost channels when new discussions, proposals, comments, votes, and outcomes occur.
Start from your Mattermost team in your browser. Then open the Integrations settings page.
Click "Incoming Webhooks"
Then click "Add Incoming Webhook"
Give it a simple name, select the channel for notifications to appear within, and click Save
Copy the Webhook URL to your clipboard, you're going to need it the next step.
Make sure you have your Webhook URL in your clipboard and follow the link below.
Connect your Loomio group notifications to Microsoft Teams.
Loomio can send notifications into your Microsoft Teams when new discussions, proposals, comments, votes, and outcomes occur.
Visit https://teams.microsoft.com then click Apps
Search for "webhook" in the search field, then click Incoming Webhook
Click "Add to a team"
Type and select the channel you want Loomio notifications to appear within.
Give it a name, such as "Loomio notifications", then click "Create"
Copy the URL it gives you, you'll paste it into Loomio in the last step.
Loomio is not created by, affiliated with, or supported by Microsoft.
Now that you have a Webhook URL, continue setting up your chatbot over here:
Connect your Loomio group notifications to Slack.
Loomio can send notifications into your Slack channels when new discussions, proposals, comments, votes, and outcomes occur. Get key updates, at the right time, on important discussions and decisions.
Start by visiting https://api.slack.com, signing in if you are not already, then clicking Create New App
Give your Slack app a name
Add incoming webhooks support
Then enable the function
Then add a new webhook
Select a channel
Copy the webhook URL to your clipboard
Now that you have a Webhook URL, continue setting up your chatbot over here:
Loomio is not created by, affiliated with, or supported by Slack.
We have a simple API. With each API Key, there is a documentation page that includes working examples of how to use your API key.
To view the documentation for your API key follow these steps to create an API Key for your group:
As a group admin, on your Loomio group page, click the settings dropdown menu and then click API Keys
Add a new integration
Give your integration a name, and select what it will be permitted to do within your group.
After you save it, you can view the documentation for your API Key
It will look something like this:
Here a link to the documentation, with a bogus API key. We recommend you follow the steps above to get working examples.