Login-free public mode for polls

Today i try to replace a “well known poll app” by nextcloud polls. Most of my polls are simple text-mode polls, shared to approx. 200 external users via URL.
To get the users acceptance I’m looking for a “very easy” access-option. Because the edit-access via private URL is for much users complicated (not for me, but for a lot of users :slight_smile: ). I know, that in this case each external user can vote or edit data from other external users, but this is also common usage in the current poll tool.

If there an option to turn off the login functionality in nc polls app?

No, sorry. Not in the near future.

I think you can better use the app Forms.

In Forms you do not have a login functionality if you use a shared link.

Hi @RailsViceRoads

Maybe I don’t get what exactley you want to achieve

But why not just use a public link and add the option to add an email address? That way the user will get an email with a personal link and no login is required. That’s exactley how doodle and other similiar services work. Otherwise I would have to manually generate 200 personal links, which would be too complicated for me as an admin :wink:

That would be a concern for me. Users who fail to click on a link and enter a username and email address, and then bookmark their personal link, or use the link from the email they got, will also “accidentally” click on the wrong place in the survey. :wink:

Doodle indeed allows a user to change every vote of every user. We could do that also, by allowing the owner to remove the existing restriction

But this would mean a hughe change for the app and additional checks and tests to be shure no flaws will remain, which could breake the current trust priciple. Currently too much work compared to the value.

Especially for an app which is just maintained by one maintainer in his free time. :wink:

Regarding the 200 invitations: There are occ commands to be able to invite users from the backend.

@All: Many thanks for your suggestions. :slight_smile:
Sorry for the following off topic part, but i want to explain the reason for my question.

I administer a nextcloud instance for a small NPO (sports club) in my free time. For organization of events some of my “users” used what ever she found in the web. Mostly doodle in “text-mode” was used to get volunteers for some tasks of those events.

Since a couple of years i try to “catch them” by supporting the Polls App. But the main reason for rejection is “it doesn’t look & feel like doodle” or “it is too complicated”. :roll_eyes:
The main argument is “we want to get volunteers - it should be at easy at possible to register for them”.

Now doodle doesn’t support text-mode doodles anymore. This is the reason why i retry to provide the functionality by our nextcloud server.

Of course i work also on the users acceptance side. But maybe other “free-time-administrators” shares this acceptance problem.

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I don’t get the link from “it is to complicated” to the request of adding a poll where everybody can change all votes.

Sorry for the following off topic part

This is not off topic. This is requested feedback.

Since a couple of years i try to “catch them” by supporting the Polls App. But the main reason for rejection is “it doesn’t look & feel like doodle”

If a user says it is to complicated, I am really interested in some more specific feedback. This helps to improve the UX more and more. The design (Does not look sexy) is bound to the nextcloud style guide.

Comparing to Doodle
Using Doodle as a participant, you directly get to the vote page and have to enter your name as the first action.

In polls, you first have to register with your name and then you get to the votepage. So ther is no real difference from my point of view.

What is the reason for the register modal?

  • Some users of polls want to get the email address (mandatory or optional) of the participants.
  • Also another request is to be able to login, if you take part in a public poll but want to participate as the site user who has a login

This is the reason, we present the registration modal first. But you have to provide the same information as doodle requests; just a name.

The other point is, that doodle permits any user to change every vote. This is not possible in polls, because the concept bases upon the decision, that every user is only allowed to change his own votes.

Breaking this principle has a huge impact on the current architecture. It is expensive compared to a limited value.

Polls is not directly supported or developed by Nextcloud although the repository is located with the nextcloud namespace. Currently I am the only maintainer and my time gets limited more and more, ATM. The originally maintainer is also limited with his time, so he is just able to maintain the releases in his spare free time.

This is the downside of OS, if you are dependent on some enthusiast, who develop as a hobby.

BUT: Polls is open source. Any other enthusiast is welcome to support the deveopment or even fork the repository and enhance the app at his own mind.

Anyways thanks for your efforts to support the usage of this app. I really appreciate this. But I hope you understand my point.

And: If you really try to promote Polls since years, I hope you can confirm a huge improvement over the years. Just for my own soul :wink:


:100: that is true for the administrator working with what is on their own instance, and just as true for the volunteer maintainer implementing endless refinements, additions, and even total overhauls in their free time.

I find it tough to replace big tech products in a drop-in manner, but users can warm to differences over time. :slight_smile:

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Maybe, we can meet halfway. I added a possibilty to store the personal token in a cookie, so direct access is possible in the same browser for 30 days after the registration.


Thanks for your answer. Yes, you are right at all the points. I will also not share the opinion of my users. :slight_smile:
Now I will try to summarize the users feedback as requested.

May be the particularity is the usage here (searching volunteers for jobs at sport events). Most of them will “scan” the poll multiple times to find which job is free or if a friend is working at the same time and so on. For this “iterative filling process” the management of the private poll link is necessary.

In Doodle there was only a link in the invitation (mail or web page) at all. I think an other point is that it was possible to parse the list without login - but with the possibility to put the data any time “on the fly”. This is the guess why it feels now “much more complicated”. :slight_smile:

There is no problem at all. Since doodle stopped the text polls support, my users learn step by step. :slight_smile:

I simply want to point out, that a more “scratch board” like mode could be nice for some scenario. Its more suggestion than a request.

The cookie solution sounds very nice. I think that will cover nearly the complete handling.

Now the part for your soul: Polls is now a powerful tool. Why else should I try promote it :wink:

And yes: I try to promote polls for a longer time. Sometime it was quite curios to see what users try to avoid this “very complex login” (sending excel files across instead using a poll…).

It’s a pity that Forms doesn’t seem to be an alternative for you. That would solve some of your problems with Polls. I think Forms is the better Polls at Nextcloud because of outstanding issues. Have you tried Forms?

Hello devnull,

yes i did. But in this special use case it is very helpful for the participants to see the “person-jobs-matrix” as a table. I didn’t found such view in forms. Also i found no way to modify the data at later time (for each participants own input).

Yes. I think for your special case Forms is also not the solution. But I think also other software e.g. from Microsoft has some problems you just have to live with.

I would like to understand this. Why is Forms a better polls and what outstanding issues do you address?

My (personal) main issue (and discussed in this thread) is the necessity to set a username. test, test2, test3, … That is stupid for an anoymous poll. Polls with option with no username would be great. Internally you could use random values to not have to rewrite the whole application. Also, no one needs the possibility to look at or change their decision afterwards. This could also be optional.

Forms solves all this problems. The disadvantage is perhaps that the current status is not displayed during voting. But no one needs that either. In an election, you only find it out at the end, too.

OK, I understand your opinion about the handling of the public polls, but I do not get the point, where you further compare Forms and Polls and judge Forms over Polls.

Both apps have different use cases. Forms is designed for surveys comparable to google forms or similair, while Polls is designed to get a consensus about times like doodle. The textpoll is a cheap addition but not usable for serious surveys.

And why entering a name before participating in a poll is a problem, is still not clear for me. I would say, it is a cheap price.

You may talk for yourself, but traveling through the github requests tells the opposite to me. There is a reason, why we provide the effort for the public polls and the possibility to reenter it. I for my self have several use cases, where I changed my mind after taking part in a poll, may it be a simple poll or by coordinating a meeting.

The other point you mentioned are the outstanding issues. Which one are you referring to?

Yes you are right. There are a lot of good options in Forms and in Polls. But in both software products options are missing. You can also use Forms for check times like doodle.

Yep. If you want free answeres for a time survey. But this is not how doodle and Polls work.

I guess, you don’t want to get in details here.

With the date entry (Date, Datetime) you are right. But you can also use “Checkboxes” and “Multiple choise” and use there a text date in Forms.

The integrated voting overview (Results/ Summary) is not bad at all. When exporting and evaluating CSV it might be a bit more difficult with Ceckboxes/Multiple choise.