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Needles and Haystacks: Featuring content in News Board versus using labels

Out of the box, Confluence Cloud comes with a handy but sometimes undervalued feature: Labels.

Atlassian describes the purpose of labels as this:

Labels are key words that you can add to pages and attachments to make them easier to group and find. For example, you could assign the label accounting to all accounts-related pages on your site. You can then browse all pages with that label in a single space or across the site, display a list of pages with that label, or search based on the label. 

Labels are also used extensively by macros to help surface content in different ways. One of my favourites is the Page Properties Report macro.

But there are some things to be aware of when using labels. You can't use spaces, and your label must be in lower case. The other thing to know about labels is that, because Confluence is a wiki, there are no specific controls over labels, except through general permissions to stop people from editing a page or blogpost.

Now, this isn't necessarily a limitation, but it can cause issues in certain use cases. For example, where you don't want to find everything, but instead need to highlight or display specific or important content from anywhere across your Confluence Cloud site.

That's why I developed News Board and News Board Lite to use a separate "Feature" flag, rather than relying on labels.


Featuring content in News Board and News Board Lite (blogposts only) allows you to curate the specific content you want to be displayed on your news page. You can also decide to let everyone feature or limit this to a list of specific people. That way, the latest Covid-19 announcement, CEO blog, or news that someone got a promotion won't get lost in all the updates happening across your Confluence site.

News Board also lets you tag content with customisable categories, which is also separate from the labels applied to that content. When you do this, News Board still respects permissions, and each user only ever sees the content they are entitled to see regardless of it being featured and a category assigned.





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