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Page read time now on Confluence Cloud

Hi everyone! I’m Tim, a Confluence Cloud product manager focused on analytics. I’m here to reveal new feature we’re excited about and I think you’ll enjoy!

Estimated page read time!

Confluence users read a lot of pages, myself included, and very soon you’ll see estimated read time appear underneath the title of a page. At a glance, this new insight helps you know roughly how long it will take to read the page, without ever needing to scroll.

We have found estimated read time helps users better plan their day and commit to reading the right pages through. It also helps page authors understand the ask of the intended audience to create even better pages. Note, estimated read time currently supports English. We’re working to add broader language support this year.Insights - read time.png

This is just one of the many new things we’re cooking up in Confluence this year so stay tuned for more updates. Please share your feedback in the comments!


Sharon Helms Community Leader Aug 31, 2020

I hope that Atlassian is planning to make this feature optional rather than something that appears on pages without our control -- especially considering when the development team asked for feedback on this feature back in February, they only received a tepid response from the Community:

Of particular concern to me is whether the voices of people who use Confluence for technical documentation are being heard a lot less than those who are using Confluence for blog posts, for example. 

Users refer to knowledge base articles such as procedures in a different way than they read "Thought pieces" about leadership or announcements about a "Company Picnic" on a company blog.

The suggestion that anyone would "plan their day and commit to reading the right pages" in Confluence doesn't really fit with knowledge bases that are used to solve problems and provide references. 

Like # people like this

Yup. Gave this a cool reception in the discussion linked by @Sharon Helms  - this is at best an irrelevance for my use-case. I maintain a technical documentation site on Confluence Cloud. Some of the pages are over 20,000 words - with very good reason as it allows us to keep all linked information in a single location. No-one is _ever_ going to read it in a single sitting. And if the heading says "80 minute read time" people are going to feel overwhelmed - when all they need to do is refer to the Table of Contents and they're instantly relocated to the 1,000 word sub-heading that's relevant to their enquiry. 

Tim Clipsham Atlassian Team Sep 02, 2020

Hi @Sharon Helms, thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts with us. We thought (and debated) a lot about your earlier feedback of “only blogs”. We decided that it would have limited its value especially in light of the broad spectrum of use cases our customers use Confluence for, particularly as we continue to see more diverse teams rely on Confluence as they embrace remote work.

That said, I completely agree with you that estimated read time doesn’t help as much with longer-form reference material that people don’t typically read end-to-end, e.g. company policies and procedures, technical reference documentation, etc. In full transparency, we don’t have any plans on our roadmap at this time to optionally show/hide read time, so I’ve noted and shared the feedback above with our team. Thanks again @Sharon Helms (and also @RPT Admin) for persisting on this point and sharing it candidly with us.

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@Tim Clipsham Thank you - great to know you're feeding this back to the team. (And yes, I'm very sheepish about my 20,000 word pages but it's what the users requested, consistently, in UX.)

Like Tim Clipsham likes this

Love this, thanks!

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Nice feature! Thank you!

Do you know is the Server Team planning to do this?

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I believe this should be optional, even if I favor writing pages that are not too long (technical documentation).

Like Kim Skimmons likes this

I think it should be optional. As a writer, I like that it will give me an estimate if I'm going too long. Also, just out of curiosity, what reading level is the timer calibrated to?

How is it calculated? 

Quite disappointed at the response "In full transparency, we don’t have any plans on our roadmap at this time to optionally show/hide read time"

I'd be interested to know if the effect of reminding people they are not great readers was ever discussed in this decision?


If someone who isn't a confident reader or perhaps has dyslexia sees the estimated read time when ever they are forced (eg by company policy) to read documentation etc, seeing the estimated time and knowing it is at least 2 or 3 times faster than you could manage is a constant reminder of how 'bad' they are.

Forcing this on all members, or not providing a way to manipulate the estimate (eg a multiplier) seems like a failure to me.


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