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Where has 'Add Watchers' gone in the new JIRA view?

I want to be able to add my BA and Scrum master to watch tickets so they receive their email notification. 

Where has ADD WATCHERS gone?

48 answers

1 accepted

13 votes
Answer accepted
Atlassian Team
Atlassian Team members are employees working across the company in a wide variety of roles.
Apr 16, 2018

Hey @Jason Lewis,

Unfortunately there is currently no way to add or manage other users as watchers on the new issue view. This is something we plan to support in the near future.

If the new design currently doesn't meet your needs, you can go back to the old view by clicking "See the old view" in the top right or by switching the feature off in your user profile (click the ••• on the issue and click "Turn off new view").

Also, if you have any feedback for the team you can click the "Give feedback" button in the top right. We read this daily and use this to inform what we build and improve next.

Hope this helps!

Thanks Kai, I strongly believe the OLD VIEW is much better functionally and I would suggest that JIRA hold off from this update.


I've switched it off for now but I hope this change doesnt get forced in!

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Atlassian Team
Atlassian Team members are employees working across the company in a wide variety of roles.
Apr 22, 2018 • edited

Thanks for the feedback, feel free to send any other specific feedback that you might have too. We're working hard to improve the new design as we build more functionality, features and address feedback we've received so far. Rest assured, we won't be rolling out the new design permanently until we've delivered the features, functionality and improvements that have been driven by the customer feedback we've received so far.

We just figured out that using [~username] to tag is not working in the new issue view. 

My instance has some specific restrictions which prevent some users from using @name to tag someone for security reasons, so they had been relying on the [~tag] to get this done. 

I've instructed them to turn this new view off for now. 

It would be nice, as an admin, if I could have an option to opt-out of trying new features that pop up without warning. I don't mind so much this happening in our test boxes, but it can be frustrating in production instances. 

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@kai wrote:

Rest assured, we won't be rolling out the new design permanently until we've delivered the features, functionality and improvements that have been driven by the customer feedback we've received so far.

I received a notice today stating that the ability to turn off the new Jira experience will be removed within the next two weeks. The new Jira still does not give me the ability to add my team members as watcher's on tickets though.

This functionality is critically important in our world.

My colleagues and I have submitted feedback on this and other items via the "Give feedback" button for the past couple of months, to no avail - at least this is what it seems like. 

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Once again you have removed functionality from a screen. This not only happens in JIRA but also in confluence; example: Undo; where you need to know the fast path to do it. Once again frustrating.

Like Edwin Sale likes this

The new version of Jira is not usable for us.  You CAN NOT take away the ability to turn off the new Jira.

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@kai This is a very critical piece of functionality to remove.  As with many companies we have leads and developers that work under them to assign issue types to.  We need a way using JIRA Cloud to be able to add the leads as watchers (or even Product or QA team members) to tickets so everyone is aware.  When will this be available for JIRA Cloud?

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@kai  When is this being re-added?  From reading the comments above, Atlassian needs to do this ASAP if they want customer base to accept and start using the new issue view. 

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Changing to Old View mode has no effect in displaying a way to manage watchers:



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I looked for an hour to see how to do this in Jira-cloud, now I know I cannot do this, so I have to find the person that most need to watch the issue as component lead

Like Edwin Sale likes this

Comment deleted, wrong area.

Adding watchers to an issue is very useful. If you force to use new UI, this feature must be added.

I also belive that "OLD VIEW" is much better functionally and I would suggest that JIRA hold off from this update.

l would also like to get the add watchers button back.

I'm a long-time JIRA user (15+ years) and must say that the new view right now seems like a grossly unfinished product that is not ready to be given to end users at this point.  There is simply too many features that are not present and it's too laborious to explain to novice/infrequent users how to turn off the new view to return to the old. 

As mentioned earlier in this post, adding watchers is a critical task to easily add people to a ticket.  However, there's lot of other features that aren't present that we use -- all critical.  Please consider getting rid of this 'new view' until more functionality is present, or allow an Administrator update the system to revert to the old view.


Thank you.

It looks like in the new view I can't even tell who is watching an issue. Is that correct? If so, I think that's even worse than not being able to add watchers.


- my team has hit the same problem:

- ie., we seem to have lost the ability to manage and view watchers in the new view

- this is core functionality and we can't believe it has disappeared in the new views (its one of the reasons we loved using JIRA since it enabled team members to keep each other in the loop on relevant issues and to quickly check who was a watcher on a given issue)

- the new views are therefore unusable for my team without the ability to independently manage and assign watchers 

- in May you mentioned that "Rest assured, we won't be rolling out the new design permanently until we've delivered the features, functionality and improvements that have been driven by the customer feedback we've received so far."

- its now September and you seem to be rolling out this new view while still missing this required functionality

- can you give us an update on when we can get this functionality back?

- i've had to waste time this past week responding to questions from my team because this new issue view was rolled out automatically without the required core functionality

- if you can provide an update that would be much appreciated




We too need to be able view current watchers and add/remove watchers from the issue view.

I will chime in here. I am very frustrated by the removal of the ability to add watchers. I'm the admin for our JIRA projects, and I used this function very heavily to keep team members in the loop.

It boggles my mind how such important functionality was removed!!???

For those watching this topic, I worked around this (somewhat clumsily) by getting a free add-on from the market place that allowed me to set up my projects so that users are added to all issue types automatically.

It's not ideal - like using a nuclear warhead where a scalpel would do, but it at least ensures me that my users are tracking / aware of new issues.

When will add/remove/list watchers be available? We shouldn't have to pay for this without this feature.

This is a very important core piece of functionality to remove!!!  When will this be available in JIRA Cloud?

1 vote
Trevan Householder_Isos-Tech-Consulting_
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Mar 04, 2021

@Jason Lewis Atlassian has heard and responded - this feature is available in Cloud:








If you can see the View Watchers iconViewWatchers.pngbut not the + Add Watchers, then check your project permissions.  You will need the "Manage Watchers" permission.

Just my two cents.  Watchers is a critical feature of JIRA.  Atlassian you need to get over that you made a mistake by removing it from the "New-View" and just find a way to put it back in.

Switching back and forth between "new" and "Old" view will probably go away as another "Enhancement" from Atlassian.

As a blogger I have been asked by my readers about JIRA.  I was a total fanboy and helped others get started with JIRA.  Now, I can't with a good heart recommend JIRA.

Listen to the people in the posts and others like it.  Put "Watchers" back in.

Agreed, and with a 9 month turn around from first report to date, I concur it is a matter of Product Manager will, not Technical difficulty that is preventing the feature from being restored.

Can the “New View” be considered successful if users have to abandon it to do their work?

This has been in the backlog for 8 months and I still have to search and find an answer for this when one of my users turned on the new view by mistake. I turned the new view off months ago because it is completely useless.


Please do not change things just to change them. If you change something use feedback to guide your hand. Its very clear that the "new view" is not being driven out of necessity or user will. 

Managing and viewing watchers is very important for us, +1 for adding it soon, and would like an update on timing. 

It's hard for us to switch to the old issue view because we need certain functionality related to subtasks that the old issue view does not provide, but we really need manage watchers as well.

+1 for this need! (actually +10 - one for each member of the team)

Our team was manually switching to the old view every time we have to Manage watchers on a ticket. Not sure if there is a way to stick to the old view from within JIRA settings. (please suggest if there is one).

For now, have written a tampermonkey script to do this, others might find useful. -

Try clicking lower-left avatar/icon and select profile, scroll to "Labs" and unselect "New Jira issue view". Sometimes I find I have to clear the session storage in chrome for it to take effect. I think there have also been times where the setting somehow got reactivated and I had to unselect it again.

Thanks for your reply Scott. Will try.

My entire team is complaining about the new view.  What happened to getting feedback from users?

Bring the "Add Watcher" to the new UI.

Agreed! They knew about this lack in April and it's still not there?

Chiming in here because the new view is all but unusable. Please do not consider rolling out any changes that remove the ability to use the old view

I eventually found the icon-only button. Eliminating text labels is not friendly to all users.

From 4/16/2018, Kai said, "This is something we plan to support in the near future."

It's 3 years later and still not working.  Is there an ETA for this super-useful feature?

I recommend anyone coming across this question goes to the following issue and add's their vote/interest to it.

Mandatory role out of new view is coming and this issue hasn't been updated in over a year...

I use the automation in next gen project with new view. No problem. We just need to get used to the new way of doing things.
1. Go to Project settings | Apps | Project automation.
2. Add automation like in the picture.


Large gov dept here, also disappointing and limiting in usage not being able to 'add watchers', large loss of capability here


Check your permissions if you are using classic setup projects to ensure watchers are enabled.   

The Add Watchers resolution was given to us by Atlassian and should be in the new and old views.   

See @John Schuster

Reach out if you need more clarity! 

Any more information in the last couple months?  I need to be able to add watchers also.  is there a permission I need to activate or something? 

Nevermind, I finally found the permission that needed to be edited.  Thanks.

I am surprised people are still complaining about this.  I was one of the original posters that reported this issue.  It has since seemed to be resolved.  I switch back and forth between the new and old issue view and they both now have the ability to add watchers.

Note:  I am using Sofware projects and am NOT using NextGen projects.  I don't know if the issue view is different for NextGen projects and if the problem still exists for those.

I am also using software projects but do not see an option to add watchers in the new view.  I'm not sure if there is an administrative setting for watchers as I have not seen one, but all I know is this used to work and now it does not after the update.

Like deb likes this

Atlassian Team - This has been an issue since 2018!  What is the hold up in adding this critical functionality back?  Our workflow requires leads and managers to be able to view tickets in their respective areas which we can easily define in Jira, but we cannot add them as watchers.  I have no idea why this was removed and I have yet to receive an answer from Kai... he no longer seems to be with Atlassian.

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