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How to allow non-licensed users to vote/watch issue?

We have a small team of 8 who use Jira Software.  We would like to create transparency between what our department is currently working on and our end users in our organization.

We want them to be able to not only see issues we're working on, but we'd like for them to be able to watch or vote on the issue as well. For example, we have a bug kanban board.  Our end users look at this board to see if a bug they're experiencing has already been reported.  If it has, it would be nice if they could add themselves to the watch list so they'll get updates about that bug.

Is there any way to set this up so we don't have to pay for additional licenses? It seems silly to pay for licenses for users when they're literally only going to be able to use two features.

Is this possible at all?

6 answers

1 accepted


To see issues, one needs to have the browse permissions in the project as well as being in the user role. I do not see a way that your end users can vote/watch issues in a project that they do not have access to.


I understand it's not currently possible to allow a non-licensed individual to vote/watch an issue, but it's still an interesting feature. I then open an issue suggesting to allow watching an issue using just an e-mail. Let's vote on it:

I find it interesting that Atlassian (who can have unlimited licenses because they don't have to pay themselves) allows all their customers to have an account in their own Jira instance so we can vote on and/or watch issues, but they don't let their customers do the same.  Bummer they can't treat their customers to the same features they like to use!

It's actually a logic problem, not a licence problem.

If you don't record who votes in some way, your voting system is completely open to fraud and gaming.  To prevent that, the question becomes one of identifying who can vote, and as there's a user system with authentication built into it, so you might as well use that.  There are other methods, but why bother when you've got a perfectly good one.

I totally get that, but then Atlassian should allow 'voter/watcher' users to exist without taking up a license...  This is not something new - other tools on the market already do this.

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0 votes
Jack Community Leader May 15, 2019

@Josh Martin , the title indicates "non-licensed". Individuals that are not licensed (don't have an account) cannot see access your Jira instance at all. If you want them to be able to do anything w/in the application make them a user. Once they are a user you can define the permissions of what the can do in project > permissions. In there you would give them Browse access first and foremost. Optionally, you can then give them 'edit' permissions. There is a specific permission section called "Voters & Watchers".

0 votes

On top of what @Jack and @Victor Mutambuki _Mumo Systems_ said, note that although you can allow "anonymous" access, this does not work for voters or watchers, because votes and watches have to be recorded as someone - you have to know who the people are for them to be of any use.

Hi guys,

I'm not sure people fully understood the question.

We want to:

  • Create a user for our internal customers (employees)
  • Allow them to Vote and Watch issue on Software Projects
  • Not give them a license to be able to only vote and watch

They will be a logged users, but without a license just to watch and vote. 

Jack Community Leader Feb 08, 2021

@Breno Lima , I'm confused. Are you associated w/ Josh, the original poster here? If not then maybe your question should be opened on a new post? Josh accepted the answer previously so I assume his answer was answered.

Hi @Jack


I'm not associated with him. I just have the same demand and I saw people commenting as he wanted to enable not logged users to vote, what was not his demand and, if I understood correctly, neither mine.

I didn't see he had accepted an answer. In this case, as I could understand, the answer is: no, it is not possible, right?



Jack Community Leader Feb 08, 2021

thanks for the additional info Breno. I don't see anything referring to not logged. The question boils down to whether a non-licensed individual can view and vote on issues. The answer is no which I think is what Victor's answer captures and I think this also answers your question but not absolutely sure.

Like Breno Lima likes this

The "logged users" here by definition cannot be allowed to watch, vote or look at issues - you have not licenced them, so they can't be let in.

First of all, thank you all for the answers! I didn't want to reopen a closed topic and sorry about that!

@Nic Brough _Adaptavist_ , I don't know technically, but I imagined something similar to what we have in the Service Desks, where people doesn't need license to log a ticket and interact with it.

Anyway, thank you all for the attention. 

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