We have made the decision to deprecate
/connect as core functionality from the application. Our first step will not be to entirely remove it, but to put it behind a feature flag pending future development. This will give you at least a few weeks to remove it if you are using it.
Connect has never worked quite well enough to justify being baked right into Forems, and while the co-location of chat and async is a pattern repeated across social media like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. we feel that in the distributed ecosystem of Forem, it makes less sense to isolate chat in too many different places.
Forem has consistently acted as a great complementary tool to chat-based spaces like Slack, Discord, etc. and removing Connect as a focus now will allow us to more clearly devote focus to the undeniably core elements of Forem — the feed, post composition, comment section, etc. We will continue to invest in the most important parts of the experience.
As Forem progresses, we will come up with effective ways to connect individuals in private and public contexts as appropriate, and chat contexts may come back — likely as more of a plug-in than a bake in.
In order to stabilize Forem and deliver a customizable, extensible, decentralized experience, we need to reverse course on functionality from time to time and Connect has never been able to get over that hump as a product feature we can lean into deeply.