Edit Threads and Notes

Each portion of a conversation in Help Scout is called a thread. A customer email that starts a conversation is the first thread, a Help Scout user reply would be a separate thread, and a note left by a user a different thread. Most threads in Help Scout have three little vertical dots to the right of the timestamp. Use this menu to perform actions that will only affect a single reply or note within a conversation. 

Note: The options to edit threads and delete notes will only appear if you have permissions to take these actions. See User Roles and Settings for more on permission settings available to Help Scout administrators.

In this article

Customer Threads

All customer threads will show the options Edit, Hide, and New Conversation, whether their original source was an email, the API or an integration, or a message sent from Beacon. Show Original will be available for any email threads created within the last 2 years. 

Note: Prior to June 2019 the original email source was only stored for 60 days, but we heard your feedback and extended that storage time to 2 years! This means that the source for emails received on or after April 19, 2019 will be available for 2 years. The source for emails received prior to that date will no longer be available.


Edit a thread when you want to exclude specific content from the previous message in your reply. As an example, if a customer included credit card information in their email to you, to protect your customer, you don't want to reply with that number still in the email. Edit the thread to remove that from their message, and when you reply they will receive the edited version with your reply. 

You might also want to use the Edit option to truncate a long response or remove extra information, for example a long string of code you don't need, a long block of text that isn't relevant, or any content that you just don't want to see in the conversation in Help Scout. 

Attachments will appear at the top of a message when editing. Click the X next to the file size to delete that attachment from the thread. 

You'll see a note indicating that the thread was edited, showing the user that edited it and when, with a link to show original. Any attachments deleted will no longer be available in the thread, but the original text will be available for all users to view. 

Keep in mind that the full email source will still be visible with the Show Original option from the menu for 2 years. All Help Scout users are able to view that and download a copy of the original message source that will include any attachments as well. Editing a thread and removing text or attachments is not a complete deletion from Help Scout. To completely delete any text or attachments you will need to delete the entire conversation instead. 


Hide a thread when you want to prevent that thread from being a part of your reply. After you hide a thread, that thread will no longer be included in the previous reply on your response to the customer. Hiding a thread only affects what the customer sees in your response - it will still be visible in your account on both the conversation and Reports. Hiding a thread can be useful if the customer sent sensitive information in their original email that you'd rather not send back in your reply. 

A hidden thread will appear as grayed out in the conversation, and will show a note indicating which user hid the conversation and when. To restore a hidden thread, select Unhide from the thread options menu. 

New Conversation

Use New Conversation to split that specific customer email into a new conversation in Help Scout. For example, if a customer emails multiple questions (in one conversation), you might want to turn those comments in to new conversations for reporting or to assign to different members of your team. 

Show Original

Here you are able to inspect the original email headers, look for inline replies that weren't pulled into the thread, or download the original source of the email. The original headers and email source are stored for 2 years for incoming emails. The original email source cannot be deleted from the conversation. 

User Threads

User threads will only show the Edit and Hide options, which work exactly the same as they do in the customer threads, as described above.


A note offers the opportunity to Edit or Delete. Edit here is a bit different than customer or user threads — we don't keep the original text on notes, only who last edited the note and when. If you delete a note, the note is removed without any indication that it had been there.

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