Direct Messaging (DM) is a feature on every social networking platform. It allows a user to privately converse with another user. DMs are fairly obvious on platforms like WhatsApp and Instagram. But on Discord, it’s a little different.

Although the method of DM-ing on Discord slightly varies from other social media, it is a piece of cake, nonetheless. It’s super easy to directly message someone on Discord once you know how. Plus, you can DM anyone, irrespective of whether you’re friends or not!

How to DM on Discord Mobile App

Directly messaging someone on the mobile app is the same as the desktop app with minute variations. When you want to DM someone directly from a chat, long tap on their name for a menu to pop in the lower half of the screen. Tap the ‘Message’ button here.

If the person you want to message hasn’t messaged on a channel for their username to pop, it’s still convenient to directly message them. Tap the ‘Members List’ button to the top right of the channel’s screen.

You’ll now see the list of all the members on the channel. Tap on the person’s username you want to message.

You’ll now see a familiar menu. Tap the same ‘Message’ button.

On the mobile app, there is only one way to directly message someone — via their individual chat space. There’s no provision for instant messaging. Both methods will open the person’s chat space where you can directly and privately message them.

Where are your DMs on the Mobile App?

To look for your direct messages, tap the hamburger icon (three vertical lines) to the top left corner of the chat screen or slide the same screen to the right.

Now, tap the ‘Message’ icon to the top left of the sidebar to turn it blue. This is the ‘Direct Messaging’ button. All your DMs will be stored here for better access.

If you have too many direct messages and want to narrow the search down to one particular DM, simply type that person’s username in the ‘Find or start a conversation’ box at the top of the ‘Direct Messages’ sidebar and select the appropriate search result. You cannot search for people you haven’t directly messaged.

How to DM on Discord Desktop App and Web Client

When you’re on a channel, there are two ways to directly message someone on that particular channel. One is via their username; if it appears on the text channel, and the other via the ‘Members’ list.

Messaging via an active text channel: Messaging someone privately when their name pops on a live chat is the easiest way forward. Simply click on their name and start typing in the ‘Message’ textbox on the contact card. This is a great way to instantly DM.

However, if you want to open the person’s chat space and view the entire conversation, double-finger tap or right-click on their username and select ‘Message’ from the menu.

You’ll now be directed to the person’s private chat space. If it’s your first time messaging someone directly, you’ll see a cute ‘Wave to’ animation along with a button to wave to the other person. Start typing out your message in the ‘Message @’ text space.

Messaging via the Members list: This method is for the times the username doesn’t appear in a chat. With this method, you must manually scroll through the list of all members on a channel to find the person you want to message.

First, locate and open the channel that has the person you want to DM. Then, click the ‘Show Members List’ button to the top right of the screen to open the list.

Scroll through the list and once you find the person, you can either double-finger tap or right-click on their name and select ‘Message’ from the menu to open their chat screen.

For instant messaging, click the username once to open their contact card with the ‘Message’ box.

How to find your DMs on the Desktop app

To find your direct messages on the desktop app, click the Discord ‘Home’ button shown with the app’s icon to the top left corner of the screen.

You’ll now see all your direct messages. On this sidebar, you can also look for existing conversations or start a new one. Click the ‘Find or start a conversation’ search box at the top of the sidebar.

Now, type the username in the ‘Where would you like to go’ box.

You’ll see all the possible search results for your query. Choose the appropriate result to go directly to that person’s chat space.

Remove a DM

To remove a direct message, hover the cursor over the person’s username then click the ‘X’ mark next to it.

You can also double-finger or right-click on that username and select ‘Close DM’ to remove the DM from the list.

The DM will only disappear from the ‘Direct Messages’ list, the history of that particular chat stays intact. You will need to manually search for the DM or username to retrieve the chat or wait for the other person to message to uncover the hidden DM.

Privacy and Safety Settings for DMs

Discord allows two special safety settings for direct messaging – DM scanning and allowing DMs from members on the same server. These settings are available on all Discord clients and all of them fairly require the same enabling method.

To reach the ‘Privacy and Safety’ settings, first, click the ‘User Settings’ button shown with a gear icon at the bottom of the left sidebar.

Now, select ‘Privacy and Safety’ from the left ‘User Settings’ sidebar.

On the mobile app, click the ‘Hamburger’ icon on the chat screen you’re on or slide it to the right to see the sidebar.

Now, tap your user profile button to the far right at the bottom of the screen and select ‘Privacy and Safety’.

The method after this is the same on any device.

Scan Your Direct Messages

‘Safe Direct Messaging’ will be the first section on the right. DM scanning is essentially a feature where you give Discord the authority to scan all direct messages for explicit content and delete them. Thus protecting you from such content. You can select your DM safety level here.

Keep me safe: If you want to be extra secure on Discord, select ‘Keep me safe’. This will scan all direct messages from everyone on the server regardless of whether they’re a friend or not.

My friends are nice: If you don’t mind unscanned DMs as long as they’re from your Discord friends, select this option. This option will continue scanning messages from strangers and acquaintances on the server — anyone who’s not a friend.

Do not scan: If you don’t want Discord to scan any direct messages for explicit content irrespective of who’s sending it (friend or not), select ‘Do not scan’.

You’ll notice that this is not an ideal option since it has a red tint. ‘Keep me safe’ is the safest option hence it has a green highlight.

Restrict DMs From Server Members

This privacy setting is for when you want to disable DMs from all server members who are not your friends. To restrict strangers from directly messaging you, stay on the same ‘Privacy and Safety’ page and locate the ‘Server Privacy Defaults’ section. Here, click the ‘Allow direct messages from server members’ green toggle button to turn it grey.

When you disable DMs from server members, Discord will also ask if you want the setting to apply to all your servers in the following prompt. Click ‘Yes’ if you don’t want all strangers from every server to DM you. If not, click ‘No’.

Now, members will need to be friends with you to directly message you. When you disable server members from directly messaging you, you cannot instantly message them. You’ll need to open their chat screen and only then DM.

And that’s how you can DM on Discord and protect yourself from unwarranted direct messages. We hope you found our guide useful!