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Martin Barrett
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What Does Idle Mean On Discord?

What Does Idle Mean On Discord?

Discord is one of the most popular apps available on smartphones, game consoles, and personal computers.

The app is used for voice and text chat between users and has become incredibly popular amongst gamers, as a perfect tool for communicating with a team while playing team-based video games.

However, Discord is also used for many things other than just gaming.

Many people also use it simply to chat, hang out, study in the same virtual space, and share the same music or visual content.

However, because the platform strives to make communication incredibly efficient and incredibly personalizable, the platform has also become rather complicated, and it can often prove incredibly daunting to users that are new to the platform.

As such, you may be reading this now because you are confused as to what the ‘Idle’ status refers to on the platform!

If so, then you have come to the perfect place, because we are going to endeavor to find the answers that what does idle mean on discord! Join us below to get started!

What Is Discord?

There are few things more important in online games than communication.

But rather than using some of the poorly-optimized built-in chat platforms that many games boast, many gamers make use of Discord instead.

Discord can most closely be compared to communication apps like Skype, which allows you not only to make face-to-face video calls with other Skype users, but also allows you to make audio calls, or simply communicate via text.

Discord can do everything that Skype can, but what really sets it apart is how truly customizable it is.

It’s easy to instantly create group chats between certain groups of people, so you can have private conversations if you wish, but it is also easy to join unique ‘servers’ which are dedicated to discussing certain things.

Let’s say, for example, you were a fan of the popular fantasy game Skyrim, you could join the dedicated Skyrim server, which would allow you to chat with various other fans of that game.

Within that server would be a number of dedicated ‘channels’, which help to keep discussions organized.

One channel may be dedicated to admin announcements, and can only be posted in by admins, while others may be for general chat.

Some channels may even be exclusively dedicated to posting and sharing memes!

You can even create your own servers and invite specific users to them. Say you had an esports team made up of fellow students at your university.

You could create a Discord server populated only by people from that team, and use the server to keep discussions within the team organized, and to make practicing easier.

Servers don’t even have to be gaming-oriented either!

You could even create a server amongst your college buddies in which you all virtually gather to study together and motivate one another!

Creativity is Discord’s greatest asset, and there are many ways you can customize your experience of the platform to your own needs and wishes.

What Does Idle Mean On Discord?

Because of its nature as an online instant communication tool, Discord also allows its users to communicate their status to other users, to let them know if they are currently accessible or not.

There are four generic status options that you can choose from, and each of these also corresponds with a unique traffic light that helps to further denote your status.

  • “Online”, which is denoted with a green circle. This makes it clear to other users that you are available for messaging or calling, and that you will likely respond promptly.
  • “Idle”, which is denoted with a moon-shaped icon. The “Idle” status communicates that a user has not touched their device for a period of around 5 – 10 minutes. This suggests that the user is away from their keyboard, and thus other users must wait for them to return to their device in order to receive a response.
  • “Do not disturb” is the third status which is denoted by a red circle, and this stops all notifications from the app from showing up on your devices, which can help to minimize distractions and allows you to focus on other things. However, it is still possible for other users to send you messages or attempt to call you, you just will not receive any push notifications warning you as such!
  • “Invisible” is the final status option, and this allows you to communicate that you are completely offline from the app. This means that not only will you not receive notifications, but will also suggest to other users that you will not respond if they attempt to call you. Thus, you should be sure that it is definitely the option you want most!

As you can see, the “Idle” status on Discord simply automatically communicates to other users, on your behalf, that you are currently away from your device, and that thus you are unlikely to notice any messages or missed calls until you return.

How Do You Change Your Status On Discord?

You may find that you want to change your Discord status at certain times to communicate certain things.

However, the method for manually changing your Discord status can depend on what device you are accessing it on. Let’s take a look at the methods now!


If you are using the desktop version of Discord, then all you need to do is move your cursor over to the bottom left, where your icon can be found.

Click on your icon, and then you will be met with a popup menu, from which you can choose from all of the varying status indicators.

Once you are ready to show up online again, simply follow the same steps, and then you will be able to select ‘Online’ from the menu!

This can also be done in the same way if you are using the web-based version of Discord on your web browser.



If you are operating Discord from your smartphone, be it an android or iPhone, you will need to start by heading to the Discord app, and then looking to the bottom right corner of the user interface.

There, you should find the ‘User Settings’ icon. Tap on this icon to access the user menu.

You will be met with a number of options that you can then choose from. Look towards the top of these options for the ‘Set Status’ button.

Tapping it will then bring up a popup menu from which you can choose your status.

Can You Set A Custom Status On Discord?

Yes! If you find that the standard status indicators on Discord are just not doing it for you, then you can easily set up a custom status on the platform.

When you enter the menu that allows you to pick a status on Discord, you will be met with a number of options, but you will want to look out for the ‘Set a custom message’ option.

Doing this will then open up a new small window in which you can enter your custom status, and even change the period of time in which it is displayed!

You can even change the icon that accommodates your new status. This way you can inject a bit of humor into your status if you wish!

This can be done on all versions of Discord, including the web and desktop versions and the smartphone versions.

All you need to do is follow the standard steps to change your status on Discord, but instead choose to create a custom one!

Can You Show Other Discord Users When You Are Playing A Game?

One of the best things about Discord is that not only can you chat with friends via text and voice, but you can also easily share your activities in various video games.

Of course, users can use the platform to discuss in-game actions, if they are playing together as a team, but users can also use Discord to share their gameplay and livestream to the platform for others to watch.

As well as this, users can also set their custom status to reflect the fact that they are playing a specific video game.

In order to do this, they need to ensure that they are using the desktop version of the platform, as this feature unfortunately does not work on smartphones.

In order to show what game the user is playing, they need to head to the platform, and then, in the bottom left, where the user information is, look for the small “Gear” icon that represents user settings.

Clicking this icon will bring up a menu that allows the user to change aspects of their profile.

Towards the left hand side of the screen is a list of options under distinct subheadings.

The user will then need to look for the ‘Activity Settings’ subheading, and then click on the ‘Activity Status’ button underneath it.

This, once again, will bring up another window. In this window, the user will want to look for the section that states “No game detected”.

Underneath this, they will also see a blue button that reads “Add it!” Clicking on this button will then bring up a drop down menu that shows all of the various programs that are currently open.

The user need only scroll through them, and then choose the appropriate platform. You can easily set this to show whatever you want.

So, if you aren’t playing a game, but you are instead watching YouTube videos or Netflix, you can show this off!

Once the user has chosen the program you are currently using, all they then need to do is ensure that ‘Display current activity as a status message’ is set to ‘yes’.

This will cause the program to be shown as the current status!

How Do You Change Your Bio On Discord?

As well as allowing you to personalize your experience of the program by allowing you to add a profile picture, cover photo and username, Discord also allows you to add a short bio in which you can express yourself!

In order to change this bio and use it to express yourself, all you need to do is click on the cog icon that is near the user information in the bottom left corner.

This will then bring up the user settings menu, on the left hand side of this menu, you will notice a list of options under distinct subheadings.

Under the ‘User settings’ submenu, find the option ‘User Profile’ and click on it.

This will bring up a new menu that allows you to change all of the various display aspects of your profile.

You should be able to see an ‘About Me’ field, in which you can enter your bio.

There are only 190 characters available to use, but you can write whatever you like, and you can even add emojis if you wish, to add some extra visual flair to your profile!

To Wrap Up

As you can now see, ‘Idle’, on Discord, simply denotes that a specific user has not touched the device that Discord is operating on for some time, and thus they cannot fully be considered as offline, but they can be considered as being idle.

This categorization helps to make it easier to see if your friends can be reached while on the platform, and can explain why someone may take a little bit of extra time to respond than usual!

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