Public Messages in myAvail Dispatch Client

Public Messages in my Avail Dispatch client (Silverlight) are used to disseminate information to the riding public. Click the icon  on the column heading row of the message list to create a new message.

This action displays the following window.


This section allows you to specify the priority of the message. The default is medium priority. The different traveler information components handle message priorities differently, as shown in the table below.


You can designate a message as a General message or a Route Specific message. (See the note below for categories of messages.) If you select Route Specific, you must select one or more routes to which this message applies. For LCD and LED signs, Facebook, Twitter, and the IVR, there is no difference between general messages and route specific messages. These designations pertain only to the myStop® Website and the user subscriptions that include text messaging and e-mails as described below. Route specific messages are most useful for information that affects only a few routes, such as information about a detour.

On the myStop® website, users can select the following choices when viewing Public


  • All Messages displays both general and route specific messages.
  • Selected Routes displays only the route specific messages for routes that the user has selected in the Routes pane of myStop®.
  • My Routes displays only the route specific messages for routes that the user has selected in their profile. My Routes is available only when the user is logged into their account.

For user subscriptions, users can set their profile to subscribe to “Public Announcements”

and/or “Route Specific” messages.

  • Public Announcements displays all public announcements.
  • Route Specific displays all route specific announcements regardless of the route. If the user subscribes to specific routes in their profile, only messages for those routes are displayed.

NOTE: The Select Categories drop-down list is an additional method that allows riders to filter text messages they receive. The feature is not commonly used, but the system can populate the drop-down list with message categories (e.g., General, Detours, Board Minutes, …). Riders can select message categories they want to receive while signing up for text messages.


Use to specify where you want the system to deliver a message. You must select at least one of the following destinations: Website, Facebook, Twitter or Sign. If you select Website, the myStop® website displays the message, and the system also sends it to users who have subscribed to public messages.

To select one or more signs to display the message, click the  icon next to the Sign checkbox, which opens a window like the one below that lists your sign locations.

Use the buttons at the top of this window to select or deselect all signs. If you select a sign group, the signs in that group are also selected in the sign list. Select Website in the Signs drop-down to select the IVR system.


By default, the status for a new message is set to Published. If you want to create a message but not activate it immediately, uncheck the Published checkbox. To activate it later, edit the message and check the Published box.

NOTE: A separate Position Setting permission grants Publish rights. When users cannot set message statuses to Published, the Publish permission has not been set for their position. This permission is useful for cases where a Public Relations department or Supervisor reviews all public messages.


Enter the text of the public message in this box. Avail recommends that you select the distribution channels before entering the text. If you attempt to save a message before at least one message channel is selected, myAvail displays an error. By default, the Edit all channels box is checked, which allows all the message destinations that you selected to use the same text that you enter in the box. Uncheck this box if you need to reword the message specifically for any of the message destinations.

The various destinations allow a different maximum number of characters. You might need to reword a message for a channel that permits fewer characters.

NOTE: User Subscription e-mail alerts, IVR announcements, and the myStop® (InfoPoint) web page use the message text entered for Website.

If you enter text with the Edit all channels box checked and you exceed the maximum character limitation of any of the selected channels, myAvail displays an error. You must resolve the error before you can save the message. To fix the error, uncheck the Edit all channels button and click the channel identified by the error. Edit the text in that channel so it fits within the length limitation. The text for all channels must fit within the channel’s limitation even if that channel is not being used by the selected destination(s). After you change the text in a specific channel, you cannot select the Edit all channels box because there are differences in the text between channels. An exception to this occurs when you blank out a channel and then select Edit all channels. In this case, the common text is put back into the channel you blanked out.

HINT: When you select Website as a destination, remember that the message is also sent to users subscribed to receive the website public messages. Users subscribed to email messages receive the text entered in the Web channel. Users subscribed to SMS messages receive the text entered in the SMS channel. Therefore, make sure that the SMS channel, which has a limitation of 160 characters, contains valid text. The easiest way to do this is to start with the Edit all channels box checked. If the complete message exceeds the LED limitation but doesn’t exceed the SMS limitation, uncheck the Edit all channels and blank out the LED channel. If the complete message also exceeds the SMS channel, you must reword the message in the SMS channel to fit within the 160 characters.


Use this area to set the starting date and ending date for when you want the message to be displayed. Click the calendar  icon to pick the dates. You can also click in the field and type in a date. The default date range starts on the current day and continues for a month.


Use this area to set the starting time and ending time for when you want the message to be displayed. The message is displayed only during this time range each day. The time range defaults to all day. If you change the time range and want to set it back to all day you can select the “Set all day” button. To change the times, click the clock icon . You can also click in the field and type in a time.

NOTE: The myStop® website and all signs use Time Range, but it is ignored by Facebook, Twitter and Text Messages. The subscriber can set up quiet times not to receive text messages.


These checkboxes allow you to select which days of the week that you want the message to be displayed. The message is displayed only on the selected days of the week within the Date Range. This defaults to all days checked.


After you have defined your message, click the Save icon in the upper-right to save the message. Or, click the Cancel icon if you do not want to save the message.

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