Subscribers | World Anvil Codex


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Guild Exclusive

This is a guild-only feature. To get access, Join the Worldbuilder's Guild!

The Subscribers feature allows you to make private content visible to specific people. There are several ways to use this feature, including self-assigned subscribers, password activation, and Patreon import. All of your subscribers need a free World Anvil account.

What is a subscriber?

A subscriber is someone who can read the secrets and other private content in your world. When your world is private, only subscribers can see the homepage and all the content that is assigned to them.   You can have as many groups of subscribers as you want, which means you can give different secrets to different groups of subscribers. The higher your guild rank, the more subscribers you can have.   To give someone editing permissions on your world us the co-author system.  

Frequently Asked Questions

Do subscribers need to be Guild members?
No. Anyone with an account can become a subscriber.
How many subscribers can I have?
The higher your guild rank, the more subscribers you can have. Note that the subscriber slots count for all your worlds (i.e. If you have ten subscriber slots, you can have ten in a single world or five in two different worlds, but not ten in each world).
If the world is set as private, can certain articles be public?
No. Private worlds overwrite the privacy state of anything within it. Subscriber groups are necessary to manage access.
How does Patreon importing work?
This is a Sage-only feature and it's not an automatic process due to technical limitations. To import your Patreon supporters, use the method described in the "Adding subscribers through email" section of this guide.

Add subscribers to a world!

To use the subscriber feature, you set up a few subscriber groups, add users to them, and then assign articles, secrets, and any other private content you want to share to those groups.

Create a subscriber group

Subscribers are organized into subscriber groups. To create one, click the padlock button at the bottom of the sidebar:

Access Rights links

  On the Access Rights page, select the Subscriber Groups tab and use the right sidebar to create a group.
Create subs group

Subscriber Group Metadata

A subscriber group has a title, a description, a position, visibility toggle, self-assigned type, default type and mutually exclusive tags.   The title is required and will be used as the name of your subscriber group. Be sure to use a title that you can easily remember and associate with the purpose of this group. The title is displayed whenever you select the group from a drop-down list to add it somewhere.   The description is only visible in the list of subscriber groups. Use this field to add some additional information that you might want to remember. For example, why you created the group or what its purpose is. It is perfectly fine to leave this field blank if you have a good title!   The position determines the order of the groups in the list of groups. The group with the highest position is added to the top in descending order.   Check the visibility toggle to hide the group membership and title from your subscribers.   Check the self-assign toggle to give users the ability to assign themselves this role. This is useful if you want to let users choose a faction, or a type of access or to hide certain content with a trigger warning behind a toggle.   The mutually exclusive tags are used to make sure users cannot subscriber to two or more self-assigned groups at the same times. Add the same tag to every group that should not be combined. You can add multiple tags by separating them with a comma.   Check the default toggle, to make this a default group. Default groups are added automatically to any private resource you create within that world. Keep in mind that this setting is not applied retroactively to already existing resources, so you still have to assign them manually in that case. You can have as many default groups as you wish.

Subscriber Group List

All of your groups are listed on the subscriber group panel.  

Groups list

  Each group in the list has three buttons, from left to right:
  • Edit: it will take you to a page to edit the group's settings (title, description and position).
  • Subscribers: it will show you who is part of this group.
  • Group Assets: it contains a list of all pages that this group can view.
  There are two additional buttons next to their names, which you can use to copy two different BBCode tags:
  • Self-assignable button: this will copy a BBCode tag that you can paste anywhere to generate a button. If any logged-in reader clicks the button, they'll be added to the group.
  • Subscriber container: paste these tags anywhere. Anything you write between them will be visible to members of this subscriber group only.

Adding subscribers

Once you have created a group, you can begin adding subscribers to it. Select Subscribers and use the sidebar to add a subscriber to a group. To add someone, they must have a World Anvil account and you need their exact username. You can add a subscriber to multiple groups, but all subscribers must be in at least one group.  

Add subscriber

  After adding it to the group, the subscriber will appear in the list of subscribers. Use the red button to remove it from a group, and the green sign to add it to another group:  

Subs list


Default groups

This feature is available to Grandmaster and Sage guild members.
  Default groups are added to any private resource that you create within the world. This is useful when you wish to share most content within a world with a group of people. When creating the resource the all the default groups are added automatically to the creation form. This means that you can remove the groups from content that you do not wish to share with specific groups.

Self-assignable groups

This feature is available to Grandmaster and Sage guild members.
  You can also have your readers subscribe to a particular subscriber group. To do this, go to the Subscriber Groups section of the Permissions page and click the copy button next to the name of the group you want to make self-assigning:  
  This will copy a BBCode tag into your clipboard that you can paste in any BBCode-enabled text field of your world (it will look something like [subgroup:GROUP-ID|WORLD-ID]). Use the following syntax to generate the result in the screenshot below: [subgroup:XX]Party[/subgroup] (replace the first tag by the proper one you have copied).  
  When a logged-in reader clicks on Party, they will be added to the subscriber group and the checkbox will be filled with a check mark.  

Access codes

This feature is available only to Sage guild members.
  This feature allows you to send an access code to someone so that they can activate their subscription to your world without you adding them manually. In your world's Access Rights page, select "Subscriber Access Codes" and fill in the sidebar. You will need to have created at least one subscriber group. The empty form looks like this:  

create subscriber code.png

  After clicking the "Create Code" button, it will appear in the list, like that:  

subscriber codes list.png

  Your subscribers will be able to activate their subscription from a special page of your world, located at your world's URL followed by /activate (e.g. It looks like this:  

activate subscriber code.png

  When the subscription is activated, your new subscriber will see a confirmation message at the top of the page.  

Mass-assign subscribers with email list

This feature is available only to Sage guild members.
You can add multiple subscribers at once with their email address. This email address has to be the same that the user used to sign up to World Anvil. To do this, use the Add subscribers to group (multi emails) panel in the Subscribers tab.   Make sure there's a single email per line and that you select the correct subscriber group in the drop-down. If you want to make sure there are no duplicates with the subscribers you have already added to the world, type PURGE in the bottom text box before clicking the Add Subscribers to Group button.   This is useful if you want to make sure all your Patreons or Ko-fi supporters have access to your content according to their support level.

Making content available to subscribers


To let your subscribers read private articles, go to the article you want to share and find the top panel in the right sidebar. Make sure it's set to private. Then click the green button and select from the list of subscriber groups. To remove a group, click the red button next to the group you wish to remove.   The article will then only be visible to you and the selected group(s).


Secrets are always private. When you create a secret, you can optionally choose which groups of subscribers can see it. If you don't select any, only you and your coauthors can see it. When creating a secret, you can select one or more groups from the list. Afterwards, you can edit the secret and change the subscriber groups, of course.
Secret subscriber groups


For categories set the subscriber group either from the Articles interface or through Advanced Edit. The category has to be private.   Setting a subscriber group on a category does not affect the categories or articles below it.


Maps have different parameters to set their level of privacy. You can make the whole map available to subscribers only from the Map Settings (Display & Privacy) tab you will find in the map edit page:  

Map configuration tab

  Set it as private and choose the subscriber groups. You can do the same with specific layers, marker groups or individual markers, from their respective tabs.   See also: Guide to Maps  


Timelines as a whole can also be hidden from everyone except subscribers. Edit your timeline and edit the visibility setting in the Edit Timeline box of the right sidebar. Note that you will have to click on Show advanced options to see the visibility settings (they will show up at the bottom of the section).   You can do the same for individual historical entries, from their respective edit pages.   See also: Guide to Timelines  


Finally, images can also be private. At the bottom of the image edit page (or when you are first uploading it), you can find the usual visibility settings. In both cases, you will have to click the Show advanced options link to edit visibility settings.   See also: Guide to Images

Subscriber Containers

This feature is available to Grandmaster and Sage guild members.
  A BBCode tag, which can be used to limit the access of content between the tags to a specific subscriber groups. These tags can be used anywhere that supports BBCode within World Anvil!  
Subscriber Containers
Spell | Oct 29, 2023

An easy way to share content only with a specific group of people.

  This video provides a good overview on how to use the subscriber system. However, the interface has changed quite a bit since then!  


Cover image: by Belleco


Please Login in order to comment!
Nov 30, 2019 00:29

I'm looking for a way to have my subscribers add their own pins to the map, as part of a hexcrawl. Any way to do this, without having them register as Co-authors or editors?

Dec 4, 2019 02:48 by Dragon

I don't know much about maps so I've asked the others. I'll get back to you when I've gotten a reply. :)

Dec 5, 2019 01:38 by Dragon

Sorry, it's not possible for subscribers to do that.

May 5, 2020 17:18

Is there any way for me to view an article as if I was a member of a subscriber group (as opposed to the author)? I want to be sure that my article (which contains some public and some sub-only content) is displaying the way I want.

May 6, 2020 02:25 by Dragon

I don't think so, but if you are viewing your article it should say in the secret container which subscriber groups can see it.

May 6, 2020 03:15

I'm actually using the subscriber group only container instead of secrets. Since I couldn't find any documentation mentioning these containers even existed (I happened to notice the button next to the group in my Subscribers Group list), I wasn't sure I was using it correctly and wanted to verify. I actually visited the article in another browser without logging in, which at least let's me see a public view. That wouldn't work if trying to compare views between different Subscriber Group views though.

May 6, 2020 03:23 by Dragon

Yeah, it would be good to be able to see how it looks for different subscriber groups, I'll ask the other enchanters if they know of any way to do it and if they don't I'll put in a feature request.

Jun 27, 2020 04:36 by Elia Browning

Is there any way to hide things from specific subscriber groups? For example, I'm trying to write a story for a roleplay group, and while I'd like the information to be public for anyone who wants to read what I've written, I would like to keep it a secret from my players, as they haven't discovered that information yet. If it's not possible with subscriber groups, I'd love to hear any other possible ways to accomplish this.

Jun 27, 2020 17:53 by Dragon

A feature request for that has been logged. However, right now the only way you can have the public view something is with [spoiler-]omg a spoiler |Label[/spoiler-] (remove the two '-' ) and trust that your players won't look at it without your permission.

Jun 28, 2020 18:24 by Elia Browning

Thanks for the tip! One of my players is responsible, but the other loves spoilers, so I'll cross my fingers XD

Jun 28, 2020 22:42 by Dragon

Haha! yeah XD

Sep 13, 2020 20:54

Thank you for the article.   I was wondering if there was a possibility so that subscriber can see the title of some page, but cannot access them. For instance, I want for them to be able to see the members of an organisation, but not the page said members. For the moment, my word is private, so puting the character pages as public achieves that (I am not sure why), but that feels quite like a hack and I would like to know if there is more proper way of doing that.

Sep 14, 2020 01:26 by Dragon

I think that if you use the mentioning system they will see the links but if they click them they will come to a 404 page.

Sep 14, 2020 06:12

That sounds like a solution, indeed. However, it means I cannot take advantage of the automatic tools of the organization (in the example above) that automatically list its member, I have to duplicate it on the main page, doesn't it?

Sep 14, 2020 19:48 by Dragon

I'm a bit unsure about what you mean with organizations. If there is a specific feature that you want WorldAnvil to have you can make a feature request over here; and Dimi will have a look at it when he has time. (He's busy with a secret project right now though)

Sep 18, 2020 17:09

Thank you very much for the explanation, and sorry for answering that late. By "organization", I meant the article type with this name you can create. You can them add character to them in the character template, and they will appear listed in the article left column. But looking a bit more, I think I may be able to do things by upgrading as Grand Master. Still have to think a bit about it, though ^^'.

Sep 19, 2020 02:46 by Dragon

<3 Great! :) Also consider joining the community over on the discord if you haven't already. Questions is easier and fast to ask and answer over there with quick screenshots.

Nov 28, 2020 20:13 by J. Thorne

Right under the "Adding subscribers to your content" part in the article above:   Do I need to have the available-to-subscribers things set to Draft/Private/Done in order for my beta readers to see it? Or is the Private setting the only important one?   Also, where do they go to see these not-yet-posted things?

Nov 28, 2020 21:58 by Dragon

If your beta readers are only subscribers and don't have access to your world any way else (writer, editor co-owner) then your articles need to be Published/Private. If it's a draft only people who have backdoor access to your world (writer/editor/co-owner) will be able to see it while if it's published everyone can see it. If it's not set to private. If it's private and published only the subscribers and the backdoor folks can see it.   Published and private articles can be found by your subscribers where you put them on your world. So if you make a beta reader category you can post everything there that they should beta read... it's also possible to post secrets in articles that only subscribers can see in certain published/public articles.

Nov 28, 2020 22:21 by J. Thorne

Okay, so for beta readers (that's exactly what I have!) it's Published/Private -- does the WIP/Done part matter?

Nov 29, 2020 04:02 by Dragon

Yep :) Nope, WIP/Done only matters for you. Just so you can see what you have marked "I'm not gonna work any more on this" ...people will be able to see that in the meta data on the article as well so they will know that the article won't get any more work done, which I suppose is nice to know for the readers/followers of your world. :)

Nov 29, 2020 04:15 by J. Thorne

People...write things...and *don't* keep editing them forever? O.O What madness is this?!? ^^   You are the bestest; thank you SO much!

Nov 29, 2020 04:55 by Dragon

Lol! Yeah, strange...isn't it? XD (I still have never clicked the done button and I've been here since the beginning of 2018 XD;; )   I'm glad I could be helpful. :)

Apr 17, 2021 10:07

Hey, right now I want to add a subcontainer of one of my subscriber groups to read some sub-only content on one of my articles. But when I try to find the subcontainer tag on the subscriber group list, I can't see the button for receiving the tag. Am I just blind or is there a new way to embed a subcontainer?

Apr 17, 2021 15:02 by Dragon

Subcontainers are a grandmaster feature.

Apr 17, 2021 16:46

Ah, that explains it. Thank you for the fast answer.

Apr 17, 2021 17:31 by Dragon

<3 No problem. :)

Aug 9, 2021 11:57 by Tillerz

Can someone please add how many subscriber groups you can have? Thanks. :)

Aug 9, 2021 16:44 by Dragon

As many as you can divide your subscribers into?

Sep 30, 2021 17:53

Regarding the number of subscribers, does that mean each individual subscriber or each subscriber group? I wasn't completely sure because the wording used made it unclear.

Sep 30, 2021 22:06 by Dragon

Do you mean for which order you want your groups to be listed on the Group List? That's the only place where I can find numbers mentioned...

Oct 1, 2021 20:04

I'm thinking of adding World Anvil as one of My perks on Patreon, and so I didn't know if the number of subscribers meant I could only have five of them subscribed or not under the first guild tier. Sorry if that sounded confusing. I'm working on a graphic novel and would love to give my patrons a sneak peek at what I've been working on.

Oct 2, 2021 04:06 by Dragon

Ah, I see. Yes, with the first tier, Journeyman, you can only have five subscribers. A Master can have 10 subscribers, and a Grandmaster can have 100 subscribers.   The Guild tier for people who plan to monetize their worlds is named Sage. It's for authors, publishers, streamers, and/or artists, and so on. :) This tier has a workshop meeting every month where advertisement, monetization, and subjects like that are discussed. This tier has 1000 subscribers and Dimi, the founder has to be contacted to start the subscription.   (There are more guild tiers as well, Inner Sanctum, Legendary, and Diety, but these are limited to those who have them right now.)   If you only want to get the Journeyman tier you could maybe put WA subscriptions in a limited Patreon tier? You should be able to limit how many people can join a tier. At least I think I saw some the last time I checked my Patreon. This way the people who get that tier will feel more special as well I suppose. :)   If you want to join the WA community or you just want answers to WA questions quicker you can join WorldAnvil's Discord -> (getting a discord server for your Patreon users is also a good idea if you haven't got one already)   You can also compare what more the WA Guild tiers have on this page: (I myself love a lot of the stuff that's available from the Grandmaster tier...but I'm a diety soo....XD;; )   The two owners of WA stream every Saturday over here as well:

Oct 7, 2021 15:59

Thank you so much this is incredibly helpful! I can only do the Journeyman tier for now, but hopefully I can upgrade once I get some traction. Awesome, I'll make sure to check out discord as well and give the resources a look. You've been super helpful, thanks so much!

Oct 7, 2021 19:21 by Dragon

Glad to be of help, have fun! :)

Apr 19, 2023 18:38

How do you find the worlds you have subscribed to?

Apr 21, 2023 00:50 by Dragon

in the upper left corner, click the text that says: "WorldAnvil". In the middle of the screen just below the regular menu tab, you should see a horizontal tab that says "News" "Community" and so on. At the end of it is "World memberships". Click that.