Slack now testing private shared channels for secretive conversations

Slack is making it easier for companies to share secrets with new capabilities for its shared channels. The company has announced the rollout of private shared channels, which let you add some privacy to what was previously a public-only feature.

Originally launched in late 2017, shared channels allow two different organizations to work with one another in, well, a shared Slack channel. While standard shared channels are public, however, sometimes companies may want to keep some projects confidential, which is where private shared channels come in.

The new feature allows administrators to limit a shared channel to only invited participants. From Slack:

Admins can choose whether a specific shared channel is public or private for their respective workspace. This means that a shared channel can be public or private on both workspaces, or public on one side and private on the other. For example, a shared channel discussing a potential merger may be private for both workspaces. On the other hand, a channel in which a company and its PR agency are discussing an upcoming launch may be kept public for the company but private for the agency's workspace to limit the news to the account team involved.

Shared channels are still in the process of being beta tested, so the new privacy features are in beta as well. However, paid team on Standard and Plus plans can try out the features as they wish. Administrators will also get access to a new "Manage shared channels" menu in their workspace, which acts as a single spot to do things like creating shared channels, viewing which channels are shared with each workspace, and more.