Course enrolments - course email unsubscribes ≠ actually sent bulk emails - How come?

Hi all,

We already noticed a long time a discrepancy between the number of enrolments and the number of sent emails when using the Bulk Email functionality (in the LMS). We always thought this was due to people unsubscribing from those course emails.

However, we recently checked the ‘Optouts’ (Home › Bulk_Email › Optouts in Django), but those unsubscribe numbers are really small. An example:

  • Our course has 2946 currently enrolled users (as reported in the course’s instructor dashboard)
  • In Django we see 2 users that opted out for bulk emails for this course
  • The course has 5 staff members (but when sending emails we only select ‘learners’)
  • We would expect therefore 2946-2= 2944 emails to be sent in our last course email
  • However, our last course email was sent to 2358 users (state: success, status: completed)
  • This means we’re missing 2944-2358=586 users that should have received an email but did not

We are now wondering where this gap might come from. Since the numbers come from Open edX, we assume they are correct (as in: representing reality), and that the issue is not with our mailserver (but the stage before, so in edX).

Anyone else seeing similar issues? Or an idea for what might explain the difference (or how we can further investigate)?

(I’ve also created an issue in Atlassian, but I think forum thread will be more fruitful in debugging this :slight_smile: )