Clicking the echo area causes Emacs to switch to the *Messages* buffer.

I hate this behavior, because the only time I click the echo area is on accident, whereupon it wastes time and breaks train of thought as I have to interrupt what I was trying to do with burying the messages buffer.

How do I disable it, so that clicking the echo area does nothing? (I know that mouse clicks are bound just like any other key, but I don't know what keymap to use?

And since the echo area alternates between showing the contents of *Minibuf-0*, *Echo Area 0*, and *Echo Area 1* buffers, the latter two of which can be deleted and get automatically recreated, I don't know if it needs to be done in some mode or minibuffer setup hook?)

1 Answer 1


STEP 1: Type C-h k and then left mouse click inside the echo area.

STEP 2: Read through the *Help* buffer and observe the message that reads:

<mouse-1> at that spot runs the command view-echo-area-messages (found
in minibuffer-inactive-mode-map), which is an interactive
byte-compiled Lisp function in ‘help.el’.

STEP 3: Redefine or disable the offending keyboard shortcut. To make sure that you have found the correct mode-map, it might be helpful to set up a message such as:

(define-key minibuffer-inactive-mode-map [mouse-1]
   (lambda () (interactive) (message "hello-world")))

STEP 4: Then, after verifying the above-mentioned definition works as advertised, go ahead and change the function parameter to either nil or 'ignore:

(define-key minibuffer-inactive-mode-map [mouse-1] nil)
  • Big thanks! I wrongly assumed that in this one specific case, describe-key wouldn't work, since I'm used to it needing to run "in" the buffer that has the binding.
    – mtraceur
    Aug 27, 2023 at 23:11

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