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Something that isn't clear to me in the other discussions on this topic:

Low-rep users can't write comments on anything other than their own posts (questions or answers) or answers to their own questions. Nor can they participate in chat unless explicitly invited.

Evidently, the "automatically move this conversation to chat" mechanism has been fixed so that such users can participate in the chat created thereby.

But when a moderator manually moves a long discussion to chat, can the low-rep users whose comments were moved participate in that chat room? This happens fairly often on EE.SE.

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    Mods can add users to chat with explicit write access, in which case (selected) users with <20 rep can participate. Aside that, no – Zoe Oct 14 at 20:10
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    @Zoethetransgirl: So that means that every time I do it, I need to check the reputation levels of all the users involved and explicitly invite the low-rep ones? Ugh! – Dave Tweed Oct 14 at 20:14
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    Yep, unfortunately. It's a weakness with the chat system. it's also something only you as a mod can do (Room owners get an error message for <20 rep users). The same rules apply to comments moved to chat as with other chatrooms. – Zoe Oct 14 at 20:16
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Upon further investigation in a chat room in which this recently occurred, it appears that all existing participants ARE automatically added to the "Explicit write access" list for the room at the time it is created, even those with <20 rep.

Thanks to Zoe for pointing out where to look for this information.

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    When mods move comments to chat, all commentators are granted access to the room automatically by the system (we don't have to add users one by one). – Samuel Liew Oct 14 at 22:04

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