Oh, okay. I get it now. I see where I was misunderstanding how Medium works.
When I get the notification “<writer> has submitted a draft to <publication>” and I click the notification, I go directly into edit mode for that story. It used to be that I mostly navigated to the submissions by the notifications.(this was also the time of the first screen shot) But we have had a big increase in submissions and I have personally started getting a lot more interaction with Medium users which means many more notifications, so I have stopped relying on my notifications for navigation.
I was under the impression I would always be in edit mode if I opened a submission, sort of like opening one of my own drafts. Good to have that cleared up.
When I go into edit mode now, I do have the speech bubble with lock icon for private notes. (which used to be missing from the tool bar half the time) so I guess you really did solve the bug :) that’s great.
Thanks for your help.