I’m very excited about today’s release of Social 2.0, a WordPress plugin from MailChimp. This is perhaps my favorite WordPress plugin; it is complex and ambitious, but I love the way it helps build a bridge between social networks and WordPress – a platform where we can really own our data.
Social has a couple of high level features:
- It enables broadcasting your WordPress content to social networks.
- It brings back reactions from those social networks to your own site.
- It lets people log in through social networks to comment – identity generally leads to better conversations.
- It allows the sharing of comments on your site to social networks.
- It does all of this without requiring you to register as a developer with the social networks and create your own apps.
This sort of integration is fraught with edge cases and little gotchas. For version 2.0 we looked at what we had with 1.x, looked at our road map for Social, bit down hard and decided to do a full rewrite for 2.0.
The downside of the rewrite was how long it took to get 2.0 released, but by doing it now we have a much more extensible platform on which to add connections to other services (Google+, for example) and we had less to refactor than we would have had we waited.
Along with the full rewrite, there are a bunch of new features in 2.0. Here are a few of them:
- Changed the way authentication works, to improve security.
- Added support for posting to Facebook Pages as well as profiles.
- When someone Likes one of your broadcasts on Facebook, that is pulled in to your site.
- New visual presentation of Retweets and Likes, so that the activity is visible but the discussion is less cluttered. We also have a smart algorithm for trying to match retweets that are not marked as such by Twitter’s API.
- If you respond to a comment imported from Twitter on your site and broadcasting that back to Twitter, the “in reply to” thread is correctly maintained.
- Where possible, comments on your WordPress site are threaded to match discussions that happened on social sites.
- A new queuing system for the checking of for social reactions, along with features that should reduce (hopefully eliminate) reactions from creating duplicate comments.
- Delayed broadcasting for future posts and comments that are held for moderation.
- The ability to enable broadcasting by default on new posts (please use this judiciously) to selected globally authenticated accounts as well as selected personal accounts.
- Convenience links in the admin bar and on the post list page to allow you to manually check for social reactions on a post.
- A ton of edge case handling for things like changing from bit.ly to wp.me URLs after publishing a post, respecting private tweets, etc.
I have a few good examples to demonstrate how Social brings in comments and displays them. Unfortunately some of these were pulled in before I started running the Social 2.0 codeline so not all of the retweets, etc. are displayed as cleanly as they will be in the future.
Big thanks to MailChimp for their support of Social. They are not only the primary benefactor of the plugin, but they also run the service that allows WordPress to connect to Twitter and Facebook without the pain and hassle of registering as a developer and creating apps for each platform.
Social’s source code is hosted on GitHub and built in the open in the best tradition of Open Source. Pull requests, enhancements and feedback are welcome.
This post is part of the project: Social. View the project timeline for more context on this post.
@alexkingorg, @benchestnut and @MailChimp did a nice job with Social 2.0 –
Now that’s it’s out, they can get back to working on my stuff.
@alexkingorg Absolutely fantastic plugin, this is the one and only social plugin I will ever need. A huge thank you for this one
On some sites, you’re already logged-in to your Facebook account, and merely have to type your comment. Any chance this will get that kind of integration (with maybe a option to switch to using G+/Twitter acct)? I just feel like if you can make it dead simple, you get more comments. I’ve seen this done, but haven’t found an easy way to implement on WordPress.
What you’re seeing is people using Facebook comments as a replacement for the comments feature in WordPress. If you do that, people have to sign in with a Facebook account to comment.
Okay. So there’s not really a way to do that, if you want other options like Twitter integration?
Social 2.0 for @WordPress released http://t.co/6VhSxClM
What are the best Twitter buttons for blogs? Our button only records tweets from the page itself, a tiny fraction of true sharing activity.
@lakey – Chris, take a look at the ‘social’ plugin from @mailchimp and crowd favourite. It’s very clever.. http://t.co/5iwk7LSh
Great news. Impressive plugin!
[…] Themes redesign that went up recently, and my pick (though I’ve yet to play with it) is the Social plugin from Crowd Favorite and MailChimp.Subscribe to the show on iTunes, or directly to the RSS […]
Social 2.0 for #WordPress looks really sweet! Check it out http://t.co/Ey8HzIgF
[…] Themes redesign that went up recently, and my pick (though I’ve yet to play with it) is the Social plugin from Crowd Favorite and […]
An interesting social plugin http://t.co/Cs0DujaM
‘Social’ looks like an interesting WordPress plugin: http://t.co/naHwhhf2 (via @alexkingorg http://t.co/i6uPFS41)
is it possible to just use the fb and tw login integration but not the rest?
I have custom templates for comments using also GD star rating votes and enabling your plugin breaks my code.
Thanks a lot for your answer and regards
Read the README to see how to customize Social.
Ok, thanks and great readme.txt
In that file you first say that twitter only returns results if we use example.com?p= or t.co but then some lines below you say we can use bit.ly. Does it mean that we can use bit.ly and see the results in our blog???
In that case, I am using yourls.org. Any idea if this one works fine or should I post my twitts with t.co??
Thanks a lot again !!!
Alex, the Social plugin is fantastic. Exactly what I wanted.
Except I have encountered a small bug.
I am using Suffusion theme, after installing Social plugin the reply option on comments disappears.
I have same problem on 2 sites
On my test site I have deactivated all other plugins and:
– The comment reply is shown with several other themes, but is missing with Suffusion theme
– The comment reply is shown if I deactivate Social plugin
I don’t think it is a CSS issue as the HTML for “reply” is not there when I view the page’s HTML
So I am guessing it’s an incompatibility between Social and Suffusion PHP.
I contacted the theme developer http://aquoid.com/fo[...]&t=7348 he suggested it might be an issue with hooks
I would prefer not to have change themes
I would also prefer not to have to dig into the PHP
I’m not sure how best to proceed. Please can you advise
– WordPress 3.3
– Suffusion 3.9.5 http://wordpress.org[...]es/suffusion
– Social 2.0
If it works with some themes and not another, I’d look into the theme in question for a solution. The WordPress Support forums are a great place to get help, the comments here are not a good support venue.
I did try using the WordPress Support forum a couple of weeks ago. But I could not find any relevant posts. I posted this question http://wordpress.org[...]me?replies=1 but no responses.
I also tried MailChimp and the theme developer and they both politely said they can’t help. Being able to use free themes, free plugins on free WordPress is fantastic – but I guess isolated instances of incompatibilities are infeasible to support – there are just too many combinations.
Thanks again for developing such a great plugin
When you activate social, it over writes the default theme comment template. If you want the theme related changes to reflect in social, you will need to update comment file in the social folder. Hope this helps.