LinkedIn Groups and a New BETA!

Hey Everyone, been working hard on two versions of leenk.me! First, I found out that LinkedIn Groups have been added to LinkedIn’s API. So I wanted to add that to the plugin as soon as possible. It is in the latest release version of the plugin (version 1.3.12) as well as the latest version of the beta (2.0.0b3). It is also still a little experimental. I’ve tested it to the best of my ability, and for some reason the LinkedIn developers made the API a little different from the regular sharing API. So you may see it a little different. If you have any questions, contact me.

I’ve had a few people testing the BETA for me and the last version had a few big bugs that needed to be squashed. I believe it is getting much more stable now, so I released a new version of the BETA, available here. It would be great if any of you had the time to test it. I think you’ll be much happier with this version. If I do not get any negative feedback, I will make this version the next release of the plugin.

I’ve also been getting a lot of questions about Google+. Yes, Google+ is on my radar :)… they killed the Buzz API a few months ago, but still haven’t opened up the Google+ API for posting. Currently it only support read-only requests. As soon as I find out that they’ve opened it up for posting, I’ll be adding it to the leenk.me service. Hopefully it’s coming real soon!

Again, if you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me.

Posted in News, plugin | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

leenk.me 2.0.0 – Beta Release

Hey Everyone, been working hard on a new update to the leenk.me plugin. I’ve only tested this in WordPress 3.2+, but it should work fine in WordPress 3.1. It *might* work in previous version, but I didn’t test them. If you’re not on the latest release version of WordPress you should be (for security reasons).

Here are some of the new features available in leenk.me 2.0.0:

  • Built-in URL Shortener Options
  • Automatic preview of your post before it is sent to your social network
  • Major code changes to improve efficiency
  • and more!

Click here to download the leenk.me 2.0.0 BETA release.

Check out this short video I made of the new plugin…

Contact me here if you have any trouble with the beta version.

Posted in News, plugin | Tagged | Leave a comment

Google Buzz is Dead…

As many of you were aware, Google announced that they were going to kill off Google Buzz. It looks like they finally shut off the Google Buzz API, which means the leenk.me service can no longer post to your Google Buzz accounts. Please upgrade your plugin to remove the Google Buzz options.

If you’d like some more information about this, please read Google’s Fall Sweep announcement. As soon as Google opens up their Google+ API for posting, I will be adding it to the leenk.me service.

P.S. I’m working on a pretty big update for the plugin, should have a lot of nice new features. Including the ability to change your URL shortener, a better interface to see what your posts will look like on the fly, and I expect it will be a lot more efficient! Coming soon :).

Posted in Google Buzz | 2 Comments

How to use the is.gd URL shortener with leenk.me

I’ve written about using bit.ly and su.pr before, but this is how you can use the is.gd URL shortener — if that’s your cup of tea. To use the is.gd URL shortener, simply add this code to your theme’s functions.php file:

function custom_leenkme_url_shortener( $api_url, $url ) {  
  
	$isgd_api ="http://is.gd/create.php";  
  
	$isgd_args = array(  
				'url' => $url,
				'format' => 'simple'
			);  
  
	return $isgd_api . '?' .  http_build_query( $isgd_args );  
  
}  
add_filter( 'leenkme_url_shortener', 'custom_leenkme_url_shortener', 10, 2 );  

And that’s it. By the way, I’m working on a big update for the leenk.me plugin, so you won’t have to use this code anymore. It will be integrated right into the plugin’s user interface.

Let me know if you run into any trouble.

Posted in Custom URL Shorteners, plugin | 2 Comments

It’s official, we have over 1,000 active leenk.me subscribers!

Wow, over 1,000 leenk.me subscribers! I am amazed that this service has been as popular as it has been. And I still have a lot of plans for the future of leenk.me!

How it started

When I started the leenk.me service, I was seriously afraid that no one would be interesting in subscribing to the service. As many of you know, leenk.me started out as a plugin named RF TwitterPost. When we found out that Twitter was killing their basic auth API and moving to a strict oAuth API we did not know how we were going to handle it. We actually sent out a survey to all the TwitterPost users and asked them if they would be interested in a pay-service like leenk.me. A resounding majority said they would not pay for this service. But I took a leap of faith, put some money down on a server and started it up. Within the first day I was already shocked by the number of people who showed interested and subscribed. And now, not even a year later we have over 1,000 subscribers!

Who uses leenk.me?

I’ve seen a huge variety of clients. People who own WordPress e-commerce stores and want to Tweet/Facebook/etc. whenever they add a new product (or group of products). News organizations who want to send a message out whenever they publish a new story. Religious organizations that want to keep their followers apprized of the happenings in their congregations. Lawyers who send out weekly tips. Real Estate agency who want to keep you apprised of the latest real estate news. And yes, the occasional spammer or porn website.

I remember the first time a spammer signed up, they joined the Plus account and added over 100 domains. Luckily they weren’t the cause of any major problems, but the first time the leenk.me service had an outage was caused by someone who tried publishing over 1,000 stories in less than a minute. Obviously, I never anticipated someone doing something so crazy :). So I’ve learned a lot about maintaining a piece of software like this. I’ve had to upgrade the leenk.me servers 4 times since I started the project. And this is why I charge for the plugin, though I am trying to keep the price as low as possible. There is a lot of money in keeping a server running.

What you never knew!

I’ve never gone public with this, only a few of my friends know… but I actually donate 10% of all my net revenue from leenk.me to the WordPress foundation. Why? Well, WordPress is an open-source product, I try to contribute to it by providing patches and opening tickets for problems, but sometimes I’m too busy to even do that. I know many business owners who use WordPress and are making tons of money from this freely available software. I think it is important to give back to the community that is enabling us to make money. After all, if the software continues to thrive, our businesses should continue to thrive. So, every time you pay leenk.me, you’re actually contributing a little to the WordPress foundation. Of course, if you want to give more to the WPF, you can here: http://wordpressfoundation.org/donate/

I want to thank you all for continuing to support leenk.me. As always, if you have any trouble, let me know via my contact form.

Posted in News | Tagged | 4 Comments

New Logo, Other News, & What’s to Come?

New Logo

I’ve been working with Ian Leino for a few weeks now to come up with a new logo for leenk.me. My first logo was just something I threw together to get the service up and running and I felt like it was time for a logo change. Ian is a great designer and really put up with all my crap. It took us several revisions and idea swaps to get to this new logo. But I have to say, I really like it, I think it expresses exactly what leenk.me is — a simple service that connects your clients, followers, users with you.

Ian’s work was recently featured on G4TV’s Attack of the Show, as you can see he is a very talented graphic designer and does a lot of great T-Shirt designs. If you ever need a designer, I would highly recommend him. Not only is he talented, but he’s professional, understanding, and patient. Be sure to check out his portfolio to see some of his other works.

Other News

I have been spending some time trying to figure out what the “next” service is gong to be that gets added to the leenk.me plugin and I’ve unfortunately hit a few brick walls. I really wanted to include Digg, Reddit, and StumbleUpon but was sad to find out that this would not be possible… at least not in the way that leenk.me has functioned with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.

Digg does not allow users API access to publish stories. I’m sure they do this to prevent SPAM. Trust me there are some users of leenk.me that would definitely fall in this category :).

Reddit does have an API that allows access to publish stories, but it would require me to store your Reddit username/password. We pride ourselves in using the most security security protocols available. We do not store your social network passwords anywhere on our system and feel that it would be too risky to do this for Reddit. This doesn’t mean that Reddit is off the table completely. Hopefully they’ll implement an oAuth (or similar) API that will allow us to use them for publishing content.

StumbleUpon is half-available. If you saw, I recently wrote about how you can use StumbleUpon’s su.pr URL shortener with leenk.me. This is the best we can do. StumbleUpon, like Digg does not allow direct publishing of stories to their service. But if you use their URL shortener, you are essentially adding a story to their service. For this reasons, I would probably recommend su.pr over bit.ly. You can kill two birds with one stone. If you use the su.pr URL shortener and publish to Twitter, you get potential StumbleUpon “likes” from your Twitter followers. Ultimately make other StumbleUpon users see your content. Which then will drive more customers to your site! So it’s not first place, but it’s a really close second.

What’s to come?

Just because there aren’t any more social networks being considered for leenk.me, doesn’t mean that leenk.me isn’t going to continue to thrive. I have a lot of plans for the plugin and for the site itself. Hopefully we’ll be adding newer and better features soon, so be on the look out.

Posted in News | 4 Comments

How to use StumbleUpon’s su.pr URL shortener in leenk.me

I recently wrote about using the bit.ly URL shortener in leenk.me and was doing some research into adding the StumbleUpon social sharing site to the leenk.me plugin. However, I was saddened to find that StumbleUpon does not have a public API. So there isn’t a way to publicize your posts directly to StumbleUpon, like you can with Facebook, Twitter, etc.

However, StumbleUpon does have a URL shortener called Su.pr. The su.pr URL shortener is basically like adding your site to StumbleUpon… it’s the only way leenk.me can use the service. So if you want people to be able to “Stumble Upon” your site, try this code:

function custom_leenkme_url_shortener( $api_url, $url ) {

    $supr_api ="http://su.pr/api/simpleshorten";

    $supr_args = array(
                            'url' => $url
                        );

    return $supr_api . '?' .  http_build_query( $supr_args );

}
add_filter( 'leenkme_url_shortener', 'custom_leenkme_url_shortener', 10, 2 );

Or, if you want to track your Stumbles, you can sign up at su.pr and use this code:

function custom_leenkme_url_shortener( $api_url, $url ) {

    $supr_api ="http://su.pr/api/simpleshorten";

    $supr_args = array(
                            'url' => $url,
                            'login' => 'ENTER_YOUR_SUPR_NAME',
                            'apiKey' => 'ENTER_YOUR_SUPR_APIKEY'
                        );

    return $supr_api . '?' .  http_build_query( $supr_args );

}
add_filter( 'leenkme_url_shortener', 'custom_leenkme_url_shortener', 10, 2 );
Posted in Custom URL Shorteners, News | 9 Comments

How to use the leenk.me FriendFeed plugin for WordPress

The anatomy of a FriendFeed entry…

Default FriendFeed Settings

Feed to MyFeed – Check this box if you want leenk.me to publish new posts to your main FriendFeed Profile.

Feed to Group – Check this box if you want leenk.me to publish new posts to your FriendFeed Group.

Default Image URL - Each FriendFeed post has an image attached to it, you can use this to specify a default image to use.

Default Image URL: <blank>
Example Default Image URL: http://leenk.me/example.png

Feed Categories – Select which categories to include or exclude from FriendFeed.

Default Feed Categories: Include All Categories

Publish All Authors – The leenk.me plugin suite allows you to take advantage of multiple authors on your WordPress website. Each author can setup a leenk.me account and insert their leenk.me API key into the plugin. If you have multiple authors publishing to your WordPress website then you will wan to have this box checked to ensure that your FriendFeed posts get sent properly.

Post Specific Settings

Custom Body - You can use this option to customize the body that gets sent to FriendFeed . You can use the %TITLE%, %WPSITENAME%, or %WPTAGLINE% format options.

Image URL – The Default Image URL (mentioned above) can be modified in three ways. If your theme supports Featured Images you can add a new image to your post an mark it as the Featured Image. The leenk.me plugin will then automatically use that image URL for Facebook. If you have attached an image to the post you are publishing, leenk.me will try to get that image and use it as the image sent to FriendFeed. If neither of those work for you, you can simply add the URL to the image you want o use in the Image URL box.

Exclude from MyFeed – Check this box if you wish to exclude posting this specific post from your main FriendFeed profile.

Exclude from Group– Check this box if you wish to exclude posting this specific post from your FriendFeed group.

Posted in FriendFeed | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

leenk.me 1.3.0 – FriendFeed support and more!

Version 1.3.0 of the leenk.me plugin has been released. Be sure to check your plugin dashboard for the update. With support for the FriendFeed social network! As always, I wrote a post and made a video tutorial explaining the basics. You can use the contact form if you run into any trouble.

How to Use the leenk.me FriendFeed plugin for WordPress

There were actually a bunch of updates added to this version…

  • Added FriendFeed support!
  • Updated the category include/exclude option for each page
  • Automatically enable the “All Authors?” option on new activations for sites that have multiple users setup
  • Fixed error introduced with the share link feature on the Facebook module
  • General security hardening
  • Fixed bug causing leenk.me post meta to be erased when you quick-edit a post
  • Fixed JavaScript bug that prevents the “Re” functions from working immediately after quick-editing post info
  • Fixed Tweet Category/Tag warnings
  • Added disabled() helper function for WP2.9.2 and below

You should definitely check out your settings to make sure the include/exclude categories were updated properly. I tested pretty rigorously, but you can never test for all cases.

Posted in FriendFeed, News, plugin | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

How to use the bit.ly URL shortener in leenk.me

I just submitted version 1.2.11 to the WordPress repository, so you should see this update coming soon. With this update is the ability to customize your URL shortener. If the URL shortener you use has a basic REST API then it should work.

For now, leenk.me uses a custom WordPress action hook to allow you to have complete freedom of what URL shortener you use. The most common request I get is for bit.ly, so here are the instruction for switching to the bit.ly URL shortener.

First, update to leenk.me 1.2.11!

Second, add this code near the top of your theme’s function.php file (after the <?php line):

function custom_leenkme_url_shortener( $api_url, $url ) {

    $bitly_api ="http://api.bitly.com/v3/shorten";

    $bitly_args = array(
                            'login' => 'ENTER_YOUR_BITLY_USERNAME',
                            'apiKey' => 'ENTER_YOUR_BITLY_API_KEY',
                            'longURL' => $url,
                            'format' => 'txt',
                            'domain' => 'bit.ly' // either bit.ly or j.mp
                        );

    return $bitly_api . '?' .  http_build_query( $bitly_args );

}
add_filter( 'leenkme_url_shortener', 'custom_leenkme_url_shortener', 10, 2 );

Third, make sure you replace “ENTER_YOUR_BITLY_USERNAME” with your bit.ly username and “ENTER_YOUR_BITLY_API_KEY” with your bit.ly API key.

This should do it, your URLs should be automatically shortened with your bit.ly account.

If you want to use another URL shortener, contact me and I’ll try to get you some code to use instead of the bit.ly example above.

Posted in Custom URL Shorteners, News, plugin, Twitter | Tagged , , | 15 Comments