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Link back to original Wordpress post

sleepjunkies
Mon, 05 Jan 2015 02:38:33 GMT

When you comment on a Muut-enabled Wordpress blog, I can read this post in the main forum page, but there's no link back to the original Wordpress post. Surely this is a basic requirement for this type of functionality. How else is the reader meant to reference the comment with content of the article?

Paul Hughes
Mon, 05 Jan 2015 02:49:09 GMT

Unfortunately, linking back to the actual page/post of a given comment thread from the Muut forum page isn't possible. Since the Muut client itself on the Forum page isn't directly WordPress-aware (Muut forums can be embedded on any type of site), it doesn't have a good way of doing that. However, the title of the Post/Page is used in the title of the comment thread that is accessible from "My Feed" or the "Comments" channel, so it isn't completely vague. Linking back to a URL where a Muut thread is embedded (e.g. a blog post using it for commenting) is definitely a piece of functionality that we will want to support in the future though! :-) Feel free to keep track of our releases and future features on our [Releases](https://muut.com/releases/) page!

sleepjunkies
Mon, 05 Jan 2015 02:52:22 GMT

Thanks for the answer. Yes, I think this should be a priority, as comments are meaningless without reference to an accompanying article.

Paul Hughes
Mon, 05 Jan 2015 02:55:10 GMT

Definitely thanks for the input! Always glad to know the future features that are most important to community members. :-D

Ormerry
Thu, 26 Feb 2015 16:47:55 GMT

It will be usefull - and not only in wordpress, but for every commenting system

Paul Hughes
Thu, 26 Feb 2015 17:16:27 GMT

Hi there! Definitely; it's something that is on our roadmap for sure. Thanks for letting us know that it's a feature you're particularly looking forward to! I agree it isn't just important for WP, but most other blog (or page) commenting implementations. :-)

crlywrly
Thu, 09 Apr 2015 06:55:01 GMT

I am glad that question was asked and answered. Until now everything I have read, about two hours worth, has led me to believe that this was exactly what muut was designed to do. Which is why I was interested in muut in the first place. It never occurred to me for a moment that comments on blog content that appear in the forum would not be linked to the original content. Muut has put such a lot of thought into the navigational and presentation aspects of thread structure and how different structures might facilitate or obstruct coherent interaction vs muddle. All that thought and effort is surely wasted if people do not actually know what is being discussed? It is such an obvious necessity to easily access and refer to the subject of a discussion that it should be clearly explained that Post/Page comments in a Muut forum do not have a link to the original content. Shared knowledge of the referent is a basic requirement of successful communication and avoidance of confusion in conversation. Thread structure is very much a secondary consideration. You explain above that the title of the Post or Page is used as the title of the Comment Thread. However, you also say that Muut is not "Wordpress aware". Does this mean that if the blog editor changes the title of the original Post/Page that the title of the Comment Thread will not update? This would make it even harder to identify and locate the original material that comments refer to. Muut is very attractive visually and you have done so much on the technical side to reduce clutter. Your manifesto and commitment to content permanence are impressive. It baffles me that, given all that attention to detail, you have released this particular functionality in such an unhelpfully incomplete state. Unless and until a link to the original content can be automated, could I suggest that you modify the Comment Form to include a field or simple text box for url entry? With a prompt to copy and paste the url? Would that be feasible? I know that mobile device browsers sometimes make it difficult to grab urls but at least those who are accessing the site with a desktop browser should be able to manage it. I still like the look of Muut and want to give it a whirl but I think that, in its current state, the Post/Page Commenting feature would best be turned off. The very fact of it being turned off might help to prompt forum contributors to include the relevant url when initiating a discussion. I hope these comments are helpful and that you read them as constructive criticism. Liz ps. How about a "Preview" function for posts - as I rush to fix typos before my time runs out! - Oh - now I see it! Underneath not on top where you usually see a preview! ;-(

Paul Hughes
Thu, 09 Apr 2015 07:44:42 GMT

Hi, Liz! Thanks so much for your thoughts and details about this! :-D I absolutely agree—linking back to the original content for commenting threads, when they are viewed in the Forum interface, might be super important (and in some situations, as you say, absolutely necessary) in order for that aspect to have value. 100% with you. I will say that our prioritization of tasks and features is dependent upon a TON of factors, and regarding this specifically, in our experience the functionality of linking users back to the original page actually isn't paramount—if needed at all—in many implementations (keep reading... ;-)). A key thing to remember is that comments from posts around the website are (in a default setup) only visible in the forum interface within the 'My Feed' section for users that are logged in—and of course only for the threads they are participating in or subscribed to. So, in terms of those users (the ones seeing the thread from the Forum page), they have to have viewed the content and replied to (or specifically subscribed to) it previously. Given the ti tle that is the same as the post/article/product/etc., and the users are familiar with the content, the value of the My Feed is not actually as a way to access the original page as a way to have all of their discussions accessible in one place. Of course, you can add a channel (and the WP plugin allows this with a simple checkbox) to the forum navigation that encompasses all the commenting threads, in which case linking back to original content, I agree, is a WAY bigger deal, since readers from there aren't necessarily participants of the discussion already and so don't have access to that context (from the Forum UX). You're right that the title of the thread is unchangeable, but that goes back to our core value of permanence—things just can't change (but it sounds like you see the value in that). That said, most blogs aren't in the habit of changing their post titles (certainly not much more than to add punctuation or such), for obvious reasons. ;-) Anyway, just to reiterate, I'm not at all defending the idea that the feature isn't good or important—it is! And it will come! Just wanted to help shed some light on our prioritization of it, and how, for many of our communities, in practice it is actually less of a deal-breaker than one might initially think. Of course, I don't know the details of your use case, so I can't speak to that _specifically_, just what we have experienced by and large. If it is a _crucial_ function for your community (e.g. you are showing all the comment threads in the main UX for all users), one workaround would be to post a link as the first comment in the thread; not ideal, obviously, but an option. In ANY event, we're stoked to have this feedback from you—you bring up lots of details and key factors we definitely will keep in mind as we are constantly jiggering around our priorities. I can guarantee you that it is definitely on our roadmap, and we love hearing from you folks about things like this! :-) P.S. Love your postscript, gave me a chuckle. ;-) Glad you saw the preview! In a long reply, we think it's probably easier to remember to check it right under the "Reply" button than to have to scroll back up to find the preview and read it there (hence our placement).

crlywrly
Thu, 09 Apr 2015 11:42:41 GMT

Hi Paul, Thank you for your very detailed reply :-) I went on to read further documentation and was interested to see the option of - if I have understood it correctly - attaching a specific channel to a specific post. I think you have confirmed that as an option in your reply - although conceptually the "attaching" is the other way around with It is also really helpful that you described "in the real world" examples of the use of Comments in your reply. It makes a lot more sense to me now. You suggestion to post a link as the first comment had me thinking that I had not seen the wood for the trees! That there is: - no need to rely on visitors to the blog to initiate discussions in the forum (by commenting on a Post/Page) - therefore no need to prompt them to include the Post/Page url - all that is required is for the author of a Post/Page to comment on it immediately after publication, including the Post/Page url in the comment! Including that action in the workflow for Post/Page creation plus creating appropriate Channels and possibly sub-Channels seems to cover all the concerns that I had. My expectations of the likely path that members might follow, Post/Page to Forum or the reverse, are based on my experience of niche sites that consist of: static pages, a blog (or several blogs) and a very active forum. It is quite common to see moderators actively encouraging members to visit the Pages and the Blogs or even the sections of the forum where new Pages and Blog Posts are announced. They don't actually say, "Stop talking amongst yourselves!" but it clear that a community develops and that for members, rather than chance visitors to the site, the forum is their first and sometimes only port of call. These sites all allow comments on Pages and Posts but are, of course, set up so that Page and Post Comments are completely separate from the Forum. I was delighted to see that one of your aims in designing Muut was to address the issue of individual Posts, Pages and Forum all existing in parallel universes. - With each Post and Page living on its own little asteroid :-) Use of Channels and immediate posting of comments that include urls seems to be the best way to use Muut in order to achieve integration between the different elements. It also automatically mingles "casual commenters" on Posts/Pages with the Forum Junkies! :-) Initially, I was thinking of Muut for a new Wordpress site that I have just set up. However, I also have a well established site that has been running for about about 5 years on Wordpress.com and am going to migrate soon to a self-hosted Wordpress site. It would be a good one for me to use to experiment with Channels as there is exiting content for me to play with. A question, and my apologies if the answer is here but I just have not found it. If Muut is added to an existing site, what happens to existing comments? Do they remain on site as "legacy" content? Many thanks again for your prompt and comprehensive response! Mind, it is no less than I expected after reading your Manifesto :-) Liz

Paul Hughes
Thu, 09 Apr 2015 21:03:14 GMT

Hey, my pleasure! I'm glad I was able to help clear things up in terms of our prioritization and most use cases. Also happy that some setup options might work for you in the meanwhile! On a WordPress website—and definitely get a self-hosted one, or through a WP-hosting service, so you can use our plugin, along with all the others—existing comments are not deleted. In fact, on posts that already have comments, by default Muut isn't shown on those posts. That, of course, can be overridden so that Muut is automatically used on _all_ posts, not just new ones and old ones with no comments. In either case though, your old comments aren't ever deleted, so if you decide to switch back from Muut, they won't have been lost or anything. Let me know if you have any other questions! :-D

Paul Hughes
Thu, 09 Apr 2015 21:19:52 GMT

One other note, that Muut can be turned on and off in the WP plugin on a post-by-post basis as well, if there are some you wanted to keep the old comments on and others not.

crlywrly
Fri, 10 Apr 2015 12:41:00 GMT

Thank you Paul and @15h :-) I have got Muut set up on a self-hosted Wordpress site but am still configuring things so the landing page for the forum is set to "Private" for the moment. Many thanks again - very good customer support and very helpful fellow Muut-users! :-)

Paul Hughes
Fri, 10 Apr 2015 15:46:38 GMT

Our pleasure, truly! We're very proud of Muut and like to make sure people understand our goals and to make sure they get it working on their sites the way they want. Good luck, and Happy Muuting! Let us know if you need any other help!

Ormerry
Tue, 09 Jun 2015 13:23:49 GMT

(digging old topic) is there an ETA for this backlink function ?

Paul Hughes
Tue, 09 Jun 2015 16:28:19 GMT

There isn't yet… It's actually a trickier problem to solve than it might appear, not entirely due to the basic functionality of it, but all the other loose ends that adding it would have to account for. Definitely something that we want to tackle, it just isn't at the forefront of our list, since not too many communities are _dependent_ upon it and it would take away from some of the other things we're working on that are higher priority, generally due to more people affected or other exciting new things that will benefit many users. :) Thanks for bringing it up though and checking in! Sorry I can't give you a better idea of where it falls on our list yet.

Sean OSullivan
Sun, 13 Nov 2016 17:27:01 GMT

Hi .. is this function available yet? .. I am loving what I *think* I can get Muut to do, but this is pretty central to what I want to achieve! thanks!

Monika
Mon, 14 Nov 2016 03:25:28 GMT

Linkbacks are not available quite yet. It's difficult to give an ETA on the feature since as Paul mentioned it's a trickier problem than it seems.

Sean OSullivan
Mon, 14 Nov 2016 09:59:09 GMT

Thanks Monika! Most problems are :). This may be an unfair question but - is it actively under consideration / review and is it safe to assume they will be incorporated within a year? If yes I can work with it, if not I probably can't. thanks!

Monika
Tue, 15 Nov 2016 00:29:06 GMT

It's definitely a feature we'd like to get added to the WordPress plugin, but it's really difficult for me to give a clear ETA. We're a small team working hard on making sure as many people as possible can get the most out of Muut and we try to work as fast as we can. However, because of that small team, and the nature of having a massive network of communities can mean that all kinds of things like unforeseen delays, needed improvements, etc. can push back other new features. We do try to make announcements of new features as soon as we have a firm idea of what and when we can accomplish them, but right now an ETA on any new feature for the WordPress plugin is unclear. We've committed to timelines in the past and have been wrong, which is sort of why I try to be more cautious with that. I don't want to put you in the position of counting on a new feature timeline and feeling burned or lied to.

Reagan
Wed, 02 Aug 2017 22:30:37 GMT

Any update on this? This feature is what I've been waiting for.

Monika
Thu, 03 Aug 2017 04:43:28 GMT

We [have a post here](https://muut.com/forum/#!/setting-up:reference-comments-on-post/so-after-a-bit-and-back-an), where we sort of worked out a potential solution for savvy developers using our API. But it is not available on the WordPress plugin at this time