Chatting in WordPress

Did you know you can set up your own chat room in WordPress? Thanks to the tlk.io chat platform, you can have a chat room embedded into a WordPress page, post or sidebar. You’ll find the widget on WordPress.com sites, and there’s a tlk.io plugin for self-hosted sites. One thing I like about tlk.io is you can use your Twitter username to identify yourself in a conversation.

The genBUZZ chat channel displayed in a sidebar widget.
The genBUZZ chat channel displayed in a sidebar widget.

This would be a useful feature for a live chat event like Miriam’s monthly Scanfests, but catching up on a lengthy conversation could be rather tedious. WordPress’s comments system would be a better option for that – especially if you’re using the Reader in the WordPress apps. The WordPress apps will notify you when someone comments, but tlk.io does not.

If you want to create your own channel, go to tlk.io and create it (takes about a minute) then come back to your blog and include it in the widget or shortcode (for use on pages and posts). You’ll find complete instructions on setting up the widget or using the shortcode in WordPress.com’s Support site. Here’s a sample channel for you to try if you wish.

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