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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

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Follow post's comments by email in Blogger

"Isn't this a built-in feature?" Yes and no. You can have post comments delivered to your mail, if you have Blogger/Google account, but not if you are OpenID, non-registered or anonymous commenter. There is the Subscribe to Post Comments (Atom) -link, maybe spiced up with RSS icon, but many people don't know what to do with that feed link. So something more user friendly would be nice.

With this little hack you can offer your reader an easy way to subscribe to new comments of a post and get them delivered to reader's email. I use blogtrottr.com feed-to-email service in this hack. I wanted to place the email subscription form beneath the RSS link, which was bit tricky but succeeded. Because RSS feed url opens in new window (target="_blank"), I made the form open its results in target="_blank", too.


Installation is easy, if you know your way around. Open template html for editing. Select Expand widget templates. Search lines:
    <!-- feed links -->
    <b:include name='feedLinks'/>
After those line add:

Data provided by Pastebin.com - Download Raw

Now your readers can subscribe to those posts' comments they are interested in. It works either by user entering email address in the form (form has very basic email validation) and clicking the subscribe button, or just by clicking the button, which opens Blogtrottr page where email is asked.

You can test this and my other comments hacks at Playground for Blogger threaded comments.
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4 comments:

Laura Pazzaglia said... [reply]

Happy New Year! I hope you are doing well.

I was looking for your first "follow by email" hack which included a link at the bottom of the post.

Her is a code snippet form it..






The link doesn't work anymore (it's still active at the bottom of the comment form in my posts) and I can't find your original post to find out what I did to break it.

I don't want to add a form to type-in an email address because I already have one near the top to subscribe to my newsletter.

Ciao!

L

Laura Pazzaglia said... [reply]

Oops.. of course the snippet does not display it's html in the comments. Duh!

Here you go:
-- blogtrottr comment email follow / mspotilas 2011 --

Ciao,

L

MS-potilas said... [reply]

@Laura Pazzaglia
Did you get it working? It seemed to work when I looked at your blog.

If you want to paste html code in the comments, you need to "escape" certain characters (for example <, > and &). There are tools for this, like HTML escape tool.

Laura Pazzaglia said... [reply]

@MS-potilas

Sorry to make you click and test!

I found out that it IS working.


I'm running firefox with an http refer changing plug-in and when it's on the link doesn't work (probably because it can't figure out the RSS feed of the actual page I'm on).

Apologies!

Ciao,

L

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