Table of contents
- 1. Introduction
- 1.1. How it Works
- 2. Quick Start - Setup and Integration
- 3. Running Example
- 4. Configuration and Administration
Gigya's Chat plugin enables users to chat and share activities in real time, making it suitable for online live events. With the Live Chat plugin users can:
Join the conversation - Users are able to see all comments made by any chat member, even if they are not signed in. The chat is refreshed every five seconds, adding real-time commentary to the webcast.
Engage with friends from multiple social networks - The Chat plugin supports signing in with one or more major social network identities, enabling users to chat with their friends across networks and to invite friends to the event.
Share their activities to drive traffic and "Buzz" - Chat comments are shared as status updates to the users' social network feeds, helping to drive social referral traffic back to the live event, and generating event buzz. Status updates include a linkback to the event site and sites can track referral traffic from these updates.
This guide walks through the Chat plugin setup and integration and serves as a reference document for the configuration and customization options.
How it Works
The Gigya Chat plugin is a plug-and-play plugin that is hosted by Gigya on a Saas model. Gigya's server infrastructure can handle enormous scale, supporting events with hundreds of thousands of unique, concurrent users.
The Chat plugin is comprised of a user panel and two chat tabs:
- Top panel - enables users to sign in using social network accounts to begin chatting.
- Everyone tab - shows live chat items publicly shared by all chat users in the event. Users can choose whether they want to share their messages with everyone or just with their friends.
- My Friends tab - Shows the messages shared by friends from one or more social networks.
The default look of the Chat plugin (logged-out state):
The default look of the Chat plugin (logged-in state):
In the logged-in state, the user panel includes:
- User's profile picture and name.
- Chat input box, where the users enter their chat messages.
- Make public checkbox, which provides an option to share the messages with everyone or only with the user's friends.
- Update networks checkbox, which provides an option to share a posted comment to social networks. If the user is logged into one network, the checkbox will be specific for the network to which the user is logged in, like in this case, "Update Facebook", otherwise the checkbox will be "Update networks".
Connecting to Multiple Networks
- To chat, users need to first connect to at least one social network. Currently supported social networks include: Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo, Microsoft Messenger, LinkedIn, Myspace, Orkut, FourSquare, Renren, Vkontakte.
- After a user connects to one social network he can choose to connect to additional networks. Messages written by the user are syndicated to all the social networks to which the user is connected.
- If none of the user's friends are participating in the live event, the user can invite them to join by sending a personal message.
Quick Start - Setup and Integration
This section is a quick integration guide. Follow the step below to integrate the Chat plugin with its default settings into your site.
The integration process includes two stages:
- Setting up a new chat configuration on Gigya's website.
Note: This step is necessary only when integrating the first instance of the Chat plugin in your site. When integrating more instances, you can reuse the same settings and jump to stage 2.
- Copying the generated code from Gigya's website and integrating the code into your site .
Setting Up a New Chat Configuration
Every Chat plugin instance is identified by a category ID, which defines the chat configuration. You may define a group of Chat plugin instances that share the same category ID, i.e. same chat configuration. You may define one or more chat configurations (category IDs) for your domain. Each chat configuration may have different settings, such as different skins. The settings are defined on the server side and may be administrated using the Chat Setup section of Gigya's website.
Follow the steps below to create a new Chat configuration:
- Go to the Chat Setup section of Gigya's website. Please make sure you are signed in. The Chat Setup page may also be accessed by clicking "Settings" in the upper menu and then "Chat Setup" in the left menu.
- Click the Add new chat button:
- Enter a new chat name and select whether to use default settings or copy the settings from an existing chat:
If you selected to copy chat settings from another site, the new chat will use the same settings as in the chosen chat.
- Click "OK". A new chat configuration is created. Notice the newly created row in the Chat table:
The "Chat Settings" button leads to an administration screen that lets you change the default settings of the chat configuration.
Integrating the Chat Plugin Generated Code into Your Site
The simplest and fasted way to integrate the Chat plugin in your site is to copy the "Embed code" from the Chat table and paste it into the <body> part of your web page in which you want the plugin to appear.
Parameters to Note
- categoryID- Notice the category ID parameter in line 5. This category ID was generated by Gigya and is a unique identifier for the group of Chat plugin instances that share the same chat configuration.
- streamID - The stream ID parameter (optional) identifies a chat stream within a certain chat configuration. The default is an empty string, meaning that there is a single stream with an empty identifier. Two Chat plugins instances that share the same category ID and stream ID will show the same chat stream. On the other hand, two Chat plugins instances that share the same category ID but have different stream IDs, will have the same chat configuration but different chat streams. Note: streamID is limited to 150 characters.
Configuration and Administration
If you go back to the the Chat Setup page, in the Chat table, in the new row that you have created, you will see a "Chat Settings" button. Clicking this button leads to the Chat Settings page. This page is an administration screen that lets you change the default settings of the chat.
You may change the settings as you choose and then save them by clicking the "Save changes" button at the bottom of the page. The changes are saved in Gigya's database (server side). No coding changes are required. The change will take effect immediately. For a page that is already loaded, refresh the page and you will see the change.
The Chat Settings include:
Choose whether to display all messages or only from today, choose whether the chat is enabled or read only, enter a moderation username and password.
Choose the networks to display as login options and change the Login title if you wish.
Choose whether to show the "Public" tab, choose whether to show the "Make Public" checkbox, and if you do show the "Make Public" checkbox, select its default status.
You can also enter here a Twitter user, for example when a moderator is posting chats via a Twitter account - the Twitter user param will pull in all tweets from that user.
To retrieve the Twitter feed by checking the "Fetch Twitter feed" checkbox, and filling in aTwitter query, aTwitter user, a Consumer key and a Consumer secret. We recommend providing a Consumer key and secret that are different than the ones you use in the Site Settings, to eliminate the possibility of Twitter blocking your application. Make sure to limit the number of chats so that you do not exceed rate limits. Read more about Twitter's Rate Limiting.
When retrieving Twitter feeds, the black-listed words that appear in the Restrictions section of our site will be applied to the Twitter feed from "Twitter user". If a feed item includes any of the black listed words/phrases the feed will not be imported.
Social Network Publishing
Choose whether to show the "Update Network" checkbox and its default status, choose the published message options, including a default textbox watermark, title, and link URL.
Choose whether to enable links in feeds. If checked, links in the chat feed will appear as html links and will open a new window with the link. Also whether to c
Blocked Chat Users
The chat moderator can block a user from a chat, and that user will then be blocked from all chat categories currently open or that will be opened in the future.
Blocked Twitter Users
You can also block Twitter users by clicking the Add Twitter User and entering a Twitter ID, which must be comprised of Alphanumerics only:
Gigya offers you the option to manage a custom black list of words and phrases to be filtered in chats, and to block IP addresses. You can read more in the Site Restrictions section, or go directly to the Site Restrictions on Gigya's site.