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Voice comment plugin for blogs

Posted by Michael Bloch in web development (Monday August 28, 2006 )

Perhaps you could have a few brief instructions telling your readers when they leave comments, to mention the post it’s in regards to – then cull the comments regularly to have a current “best of” set. If people are commenting on a number of posts, it could give listeners the incentive to dig around your blog to find the posts they are referring to.

Aside from blogging purposes, online businesses could benefit from an easy to use voice comment application as a great way to gather and showcase customer testimonials.

SnapVine also offers a range of other services, including the ability to listen to podcasts by phone, message calls, wake up calls, voice forums and an SDK for developers.

Go for it – now you can experiment with voice comments for your blog for free!

Updated August 29: I received an email from Curtis from SnapVine earlier today – he says that they are very keen to hear ideas about gearing the SnapVine voice comment service to the blogging community. It’s nice to see that level of involvement from upper management not just a “thanks for your comments, we’ll pass it on”.

By the way, Curtis used to be a Chief Executive with Ask Jeeves – one of their original team. There’s quite a few talented individuals working with SnapVine at the moment with a solid background in the online world, so I expect you’ll hear and see a lot more of the service in the time ahead – I’ve already noticed increased buzz in the MySpace community just over the last day.

Update February 21 2007 – Joe from Snapvine has left a comment below stating that Snapvine just launched support for 17 countries including Australia, New Zealand, Japan, UK, Spain, Germany, France, Netherlands and Sweden.

Related:
My original post on voice comments for blogs

Other blog posts regarding MySpace

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My first post on voice comments for blogs seems to have created a lot of interest judging by the number of search engine referrals, so I decided to hunt around a bit more to see if there were any reasonably priced voice commenting services and plugins available. I found one so far, and it’s free! Read on and give it a whirl.

SnapVine are offering a free voice comment plugin (in beta) and while it’s being geared primarily to social networks such as MySpace, it’s very easy to set up and integrate into your blog. A few fields to fill in on their signup form and you’re then presented with the plugin code to embed in your pages. The finished product looks like this:


Get a voice comment plugin for your blog

As you can hear above, you can also record a short personalized introduction if you wish.

Note: if you see a message on the SnapVine site stating there are no more free voice comment plugin accounts currently available, try this special link – which was kindly provided to us by Joe from SnapVine. Thanks Joe!

To leave a comment, your visitors click the “record comment” button, dial the US number listed, enter the PIN code and start recording. For US users calling via landline, the call is free (update: support for 17 countries added – see below).

If your visitors are overseas, it still costs next to nix if they are using a VoIP service such as SkypeIN. Callers need to initially be registered with SnapVine, which is a quick process via the phone call, unless they are blocking caller ID – in which case, they’ll need to register on the SnapVine site first. They appear to have a fairly solid privacy policy in place.

In the tests I ran, I found it very easy to leave voice comments and the recording playback quality is quite good. You’ll receive an email notification when a comment is recorded.

You’re able to delete voice comments easily from your player interface; although it would be better if there was a moderation feature before voice comments went live. As mentioned, this service is currently in Beta (so expect glitches) and the SnapVine team seem eager for feedback, so I expect they’ll introduce this feature soon.

One of the other drawbacks in using it in a blog scenario is you’d need a different player account for each blog thread. Aside from the messing around involved with that, I really don’t think the SnapVine team would want you doing this, or in fact if it’s possible :).

Perhaps you could have a few brief instructions telling your readers when they leave comments, to mention the post it’s in regards to – then cull the comments regularly to have a current “best of” set. If people are commenting on a number of posts, it could give listeners the incentive to dig around your blog to find the posts they are referring to.

Aside from blogging purposes, online businesses could benefit from an easy to use voice comment application as a great way to gather and showcase customer testimonials.

SnapVine also offers a range of other services, including the ability to listen to podcasts by phone, message calls, wake up calls, voice forums and an SDK for developers.

Go for it – now you can experiment with voice comments for your blog for free!

Updated August 29: I received an email from Curtis from SnapVine earlier today – he says that they are very keen to hear ideas about gearing the SnapVine voice comment service to the blogging community. It’s nice to see that level of involvement from upper management not just a “thanks for your comments, we’ll pass it on”.

By the way, Curtis used to be a Chief Executive with Ask Jeeves – one of their original team. There’s quite a few talented individuals working with SnapVine at the moment with a solid background in the online world, so I expect you’ll hear and see a lot more of the service in the time ahead – I’ve already noticed increased buzz in the MySpace community just over the last day.

Update February 21 2007 – Joe from Snapvine has left a comment below stating that Snapvine just launched support for 17 countries including Australia, New Zealand, Japan, UK, Spain, Germany, France, Netherlands and Sweden.

Related:
My original post on voice comments for blogs

Other blog posts regarding MySpace



 

 
17 comments for Voice comment plugin for blogs
  1. how do u run out of voice comment plugins?
    just wondering…

    Comment by Hannah — September 7, 2006 @ 8:27 pm

  2. Hi Hannah, I’d say what’s happened is that they haven’t run out of voice comment plugins as such, but their capacity for supporting more player installations has temporarily maxed out. They probably need more servers, staff etc. – it would be a pretty resource intensive application. I’ll email Curtis to see if he has some idea of when they’ll have extra capacity in place.

    Comment by Michael Bloch — September 7, 2006 @ 8:43 pm

  3. hi Hannah, Michael and readers of Michael’s blog,

    this is joe from snapvine. Here’s a special link to get a voice player, even if “we have run out” :-)

    http://www.snapvine.com/signup?reason=ms&frontpageimg&activate=KOOLAID

    Comment by joe — September 8, 2006 @ 4:30 am

  4. Thanks Joe! :)

    Comment by Michael Bloch — September 8, 2006 @ 5:25 am

  5. Is saynow about the same as snapvine?

    Comment by Susie — September 9, 2006 @ 5:03 am

  6. Hi Susie – thanks for mentioning SayNow voice comment plugin; I haven’t seen it before. Looks to be a very interesting service :). It is a little different in that it appears to have a broader range of features, but it does have limited availability; i.e. it’s only being offerd to bands/entertainers rather than the general public as a means for them to reach out to their fan base.

    I like the feature where the band can broadcast their own voice comments to cell phones as well; although that’s an aspect they’d want to handle with care :).

    Comment by Michael Bloch — September 9, 2006 @ 3:57 pm

  7. If you call to leave a comment, does it cost anything?

    Comment by Andrea — September 10, 2006 @ 7:49 pm

  8. Hi Andrea, it’s a toll free number for US and Canada users if you call via landline. If you are using a cell phone normal call charges apply – but you’re not charged anything to use the voice comment service itself.

    Comment by Michael Bloch — September 10, 2006 @ 8:20 pm

  9. Where do we find the toll free number for SNAPVINE if calling from the U.S.?

    Comment by BRØKINBØNZ® — September 28, 2006 @ 12:11 pm

  10. Hi there, do you mean a phone number for the company themselves? They don’t list one; just an email address – details can be viewed here:

    http://www.snapvine.com/info/company

    Comment by Michael Bloch — September 29, 2006 @ 5:06 am

  11. […] Die Voice-Features für Social-Web Anwendungen finden in den USA offensichtlich einen wachsenden Markt. Dienste wie Evoca, Subcast oder Snapvine stellen sich darauf ein. Der Ansatz ist nicht neu, wohl aber der Versuch, Audio zunehmend kontextbezogen und automatisiert in die Text-Anwendungen einzubetten. Dafür klinken die Anbieter sich auch in exisitierende Netzwerke wie MySpace, hi5 oder Xanga an, um diese Extra-Features zu vermarkten. Bei Evoca ist der Dienst bis zu einer Aufnahmedauer von 60min kostenlos und stellt eine Deutsche Call-In Rufnummer (Berlin) zur Verfügung. Wer also eine Festnetz- oder Mobilflatrate hat, zahlt überhaupt nichts mehr. Der in Blogs vom WordPress integrierte Dienst von mychingo (realisiert durch den Plugin-Entwickler von Podpress) bleibt aber nach meiner Einschätzung (bisher) immer noch die beste Möglichkeit, Audio-Kommentare zu hinterlassen. Der größte Vorteil besteht darin, dass die Audio-Files direkt den Kommentaren eines Beitrages zugeordnet sind und in einem Podcast RSS-Feed des Blogs verwaltet und abonniert werden können. So leben Text- und Audio-Kommentare ideal in einem Blog zusammen. Was elementar fehlt, ist die Telefon-Moblogging Funktion für alle, die kein Mikrofon am PC haben oder einfach nur gerade keinen Internet-Zugang zu Verfügung haben. Technisch ist dabei natürlich eine große Hürde zu nehmen: Die jeweilige ID eines Blog-Beitrages muß bekannt sein und z.B. per Tonwahlsignal vor der eigentlichen Aufnahme eingegeben werden. Denn wie sollte das System sonst die Telefon-Kommentare zu einen bestimmten Beitrag zuordnen können, was sehr wünschenswert wäre?! Umgehen könnte man dieses Problem bei Evoca, wenn man z.B. für jeden einzelnen Beitrag einen Account anlegen würde, aber -mal abgesehen von dem mühseligen Gefrickel- wird das sicher nicht im Sinne des Erfinders sein . […]

    Pingback by O h r… k a u f t… m i t ! » Audio Kommentare im Social Web — October 15, 2006 @ 9:22 am

  12. I was just wondering if they have a voice comment one for Australia, it seems the only one i can find is for America and Canada..

    Comment by Bez — December 11, 2006 @ 12:50 am

  13. Hi Bez, I haven’t seen a Australia voice comment add-on as yet.

    Comment by Michael Bloch — December 11, 2006 @ 4:43 am

  14. hi
    i am just wondering if people in Australia can comment on snapvine? and does it cost? or is it still free?

    Comment by Sue — January 29, 2007 @ 9:18 pm

  15. hi Sue and Michael,

    Snapvine just launched international support including Australia (and New Zealand, Japan, UK, Spain, Germany, France, Netherlands, Sweden — 17 countries in total).

    Please enjoy communicating with friends all around the world for the price of a local call, through your blogs, social networks and mobile phones.

    Let us know what you think too, we’re happy to listen and offer more of what you want.

    thanks!

    Comment by joe — February 22, 2007 @ 12:07 am

  16. Thanks for the update Joe!

    Comment by Michael Bloch — February 22, 2007 @ 2:59 am

  17. Hardly it can be counted as a plugin because of its simplicity, but you can always create mp3 file yourself and upload it to your webspace or use a tool like this one: http://sayandpost.com that makes it a bit easier.
    You don’t need to ask your friends to join yet another social network website, There are no fancy widgets – just a link to the voice file that is played directly from the web.

    Comment by Henry Brier — July 4, 2007 @ 12:03 pm

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