Community Cloud WordPress Plugin Released

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Update (08-Feb-2008): New version of the Community Cloud plugin is available here.

When I first announced the new design for our blog, I mentioned our new Community Cloud, which displays a “tag cloud” of all the people in our community who have contributed to our blog by commenting. The more someone has commented, the bigger and bolder the link. Sound good? Then get one for your wordpress blog. I’ve released the Community Cloud as a plugin for you to download here.

How do you Install it?

  1. Download and Extract the Community Cloud plugin
  2. Upload it via FTP to your wordpress plugins directory (/wp-content/plugins/)
  3. Activate the Community Cloud in the Plugins section of your blog’s admin.
  4. In the Options -> Community Cloud section change the default settings to fit your blog.

Ok, it’s Installed. How do I use it?

Once installed, to display the community cloud on your blog you can either

  1. Create a new Page on your blog and in the Page Content area, enter the following tag where you want the community cloud to appear, <!–community cloud–> and publish.
  2. Or, there is also sidebar widget. So you can just go to the Widgets tab within the Presentations menu and drag-n-drop the Community Cloud widget into your sidebar.

Click here to download the latest version of the Community Cloud

Have Fun. 🙂

  • Nic

    Looks great on your site and I think it’s a brilliant plugin… but it’s not working. I have uploaded the plugin folder to the WP plugin folder, nothing, I also uploaded each individual php file for the plugin, but still nothing.

    The plugin itself does’nt seem to be registering in the backend WP plugin section… any ideas?

  • Thanks for letting me know. Hmm.. I created this plugin by modifying an existing wordpress plugin. Do you have the latest version of wordpress (version 2.2 I think it is).

    I’ve installed this plugin on another wordpress setup as I described about, and it worked fine for me.

    Does it give you any sort of error message, or does it just not show up in the list of plugins?

  • Nic

    No error message, it uploads on the server perfectly, I can see the files but in the WordPress admin, nothing in the plugins section.

  • Are you running WordPress version 2.x?

  • I’ve tried the plugin on 2 other blogs now, and it’s worked both times for me. Perhaps check that plugin files look like this.

  • I got the same problem that Nic got with the plugin yesterday installing the Community Cloud plugin.

    The problem is not with the plugin itself, but you need to make sure the the file permissions on the plugin is set correctly. In geek speak you need to CHMOD the files to 755, or 777 just to be safe.

    Once I did that the plugin showed up in the wordpress plugins list.

  • Hi Miguel,

    I just installed this plugin and I am very pleased. At first it didn’t work just like what happened to Nic. I did what you suggested and it worked after I changed the permission for the two files within the community cloud folder, not just the main folder itse.f

    Thanks a lot.

  • nice plugin but escape $comment->comment_author to eliminate some mysql errors!

    mysql_escape_string($comment->comment_author) on line 33…

    greetz chris

  • Thanks Chris, I’ve updated the plugin. Glad you all liked it 🙂

  • Good job! I love it…

  • Yeah,it is now show in my “About All “to show the blog & freinds & me…it is beauty as a tag cloud…

  • Nice one!! But the thing is it won’t work on my blog site… How is it?

  • Hi Miguel,

    thanks for this plugin, i made a translation for frenchies bloggers on my blog 😉

    Thanks again, regards

  • This is what appeared on my page…

  • Thanks Arkan for the translation.
    mats, I think you need to check the plugin options that you get once you activated the plugin. It might be that the maximum text size is way too large, or maybe the maximum text size is set to 240px rather than 240%. Is it any of those things?
    Let me know. Thanks

  • Is this something that could easily be added to a sidebar?

  • Although I didn’t create the plugin specifically to be added to the sidebar, you can add make the community cloud display in your blog’s sidebar by copying the following code into the sidebar.php file of your blog template:

    <?php echo cc_community_cloud(“<!–community cloud–>”); ?>

  • changing permissions worked for me too.

  • I’ve updated the plugin. You can see the changed I’ve made in my blog post here

  • Excellent plugin, guys. I likes it. But I has a problem. Two, in fact.

    When you exclude specific commenters using the comma-delimited list in the options panel, only the first name mentioned actually gets excluded. This appears to be a bug, albeit a simple one.

    While testing, I had my own name later in the list, and found that if the maximum font size is set too high, it doesn’t scale back down to the width of the sidebar. I don’t have the longest name on the planet, so this will certainly become a problem when someone called Count Belthazar de Freitas Comminotto starts leading the comment pack.

    Finally, a feature request: I’d prefer if the names didn’t scale linearly with their absolute number of posts, as I think they do now. Low-end changes should show up more rapidly in the scaling of the names. One simple way to do this, which will work on any comment set, is to scale them by ranking their number of posts, rather than by the absolute number of posts. (A more sophisticated formula could be contrived, I’m sure.) This option would prevent every name appearing small, or a few regular commenters dominating the cloud. (See the category cloud on my blog for an illustration of the same problem.)

  • Thanks Ivo for the great feedback. I’ve fixed the first issue you had, and I’ll have a look see at what I can do about the other stuff.

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  • Thank you for the update.

  • @mats
    you may need to warp it with div.

  • estra

    maybe you can make a similar plugin with authors of a blog instead of commenters (with a link to their posts -> /authors/username/ ). would love to see that. 🙂

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  • Excellent! I’ll need a few more comments to se how it all weighs out, but looks good so far!

  • nice plugins! 🙂

  • I don’t use widgets but really want this in my sidebar. I’ve tried
    �); ?>
    in my sidebar but get an error that shuts down both sidebars.

    Not being that techie when it comes to coding, am I missing something?

  • Hi Paul, I had a look at your blog and it looks like you came right, I see the community cloud in your sidebar. thanks and enjoy 🙂

  • Hi Miguel,

    Yes I decided to opt for the widgets in my left sidebar so it works a dream. Lets hope that it fills up soon!!! I assume the link to you will always be there 🙂

  • The link to us is optional, you can enable/disable it in the Community Cloud options page if you like.
    It enabled by default 😛 because we like the link love, but it’s not mandatory.

  • Nice plugin. I was dreaming of such a plugin.

  • Sweet little plugin!

    I have only so far got people with or two comments, so that could be a reason behind it, but mine aren’t weighting yet.

    Any ideas? Or should i just be more patient?

  • created a page and put the tag in, but it only displays the tag. i keep removing the extra space in the tag, but it gets stripped out.

  • I think the problem could be that the WYSIWYG editor is converting the tag into something else when you save the page. You should select the Code view before entering the tag.
    That way when you save the page it will not be altered in any way by the WYSIWYG editor.

  • Ok, I just needed to be patient. I’m weighting now 🙂

  • Doc

    nbot working: i’ve put it in both Visual and Code – still just displays as written.

    I suppose it might be permissions, but I don’t know how to change those…

  • When I put the code in my Page Content area,it appears nothing,but the widget works well,I really don’t why.

  • Hi kusanagi, I think you might be having the same problem as Doc had. I replied to him via email, but I’ll tell you what I told him think it could be.

    I think some wordpress installations might have a problem with the WYSIWYG editor in that when you create a new page and you enter the under the “code” tab and you publish or save the page, the WordPress system automatically changes the contents because it sees the content as an HTML comment.

    If you don’t understand what I’m talking about, I think please try and update your wordpress, or update your rich text editor plugin, like advanced tinymce.

    I hope this makes sense and helps.

  • doc

    …i solved the issue over theweekend – it was due to laziness on my part.

    if you read the instructions on this page, you believe you are tp put this in your code section:

    ahhhh: but if your read the README.TXT that comes with the download, you realize that you should be cutting & pasating this:

    which works just fine, no issues:

    so, given the nature of os guys to NOT read directions until we absolutely have to, i might edit this page to reflect the right entry you’ll get less trouble tickets…

    ; ‘ )


  • Doc

    well…i like it.


    it writes to the DB over 4000 times whenever someone loads a page at my site; with it disabled, the DB querying knocks down to just about 40 times.

    i’ve had to disable the little critter, much as i like it.

    ; ‘ (

  • Roland

    Is there a way to put it in the Sidebar without using Widget so i can place it at any given place.. I dont use widgets but I would love to use this plugin

  • Hi there Roland, You can insert the php code into your template using the following code.

    < ?php echo cc_community_cloud('‘); ?>

    The above function also takes a second parameter that limits the number of links it will display.

    eg. < ?php echo cc_community_cloud('‘, 20); ?>
    will show up to 20 links in your community cloud.


  • Hi Miguel..

    Thank you so much for the quick response.. Will put this in right now 🙂

  • chaoman

    Awesome, plug-in!! Thanks!

  • hi miguel!

    i love the idea of your plugin, but i don’t manage to get it working. i want it to appear in the sidebar and i tried with the < ?php echo… you recommended to roland, but it doesn’t work (i couldn’t find it working at rolands website either).

    any hints would be very much appreciated…


  • Willian

    worked for me with this:

    <?php echo cc_community_cloud( ““, 20); ?>

    thanks for the plugin

  • I put that in and got nothing. Am I doing somethign wrong? Or am I using the wrong version of WP?

  • Paul M.

    same here…

  • Hi there,

    Does that plug-in work with the guestbook generator ?

    Thank you for the answer!


  • hellows

    All I get in the widget is: Your Group of Web AddiCT(s);. How do I get it to work!

  • hellows

    .And this is not working in the theme!

  • hellows

    – is not working. this php has got a strange sign, not the usual (”). I have tryied few option like (””) () (”) (,) nothing works. what can I do ?

  • Hi!
    I love this plugin but it doesn’t work in my sidebar.
    I put

    please help me!!!!

  • Hi,

    First of all, great plugin, really like the idea. That being said, I would really like to put this on my blog, but its not working. On the WP Plugin Database or whatever its called, it says that its not compatible with WP 2.6, so i assume thats why its not working.

    So I ask you, my friend, is this plugin going to be updated to work with WP 2.6?

    Thanks for your work.

  • Completely ignore my previous post. Ive fixed the problem. the plugin works perfectly on WP 2.6

  • Thanks for your work.

    i am using it on my blog about page ( now.

  • ok so i clicked on download
    and nothing happened

  • Ok, I have read all comment to here and I am still not able to get this plug in working.

    Ideally I would like to have it in my ui.tabs.php but this is simply not working (that is static on the website, but not a page, it is on the frontpage of the blog, found under “home”).

    I have tried all variations of the php echo text to no avail. I even tried to put it on a page with the text given in the description above. No go.

    The only thing I was totally unable to understand HOW to do was the tip to change the CHMOD number. WHERE do I do that? (Or do I need to do that?)

    This is a neat application, would love to have it on my blog!

    Thanks for your help!

  • ibonette

    thank you…

  • I like it, thanks….

  • looks good, i like it.

  • Thank , i like it ..

  • DG

    It works! Thanks! I would like to have the code expressed as a template tag (a function) to put this in my sidebar without using Widgets. Is it possible?

    Also I would like the same code for purposes of putting an “IF plugin exists, then do this function… ELSE if plugin is deactivated, then put something else.”

  • Looking forward to installing this folks, awesome way to give credit back to your heavy commenters. May I suggest sending the plugin over to lifehacker..

  • Thanks Mark, I might just do that, however I have a version 2 of the community cloud plugin coming soon, that is faster, more efficient and includes a social HCard on commenters links, so when I’m ready to release that I’ll post it over to lifehacker and see if they like it.

    • Richard

      I like this plugin, but I would love to be able to click a commenter in the cloud and see a page showing all his/her comments. Each comment is listed as a clickable link to the title of the page/post and date. Make the comment show ‘x’ number of characters as a excerpt only. Yes, it would need paging maybe, but this would be a great way to see what people have said.

      Show gravatar would also be very nice. Lots of possibilities to build communities for future development …

  • Thanks, I’ve been thinking that also 😉
    I’ll be releasing v2.0 soon, so I’ll try to put this feature in v2.1

    • Richard

      Thanks for you quick reply Miguel! I will look forward to those new features very much. This is great plugin for building communities and linking people together. Good luck with your next release.

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  • Jake

    When I use the it does not seem to work. Any ideas? Thanks!

  • @Jake I’ve just posted the community cloud version 2.0 plugin. Try that one here 😛
    If you have the old version installed already, you’ll need to deactivate and reactivate the plugin after uploading the new files.

    • Jake

      I am trying to display the comment cloud in the footer but I cannot get it to run with the !comment command. Is that because the plug-in files only load in the sidebar?

  • The plugin should be able to be called from anywhere in your theme.
    If you need to display the cloud from within your theme try the following code.
    <?php print community_cloud_display("<!--community cloud-->"); ?>

  • Thanks for your comment regarding feature requests, Miguel. I have run into a small problem, maybe a bug? On my community cloud here I have several commenters listed. Here is what happens

    1- I have 2 different commenters Both with the same username but different email addresses (unregistered commenters can do this)
    2- One of the commenters shows a website address, the other does not have one entered.
    3- In the community tag cloud, it only shows one of these commenters, the one with the website address.
    4- The other commenter does Not appear.
    5- Also, the commenter that appears shows the combined comment count for BOTH commenters.

    I hope I explain this well?

    The above scenario is wrong: both commenters should be showing in the cloud, one clickable, one not and the clickable one should only show their own post count.

    Any ideas??

    • 🙂 that is actually to be expected. it’s a problem with accuracy in the first version of the plugin. I figured that listing unique names would be a good idea. doh!

      Anyways, I’ve created the community cloud plugin version 2.0 which I released yesterday which should fix the problem you described. It now filters commenters by unique email address rather than name.

      check it out,

  • Great news for the update and thanks for filtering unique emails rather than usernames. Did I see small avatars in the your version here?? Hope so, that’s a good idea. Looking forward to being able to see all comments by a user feature …

    • Yeah, if it finds an hCard for the commenter’s link then it display’s their favicon also to distinguish between those that have and those that don’t have social hCards.

      I didn’t do it for all links because it ends up looking quite messy.

  • Richard

    I have tried install the latest version and I’m getting an error as below..
    Fatal error: Cannot redeclare community_cloud_menu() (previously declared in /home/****/public_html/***.com/wp-content/plugins/community_cloud/community_cloud.php:17) in /home/****/public_html/****.com/wp-content/plugins/community_cloud

    Any advice please? Thanks

    • Hmm… , That sounds like you have the plugin uploaded and activate two places (perhaps an old one and a new one) and wordpress is trying to access both plugins.
      I think your best option is to just remove all instances of the plugin and reupload the latest plugin.
      Hope that helps.
      If that’s not the case, please tell me more. I’m not sure how else it would come up with that error, as the community_cloud_menu() function isn’t declared on line 17 in the latest version of the plugin, it’s on line 127

      • I tried to install this again and it was fully successful, thanks… I think I was experiencing a little wordpress cache problem. Sometimes it just catches me out.!

  • Hi, its possible to show a limit? Like the most 100 people…
    Thanks a lot

  • Only when using the widget, or if calling the community cloud display function directly in your theme using

    community_cloud_display("<!--community cloud-->", 100);

    the second argument is the limit.

    I should really make it so you can specify

    <!--community cloud:100-->

    , but I’ll update that in the next release.

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  • Chinese Characters show as question marks.
    How do I change the character encoding?

  • it’s not working in my site…

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  • Nice plugin for creating community using the wordpress

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  • Thank for sharing 😉

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  • great plugin!

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  • is not working in wordpress page. wat is the problem? its sidebar widget is working fine. you can see my page

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  • A big thanks for this great information. I have stumbled it and will shortly tell the rest of my online network know. They will definitely think it as interesting as I did.

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