221 – Stream Live with WordPress and WP Livestream

Interview with Nathan Parikh and Nathan Wrigley

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So it might have passed you by, but now we can (and apparently do) all create our own T.V. channels! Services like YouTube, Facebook, Twitch and Vimeo make this process pretty much painless, but pretty much painless is not completely painless; and that’s the subject of the podcast today. A WordPress plugin called WP Livestream which makes this as simple as possible. If you go back just a few years, the very idea that this would bo something that you could do would’ve seemed crazy, but here we are, and it’s an amazing reality we live in!

You might think that it’s really not that hard to go live, and you’d be right about that. Platforms like Facebook and YouTube have made it possible to do that with an account and the click of a button, but that’s not really what we’re talking about here.

WP Livestream offers you the ability to do something much more useful and without the hassle of trying to write the code yourself.

The WP Livestream plugin enables you to embed the feed for your YouTube channel, not an individual livestream. This can be really useful.

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Take for example the WP Builds LIVE Page. It is a page that I want to be available all the time so that whenever I click the ‘go live’ button in Streamyard (the SaaS app that I use to create the shows), the live is on that page right away.

This has obvious benefits:

  • I don’t have to copy / paste the embed code everytime I hit ‘go live’
  • I can tell everyone this URL and they can bookmark for easy access, no trying to track the stream down on YouTube (et al.)
  • You don’t have to be logged into some other platform to see the stream
  • It’s all on my own domain and I can surround that livestream with whatever content I would like people to see

You see, it’s much better to do it this way, or at least that’s what I think!

On the podcast Nathan and I (also Nathan!) chat about how he came to develop the plugin. It was, as is so often true, a case of scratching his own itch. He needed a place where the members of his church could reliably go during the Covid lockdown to see church services. No need to sign up anywhere, just go to the church website and watch the content every time it goes live.

We talk about what options are available, such as the destinations that you can choose. At the time of writing they are:

  • YouTube
  • Facebook
  • Twitch
  • Vimeo

It’s pretty much a set-it-and-forget-it type of plugin. No more copy codes every single time you go live. The amount of times that I’ve forgotten to paste the embed onto the WP Builds website with seconds to spare. This is literally a lifesaver. If you forget to update the embed code, there is no livestream at all. WP Livestream removes this point of failure as it’s always polling whichever service you use; as soon as you go live, WP Livestream works that out and updates itself with the correct embed code and that’s it. You don’t need to worry about it, it just happens.

There’s a little bit more to the plugin too. WP Livestream also has the ability to display a pop-up banner on your entire site to say that you’re currently live. This does not show, for obvious reasons, on the live page itself, but it a great way to get your website visitors to notice your stream and hop on.

Although this is not yet live, Nathan is also working on a feature that would be really great to have… comments. The idea here is that comments would come into Facebook, YouTube and wherever else it’s being posted to and those comments would appear on your website too. You could reply there instead of having to have multiple tabs open in your browser, constantly checking to see if new comments were rolling in. Nice!

Another roadmap feature is the ability to style the livestream player some more. Currently is quite plain, but hopefully in the future, this will make it possible to have a player that matches your branding more.

So go check out the WP Livestream plugin and get yourself 15% off with the code “VIP”.

As always, leave some comments on the WP Builds website, or in the thread for this podcast episode (#221) in the WP Builds Facebook Group, and remember to come back every Monday at 2pm UK time when we go LIVE for our ‘This Week in WordPress‘ show.

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Transcript (if available)

These transcripts are created using software, so apologies if there are errors in them.

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Nathan Wrigley: [00:00:00] Welcome to the WP Builds podcast, bringing you the latest news from the WordPress community. Welcome your host, David Waumsley, Nathan Wrigley.
Hello there and welcome to the WP Builds podcast. Once more. We're on episode number 221 today. And it's entitled live stream with WordPress and WP live stream. It was published on Thursday, the 18th of March, 2021. My name's Nathan Wrigley and a little bit of housekeeping just before we begin, do head over to our website.
WP Builds.com. That's where we keep all of our content. The content that we typically produce in a week involves a Thursday podcast, which you're listening to right now. And then on a Monday at 2:00 PM UK time, you can find us [email protected] forward slash live for a show called this week in WordPress.
I'm joined every week by Paul Lacey and usually a couple of other WordPress guests. And we discuss the latest news from the previous seven days in the WordPress space. That's then gets repurposed into a video and a newsletter piece of content, which I publish at 7:00 AM UK time. And if you go to the subscribe page, WP Builds.com forward slash subscribe.
There's a form on there. And you can sign up to the newsletters to be alerted whenever we produce new content on that page, there's also links to our very friendly Facebook group and YouTube channel Twitter stream and so on and so forth. So that's WP Builds.com forward slash subscribe. I know that a lot of you are in the market for WordPress deals and we've got a dedicated deals page for that.
WP Builds.com forward slash deals. It's their 365 days of the year. And it's a little bit like black Friday, but every day of the week. If you need a plugin or a theme this week, it may be worth checking that out and bookmarking it for future reference. WP Builds.com forward slash deals. And finally, WP Builds.com forward slash advertise.
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Okay. What have we got for you today? Like I said, at the top it's episode, two, two, one live stream with WordPress and WP live stream. I'm joined today by Nathan Perry, who is the founder of the plugin. And the idea here is that you install this plugin and then you are able to live stream throughout. The universe platforms include Twitch, YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, the usual suspects, but it does make the whole process a lot easier.
I've tried this before. You've got this awful process where if you try to embed a live stream, you have to go back each time to create a new live stream code and embed that in your website. This plugin takes care of all that. Any time you go live, it detects that and it puts it onto your website. It will also do a whole bunch of other things.
For example, it will put a banner up on all the other pages of your website to say, we're live streaming now come and find us, but there's a whole ton of things in the process of being built as well. So quite a comprehensive roadmap, WP Builds listeners also get 15% off this plugin using the code VIP.
So that's VIP all in caps at the checkout. It seems that live streaming is all the rage at the moment. And so this is right in my wheelhouse. I really learned a lot and I hope that you enjoy the podcast. Hello there. Welcome to the WP Builds podcast. Once again, this all be a fun episode because it's an episode we've never, literally never touched on before.
So I'm going to introduce you to Nathan Perique. How are you, Nathan? Doing
Nathan Parikh: [00:04:44] well, thank you for having me on
Nathan Wrigley: [00:04:46] Nathan. I have connected about a plugin that he has created, and it seems like if you were in the plugin space, this, the plugin that he's created just seems to have fitted perfectly with the issues that we've had during the year 20, 20 and 2021, it's called WP live stream.
And we might as well get the URL out there right at the start so that if you want to pause this podcast and go and check out what we're talking about, you can find it. It's WP live stream.com and I bet you can't guess what it does. It enables you to send live streams to your WordPress install. Before we get into the specifics of the plugin.
Always good to get a bit of background about you. Nathan, tell us. Certainly just occurred to me that we've got two Nathan's on the call. That's where is, yeah, that's a bit of a first what's your background with WordPress? You develop a full-time do you, is this like a part-time gig? Just what's your WordPress journey?
Nathan Parikh: [00:05:42] Yeah, so I started way back in 2007. I was getting ready to go to college at that time. And I had been following Corey Miller's personal blog basically. And I'd already been tinkering around in high school with just the basic web development back in the day, whether it was front page or Dreamweaver, working with tables and all that kind of stuff.
And so I'd slowly grown from there in the early two thousands. And I saw that he had posted that he was looking for some help building like a WordPress theme. And at the time I had never. Built anything with WordPress and T in 2007, but I emailed him anyway and said, Hey, I think I can help you with this.
And I got the gig and that was my entrance into the WordPress world. And I've been freelancing with WordPress development projects, basically, ever since I did that through college, through grad school, and I'm still doing it today. And so I've had the privilege of working on a variety of projects for clients all over the world.
And yeah, it's been a. Quick 14 years, but here I am. So
Nathan Wrigley: [00:06:48] I want a nice place to start with Corey. Yeah. Wow. You really hit the ground running there. That's lovely.
Nathan Parikh: [00:06:53] Yeah. I
Nathan Wrigley: [00:06:54] didn't even know it. Yeah. Perfect. So we'll get stuck into the product itself. We've got a plugin WP live stream. What does it do if anybody was in any doubt?
Nathan Parikh: [00:07:05] good to explain her. So at its very core, its core functionality is to automatically embed a livestream onto your WordPress website. And so in addition to my freelance WordPress work, I'm also a pastor at a church in Fort worth, Texas. And I'm over all of our communications. And so it's a pretty small team as far as who is over that.
And like many other organizations, we really jumped into live streaming more seriously in 2020. And I found myself being a one man show of I had to run the camera. I had to start the live stream I had to then after we had gone live while I'm running the camera, embed the live stream onto our website.
So other people could watch it. And I'm like, man, there has to be. Like an automatic way to do this, to take at least this piece off of my plate. Cause we live stream to Facebook and to YouTube and there wasn't really anything that fit what I was looking for. And so I just decided to build it myself and I kinda got the core functionality working for us in our church early on, but then once COVID hit and a bunch of other organizations started needing to livestream.
I just realized that there was a big need for this. And so I decided to really. Put my nose down and work hard at it. And I released it in may of 2020. Yeah, just
Nathan Wrigley: [00:08:23] the perfect timing. That the world needed solutions like this kind of yesterday during the beginning of COVID didn't they? So that's amazing.
Now, anybody listening to this will probably, if you've never done a live stream before, you've probably got this impression that it's really easy to live stream because in effect it is, you can click a button in your Facebook app and you're off. You can press buttons in YouTube and you're off, but that's not the crisis.
Is it that, that the crisis here is actually getting it somewhere else, onto a WordPress website. And so I wonder if you could describe the problem with that, because like I say, I think people will assume that this is. Straightforward. No, it's not beyond the realms of people, but there are complexities and also there's a friction about the repetition of it as well.
So if you could just describe the problem and how your solution fits that problem.
Nathan Parikh: [00:09:17] Yeah, for sure. Yeah. There's a couple of angles to it. Like the most foundational one is typically however you choose to go live or start your live stream. Every time you do. So there's typically a unique embed code.
And so if you want to embed that anywhere, every time you have to basically copy that unique embed code and then paste that into your website or wherever it is that you're trying to embed. And so that's kinda what led me at first to develop. This was the need to have a set it up once and then you never have to touch it again, solution it's where it'll auto detect and it'll grab all of that unique embed code for you.
And then just put it onto your website. And then the other facet of it is as a communications guy, like my goal is to basically make it as easy as possible for our live stream to be found. And so some of our people that we reach are on Facebook. Other people are on YouTube, but a lot of our people who are trying to visit us or check us out for the very first time they're going to land on our website.
And so that, that was a, like a very important piece for us. To have that in place to where, if someone is searching for us for the very first time when they land on our page, we wanted them to be able to easily find find that live stream. And yeah, the unique ID that's generated each time was a challenge.
And then also just providing like that extra Avenue for my church and other organizations. To reach people where they are instead of demanding that they all go to one platform. Yeah. Yeah.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:10:51] Do not underestimate the folly of not copying and pasting the link correctly because mostly when you're doing these live events, typically there's some sort of time constraint, you've set the clock, you're going to go live at 3:00 PM or whatever it might be.
And I have done it. I have literally forgotten. This was in the days prior to figuring out my own solution, but I forgotten as the last piece of that jigsaw puzzle to go to the WordPress website and to paste in the actual code, it just got forgotten. And so you're going live and you've told everybody to go to this particular URL and there's nothing to see here.
So having a solution, which. Enables you to go live. And regardless of when you do that, you can give them your bespoke URL. In our case, we just use WP Builds.com forward slash alive. It's short, it's easy to remember and people can go there and I don't have to worry too much. About getting that code.
Cause it, it automatically consumes the correct code. So how does it work on a sort of like technical level? How do you actually figure out what the next live stream let's take the example of YouTube. If each time YouTube is if you configure something you say I'm going to go live at 2:00 PM tomorrow.
What's going on in the background so that you can consume the correct. Feed at the correct time and put it on the website, right?
Nathan Parikh: [00:12:17] Yeah. So currently the way the plugin works is it won't show anything on your website as far as the live stream until it's truly live. But one of the benefits is that you can customize what is shown in the meantime.
So you can put any WordPress content or like any short code or any HTML code that you want. As like a placeholder. So like for instance, right now, if your channel isn't live and someone goes to that live page on your website, it won't just be a blank screen. They'll be able to see whatever it is that you want them to see.
But on the YouTube side of things, once your channels live basically I had to build my own little scraper that would detect when you go live because YouTube does have an API that the detects. When a channel goes live, but by default the amount of credits, if you will, that they give each user to check when your channel goes live, it'll be consumed pretty quickly.
And basically for a lot of people who go live on a regular basis, their API usage would be maxed out pretty fast. Even if so what what I do is to help is I cashed the room so that every three minutes once a week hits the page, that's when the call is made to check, Hey, is this channel live or is it not just to help speed things up, but even with that a caching system in place you could pretty quickly.
Use up all of your YouTube API credits. And so I had to, that was a big challenge for me initially as well because like Facebook makes it pretty easy with their graph, API, Vimeo, and Twitch, make it a little bit more straightforward with their APIs as well. But YouTube currently has that limit.
And so I had to find a little work around if I was going to build something that was usable for people who go live. Frequently or have a lot of people visiting their website to see if they're alive. So that was that's. So I it's pretty easy, honestly, for the YouTube set up for the plugin, it's probably the most straightforward one to use.
You just enter your channel ID, and you're done. And then you can set some options as far as how you want it to look and what's shown with it. And then with with Facebook, you have to set up your own Facebook app and connect it to your page and authorize the plugin to work with it. Same thing with.
The MEO and Twitch, but we try to walk you through it pretty. Pretty simply in the documentation.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:14:36] Yeah. Yeah. And the, I guess the point here is that you're trying to, you're trying to just create something on your own backyard in your own backyard. So yeah, you could, if you wanted to send people to Facebook, but you might.
Like literally disagree with doing that, but also you could send people to YouTube, but the chances of that being a nice, easy to read URL are pretty slim. So the idea is that you put something out on your own platform, your own WordPress website with your own branding and there it is, you configure a URL.
Set it. And is it, is this one of those things where you just set it one time, you spend 10 minutes in the plugin, backend configure all the bits and you don't, that should be it,
Nathan Parikh: [00:15:20] right? Yeah. So for our church, I haven't touched it in months basically. So I set it up one time and I haven't had to worry about it since.
So now it's, every week when we go live, it's just automatically there. On our website and the plugin also offers a little like notification feature that you can choose to display on your website. So basically on every page that doesn't have the live stream if someone visits, you can have a little like notification bar that says, Hey we're live right now, click here to watch.
And they can either dismiss that or click the button there. It'll take them to your. To your live
Nathan Wrigley: [00:15:54] page. Oh, that's a really nice feature. I didn't know. Yeah. So what, like a pop-up or a little bar at the bottom or something that's saying
Nathan Parikh: [00:16:01] yeah. Yeah, just a little toast notification at the bottom, or bottom left of the screen that you can choose where it's shown and also just you can customize the colors and like just what it says to match what it is. You're trying to communicate, but. Yeah. Cause a lot of times, again, like in my context, if someone who doesn't really know our church lands on our website, they're not really going to know necessarily, Oh, I need to click over here to the live page to watch their stream.
And so we wanted a way to notify our visitors that, Hey, we're live right now. Come check us out. And so that was one other benefit to that. And like you alluded to earlier, the benefit of keeping it all in your own backyard, so to speak is hopefully in the middle of the live stream or once it's done, there'll be able to stay on your website and click around as opposed to, YouTube, just rolling them into the next live stream and then they're gone so to speak.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:16:52] Yeah. Yeah. With the little toast, sorry pop toast notification or whatever does it does it come up sensing when the live stream begins and then it begins to broadcast itself throughout the rest of your website? Can you configure which pages it comes on? As an example might be let's just put that on the home page or is it just on or off site wide?
Nathan Parikh: [00:17:14] Yeah. Currently it's on every page except the pages that have your live stream. So yeah, that would be a feature we would want to add down the line and you can have a little more fine tune control. Yeah. But I knew I didn't want it to show up on our live stream page cause that be redundant.
So yeah, that the plugins being used. Won't show on those pages, but right now it is site-wide.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:17:37] Yep. Another question about that, because I'm interested in, maybe this is something for the future as well, whether it can tell visitors that we are going to go live in three hours old or something, that might be an interesting, yeah.
Nathan Parikh: [00:17:52] So that's on our roadmap is more of a countdown feature. To give you more of a heads up, cause yeah, cause right now it's basically, once you are actually live, then it'll show. Okay. The same thing with with the embed is we want to be able to. Show a countdown as opposed to, Hey, we're offline right now, but maybe you're about to go live in two minutes to have a little bit more padding there for your visitors.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:18:15] The, one of the nice things about, say, for example, being subscribed to a YouTube channel, is that YouTube very helpfully. Yeah. Tells you when people are going live or at least that's my experience. I don't know if that's on offerable. If you can switch that off in the settings for your particular channel, but you get some kind of, so if you go to YouTube, it will tell your subscribers where we're going live.
And so that's helpful a bit like your toast notification. I don't know if the other platforms do that as well. Yeah. But also, I, I wondered if that was something that, that it did, it's it could be configured to work with MailChimp or something to send out to your own subscriber list where we're going live, or we have just gone live, come and join us, replacing the YouTube.
Pop-up the YouTube notification. Sorry with your own
Nathan Parikh: [00:18:57] branded weird. Definitely on the right track. Yeah. That's also something on our roadmap is to work with a Zapier basically. So that, yup. Yeah. So like it'll trigger once you're alive, then you can trigger. Yeah. Like a email from MailChimp or a text from Twilio or whatever it is that you want to do.
Just because there's so many different use cases that people live stream with. There's just a lot of possibilities there. But yeah, that's a great idea and something that's on our roadmap. Yeah. This
Nathan Wrigley: [00:19:22] is great. Yeah, because that's, that is, I think the friction, isn't it's very, it's so easy to go live nowadays.
But that just alerting people that, obviously everybody knows when the television is going, the news is going to be on because it's happening every day. And if you're lucky enough to produce a live stream at the exact same time of the week, You can probably get a regular audience, but for most people it's not like that.
You just do something when the, on the spur of the moment, perhaps a little bit more. So having those possibilities to alert your audience, that I'm doing it is really nicely. Yeah. Just just run through the platforms that it's configured to work with. I know we've mentioned YouTube. We mentioned Facebook.
What are the other ones again?
Nathan Parikh: [00:20:00] It also works with Vimeo and Twitch. So those are the four platforms that we currently support and we're looking to add more but we wanted to get those big four out of the gate just because those are the most popular ones. Yeah.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:20:11] Do they do they differ in the way things present on your website?
So for example, if I use Facebook over YouTube or Vimeo and does the thing that comes onto the WordPress website look the same in all cases.
Nathan Parikh: [00:20:25] Yeah. So right now we just basically take the default embeds from each platform. So if you're embedding from YouTube, you'll see the YouTube player. If you're embedding from Facebook, you have the Facebook video player, the MEO Twitch are the same.
And yeah, right now it'll look like whatever platform you have. And so that's one of the challenges of. Supporting multiple platforms is I would love to have a customizable unified player in the long-term to where just to give the users more customization. Yeah. But just trying to figure out how to make that work.
And then on top of that, you have comments which Vimeo and Twitch support, sadly have YouTube just disabled that
Nathan Wrigley: [00:21:05] the other day. Yeah. Yeah. Eric was, there was the regular bit of PHP and the. The blessing comments were not anywhere to be seen in a quick Google. They're just just silently deprecated, the embedded feature for comments, which was a bit annoying.
Nathan Parikh: [00:21:18] it was. And and Facebook doesn't even allow it at all by default. Yeah. So that's a big request that we have is, Hey, I want to have comments on my page as well, because you are losing something, if. If people can't interact, that's definitely a valuable feature. And so that is another item on our roadmap, or we're looking to build a a custom comment feed.
So that regardless of what platform you're using, it'll pull that in live. Yes. Yes. But that's a bit of a
Nathan Wrigley: [00:21:49] challenge. Yeah. Yeah. I was going to ask that was my next question. Where are you going to use like a default WordPress commenting system or where are you going to again, try and consume the comments.
I've used platforms like Oh, what's it called? Restream that's it? Oh yeah. restream.io. And I don't know what kind of wizardry is going on there, but they somehow managed to pull in the comments. From the different platforms. So the Facebook comments come in and the YouTube comments come in and they will get coalesced into this one comment stream.

Nathan Parikh: [00:22:16] I know that they have really mastered that aspect of it really well. Yeah. So basically I'm trying to basically build a WordPress version of that. So where, cause to get that feature with restream, you'd have to be using that platform, which is totally understandable for them to do. But I want to be more open just to the WordPress community in general.
Yeah. And so that's what our goal is to have that capable, that option as well.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:22:39] Yeah. I feel that would be a really excellent feature because I've played with restream a little bit before and I've moved away from it. And now I'm using a platform called stream yard, which is a sassy.
Yeah. And it can handle the going to different destinations. It doesn't handle it. Any of the stuff that you're describing, it, doesn't try to fix any of the problems, but it does try to tackle the combined commenting system. And it works pretty well. I'm really happy with it, but there's no way of getting that.
Onto the website that, there's only, I can see it in the, I can see it in the SAS app. I can actually put those comments onto the screen, which is quite nice, but I can't put those comments onto the website. And so I, until this month was relying on YouTube. That was our Facebook group. And people comment over there who happened to be logged into Facebook at that moment.
And then I was able to embed the YouTube comments, which seemed like a really nice kind of. Poor man's commenting system. It worked well enough, but then like you say, it just broke. And so that kind of, that would be a marvelous solution. If you could figure that out and have a WordPress version of that would be sublimely cool.
Nathan Parikh: [00:23:45] Yeah. That's the plan. Hopefully I can get that
Nathan Wrigley: [00:23:47] working. Yeah. Yeah. That would be lovely. Speaking of things like YouTube breaking and so on, is that a thing which, which has happened a lot. I know that a lot of people, if they invest in a technology like your plugin, they keen to know that it's a set it and forget it, solution that if anything, on the back end on the YouTube side or the Facebook.
Cause we all have had problems where we've logged into Facebook with our third party systems and then we get a notification two weeks later, you've been logged out of Facebook. You've got to really log in and authenticate yourself. Okay. Do any of that stuff going on that you've had to deal with, changes to their backend, the way that their API works and so on.
Nathan Parikh: [00:24:22] Yeah. And the, the plugin is still pretty young. It's not even a full year old yet, but yeah, I've had to deal with, different API changes for YouTube, for Facebook. So far Vimeo and Twitch have remained pretty static. So that's been good, but Facebook is pretty regularly updating their graph API and sometimes it doesn't affect me and other times it does affect the plug-in functionality, and that's one of the reasons why it is a premium plugin is cause I have to basically stay on top of right now anyway, for different platforms and their API APIs and when they update what breaks basically. And yeah, so it is a challenge right now with the four platforms trying to say, Hey, every update that they push, I have to make sure that everything that the plugin offers still works with each.
With each platform. Yeah.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:25:08] Yeah. I feel that I may have missed the target when I described this at the beginning. So I just want to rewind a little bit and just explain what it is that you're actually achieving when you do this. So imagine that you've got a WordPress webpage and you, and again, I don't know how this works.
I'm going to guess it's a short guy, but we'll get to that in a minute. You put that into the page and then if you link it, say to Facebook, every time you go live on Facebook with zero friction, you're just going to go live on your own website as well. So basically you get your own free of Facebook.
Version of a TV channel. And I don't know if I made that point, it fell. It feels Oh, they need to be logged into Facebook or they need to be on YouTube and so on. But that's the point, right? You pick a place where you want it to go and then you can steal it if you like from that place, YouTube, Twitch, Vimeo, or whatever, and stinking on your own website.
Nathan Parikh: [00:26:02] Yeah, absolutely. That was one of the challenges that we had when we first started streaming at my church. We were only going to Facebook, which, a lot of our people use, but not everyone does. And so when we said, Hey, we're live on Facebook. They were like I don't have a Facebook account.
So I'm just not going to watch. I'm like, okay. But if you embed it on your website, you don't have to have a Facebook account, or like you said, a Google account or anything. It's just there on your website. So if they have a browser, there'll be able to the watch. Okay.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:26:31] Yeah, sublimely cool. This is right in my wheelhouse.
I love all this stuff, so it's very exciting. Do you have a do you have like a list of I know you do. I'm just wondering if we missed any of the features. I don't want to get to the end of this podcast thing. Yeah. We forgot to mention that. So we've mentioned the destinations. We mentioned the the fact that you embed it.
Let's go with that. The embed thing. How does that work? How do we actually get from your settings page? What's in the settings page and how do we actually convert the plugin into something on the site? So a step-by-step guide in audio?
Nathan Parikh: [00:27:05] Sure. Yeah, absolutely. So once everything is configured on the backend with the plugin settings, it's really just right now, just a dead simple shortcode and you just drop in.
The shortcode WP livestream on whatever page or pages that you want your live stream to be. And that's it. And right now there's no options or configuration things you need to do within the shortcode. Although we'll probably add some options down the road, as well as the ability to use it in a block form and a native Gutenberg block.
But right now it's just a simple, short code that you can place. On any widget area and he posts and page that supports short codes and you'll be good to
Nathan Wrigley: [00:27:40] go. Okay. And how do we in the backend enable Facebook to talk to the plugin and YouTube to talk to the plugin? What do we need to do? Is that, it's fairly straightforward procedure, but nevertheless worth
Nathan Parikh: [00:27:51] explaining.
Sure, absolutely. Yeah. So it's again, a little bit different for each platform because of their different APIs and requirements. So YouTube is the easiest you just put in your channel ID hit save. And that's all you have to do if you want to embed from YouTube for Facebook in order to get data from your Facebook page, it requires that, you have to create a Facebook app that then connects to your Facebook page and that is authorized to work with the plugin.
And so it's a little more step-by-step, but we have a step-by-step screenshot walk through in our documentation that we'll take you through that. So Facebook is probably the most tedious, but. It's really only take you probably about 15 minutes to do. But for for a lot of first time users or people who aren't tech savvy, it can be a little bit.
Intimidating. And so we, I try to make the documentation as clear as possible, and we also offer a setup service where I would basically set it up for you. And yeah, and some people have opted to do that as well. And then Vimeo and Twitch are basically the same idea as what Facebook does, except not quite as intense to probably take you about 10 minutes to do those.
But it's basically, yeah, just a little bit different for each platform because they all have different requirements for their APIs and apps and everything.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:29:04] There's no benefit to doing more than one though. Is the presumably if you've decided on Facebook, then Facebook will just work.
Nathan Parikh: [00:29:11] Yeah, for sure. So I always encourage people. It's it just depends on what platforms you're streaming too. If it's just one, obviously you'll do that one. If you do stream to YouTube, I always just My recommendation is to use YouTube as well, or as your primary one that you embed on your website, just because most people are familiar with it.
And there's just a greater chance that your theme would have those styles in place to support it. But of course, Vimeo works fantastic as well. But typically Facebook and YouTube are number one and two use platforms with the plugin currently. Yeah. And so I was just tell people, Hey, if you're using both.
I would recommend embedding from YouTube and it used to be because YouTube would have the comments, but now it's just because YouTube is a bit more embed friendly.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:29:56] Yeah. And everybody gets the YouTube URL. You don't know that the buttons that just, you just know where everything is, whether the, I dunno, the pause button is and the ability to change up and change down the quality of the stream.
Yeah. Doc. I can't think of a single human alive. Who's probably not interacted with you point. Yeah. So if I was to go, let's say I right now I decided to live stream this and I turn on my camera and I've embedded your shirt. Shortcode into one of my pages. You mentioned that you will be polling roughly every three minutes, thereabouts, to see if something started.
Okay. So let's say that by pure coincidence. Two minutes and 59 seconds go by between me clicking the button and you doing the next poll. In other words, I'm right at the edge of this poll. How does that work? Do, does that live stream miss two minutes, 59 seconds? Or does it then just begin playing it from the beginning of the live stream?
Nathan Parikh: [00:30:54] Oh yeah, that's a good question. So the way the polling works with the plugin is it's not three minutes from when you go live. It's three minutes from the last hit on the page. If that makes sense. Yep. And so basically if you were to go live, but no one visits your website until, one second after you go live, then they'll see it right away.
But yeah, there's pretty much. I'm just blanking on your original question here.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:31:20] Yeah. So if I go lives immediately now and three minutes passes, would anybody be able to see the content? Like my entire introduction takes less than three minutes, for example, would they miss all of that?
Nathan Parikh: [00:31:34] No. So that would depend on the platform, but generally speaking when you first hit play or when it first autoplays. It'll be current. So if they're two minutes late, so to speak, it'll just show them your current live stream. Yeah. But like a lot of times YouTube will let you rewind while you're still alive.
Facebook sometimes lets you do that. And then Vimeo or Twitch. I can't remember off the top of my head, but yeah, that's more platform dependent and then plug
Nathan Wrigley: [00:31:59] independent, never ceases to amaze me that you can rewind essentially now. Television. We, it's so close to being live, but you can still go back 10 seconds just now happened.
Okay. Another question. What if I shed jewel something? So let's say for example, every Monday, 2:00 PM, UK time, I'm going live. And that's the only time I go live. So what I want to see is that it picks up that I'm going to be going live at 2:00 PM and it's ready for that. It's, knows somehow because the current setup that I've got, which was just a bit of PHP that I threw together, it doesn't really.
Need to worry about that. It's just consuming the live feed and in the absence of a live feed, it tells me on the inside the, the UI for the video, it says next going live in three hours and 28 minutes or something.
Nathan Parikh: [00:32:53] Yeah. So currently it will only embed it once you're truly alive. The only caveat to that is if you do like a premiere video on YouTube, YouTube will do an automatic.
Countdown for you. And so it'll pick that up as part of your live stream. But yeah, that is something that I'm wanting to add as far as offering a countdown feature for people like you who have like a set schedule, like it's always going to be this time. It's easy to detect. Let me just input my schedule here and it'll detect that for you, but also for people who don't have that set schedule, but they still use like the scheduled live stream feature on YouTube or Vimeo so that it can detect that as well and still grab people and say, Hey, it's, we're not live yet, but we're going to be soon.
Yeah. That's something that's definitely on our roadmap. Yeah.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:33:39] Because in all honesty, I'm not really sure how that. That workflow works. All I know is that in stream yard, I set the time of when I'm next going to go live. So stream yard is that the SAS app, which enables me to go out to these different destinations, YouTube and so on.
And then I paste the YouTube into my website. Somehow in the UI there, I enter the time I want to go live and. It provides that to the platforms and they then display it as a part of the post and so on. So yeah. Like in your situation, I'm sure the church the church thing that you do each week probably happens at a regular time.
I would imagine feels like a nice fit. For sure. Yeah. What about things like I don't know the ability to put this on a multi-site network, can you do that? Can you embed this in more than one place or let's say our bile we'll get onto the pricing and licenses in a minute, but I could I put this on a variety of different pages and stream to different pages from different channels all at the same time.
Nathan Parikh: [00:34:35] Yeah. So we do support multi-site and so what that does is basically for each of your. Sites within your multi-site install, they can have a different, channel different platform that they're embedding the stream from. Oh, nice. That works out of the box right now. And another thing on our roadmap, we really good at figuring out what my roadmap is.
Is we have requests for people that are on like a single install, WordPress installation, but they want, page a, to embed from their Facebook and they want page B to embed from their YouTube. Right now, it's like a universal setting. So for each site it'll always pull from one platform.
And so the goal long-term would be to where you can using the short code or the upcoming block. You could say, Hey, on this page I want it to embed from Facebook or from YouTube or from whatever. So on a single site installation, that's basically on the roadmap, but for the multi-site situation that's already supported.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:35:33] Yeah. Cause it feels that, especially with everything going online these days and who knows how long that whole crisis will last. Feels like you might have a, yeah. I don't know, take the example of a school or something where they want to distribute. Teacher a is doing physics over teacher B is doing chemistry over here and we've got the English teacher on this one and they're all using, their WordPress website to do it all.
And this presumably could handle that if those modifications were made and it just, yeah just a thought. But yeah, it really does feel like I've read your desire to be on the roadmap though. There's good. Good point. Anything on the roadmap that is significant that I didn't guess.
Nathan Parikh: [00:36:09] Ultimately like my long-term goal would be to where this could work independent of your WordPress, like installation, meaning like with a lot of the headless WordPress sites, things like that.
But then also extending that to where if you just have a regular front end site or you're on a totally different platform, you could still use. WP live stream as your auto detection system. That's like my longterm goal because obviously I'm a big WordPress guy and, WordPress powers, half the internet anyway.
But I would love to open it up to everybody. So that's like the long-term goal. But in the meantime, basically the roadmap consists of what we've already discussed. Plus adding some more niche platforms for support some more Customization options for those notifications. And then the chat feature is going to be a big one.
If we can get that, I feel
Nathan Wrigley: [00:37:05] the doc site would be all over the chat feature. That would be great. Yeah. The the pricing then we've got if you go to WP low stream.com most of what you need to know is on that home page, including the pricing go about halfway down, Joe, talk us through that. How many different tiers and what pricing points you've got.
Nathan Parikh: [00:37:22] Yeah. So right now we have three tiers. The you have personal professional and the developer, the right now it's basically tiered based off of the number of sites you want to use it on and the type of support that you'll receive. So the personal plan, which is our most popular one, it works on one, a WordPress site.
And then you get standard email support through that, but you get all of the regular features of the plugin. And then the professional license works on three websites and the developer license works on unlimited. And with the professional, you get priority support. And with the developer, you get priority chat support as well.
And the professional and developer licenses are the ones that support the a multi-site environment. Whereas the personal one we'll just work on one.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:38:09] Yeah. Yeah. Okay. I've got it. Ah this really is right in my wheelhouse. This is, was such a refreshing subject where I actually feel like I know what I'm on about, which is great.
It makes a change. Yeah. I think probably we've we've consumed all the time that we need to give to this one WP livestream.com. You can reach out to Nathan. Presumably there is a contact link in the top there. Thank you very much for coming on the podcast today and explaining this exciting plugin.
I appreciate it. Yeah,
Nathan Parikh: [00:38:39] thank you for having me. And I wanted to offer your listeners a discount as well. If they use the code a VIP at checkout, they'll get 15% off any of our licenses.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:38:49] That is very kind. Thank you so much. I appreciate that. I'll make sure to include that when I publish it live. Thanks very much, Nathan.
Thank you so much. I hope that you enjoyed that. It was very nice to chat with Nathan Pareek today about his product WP live stream and how it can enable you to easily put a live stream from multiple different platforms onto your WordPress website, so that you can maintain some kind of ownership of it.
Like I say, there is a deal code. It is deal code a VIP, and it will entitle you to 15% off WP live stream. If you use that at the checkout. The WP build's podcast was brought to you today by CloudWave is a managed cloud hosting platform that ensures simplicity, performance and security. It offers cloud service from five different cloud providers that you can manage through its intuitive platform.
Some of the features include 24 seven support free migrations and a dedicated firewall. You can check it out at cloud ways. Dot com. And a B split test. Do you want to set up your AB split tests in record time? The new AB split test plugin for WordPress. We'll have you up and running in a couple of minutes.
Use your existing pages and test anything against anything else. Buttons, images, headers, rows, anything. And the best part is that it works with element or Beaver builder and the WordPress block editor. You can check it out and get a free [email protected]. Okay. We will be back next Thursday as it was an interview.
This week, I will be chatting next week with David Wamsley as we go through our a, to Zed of WordPress. And also I'll be back every Monday, 2:00 PM, UK time with Paul Lacey for this weekend, WordPress that's on the URL. WP Builds.com forward slash live or in our Facebook group. And then we'll also put that out.
As an episode for the podcast with some audio and video to accompany it on Tuesday morning at 7:00 AM UK time, you can find out all about [email protected] forward slash subscribe. Okay, stay safe. Have a good week. Cheesy music coming up.

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Nathan Wrigley
Nathan Wrigley

Nathan writes posts and creates audio about WordPress on WP Builds and WP Tavern. He can also be found in the WP Builds Facebook group, and on Mastodon at wpbuilds.social. Feel free to donate to WP Builds to keep the lights on as well!

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