Bridgy

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Bridgy is an open source project and proxy that implements backfeed and POSSE as a service. Bridgy sends webmentions for comments, likes, etc. on Twitter, Instagram, Flickr, GitHub, and Mastodon.

It can also POSSE posts, issues, comments/replies, retweets, RSVPs, and likes/favorites/stars to Twitter, Flickr, GitHub, Mastodon, and Meetup (where supported).

Finally, it adds webmention support to Blogger, Tumblr, WordPress.com, and Medium blogs.

Screenshot of a blog post with Bridgy backfeed:

bridgy example screenshot.png


How to use

Once you OAuth into Brid.gy, Bridgy polls your silo posts, discovers original post links, and sends comments to those links as webmentions.

It also serves the silo posts, comments, likes, etc. as microformats2 for webmention targets to read.

Example silo-post-as-microformats for reference:

More details.

Why

Backfeed

Bridgy is the fastest way to implement backfeed on your site.

Once you have webmention receiving support implemented on your indieweb site, OAuth into Bridgy and it will send webmentions to your posts for any activity on POSSEd copies of those posts.

Send silo interactions

After you sign up, Bridgy sends all responses to your posts back to your site and other sites that support webmentions. The recipients don't need to be signed up themselves; Bridgy sends webmentions to any server that supports them.

Implementation details

More implementation details here.

Generating h-cards from silo profiles

If your silo profile includes your web site URL, it's included in the h-card that Bridgy generates instead of your silo profile URL, which means that Bridgy comments rendered on original posts will (usually) link directly to your web site. As an example, see the second and third comments here.

This is another step toward making individual web sites the real UX and using silos just as invisible infrastructure (pubsub, friend graphs, etc).

posse-post-discovery on content with no backlinks

As of 2014-04-26, Bridgy uses posse-post-discovery to find original posts, even when the syndicated post does not or cannot include a permalink/citation. (as long as users publish rel-syndication links on their own site).

IndieWeb Examples

Here are some examples of IndieWeb community members using Bridgy along with posts with responses generated by Bridgy:

Aaron Parecki

Aaron Parecki on his notes posts on aaronparecki.com using p3k since 2013-??-??. E.g.

AnomaLily

AnomaLily on anomalily.net E.g.

Barry Frost

Barry Frost on barryfrost.com since 2013-??-??. E.g.

Caseorganic

Amber Case on caseorganic.com since 2013-??-??. E.g.

Christope Duchamp

User:Christopheducamp.com on christopheducamp.com since 2013-??-??. E.g.

Denton Jacobs

Denton Jacobs

(former user of Bridgy. New site currently doesn't support it.)

Erin Jo Richley

User:Erinjorichey.com

Joschi Kuphal

User:Jkphl.is

Matthias Pfefferle

User:Notizblog.org

Ryan Barrett

User:Snarfed.org

Ben Werdmüller

User:Werd.io

Felix Schwenzel

(Felix Schwenzel)

Barnaby Walters

gRegor Morrill

Tantek

Tantek Çelik uses Falcon to automatically POSSE with Bridgy Publish:

  • Since 2015-04-02 likes of Tweets to Twitter - and before that manually since 2014-12-31
  • 2015-05-25 to 2018-04-24 RSVPs to Facebook events - and before that manually since 2014-??-??

Jamie Tanna

  Jamie Tanna uses Bridgy on his site for:

  • Twitter backfeed
  • Twitter publish
  • Meetup publish

Open Source

Bridgy source is maintained on GitHub:

Plugins

WordPress

Statistics

Current.

  • 2019-01-02
  • 2018-01-02
  • On 2016-06-06: 3k users, and more.
  • On 2016-07-14: 1000 unit tests.
  • On 2015-12-07: 2545 users, and more.
  • On 2014-11-06: 1000 users, and more.
  • On 2014-03-11, 3 months after its relaunch with webmention support:
    • 155 users (72 Twitter, 35 Google+, 34 Facebook, 14 Instagram)
    • Seen 56,142 total responses (comments, retweets, likes, RSVPS, etc.)
    • Inspected 40k (estimated) pages for webmention endpoints
    • Sent 4,576 successful webmentions to 702 different posts on 39 domains

Brainstorming

Minimize Publish Rerequests

Tantek Çelik tl;dr: minimize:

  • How many times you Webmention Bridgy to ask it to publish a post (should only be once, since updates aren't supported yet.
  • How many "command" links to Bridgy you have on your post (should only need them until you’ve Webmentioned Bridgy Publish and gotten back a syndication URL)

"command links" being links of the form https://brid.gy/publish/... like https://brid.gy/publish/twitter

General idea: check for an existing syndication link to a destination before attempting to syndicate to it! (Except for update (including salmentions) and delete changes in a post obviously).

Specific method: test for the existence of a syndication link to a particular destination before outputting the command link to Bridgy Publish for that destination. Will reduce requests to Bridgy Publish which don’t actually do anything, both any requests from your own site, and potentially any crawlers that automatically send Webmentions to all links on a page.

pseudo-code:

if !(.u-syndication[href^="https://twitter.com"])
then output Bridgy Publish To Twitter Link

History

Ryan started working on Bridgy in the summer of 2011, launched the first (WordPress-only) version on 2012-01-08, and relaunched it with webmention support on 2013-12-09.

Previous Features

Google+

Google+ support was removed when it shut down in April 2019.

Facebook

Facebook support was removed in August 2018 due to Facebook API changes.

Publish Facebook Like

From ????-??-?? to 2015-02-14, Bridgy Publish supported POSSEing of like posts of Facebook posts, to "likes" directly on the Facebook posts themselves.

In a round of API changes, Facebook broke the ability to do this, and thus feature was disabled.[1]

This was the first ever regression of Bridgy Publish functionality, due directly to a change by a silo. There is no evidence to suggest this was a deliberately breaking change.[2]

Custom Facebook original-post-discovery

While Facebook was supported, Bridgy could POSSE with custom "See Original" links. Bridgy detected these and correctly sent comments and likes to the linked post.

FAQ

How can I pay for Bridgy

Q: How can I ever return the favor of Bridgy? Or pay back for it?

A:

Could Bridgy be decentralized

Q: Could Bridgy be decentralized / decentralised / distributed / federated ?

A: Yes, you can for yourself.

  1. Install Bridgy (open source) on your own server. (It runs on App Engine, so you'd probably want to use that, but you could also use a compatible PaaS like AppScale, or a LAMP server with compatibility libraries.)
  2. Configure it with Application API keys for the silos you want to backfeed from.
  3. There is no step three.

There are also other backfeed implementations.

What about links posted by others

Q: Does Bridgy send notifications for links to your site posted by others? E.g.

is effectively a comment on:

And it would be handy to receive it as such.

A: Yes! Details.

How do I recrawl my site

Q: How do I get Bridgy to recrawl my site, like if I’ve updated my h-feed?

A: Click a "retry" / "reload" button in the Responses list.

  1. Go to your Bridgy for a particular silo, e.g. https://brid.gy/instagram/tantek
  2. Click the "retry" / "reload" button next to an item in the "Responses" list in the bottom half of the page

Note: If Bridgy has never found syndication link from your site to that specific silo, it may be more reluctant to recrawl your site.

How do I re-auth

Q: How do I re-auth Bridgy with various silos?

A:

  1. Go to https://brid.gy/ , click the silo you want to re-auth, and approve the prompts.
  2. Once you reach your Bridgy user page, if publish is disabled and you want to enable it, click the silo button next to it.

Can Bridgy re-send a batch of webmentions?

Q: Can Bridgy re-send a batch of webmentions?

A: Yes! Enter the original or silo post URL in the Resend for post box on your user page. Background in https://github.com/snarfed/bridgy/issues/579.

See Also