Ask Me Anything (Anonymously)

Description

The Ask Me Anything (AMA) plugin lets you add a form on your website where users can ask you questions anonymously.

The AMA plugin uses the shortcode [askmeanythingpeople] to add the form. It also lists the questions and answers neatly. There are 20 attributes and few example configurations are listed towards the end of this description.

The plugin comes with a shortcode generator which lets you easily configure and customize the shortcode. You will find this in WordPress Admin > Settings > Ask Me Anything (see screenshots page). All you have to do to create the AMA page is to install the plugin, and copy the shortcode from the generator into a page or post.

Live Demo | Showcase

AMA saves questions as WordPress comments. So comments have to be enabled on the page or post. You can use the shortcode on a text widget by using the page ID of the page or post in the post_or_page_id attribute of the shortcode. Please refer to the Installation page for more details.

Questions from users can be found along with your WordPress comments in WordPress Admin > Comments. You can reply to them here. Depending on your settings in Settings > Discussion, new questions will be held for moderation (if ‘Comment author must have a previously approved comment’ is checked) and you will be notified via email (if ‘Anyone posts a comment’ or ‘A comment is held for moderation’ is checked).

Main features:

  • Questions and answers are WordPress comments. New database tables are not created.
  • Fully customizable using 20 shortcode attributes.
  • Easy to use shortcode generator in Settings > Ask Me Anything.
  • Compatible with most themes out of the box since it mostly uses WordPress default styles.
  • Proper CSS ID’s and classes to easily style if necessary.
  • Easily style your AMA page with built-in CSS box. Find it in Settings > Ask Me Anything > ‘Custom CSS’ tab.
  • Simple and effective spam/bot check via a test question. Test question can be customized.
  • Multisite compatible.
  • Translation ready.

    Default usage:

    [askmeanythingpeople]

    List the 5 most recent questions and answers on the sidebar:

    [askmeanythingpeople post_or_page_id=”123″ questions_per_page=”5″ show_question_box=”false” show_navigation=”false”]

    Note: This assumes that 123 is the page or post id that is the dedicated Ask Me Anything page.
    Refer the ‘Installation’ page for more details.

    Complete attribute list with default values:

    post_or_page_id=”0″
    latest_first=”true”
    anonymous_name=”Someone”
    success_text=”Your question is saved and will appear when it is answered.”
    question_box_title=”Your Question”
    placeholder=”In the spirit of keeping it anonymous please do not leave any personal information.”
    test_question=”What is 7+5?”
    test_answer=”12″
    ask_button_text=”Ask Anonymously”
    answer_list_title=”Answers So Far..”
    no_answers_text=”Be the first to ask!”
    questions_per_page=”10″
    avatar=”monsterid”
    avatar_size=”96″
    show_question_box=”true”
    show_answers=”true”
    show_navigation=”true”
    show_test_question=”true”
    show_do_action=”false”
    give_thanks=”false”

Please read the Installation page and FAQ page for more information. If you still have questions, please the Support page for help, bug reports and new feature requests.

If you like my plugin, please rate it and give me credit by setting the give_thanks attribute to true (default is false) in the shortcode. Thanks!

Screenshots

  • Ask Me Anything Shortcode Generator in Settings > Ask Me Anything.
  • Easily Stlye Your AMA Page With Custom CSS.
  • A Sample Ask Me Anything Page.
  • A Sidebar Widget Showing Recent Questions And Their Answers.

Installation

To install this plugin:

  1. Install the plugin through the WordPress admin interface, or upload the plugin folder to /wp-content/plugins/ using ftp.
  2. Activate the plugin through the ‘Plugins’ screen in WordPress. On a Multisite you can either network activate it or let users activate it individually.

To create a Page / Post with the Ask Me Anything form:

  1. Go to WordPress Admin > Settings > Ask Me Anything to generate and customize the shortcode. Copy this shortcode.
  2. Add a new Page / Post and make sure comments are enabled. Refer FAQ if you do not know how to enable comments.
  3. Paste the shortcode that you generated in step 1 and publish the page. You will have your brand new Ask Me Anything page.

To add the form into a widget:

  1. Questions are saved as WordPress comments and all comments need to be associated with a page or a post. So you need to create a page or a post with the Ask Me Anything form as described in the previous steps.
  2. Once the Page is created, go to WordPress Admin > Settings > Ask Me Anything.
  3. Select Location in ‘Choose Location’ as ‘Sidebar Widget’.
  4. Enter the page ID of the Page or Post created for the Ask Me Anything form in ‘Page / Post ID’.
  5. Play with the rest of the options to customize the shortcode. Copy the generated shortcode.
  6. Go to Appearance > Widgets and add a new Text widget to your sidebar. Paste the shortcode here and Save it. Your Ask Me Anything widget is ready.

FAQ

Do I need to register for a third party service to use this plugin?

No.

Where can I see a live demo before I install this plugin?

You can see a live demo here on my travelogue. Please do not post test questions there.

Can I use this plugin without creating a dedicated Page or Post?

No. Since the plugin saves questions and answers as WordPress comments, it needs to be associated with a page or post. However, once you have it on a page, you can add the form as a sidebar widget as well.

How do I enable comments on a page?
  1. Edit the page or post and on the top right corner click on ‘Screen Options’.
  2. In the drawer that drops down, check ‘Discussion’. Close the drawer by clicking on ‘Screen Options’ again.
  3. In the ‘Discussion’ meta box, check ‘Allow comments’.
  4. Publish / Update the page.
I get an ‘Empty CAPTCHA’ error when I sumbit a question. What do I do?

This probably comes from a captcha plugin that adds it to the comment form. In Settings > Ask Me Anything set ‘Additional Form Elements’ to ‘Show’ along with all the other options you want. Then copy paste the new shortcode into your page / post. This will display the captcha and the user can fill it up at the time of submitting the question.

Note: The AMA plugin does not come with its own captcha.

Reviews

Simple and easy to use

The plugin is simple and straightforward to use. Just install, go to Tools → Ask Me Anything, generate shortcode and paste in a post/page/widget.

Just one suggestion, it would be awesome if I can generate shortcode from a the editor itself. Just a minor wish. 🙂

Read all 2 reviews

Contributors & Developers

“Ask Me Anything (Anonymously)” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.

Contributors

Changelog

1.2

  • Options page moved from WordPress Admin > Tools > Ask Me Anything to WordPress Admin > Settings > Ask Me Anything.
  • Added ability to add custom CSS.
  • Added link to the showcase thread in readme.txt.
  • Changed time-stamp from date to date and time in hours and minutes.

1.01

  • New shortcode attribute: show_test_question to show (default) or hide the test question for spam check.
  • New shortcode attribute: show_do_action to optionally show (hide by default) additional comment form elements added by other plugins like captcha plugins.

1.0

  • First release of the plugin.