June 29, 2016 Last Updated 8:42 am

WordPress plug-in for Apple News updated

The developers behind the WordPress plug-in for Apple News have issued an update, bring the plug-in up to version 1.1.5.

AppleNews-icon-150Here are the details:

  • Updated logic for creating a unique ID for anchored components to avoid occasional conflicts due to lack of entropy.
  • Fixed issue with lack of container for components when cover isn’t the first component causing text to scroll awkwardly over the image with the parallax effect.
  • Added the ability to set the body background color.
  • Fixed issue with empty but valid JSON components causing an “Undefined index” error in Apple News validation.
  • Fixed issue with an invalid API response or unreachable endpoint causing the post edit screen to break when trying to load the Apple News meta box.

The plug-in has bee a God send for small publishers using WordPress, as it automates much of the production, while doing a very good job of keeping the layouts true to the original. But as Apple News has a few rules that must be followed, such as with rejecting small photos, it is usually best for the publishing to know what will work in Apple News and so make sure their web layouts conform.

There remain a few quirks. For instance, one can embed a Tweet on the web and have it work in Apple News, but don’t do two tweets in a row. Also, code can’t follow code. So, when TNM might use a line to break up sections, if there is an embedded video, picture or tweet next to that line there will be a problem.

These are minor annoyances that can be adjusted for.

My biggest recommendation for publishers using the plug-in is to set it to manual so that you have to manually push the stories to Apple News rather than have then go automatically. This allows you to see when there are problems at the time of publisher, rather than later when you review your Apple News content.

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