WordPress’ mobile app is useless for keeping up with site comments

WordPress is what powers this site, so the mobile app should in theory be a very important tool for us. For me at least, it’s anything but that. There is one feature that is currently missing from the app, and that’s the ability to get notifications only for comments to your own posts. You can get them for all comments, but there’s no way of only getting comments on your own articles. Without that feature, the app is completely useless to me.

What’s weird is that WordPress’ email notifications actually work the other way around: you only get notifications for comments to your own posts. Why on Earth the app does one thing and the email notifications something else, I don’t know. You’d think then that if the email notifications does things “correctly,” it would be simple to use those instead. Unfortunately, WordPress notification emails can’t be replied to and have the replies become comments, unlike the notification emails for the competitor TypePad. There’s also no tie-in between the email notifications and the WordPress app, which would in theory solve the problem by simply having a link in the email to open up a reply box in the WordPress app. That leaves you having to comment in a browser, or manually open the mobile app and dig through to the comment you want.

It frankly baffles me how poor WordPress’ comment system is in general, and I’m starting to see a pattern here as the system also has major flaws elsewhere. As an example, the comment notification setting is global (not per-user), it doesn’t handle comment replies properly, and you can’t even filter the comment list by post author. With such massive issues in the core of WordPress, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that the mobile side of things has gaping holes either. There are always plugins for various things, but using plugins has its own set of issues.

WordPress continues to release updates for both its core systems and mobile apps, but I’m getting the distinct feeling that it’s moving more and more towards a personal blog service, with each update focusing on the UI and “prettyness factor” rather than advanced functionality. I frankly think the word has enough Facebook clones, and that it doesn’t need WordPress to become yet another one, but it seems that WordPress disagrees.

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Andreas Ødegård

Andreas Ødegård is more interested in aftermarket (and user created) software and hardware than chasing the latest gadgets. His day job as a teacher keeps him interested in education tech and takes up most of his time.