WordPress + Eventbrite = hours* of frustration

* It would have been hours, but I gave up after 30 minutes, I’m not getting any younger. Why should embedding off-site content be so difficult?

On the CIPR Yorkshire & Lincolnshire WordPress.com site1 there’s a sidebar widget that shows what events we have coming up. I thought I’d add it to my site as well, to help promote our forthcoming events. And, my current theme has Eventbrite-specific .css calls so I know I wouldn’t have much formatting to do.

First problem: there’s no list of plugins on our WordPress site, just the widget.

So I had a look in the plugins directory and found two, one created by Automattic itself, one by the people who have an Eventbrite-based template. Both are dependent upon another plugin (Keyring) to handle the OAuth credentials (the science part) but that’s fine.

The trouble came when I went to get an OAuth key, so that the plugin can securely identify itself to Eventbrite.

Having gone round in circles trying to find the right page, going back to the My Apps page in Eventbrite and getting to the point where I can get an OAuth key, it asks me for details I don’t know about the application URI (address). I know where my web site is, but is that the ‘application’? It’s different to where the plugin files sit on the server.

So back to Keyring I go, which gives me the answer to the OAuth redirect link (but not the application link) I need to insert on Eventbrite. Copy & paste. Fill in the rest as best I can. Accept the terms & conditions and generate a key.

I then get three keystrings back, none of which have the same name as the three boxes I need to complete in the Keyring plugin. Re-read the instructions to work out what’s supposed to go where and save the keys in the plugin. Go to the Eventbrite plugin, log back in to Eventbrite, allow the plugin access, back to my web site.

The first plugin doesn’t have a Widget.

Swear a bit, try the Automattic one. Activating it breaks the whole web site.

Swear a bit more, open up the ftp program and delete the first plugin from the server. Site works again.

Still no widget. No menu options either.

What the chuff does this plugin actually do? Find the documentation; it creates a Page template. This says “nothing found”, possibly because we have no live events at the moment.

It should not be this difficult!

Sigh loudly. Drink tea. Give up.

  1. Now deceased. []