Contributing comments to pictures allows you to contextualize stories with the details in the picture. Using Ponga, you can even pull in media like videos or documents from elsewhere on the web. When you paste links to external web content into Ponga, All you do is paste in the link.
When you paste a link into a comment, Ponga acts like a browser to bring in the external content. The external content will display in one of three ways, as:
- Playable media (such as audio, video, or documents)
- Preview content, title, and description from the site metadata (much like social sharing content in Facebook or Twitter.)
- Clickable links
How links behave depends on how you enter the link and the configuration of the remote site. Here's more detail:
Playable media: IF the remote content supports web embedding protocols then Ponga will preview the content so that it is "playable." Play buttons are available for videos, or music, for example. All you do is enter the URL, wait a moment, then the media will display. Youtube, SoundCloud, and a range of other services support these protocols. A full list is included here.
You may not think of documents, powerpoint slides, and web images as playable media, but they can be embedded and displayed the same way.
- Documents can be added to the web in a variety means depending on website tools. Generally, when a document can be viewed in a browser from a URL that ends with .pdf the document will embed into Ponga (very large documents can take some time, so be patient.)
- Powerpoint presentations are a special category because websites like slideshare.net have created a way to display and control these from a web page. If you have a Slideshare link or can upload the presentation to Slideshare, you can just paste it into a comment as if it were video
- Any other media type. If you're not sure how different media types will behave, go ahead and experiment. Just paste the link in and see what happens. Notifications won't go out to people the picture is shared with until after you post a comment. There's no harm in experimenting.
Ordinary web pages: IF the remote content is not playable, then Ponga will display the thumbnail image, title and description configured as available by the remote website. This behavior is very much like what you'd see in Facebook. For more, see the article How do I control the behavior of content previews?
Clickable Links: IF you don’t precede a link with “http://” Ponga will not preview the information, but will auto-link to the remote site. (If you’ve used Facebook, you’ll find that this behavior is exactly the same. If you type “http://ponga.com,” for example, Facebook will preview the information for the link. If you type “ponga.com,” it will not, though it will still include a link.)
Note that if you paste a link but don't add any comments at all, the content appears, but not the link. This might be useful if you don’t want to clutter a message with the visuals associated with a link.
Links must be public. Just like with Facebook, links must be public in order for any content to be embedded or previewed. This includes so-called "unlisted" YouTube links, but doesn't include PDF documents behind corporate firewalls, for example. You can test a link by opening an "incognito" browser window ("New Incognito Window" in the Chrome File menu, for example) and pasting the link. That test makes sure that you're opening a link without any login or access controls. If that opens, then it should preview or embed in a Ponga comment.
If you include a link and don't get the desired result, that's okay, You can just re-do it. Copy out the contents, delete the comment, paste, edit, and post again.
Finally, a note of patience. Depending on the speed of your network connection, you may need to wait a couple of seconds before external content appears. Ponga’s behavior in pulling in external content is a little like Facebook or Linkedin in that it takes a moment to bring in the external content. After typing or pasting in a link, you can hit a space and pause a moment as you would for external content to come into Facebook or Linkedin. If you have problems, we're standing by to help.