New Release: PeepSo & Gecko

New system requirements! Introducing configurable WP embed thumbnail resolution, GIF autoplay and chat sounds. Along with new page / layout options, and improved performance and builder compatibility.

PHP 7.3 and WP 5.5 are now required

PeepSo drops support for PHP 7.2 with version, after previously dropping 7.0 and 7.1 with version This makes PHP 7.3 the minimum required version.

This is the first time in PeepSo history we managed to drop support for PHP versions that are no longer developed – and that’s in large thanks to our community being much better at keeping their sites updated than the average WordPress user. As I write this, 90% of PeepSo sites are running on PHP 7.3 or newer, while in the WordPress community the adoption is barely over 56%!

Our recommended PHP version does not change – it’s still PHP 7.4, so if you are on PHP 7.0, 7.1 or 7.2 you should upgrade to PHP 7.4 if you can and 7.3 if you can’t.

PeepSo is compatible with PHP 8 already, but we probably will make it an official endorsement later in this quarter.

We have also bumped the minimum required WordPress version to 5.5.

The PHP releases have their own life cycles. Using anything marked as “End of life” is a security issue.

Action required: user blocking is now disabled by default

To improve database queries performance by avoiding unnecessary table join statements, and/or when the administrator does not wish the users to be able to block each other, we introduced a configuration switch to enable/disable blocking site-wide. Due to technical challenges, we have left this setting disabled for everyone who upgrades to PeepSo you wish to keep the user blocking feature, you’ll need to turn it on in PeepSo Configuration.

The option to enable user blocking can be found in WP Admin > PeepSo > Configuration > Advanced > Performance

What’s new in Gecko

We have introduced a few features which were widely requested, along with introducing some better third party builder compatibility.

Scrollable sidebars (Beta)

This feature is in short a alternative version of Sticky sidebars. It gives you ability to scroll each column (left sidebar / middle / right sidebar) independently. You can scroll sidebars without scrolling the middle column and vice versa. This is really a cool feature suggested by our Community. It’s released as beta because there is no scrollbar visible on each column, but we will improve that soon.

You can scroll middle column and sidebars independently.

Tagline next to logo

We have added a option to display site tagline (which you can add in WordPress customizer) next to the logo. You can control its visibility on desktop and mobile. You can expect more tagline options like font-size or text color in the near future.

Site tagline next to the logo.

Builder compatibility & more page options

Builder friendly page template – Removes default styling of the page content, no featured image and title. Just header, content (builder blocks) and footer.

Builder friendly template, default page title and feature image are hided. No gecko formatting on content, just builder blocks and styles.

We have also introduced Gecko page options for EDD products, and improved the page options for the WordPress search page.

Other improvements

More google fonts, improved EDD styles and fixed an issue with header blending.

New google fonts list:

  • Montserrat
  • Source Sans Pro
  • Oswald
  • Lexend
  • Poppins
  • Noto Sans
  • Noto Serif
  • Fira Sans
  • Titillium Web
  • Averia Serif Libre
  • Inconsolata
  • Barlow
  • Karla
  • Libre Franklin
  • Josefin Sans
  • Barlow Condensed
  • Dosis
  • Patrick Hand
  • Architects Daughter
  • Fredoka One
  • Satisfy

We have also replaced “Baloo Tammudu 2” font with “Baloo 2” which fixed line-height issue.

What’s new in PeepSo

Ban improvements

The PeepSo banning process is now more aggressive, forcing a log-out for the users being banned and preventing them from logging back in through any log-in form or WordPress page. Before version 3.4, the user session was not destroyed until they tried to access a PeepSo page. Now the bans are site-wide.

Configurable embed thumbnail resolution

We have taken a much closer look into how WordPress embeds work, and implemented a system which will attempt to load a high resolution thumbnail on PeepSo streams. This is intended to resolve issues with WordPress sometimes deciding to load a low resolution image, resulting in blurry previews, especially for blog posts.

Different WordPress installations will have a different thumbnails sizes available, depending on the plugins and theme used, so PeepSo will attempt to find the closest possible match to your preference. And because this is based on WordPress PHP filters, PeepSo is only able to attempt to control this for embeds coming from your own site.

WordPress embed thumbnail size setting can be found in WP Admin > PeepSo > Configuration > Stream Posts > Links & Embeds

Previewing passwords

Starting with this release, administrators can allow password previews for their users. It will apply to any PeepSo forms where the user types their password (like log-in form, profile deletion form etc.), to allow them to double check if they typed it correctly before submitting the form. This does not apply to passwords stored in the database, as they are securely encrypted and cannot be read in any way.

Password previewing can be enabled in WP Admin > PeepSo > Configuration > Accounts & Security > Security > Security & Caching

Chat sound

PeepSo will now play a sound when a new Chat message is received. There is no configuration for this right now, and we will improve this feature later (ability to turn it off by admin / users, setting a custom sound, limiting the amount of sounds per minute, etc.), based on user feedback.

New field type: yes/no

This is a new field type which works just like a regular single select field, but only gives two options as an answer: positive and negative. It allows for easier form building in cases where you want to ask a simple “yes or no” question, since it does not require you to create the answers yourself. You can still change the labels of the “yes” and “no” options, if you like.

New “Select: Yes/No” field type can be found in WP Admin > PeepSo > Manage > Profile Fields

GIF autoplay

Administrators can now decide to automatically play all GIFs uploaded by the users. This feature can be enabled in WP Admin > PeepSo > Configuration > Photos > General.

Other improvements

We have improved the spacing and positioning of some PeepSo elements when the Divi Builder Compatibility Mode is enabled. We have also further improved the way PeepSo loads its front-end assets, to avoid unnecessary CSS and JavaScript files being loaded where possible, and fine-tuned our AJAX queue prioritization to load some interface elements before others.

Watch the live stream

Check out our Engineering Update on YouTube! In this video series we dive deeper into the nerdy secrets behind the new features, improvements and fixes.

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Brought to you by PeepSo Team Matt Jaworski
I am a professional nerd with **over fifteen years of experience** in the field of Open Source web development. Before [PeepSo]( I was a contractor and have helped build successful businesses around the world, including USA, UK, Germany, Indonesia, and Malaysia. A couple of years leading up to founding PeepSo, I was involved with JomSocial - a social networking extension for Joomla. Stepping up from the role of a contractor to a business owner, I became [PeepSo]( founder and Chief Technology Officer. I strive to build beautiful, fast, and functional software that **empowers users to build their own digital tribes with full autonomy and freedom** often not available on mainstream social networking media. In 2022 I launched [EmeraldWP]( which acts as an umbrella for my other projects such as ListoWP, Widget Shortcode Pro, and MomentsWP.

Reactions & comments

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@peepso_user_19031(Robert Betz)
Since updating, I keep getting emails about notifications sent via email to members whose email addresses aren't accepting the emails. How do I stop these?
April 14, 2021 4:13 pm
@peepso_user_5672(Gen Gen Fikri Adam)
@peepso_user_19031(Robert Betz) Please open a support ticket with a few screenshots of the issue
April 16, 2021 4:54 am
@peepso_user_19031(Robert Betz)
@peepso_user_5672(Gen Gen Fikri Adam) I solved the problem by manually unsubscribing them.
April 20, 2021 7:26 pm
@peepso_user_7245(Scott Murphy)
Cool, i am really thinking about building my own social network after building one for a client, i love this plugin that much!
@peepso_user_7(Eric Tracz)
Eric Tracz shared a GIF