Version 0.8 of my popular Invite Anyone plugin for BuddyPress has a brand new feature: optional integration with the CloudSponge service. CloudSponge is a service that acts as a front-end for a number of API address-book services (at the moment, Gmail, Yahoo Mail, Windows Live/Hotmail/MSN, AOL, Plaxo, the Mac Address Book, and Microsoft Outlook). With CloudSponge turned on alongside Invite Anyone, members of your BuddyPress community can invite friends to join the site by dipping into their preferred address book and selecting the desired email addresses from an easy-to-use interface. This can be a powerful driver of membership and engagement. To sign up for CloudSponge and turn on IA integration, go to the Invite Anyone Dashboard panel (be sure to look in the Network Admin on 3.1 Multisite!).
CloudSponge is a paid service (though they have a free trial). If you decide to become a CloudSponge customer through Invite Anyone, I’ll receive a small portion of your membership fees as an affiliate bonus. You can think of this as a way to support future development on Invite Anyone, by making sure that I have money to purchase the beer and pizza that fuel so much of my code 🙂
Of course, CloudSponge is an optional add-on to Invite Anyone. The plugin itself, and all its existing features, will continue to be free. CloudSponge is a little something extra for those communities where a regular stream of new members is key to success.