This plugin hasn’t been updated in over 2 years. It may no longer be maintained or supported and may have compatibility issues when used with more recent versions of WordPress.

WP-MP-Contact

Description

Tested on Gravity Forms 1.8.19, will probably work under versions from 1.6.

WP-MP-Contact is a Gravity Forms add-in for UK Member of Parliament email campaigns. Using API calls to They Work for You, a campaigning organisation can add an ‘MP-Contact’ field to their gravity form which allows pre-population of an (editable) message to send to an MP.

Unfortunately, the Guardian has decomissioned their politics API that allowed for this plugin to return an MP’s email address without any further input from the administrator. This plugin now uses a Google Spreadsheet as the data source for email addresses. These can either be purchased from DeHavilland, or entered manually from http://parliament.uk. The lookup still uses the Guardian’s format of constituency names, so the data in the Google Spreadsheet is looked up from the Guardian Constituency in column A. An example spreadsheet is available at https://docs.google.com/a/properdesign.co.uk/spreadsheets/d/1OCmI1t_6Ou_1CwcK3u0IfhRq3UZ6KaK0Qn5zEfp-DJ4/edit#gid=0

On the front-end, the user enters their UK postcode. If the postcode is valid, WP-MP-Contact will show a slide-down drawer with the MP’s details and a pre-populated message from the campaigning organisation (set by the administrator in Gravity Forms settings).

The user has the ability to edit the message that the campaigner has pre-populated before sending an email to the MP.

In the Gravity Forms back end, all submissions are recorded in the usual Gravity Forms entries interface.

MP-Contact comes with minimal styling out of the box and doesn’t pre-suppose how it will look in your theme. Go on, get stuck into styling it, it’s only a bit of flexbox.

Feel free to contribute to the project. You can find the repo on Github at https://github.com/shankiesan/wp-mp-contact

WP-MP-Contact was developed by Proper Design (http://properdesign.rs)

Acknowledgements:

  • Renewable UK (http://www.renewableuk.com/) and Action for Renewables (http://www.actionforrenewables.org/) for funding the initial development of this Gravity Forms add-in
  • They Work for You’s consituency API (http://www.theyworkforyou.com/api/)
  • rubenarakelyan’s PHP class for They Work for You (https://github.com/rubenarakelyan/twfyapi)
  • WPSmith for the tutorial that got it all started (http://wpsmith.net/2011/plugins/how-to-create-a-custom-form-field-in-gravity-forms-with-a-terms-of-service-form-field-example/)
  • The Agency for showing how to work with complex fields (http://theagencyonline.co.uk/2014/07/custom-multiple-input-form-for-gravity-fields/)
  • Pippin Williamson for the usual and oft-forgotten explanation of the proper way to do AJAX in WordPress (https://pippinsplugins.com/process-ajax-requests-correctly-in-wordpress-plugins/)

Installation

  1. Make sure that your server is running at least cURL version 7.28.1. If not, upgrade it (or ask your host to upgrade it for you)
  2. Make sure that Gravity Forms is installed on your WordPress site
  3. Upload this plugin to your WordPress site as you would any other plugin
  4. Get a theyworkforyou.com API key by going to http://www.theyworkforyou.com/api/key
  5. Enter the key into Forms->Settings->WP MP Contact and click ‘Update Settings’
  6. Add the JSON feed for the Google Spreadsheet data source. A sample spreadsheet is available at https://docs.google.com/a/properdesign.co.uk/spreadsheets/d/1OCmI1t_6Ou_1CwcK3u0IfhRq3UZ6KaK0Qn5zEfp-DJ4/edit#gid=0. A blog post explaining how to publish a Google Spreadsheet into a JSON feed is available here http://properdesign.rs/using-google-spreadsheet-json-data-source/. Add the key into the settings field.
  7. Create a new form and add the MP contact field to your form. You’ll find it under ‘Advanced’ fields. It’s not really that advanced, don’t worry.
  8. Add a default campaign message by going to Advanced Settings for your MP Contact field and adding a default value. This will appear as the campaign message to site visitors.
  9. Add your form to a page as you would any other Gravity Form
  10. Create a new notification for your form by going to [Your form]->Form Settings->Notifications. There are a couple of points to note about notifications, so please read the section ‘Notifications’ below
  11. Run some tests! The plugin will always send to the address in the front-end field ‘MP E-Mail (send to)’, so to test the plugin, you can overwrite the returned email address with your own to check how your notification emails appear. Make sure that you do this every time as you will otherwise send test emails to your MP! (Sorry, Jenny)

Notifications:

Due to some core Gravity Forms functionality, MP-Contact’s MP Email field doesn’t appear in the ‘Select a field’ drop-down for ‘Send to Email’. Instead, use the ‘Enter Email’ option. Unfortunately, this field doesn’t have the field-selection drop-down to the right as most fields do (are you listening, Gravity?), so simply use one of the other fields to generate the curly-brackets code for you MP Email field, e.g. {MP Contact (MP Email Address):1.4}

It’s also worth noting that you should set the From Email address to an email address in the same domain as your server to minimise the chances of your message being seen as spam. You can, however, set the reply-to address to the site visitor’s email address so that the MP can reply directly to his or her constituent.

You can further reduce the chances of your emails being marked as spam by configuring WordPress to use your own SMTP servers, rather than the PHP mail() built into WordPress by using this plugin: https://wordpress.org/plugins/wp-mail-smtp/

Contributors & Developers

“WP-MP-Contact” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.

Contributors

Changelog

1.0 – Initial Release
1.0.2 – Changes handling of Guardian API calls to CURL
1.0.3 – Adds prepend and append to the MP message
1.1 – Moves email source to Google Docs