Author Archives: Callum

Closing down Composer

Update: Apologies to everyone who posted a comment, comment notifications were broken, so we didn’t see them. We assumed nobody had noticed. Thanks for your support, will try to follow up on comments that wanted a reply shortly…

As of now, registration is closed. I still use Composer personally, so I’ll keep the service online for some time. However, users should migrate to other services and expect that at some point the service will go offline.

Any accounts that look like spam are liable to be deleted immediately and without warning.

No Support

As of today, we’re also suspending all support. We’re unable to respond to any support requests. Please use another service instead.


Thanks to all our users over the last couple of years. Unfortunately signups and usage never really took off, and have been declining recently. The service costs money to host, takes time to maintain, and hasn’t produced any income or revenue of any kind. It’s just not practical to maintain it any more. Sorry for any inconvenience this might cause.

If anyone is passionate about the service and would like to take over hosting and maintaining it, feel free to reach out in the comments.

Rare Facebook issue fixed

We had a strange issue where in very rare cases, posts were sent to the wrong Facebook page. Instead of being posted to your own profile, they would be posted to the timeline of another Composer user. Still posted as you, but to the wrong place. This issue has now been fixed. There seems to be some kind of bug in the PHP Facebook SDK.

Just made a little architectural change to Composer that adds locking to our MySQL based queue. Should avoid double postings. 🙂

Posted via Composer

Detailed look at scheduling

There has been some discussion on post scheduling and it’s specifics. I wanted to outline it in a bit more detail so people who are interested can get a better understanding.

Firstly, as Nino eloquently put it, scheduled posts are written in stone. There’s currently no way to edit them in any way. These features are on the roadmap, but they don’t exist today, and it’s not clear when we’ll get to them. Fire a comment below if it’s a priority feature for you.

Secondly, posts are scheduled with the service information as it exists right now. I’ll explain this point in a bit more depth, starting with some background. Different services work differently. Facebook gives us a token to use which is supposed to be valid for 60 days. While for WordPress sites, we use your username and password to authenticate.

If you schedule a post to Facebook today, it’ll use the Facebook token we have today. If you schedule the post 90 days in the future, the token we have today should have expired by then. In practice, the token might still work, but it is supposed to fail according to Facebook.

If you schedule a post to WordPress next week, then tomorrow change your WordPress password, and then update your WordPress service on Composer, the post will fail. The old password will be saved along with the scheduled post, and there’s currently no way to change it.

The reason for this design was simplicity. It allowed us to launch the feature now rather than later. At some point we’ll update the architecture so that scheduled posts are linked to the service, and so if you update the service, it updates the scheduled posts.

For all these reasons, we recommend you only schedule posts 30 days or so into the future. In all likelihood, posts scheduled further into the future will work, but the risks of something going wrong increase the longer a scheduled post is kept in the system.

If anything is unclear, or you have any feedback, fire a comment below, send an email, or release a carrier pigeon in our direction. 🙂

LinkedIn working again

We’ve had issues with LinkedIn recently. The LinkedIn API is one of the most complicated and least documented that we support. It looks like anything posted on LinkedIn is now only visible on the homepage. Updates used to appear on my profile page, but not any longer.

The LinkedIn API was telling us that messages had been successfully posted, but in fact they were not appearing. To get around the problem, we’ve switched from posting “Network Updates” to instead using the “Share” API.

Previously, “Shares” and “Network Updates” were treated differently, but now that they all land only on the homepage, we’ve switched. The share API is a bit more reliable.

Any issues, please shoot us an email or fire a comment below.

Many Tumblrs

Jamel asked to be able to post to multiple Tumblr blogs. An excellent suggestion. We’ve just launched it. When you click through to add Tumblr blogs, you’ll now be given a list of all the blogs you have access to and you can choose as many as you want to add.

As usual, fire any feedback in the comments.

Oh, and happy 2014. 🙂

Back online after disk failure

Composer is back. Apologies for the outage.

A hard disk failed on our primary server overnight. We requested the replacement but once the server came back online with the new disk, our database had been corrupted. We restored from a backup taken at 5am today.  Unfortunately, any posts made in the last ~10 hours will have been lost from your history. Any posts you scheduled during that time have also been lost.

Apologies for any inconvenience. We’re working to make backups more robust right now.

Tumblr gets hashtags and photos

Two announcements for Tumblr support.

Tumblr gets images. Post an image to Tumblr, and it’ll switch your Tumblr post type to “photo” and send the text as the caption.

Also, if you post a #hashtag to tumblr, we’ll automatically make it into a Tumblr tag. Sweet.

Any issues or feedback, just let us know…

Rate limiting

We’ve posted more than 3k messages for a single user in the past few days. More than all other users combined, across Composer’s entire history! We reached out to this user, asking about their usage, and we’re still waiting for a response.

To keep things in check, we’ve introduced a rate limit. So you can only post a set number of messages per day. We’ve chosen a number that means every current user should be fine. If you do see any rate limit errors, please let us know and we’ll increase your limit.

If you’re interested in using Composer for very high volume social media message distribution, please get in touch.