Adding a simple shout box is probably the best way to go if you are looking for a simple means of communicating with your website or blog users.
Shoutboxes, Sayboxes, Tagboards, and Chatboxes - Shout boxes are a mini java based chat system and are often seen on the side menus of websites and blogs, they are sometimes seen on social networking websites.
These small shout boxes are mainly used for leaving quick messages to the blog or website owner but can also be used to carry on conversations between other surfers who are on the same website at the same time. It is rare that this form of chat is fully moderated in real time, but the site owner does have a basic control panel with functions that can be used to ban users by their ip address and change the colors, fonts and size of the shout box to blend with the design of their website.
If you are looking for a simple means of communicating with your website or blog users or a way for users to leave messages for the site owner, or as a basic chat room, for your website or blog visitors then adding a simple shout box is probably the best way to go. However if you are looking for a complete fully functional chat room with all the bells and whistles for your site then see our article on adding a free chat room for your website.
Free and Paid Shout boxes for your Myspace pages, Website or Blog.
Most shoutbox offer 2 versions - free and paid. The free version usually requires the page the chat box is on to be refreshed before new postings will show up. This is fine for those just wishing to leave on site messages, however it would make carrying on a conversation very hard due to having to manually refresh the page after each posting. With the paid version the chat area will continue to scroll without the need for page refreshes, plus the paid version usually offers more admin features such as banning users, chat logs etc. It is well worth updating to the paid version as the cost for a paid chatbox is very low at between $15 and $40 per year.
Where can I get a shoutbox
Listed below are links to website and blog shout box examples.
Cbox - for your website or blog. This chatbox is my favorite, and no I don't get paid for saying that. In fact we use this chatbox as a full chat room here at Disabled World for our basic chat room as people who are vision impaired can use screen readers to hear the conversation. You can see the chatbox in operation at our health and disability chat section - REMEMBER this is a live chat and spammers ip addresses ARE reported, you are welcome to look but don't join in unless you have something constructive to say. C-Box offers a lot of customizations and allows your visitors to leave messages to the website owner and/or chat with each other. Getting started couldn't be easier sign up, get your code, and start chatting! The basic shoutbox version is free and the paid version is just $20 a year - cbox.ws
Tag Board - Tag-Board.com is a free message box that allows you to provide your visitors with a real time discussion area. TagBoard offer two types of message boxes - Enhanced and Basic, with the basic version being free.
MySpace Shoutbox - Simply copy and paste a small piece of code into the top of your MySpace 'About Me' section and thats all you need do to have your own MySpace shoutbox. Also included on the website is lots of nifty Myspace widgets, layouts, graphics, and designs - www.kawaiispace.com/getshoutbox
ShoutMix - provides a great interactive add-on to your blog. Your visitors can easily post comments and use the shoutbox to chat with you and other site visitors at the same time - ShoutMix.com offers free shoutboxes and installation guides for personal websites, Blogger, Bolt, Freewebs, Friendster, Wordpress, Xanga, Yahoo! Groups, and more.
MyShoutBox - Another place to get a free shout box is at www.myshoutbox.com. Their website states their Shoutbox is absolutely free of charge.
YellBox - Add a YellBox to your site. Yellbox works with any webspace, there is no need for PHP or MySQL on your server space and no programming knowledge is needed - Just add a snippet of HTML code in your page - www.yellbox.com
Free Shout Box - You can create free shoutboxes that you can use either as shoutbox at your site, as a guest-book for your site, or as a chat room - www.freeshoutbox.net
AJAX Shoutbox for Wordpress Blogs - The AJAX Shoutbox Wordpress plugin adds live chat functionality to your Wordpress blog. Your visitors can chat with each other right in your website without refreshing their browsers.
YShout - is a lightweight yet full-featured package that allows you to easily add an interactive shoutbox to your website. Note: In order to download YShout a donation is required, this donation can be of any sum donate what you think - yurivish.com/yshout/
Shoutbox Pro - sign up for a free shoutbox, then put one line of code on your website. All your visitor has to do is type in their name and message and hit the shout button. They never even leave your web page - shoutboxpro.com
Shoutbox - Provide services for websites and weblogs such as shoutboxes. Their shoutbox supports shoutbox avatar , reply on entries, unlimited entries and more. They state they are the pioneer of shoutbox technology - oggix.com
Drupal Shoutbox - A module that provides a block where visitors can quickly post short messages. Permissions can be set so that posts go live immediately or go to a moderation queue. The shoutbox has been updated for Drupal 5.x. drupal.org/project/shoutbox
Joomla Shoutbox Module - A Joomla Shoutbox adds live chat functionality to your Joomla site. Your visitors can chat with each other right in your website without refreshing their browsers.
Another AJAX Shoutbox - Shout-Box.com offer a FREE, remotely hosted, AJAX powered ShoutBox for your Web Site/ Blog or Forum etc. Easily place a Shout Box on your site so your visitors can leave messages for others to see.
ASP Shoutbox for Windows Servers - This small ASP chat application will turn your entire site into an awesome discussion area. Bring the very latest shoutbox chat experience to your visitors. Current price is US$39.95 - www.xigla.com/shoutbox/