The Python IRC Bot

Per-channel configuration

Note: This feature is available only in Sopel 7.0 and later.

If your Sopel bot is in many channels, you’ve probably run into at least one case where a plugin that one channel loves is hated by the users and/or operators in another. This is pretty common—after all, every IRC channel is a fiefdom with its own dictator, who may or may not be benevolent.

Fortunately, configuring Sopel to work around such situations is easy.

Channel config sections

In Sopel’s config file, you can add sections for channels you want to treat specially. For example:

disable_plugins = emoticons,instagram,reddit,xkcd
disable_commands = {"search": ["bing", "search"], "url": ["title_auto"]}

The channel name is taken literally; no pattern-matching is supported, for now.

In channels named #FunHaters, this would disable the emoticons, instagram, reddit, and xkcd plugins entirely; it would also prevent the automatic title-fetcher from url from running (but still allow the manual .title command), and block use of the .bing and .search commands from the search plugin (while still allowing .duck). Details for each option below.


The disable_plugins option is a simple comma-separated list of plugin names, just like core.enable or core.exclude.


The disable_commands option is written as a Python dict, where each key is a plugin name and each value is a list of method names within that plugin.

Be sure to use the method name, not the command name. Matching on method names makes it possible to disable things like URL handlers, too.

Note: A future version of Sopel might move to a YAML config file format instead of the INI format it uses now, to simplify the inclusion of more complex, structured options like this. Let us know on IRC if you think this is a good idea.