Tag Archives: intense debate

commenting systems

Disqus released their new commenting system today. It adds:

# Comments are indexable by search engines (SEO-friendly)
# Export and import of comments
# Automatic synchronization between Disqus.com and your WordPress comments
# Uses the new Disqus API
# Moderate/administer your blog right from the WordPress admin

The important one there for me was the ability to import and export comments. It actually is not working for some reason right now (an export to Disqus gives an error) but I am hoping this is just teething problems. This feature meant I could move in the first place (as before moving to disqus meant a blackhole for any new comments), but it is also the trackbacks and larger userbase that makes me want to switch in the first place.

This does mean goodbye to Intense Debate for now – I loved the automatic export out of friendfeed provided by that service but the larger community of disqus hopefully will mean a greater number of people coming to this site. Not that I am ignoring Intense Debate – with the ability to import and export as well – I could move between providers with little pain – and not lose any comments in the process. This alone is going to make it interesting to see how this particular niche progresses. The competition is huge and with only minimal barriers to switch providers, somehow the commenting providers are going to have to balance innovation and stability to maintain their userbase.

intense debate issues

Some of you will have noticed that I rolled out Intense Debate as the commenting system on this blog. It replaced Disqus, another centralised commenting system, – mainly because it gave me the option to import and export comments with ease and seemed to give me more control over spam. It just felt more rounded. Disqus on the other hand definitely increased discussion on blogs – I browsed more blogs as a result of being on Disqus than I have in all the time I have been on Intense Debate. It is much too difficult to interact with others on Intense Debate.

Unfortunately we have hit a few snags. Straight after I installed Intense Debate, there was a noticable slowdown on my site when compared to Disqus. Thankfully they fixed it soon enough though Ive noticed it happening again. A sign of their gaining popularity I’m sure. But a much more serious issue is that Hrafn at Think Artificial emailed me saying he got a “Error! Connection has timed out” when trying to comment. I’ve messaged Intense Debate to get some feedback on it but I’m wondering whether I just go back to using my own blog’s commenting system.

It is the wordpress.com vs wordpress.org question – is it better to host your own or let someone else provide the service.

[update] Rather illustrating my point, Intense Debate is down at the time of posting this post. sighs.