Intense Debate

IntenseDebate is a service for improving and managing your blog comments, not only on your own blog but across any blog supporting their service. I’ve always been frustrated that the comments on the blog are:

  • Basic with no threading support
  • Ask for a lot of details when people visit
  • No way of keeping track of my comments in one central place – i.e. posting elsewhere – you can’t see when those posts are updated

I tried CoComment a couple of years ago but was never satisfied with the service. Disqus and IntenseDebate looked to be better options but I never liked that the comments were stored elsewhere and not on my site. For me to commit to a service I wanted to be more in control of comments and be in a position to move them to where I wanted at and time. However there’s been a couple of changes recently which has made me move to installing IntenseDebate on the site.

Firstly IntenseDebate have been bought by Automattic, the people behind WordPress and a few other services. This gives me a lot more reassurance that the service will be around to stay and that it will be enabled on a lot more blogs in the near future. This should make it easier to track conversations across the many sites I read. Secondly, both Disqus and IntenseDebate now support syncing of comments so that the comment exists not only on a remote server but on your local blog installation.

There are many features within the IntenseDebate pluging – threading, comment moderation, commenter profiles including reputation points and many more that are covered on their website. There is also an excellent dashboard that pulls together comments on your own posts and comments you have made elsewhere, but only on those sites that have also signed up to IntenseDebate.

I’m hoping that with WordPress 2.7 coming out soon which starts to include some of the functionality of IntenseDebate and also the availability of the new plugin will lead to an increase in the services support across many more sites. However please do let me know if you hit any snags when commenting – at the slightest wiff on any problems I’ll move back to the old system. However there are no issues so far for me so here’s hoping for plain sailing.

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