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Added Disqus to SMS Text News

Over the past few months a lot of people have emailed me about the comments system on SMS Text News. The main issue has been the system’s simplicity. While it certainly works, it’s rather difficult to follow and discussion is a bit of an arse if you really want to get into the meat of an argument.

Recently we added the ability to ‘subscribe’ to get updates when someone replies to a comment stream. Nice, but it hasn’t materially changed things.

Enter Disqus. You might have come across it already, you might even be a member. It’s a comments/forum system that you plug into your site.

We’ve added it today, temporarily — as a trial — to see how it works out. It does require you to quickly register but once you’re done, it remembers who you are and offers quite a lot of nifty features.

Check it out. Try replying to this post and see what you think?

UPDATE: All previous comments, although not displayed at the moment, haven’t been lost. They’re just hidden whilst we try Disqus. I recognise this is a bit of an arse but I’m hoping that the ease of use with Disqus might outweigh this annoyance.

Also: If you’re registered, your comments go live right-away. No need for me to vet them since ‘we know who you are’ and can easily disable naughty people from posting.

48 COMMENTS

  1. It's in the settings Ricky — mid-way down, I think. I got the alert of your comment by mail (although perhaps that's an admin function, … surely not!)

  2. Agreed. The question Andrew, is whether this is a really useful way of joining the community together, or whether it becomes rather annoying. Thoughts?

  3. Looking good. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Btw, we're working to import all comments into our system. I appreciate the (massive) patience regarding this, but we'll try hard not to disappoint.

  4. Not that I can see. I meant that users should have to scroll through the existing comments before they get to the post new comment form. Might encourage people to read what's being written ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. But some of us need to remain anonymous for employment reasons. Can Disqus make you an authorised commenter whom Ewan has vetted but not public?

  6. Ewan

    Good to see you join Disqus. I have been using them for over a month now and it has been good. I am in touch with them and discussing different ways the product could be innovated to improve the user and website owner experience. They are really great guys.

    Also regarding previous comments, they do not need to be covered up even if you use the WordPress Plugin as there is an option to just add afterwards or only to new posts. Additionally you could tie in directly to their API and make the system practically transparent. I have not used the api myself as the plugin is largely meets my current needs but I do plan on using their api in the near-term once they release some of the new features we had discussed.

    That being said, no one needs to register as you implied in order to comment, but as you pointed out there is a great deal of value to those who do register which means you won't need to vet their comments and they can comment more often and with greater flexibility.

    This was the really attractive part for me, not having to worry about who was saying what because any of the bad apples were already barred.

    If you have any suggestions for improvements drop by my site and leave some comments under the any of the few posts I have on them as I am always interested in what they can do to improve and I am pushing pretty hard for some key changes.

    I hope it goes well for you.

  7. I am with Ewan Mike there really is no reason why you cannot remain anonymous and be registered as well. When you comment on STN (short for your site) are you not already adding your email and name?

    The only difference here is that instead of Ewan vetting you every time you can be pre-approved. What name you use with Disqus, and the email are entirely your decision. So just keep them separate from your usual commenting. Sort of an alias. Most of us have them. I have two but I never use them anymore… Too much work but they are there if I ever need them again.

  8. Terence there is this capability. Ewan it is in your settings on the Disqus control panel when you login, under Tweaks.

    I have my site set up the way you suggest Terence.

    Also I think the .mobi site will be fine with Disqus but as I said at the bottom of this list of comments to Ewan and that is he will need to use their API to sort out proper integration issues such as the .mobi site.

    Using the WP plugin which is surely what Ewan has used for this test does not allow enough flexibility visually for mobile sites.

  9. I've just tried logging in with my OpenID, but once I've done that it still asks me to register in order to “connect” my account. Doesn't this defeat the whole purpose of OpenID?

    You should be able to pull a username, email and photo from the sreg data…

  10. Gah! I've set my Date/Time preferences to absolute – but it's showing AMERICAN date format.
    “TerenceEden 04/23/2008 09:13 AM” There is no 23rd month as far as I'm aware….

  11. Following etiquette what is it? It seems you cannot remove the following feature, I suppose it would be nice to have an option to decline someone! (NB this is not aimed at the people following me)

  12. Following etiquette what is it? It seems you cannot remove the following feature, I suppose it would be nice to have an option to decline someone! (NB this is not aimed at the people following me)

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