In light of that post, one can probably understand why it’s extremely difficult for me to install any addons if they do not directly increase the overall speed of the site or have an obvious user experience pull. In fact, in many cases I choose to either hard code the scripts instead of using related plugins or I build them myself from scratch.
Disqus, though, is a thing of beauty because it falls in both the “speed” category and the obvious uX category too. Disqus is wickedly cool and super easy to install and use commenting engine which spices up your blogging comments and makes you a king of community.
This post could probably end here, but I suppose I’ll shed some more light as to what Disqus is all about.
Disqus, pronounced “discuss”, is a service and tool for web comments and discussions. The Disqus comment system can be plugged into any website, blog, or application. Disqus makes commenting easier and more interactive, while connecting websites and commenters across a thriving discussion community.
After installing the plugin you get your very own subdomain on the disqus.com site (churchcrunch.disqus.com for this one) and a sweet suite of added functionalities that aren’t typically available out of the box in most blogging platforms. TechCrunch has a great write up of them:
Disqus commenting system adds threads, comment/user ratings, spam control, and user identities. The system can either replace all your comments (starting from nothing), or only be activated on new posts. If you find it’s not what you want, you can just deactivate the plugin to get back your old comments.
The forums are fully skinnable and RSS enabled. You can follow threads or comments from other commentors. Frequent forum users will he happy to hear that you can receive updates and post replies by email as well. But Disqus isn’t just a community of commentors, it’s also a community of forums. Diqus’ main site serves as a hub for the hottest or most recent stories across all Disqus blogs.
And don’t worry, with the WordPress plugin, as mentioned above, all comments are saved. This means that your comments are, indeed, saved server-side.
What does that mean? It means that your SEO just got a healthy boost because they are easily indexed by search engines. And just recently they added trackback/pingback functionality and pagination. Can I get an “amen”?
And another “don’t worry”… you don’t have to login to another site to use the service; it actually pulls in the control panel window in your WordPress admin page so you can moderate it right there:
So with all this goodness, you’re going to use it, right? Still thinking about it? Here are some other thoughts to get you going:
- Daniel Ha, the founder and CEO of Disqus is really cool. I’ve had the pleasure of some 1:1 conversations with him about the platform and he was super accessible and easy to talk to. I thought he was a young guy, but wasn’t sure. Got some confirmation here.
- Disqus thinks Open Source: Releasing an API was the first step. I really think they get it…
- Multiple ways to change your “layout” of your comments (I like choices).
- Avatar support (you can change the size of them too!)
- Seesmic integration built in! That means you can delete that Seesmic Plugin. I love this because I don’t have to actually increase the aggregate total of plugins used for my blogs… I know, I’m a geek, but remember, I’m all about speed!
- Increased sense of community. I feel the love. You can even instantly “reblog” a particular comment that you see and share the love even more (see screeny below)!
- And much much more.
So, give it a go. The service isn’t perfect, but, it’s a great start, and the fact that Daniel is a young guy means he’s got a lot of energy and time to make it world class.
Let me know what you think, and make your blog have a community++ moment.