For the past 9 years, Liliputing’s comment system has been powered by Disqus. Today I’m trying something different.
As I mentioned in January, Disqus recently announced that websites using the company’s commenting tools had a choice: display advertising in the comment section or pay for a subscription.
The subscription fee is reasonably low and I would have been happy to pay. But if I was going to become a paying customer, I wanted Disqus to help resolve an issue that’s affected Liliputing for over a year. The customer support I received was awful. So I’ve turned off Disqus… at least for now.
But some of the best features of Disqus are still here. Our new comment system includes:
- Threaded replies
- Upvote and downvote options
- Sort comments by newest, oldest, or most upvoted
- Email notifications of follow-up comments
- Share comments to social media
- Edit your comments
You also have multiple ways to login:
- Leave a message as a guest
- Login with Facebook, Twitter, or Google+
Create a Liliputing account.
- Creating an account just for this site is kind of a pain to implement, so we’re going to go with guest and/or social media logins for now. We can also add support for WordPress.com, Yahoo, Microsoft, and some other logins if there’s enough interest.
Note: If you want to be able to edit comments, you’ll have to login with a social media account (for now, at least). Once you do that, you can edit a comment within 15 minutes of posting it.
In case you’re curious, Liliputing is now using wpDisquz and WordPress Social Login to power the comments. There are some additional features that we may add in the future, but I want to see how everything works first.
And in case you’re wondering what my support issue with Disqus was, sometime in late 2015 the service stopped synchronizing comments with my local database, which meant they were only backed up and served from the Disqus servers.
That meant if Disqus went down, any recent comments would not be displayed. It also meant that Liliputing didn’t get any search engine optimization benefits from comments left on the site. And most importantly, it meant that Liliputing didn’t have full control over what was done with those comments.
After weeks of back and forth (with very long pauses between email messages), I finally received a message letting me know that instead of continuing to help me troubleshoot the issue, Disqus was working on a new version of its WordPress plugin that didn’t have database synchronization anyway. So this important feature is being phased out.
Today was a slow news day, so instead of working on some other things I should really be spending time on (like filing taxes or producing the next episode of the Loving Project podcast), I figured out a way to recover most of the missing comments. But the method I used does not sync any future comments, so I would have to manually go through this time-consuming process on a regular basis if I stayed with Disqus.
I would have been happy to become a paying Disqus customer. But not without local database synchronization… and not with the level of non-support I’ve received over the past few weeks.
So it’s time to try something different. I’m not married to the current setup, but I do think it offers a few advantages over stock WordPress comments or Jetpack comments.
I am committed to keeping an active comments section on this site though, so let me know what you think of the new system.