in Just Stuff

★ Are commenting systems the new social network?

With the latest update of Disqus, the release of JS-Kit Echo, and Automattic’s ‘Intense Debate‘, it seems that blog commenting systems have all but become their own social networks.

With each of these systems you can login, comment on any blog where they are used keeping a record of your commenting so that you can easily track and respond to replies.On the surface all of the systems are quite similar, and having used all three on my blog here I thought I’d do a quick little feature, experience, and recommendation write up. And being a bit stuck for time at the moment I’ll jot it all down in point form, however I will endeavor to expand on the points at a later date.

Key Features

  • Take your comments with you all over the social web
  • Build your ‘commenting profile’ and enhance your reputation as an authority
  • Bring ‘reactions’ in to your blog from the social web
  • ‘Real time’ discussions with threaded replies
  • Video commenting
  • Enterprise versions available for larger communities

My Experiences

  • All are easily installed on blogs
  • Simple to set up and import your existing comments (JS Kit’s import failed for me though, tried tech support but no help.)
  • All fairly easily styled with CSS to fit your blog theme


  • Couldn’t import my comments to use JS-kit, so I scrapped that straight away
  • Have been using Intense Debate for a week, it seems quite nice but with the release of Disqus v3 it now seems clunky and maybe not quite as feature rich
  • I love Disqus’ new D Profile where you link in your profiles and web IDs

So the winner of the new ‘Social Comments’ war at this point in time is Disqus, but I’m sure it won’t be long till we see even more competition in this arena now that we’re slowly seeing people returning to their blogs as their central focus.