I’ve tried a lot of plugins on my blog. Some of those, are quite good, others are dismal failures, but most are just mediocre. Every once in a while, there comes a plugin that really improves the quality of my blog, and Disqus is one such plugin.
You’ve probably seen Disqus at other popular blogging sites, like the Bell of Lost Souls. I know I did, and I liked the features it offered, so I figured I’d give it a shot on my blog. So, what does this plugin do?
According to the WordPress plugin: “Disqus … is a service and tool for web comments and discussions. Disqus makes commenting easier and more interactive, while connecting websites and commenters across a thriving discussion community.”
Ok, so that seemingly wordy description, what does it actually do? It:
- Provides an automated means of authenticating to other blogs/sites (something I’ve had problems with in the past).
- Allows for easy comment management (approval, replies, etc.) direct from your email
- Works with WordPress and Blogger blogs alike!
It enhances your visitor’s experience on your website by providing them a simple means of logging on for commenting. This benefit also allows a user’s comments to follow them across sites by means of a Disqus profile. That way, when you see a comment you like, you can go through and see other comments that poster has left on other sites. See an example profile here.
From a blog owner’s perspective, it also helps me manage my comments. With Disqus, I receive an email every time a comment is left on my blog (though that’s configurable if you don’t want it). Granted, this is a basic feature integrated into any blogging platform, but Disqus enables me to reply to any post simply by replying to that email. Likewise, I can approve or deny questionable content by replying to the email with the words “Approve” or “Deny.” All in all, I don’t have to visit my site to manage comments at all.
Installation was amazingly simple. I simply created a Disqus account, downloaded the plugin and activated it. It automatically retrieved all of the comments on my blog and uploaded them into Disqus. I lost no data, and it took very little effort on my part. Of course, they recommend you back up all files prior to installing the plugin (which is sound advice), but in my case, it wasn’t necessary. You can find complete installation steps for your blogging software here.
For disadvantages, the plugin has been attributed to slow page loads. I haven’t really noticed this on my site, though I have seen it on BoLS–but I think that has more to do with the movies and advertising than the commenting system.
So, if you like the commenting system I’m using, feel free to install it yourself. And, by all means, leave a comment here as well! For information on more plugins I’ve tried, check out my Website Administration section.
Disqus image copyright by Disqus.
P.S. For those who are wondering what [sic] means, look here.