A Day Without Disqus

Regular commenters know that yesterday's post's comment thread was not on Disqus. I tried something new (posting from typepad's mobile web app via the android browser) and in the process accidentally turned typepad comments on which turned disqus comments off. I figured it out too late and there was already a discussion going on so I left the whole post on typepad comments.

As one commenter said:

Wow, I didn't realize how much I'd miss Disqus commenting until it was
gone. Perhaps that's an unplanned benefit from this little glitch?

I said the same thing to Daniel Ha, founder/CEO of Disqus, via email yesterday and he replied back:

What are 3-4 things that you miss?

I'd like anyone who is interested help me answer Daniel. I'll post my 3-4 things here and please leave your thoughts in the comments. I'll make sure Daniel reads them, although that won't be tough.

Things I missed:

1) Threaded discussions. If you look at yesterday's comment thread, you'll see that I was replying (via email actually) to the comments but they are not shown as replies. I found it impossible to follow and stopped replying as a result.

2) Email reply. Typepad has email reply, at least for me, the author, but I don't think it works for the person leaving the comment when someone replies to them. And the reply is not shown as a reply in the thread. And it doesn't pick up my avatar when it shows the reply. Without those features, email reply really isn't useful to me.

3) No avatars. I've got so used to seeing people's avatars next to their comments. It really allows the community to thrive. The comment thread feels so empty without them.

4) Easy login. If you are a frequent commenter and are "logged in" as I almost always am, Disqus recognizes you and invites you to leave a comment. If you aren't logged in, you can log in right in the comment thread. Those two features mean that a lot more people comment.

Here's some data to show the difference between Disqus and Tyepepad's comment system. I average about 100 comments per post. I got 25 yesterday (though it says 49, I think some of the comments may be missing). Either way I got way less than normal. And yesterday was one of the biggest days ever on AVC with 19k visits and 22k page views, four times my normal traffic. Four times the traffic, a quarter to half the comments? That's the Disqus difference in action.

Ok, now it's time for everyone else to chime in (via Disqus thankfully).