UK Web Focus

Innovation and best practices for the Web

Being Informed Of New Comments

Posted by Brian Kelly (UK Web Focus) on 19 March 2007

When a new comment is made on this blog I receive an email alert. And details of the last 5 comments are included in the sidebar widget. But how can readers of this blog find out about new comments made to postings of particular interest, especially if they miss the information in the sidebar (which can happen if several comments are made in quick succession, if they don’t visit the blog site regularly or, indeed, if they use an RSS reader, email delivery of postings, etc.

This occurred to me after receiving a comment on the FireFox – The Researchers Favourite Application? posting from Peter Miller, in which he mentioned that Mike Kaply, the Firefox Operator guy, is blogging on enterprise deployment. There has been a fair amount of interest in this topic (indeed the post is in the list of top postings in this blog) so it would be unfortunate if people missed this useful link on developments in this area.

WordPress does provide an RSS feed for new comments. Perhaps I should provide a link to the feed in the sidebar. But, as has been discussed previously, many users don’t know what to do with RSS feeds, so should I provide a link to an email delivery of RSS feeds? But won’t this be confusing – what will receiving notification of a comment mean without the context? Or do they applications provide information about the context? And do RSS readers solve this in any case, so there’s no need for me to make any changes (and to add more clutter to the sidebar)?

What do you think?

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8 Responses to “Being Informed Of New Comments”

  1. [...] brian kelly, co.mments, comments, google reader, rss, wordpress Brian Kelly has posted about tracking new comments. This is a topic I’ve been wondering about for a while and haven’t been able to come up [...]

  2. Peter Miller said

    Following Michael’s tip, I’m going to try co.mments and will report back.

  3. [...] Original post by Brian Kelly (UK Web Focus) [...]

  4. I love being able to subscribe to a comments feed if I’ve posted something on it, so that I am notified when somebody replies. If I comment on 6 blogs today, it’s unlikely that I’ll remember to check each of them tomorrow, or the day after, in order to continue a conversation if they have replied. This is especially true if I am asking for a clarification on their post, or trying to elicit an opinion.

    I don’t mind temporarily adding another feed to my long list, because I am frequently adding and deleting feeds, so it’s not an issue.

    So that’s what I prefer… but I concede that it probably isn’t the best for the majority.

  5. FWIW I’ve been using cocomments.com quite successfully for a long time now.

  6. Or http://www.cocomment.com/ rather. They have a Firefox extension which I’ve installed and picks up whenever I make a comment somewhere.

  7. Well I subscribed to this post’s comments feed and Google Reader has failed to refresh this feed for the last three comments, and Peter’s comment was posted six or seven hours before then. I’ll try cocomment

  8. Tom Roper said

    Yes, cocomment is very good, not only for keeping track of comments you may have made here and there, but also for seeing your comment neighbours, ie who else is commenting on the same things as you. There’s a new privacy tool and it’s supposed to integrate with Technorati’s blog claim, though I have yet to make that feature work properly

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