Oh, you put the comments in, and you take the comments out

Guardian on Blogger Pro :

Still to come are much-requested features such as built-in commenting – through which readers can leave their comments

Well, I was delighted to see that comments were not on the list of “coming soon” features on the Pro page. Not only do I not want to see my friends in the comment provider business be put out to pasture, but there’s just no point in running comments through Blogger. What possible value could Blogger add to comments, other than to put them in the templates by default? Even that’s not a killer feature, since anyone who wanted to do an auto-install could do it through the API (Hossein: want to try it? Finding where to put the <head> script would be easy: just go right before </head>. The other piece would be a bit harder to place correctly, though). The only thing I’ve ever come up with that would be close to a feature would be the ability to do inline comments and put them in the actual html of the page (by republishing the blog every time a comment was posted), which would make the comments available without Javascript. Which would make them available to search engine crawlers. Which would make them worth spamming. Which would make them worth-less.


Comment by Hossein #
2002-02-01 00:40:30

I haven’t looked at the Blogger API, but I’d be willing to give it a shot, as long as I don’t have to ask users for their blogger username and password. Also, having to ask users for their blog ID # again would be a pain (I’m really glad I removed that requirement from YACCS).

Comment by Phil Ringnalda #
2002-02-01 07:24:37

Well, you would have to ask for username and password, but not for blogid: just have them pick from the list that blogger.getUsersBlogs returns. But how to generalize the spot where the comment link should end up? Start at </Blogger> and work your way backward, if there’s a <BlogDateFooter> go above it, and then what? I guess build a tree of the code after <$BlogItemBody$>, and put yourself at the end of the highest branch. Too bad there isn’t a handy browser widget you could use to render the <Blogger> section of code with sample data, have the user positions the cursor where they want the link, and go from there.

Comment by Phil Ringnalda #
2002-02-01 07:29:42

Curses: comments are on the feature list of the new Pro FAQ. Again: what can Blogger add?

Comment by Hossein #
2002-02-03 21:12:45

I don’t want to ask users for their blogger userid and password. If it’s a desktop application, it’s ok to ask. But if it’s a web service, I could see people trying to blame me for their stolen passwords, even though I had nothing to do with it. It just sounds too risky to me. There should be a more secure way do to it (such as having blogger generate passcodes that can be used once to modify the template once).

Comment by Hossein #
2002-02-03 21:16:36

err.. sorry about the extra ”once” in that last sentence. Time to add comment editing to YACCS.

Comment by Phil Ringnalda #
2002-02-03 21:23:21

Heh. I would fire up my very-beta dotcomments editing script and fix it, except I’m in the middle of trying to fix something in another thread, and making it worse every time I edit. It’s just good enough to make me think it’s usable, until I use it and find out another thing I forgot to allow for (like not converting ”http://” to a link again every time I edit).

Comment by Ana Maria #
2002-02-04 09:36:38

I’ve learned more about code since I started a blog than ever before. This is good as I like learning. But many folks are in the ”how to upload an image” phase. Not fully understanding the ”how” of comment logging, where they get stored, etc., the idea that Blogger provide ”commenting” to me means primarily to make ”adding comment functionality” as an available option, user-oriented to not have to include more than say one-line of ”code” (gg). Your point about existing comment providers is a good one, though. Aside from the ”how”, I’m still weighing whether to implement my comments as I have trouble handling SPAM or high rudeness. The comment system has to be robust to allow the blog admin full control.

(PS – Phil, I LUV the archive calendar & after some stumbling on my part (non-code related), have it on all my blogs)

Comment by Greg #
2002-02-05 13:13:54

Well, here’s what I think would be good about Blogger handling comments. First, the comments could be stored along with the blog contents, whether at BlogSpot or elsewhere, making backups easier. Second, the comments page could be designed so that it automatically mimics the style of the blog itself. Third, at least two, if not three, of the comment providers I have tried have either quit supporting their offerings or stopped taking new users. There were, admittedly, all free services, but as I’m already paying $12 per year for an ad-free BlogSpot and $35 this year (and $50 per year subsequently) for Blogger Pro, I’m not real keen on paying yet another fee to yet another provider for a comment service. Do those make sense to you folks, or am I missing something?

Name (required)
E-mail (required - never shown publicly)
Your Comment (smaller size | larger size)
You may use <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <del datetime="" cite=""> <dd> <dl> <dt> <em> <i> <ins datetime="" cite=""> <kbd> <li> <ol> <p> <pre> <q cite=""> <samp> <strong> <sub> <sup> <ul> in your comment.