Some of you have noticed that I’d changed the commenting system on my blog recently. Here’s the full story (with a question for you at the very end).
I was totally fed up with Blogger comments years ago and decided to look for an alternative. JS-Kit was a perfect solution and it even allowed me to import Blogger comments and synchronize new entries with Blogger (so I could turn it off at any time and retain my comments).
However, it turned out JS-Kit (later renamed to Echo) was simply too good and attracted attention of very large customers paying big bucks for a scalable commenting platform. Echo (the company behind JS-Kit/Echo) thus decided to focus more on those customers, and the effects have become visible in the last few months (ex: Twitter integration was gone).
Finally, Echo decided to cancel the JS-Kit commenting service, giving us six months to migrate and making it very clear (yes, I asked) that they’re not interested in small users even when they want to pay. Still, six months is a long period and I put the problem on the back burner until the Blogger synchronization broke (again).
I’ve experienced at least half dozen similar Echo-to-Blogger synchronization problems in the past, and they eventually got fixed, but this time I simply couldn’t get rely on that. It was time to move, and I had to do it fast (or risk losing too many comments). The only fast alternative was to go back to Blogger comments (at least almost all of the comments you’d made in the last years were already in the system).
Stone Age Called and Wanted Its Comments Back
Going from Echo to Blogger is like going back to the Stone Age. I’ll eventually fix the formatting (I might also be able to write my own script to override Google’s threaded comment format), but so many features that I came to rely upon with Echo are simply gone, among them a good spam handler (Echo used Akismet).
I don’t have time to delete hundreds of spam comments each day; I’m thus left with two short-term alternatives:
- Allow anonymous comments and use Captcha to stop those spammers that are too thrifty to pay someone to solve them;
- Allow comments from logged-in users, where you could select from Google+, Worpress, Live Journal or any other OpenID account (unfortunately neither Facebook nor Twitter act as OpenID providers).
What would you prefer?