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Site update: Switched from Disqus to Commento

by Tom Johnson on Jan 30, 2020 •
categories: innovation

I recently switched the commenting service on this blog from Disqus to Commento. Commento is a lightweight commenting service that doesn't insert a bunch of scripts with each page load. It also makes it easier to comment.

About six years ago, when I switched from WordPress to Jekyll as the platform for this site, I implemented Disqus for comments. However, I’ve disliked Disqus for a long time, especially when I look at all the scripts and other bloat this commenting service ads on my site. For more complaints about Disqus, see Why you should remove Disqus from your site. Disqus doesn’t align with modern web practices and privacy, frankly. When you look at everything that loads with Disqus, it’s kind of startling.

Commento is lightweight, privacy friendly, and seems to work well even it’s missing some features. For example, it doesn’t let me aggregate the latest comments in a single list, nor does it surface related posts. It also looks like a one-person shop created by a student. However, it’s $5 a month instead of $9, was trivial to integrate, and offered an import from Disqus. Managing comments is easy, and so far even by allowing anonymous comments, I haven’t received much spam.

I have noticed that more people are commenting now. I think Disqus required too many logins and had too many false positives filtered out.

One other feature I’m considering deep-sixing is the Facebook share button on my site (which loads its own scripts). Facebook has fallen into disrepute in the tech community, and I don’t actively use Facebook nor see many conversations there. At the same time, Facebook still does have some traffic and popularity.

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About Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson

I'm a technical writer based in the California San Francisco Bay area. In this blog, I write about topics related to technical writing and communication — such as software documentation, API documentation, visual communication, information architecture, writing techniques, plain language, tech comm careers, and more. Check out simplifying complexity and API documentation for some deep dives into these topics. If you're a technical writer and want to keep on top of the latest trends in the field, be sure to subscribe to email updates. You can also learn more about me or contact me.

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