Comments Floating in the Blogosphere

Comments here,
Comments there,
Comments posted everywhere.

Comments here,
Comments there,
Comments floating in the blogosphere.

The blogosphere is a buzz. The conversation is about comments. I wrote the other day about “the FriendFeed disjointed comments problem.” My post was pointing out how FriendFeed could help move the conversation back to the original blog.

Conversation is taking place outside of the originating blog and the problem is far bigger than just FriendFeed. The buzz began over the weekend when Louis Gray’s post “Should Fractured Feed Reader Comments Raise Blog Owners’ Ire?hit Techmeme.

I watched as Louis Gray’s post hit and the problem was clearly demonstrated. Conversation took place on the blog post, on plaxo, and on friendfeed. Certainly that was not all of the stir. I am sure other conversation took place on many other sites as people on commented as they bookmarked it, commented on the digg submission, etc.

The FriendFeed conversation was certainly spirited. The whole issue revolved around Shyftr and whether they should allow commenting with full text RSS. Some compared it to simple content scraping. It led one user to state, “they (Shyftr) can expect to get hit with a DMCA take-down notice” if his content was used.

My take on the whole issue. Shyftr is great to allow comments. Almost every Google Reader user would love the ability to comment in the app. However let’s create a system to allow posting back to the original post.

I posted the following on the FriendFeed conversation:

I wonder if or OpenComments.Org are available? A system must be devised to send the comments back to the blogs. An open standard will come out of this. I can see Disqus being one of the early players. As for the offenders they are too numerous to name. Disqus, Digg,, Plaxo, FriendFeed, Shyftr, Mixx, etc. Anywhere you post a link and comment not on the original blog would be included. I think this applies to linkers as much as the sites that pull the full text RSS.

The issue is protecting content creators. I have seen numerous posts lately about the changing landscape of the blogosphere and the lack of original content. Content creators simply feel threatened by someone else getting the page views and never even knowing about it.

So I was kidding about CommentsPortability and OpenComments but we simply need a system to let the Shyftrs, the FriendFeeds, or wherever else the conversation is taking place send comments back to the original post.

As my comment stated I do think Disqus could be a major early player in this.

Dave Winer says that RSS has elements in place that can be used. Can’t we allow just get along?

Are Updates Broken on FriendFeed?

Are Updates Broken on FriendFeed? I saved a link on Sunday night and noticed that in had not shown up in my FriendFeed.

I noticed this last week when Louis Gray linked to my post “The FriendFeed Disjointed Comments Problem.” I noticed then that it was not in his friendfeed.

Stay tuned for updates I will try to find out what is going on…

UPDATE: Louis Gray has pointed out that if you delete and re-add it on your FriendFeed it will work.


The FriendFeed Disjointed Comments Problem

FriendFeed is great. I like the service but let me describe the Disjointed Comments problem. The aggregation needs to group based upon link. For example, Louis Gray wrote a nice post titled “TechMeme Leaderboard’s Top Ten: Six Months In.” On his FriendFeed alone there are 3 seperate entries to this post. Three places to like or hide and three places to comment. An entry directly submitted to FriendFeed, an entry to Google Reader sharing his post feed, and the post feed itself.

The key to me to satisfy the blogosphere is easily displays all of this activity (liking and commenting) back on the original post. I have already seen an early wordpress plugin displaying inline the FriendFeed comments of the post.

The next step for FriendFeed is to combine/group entries that link to the destination URL. Positioned in the FriendFeed by the last reference. So in other words if Louis bookmarked his post a fourth time on then the whole group would bubble to the top of his FriendFeed.

So once they are grouped together the convesation at least on the Louis Gray FriendFeed is not disjointed.

However, the next problem is me. I liked the post. So Louis had it shared in 3 or 4 places. What if I share it / link it in a couple of places. Google Reader and What if people comment on my FriendFeed?

This is conversation Louis might want to know about. So now FriendFeed groups my conversations with Louis’s FriendFeed. This is probably not a big deal if just I share it. But what about when it is shared 500 times?

Ok So FriendFeed does all of that. Great, Huh? Well now the bloggers want more. That wordpress plugin now needs to embed the conversation on the original post. Then maybe just maybe the blogosphere is happy. Well probably not. It doesn’t happen very often. 🙂