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Keeping up with the blogging conversation

Keeping up with the blogging conversation

I think its a good idea to keep up with what you say and where in the blogosphere, yet with so many different types of platforms and formats its pretty difficult to do at times.

Which is probably why I just got a little excited when visiting co.mments. I think co.mments is a great way of tracking your conversations. I vaguely recalling seeing this somewhere or other and thinking cool, that could be handy, so I just went along and signed up, great I thought this could be just the thing, and then my balloon went down. It would be great, if that is, I remembered to use the bookmark tools they provide.

Use these bookmarklets to quickly bookmark conversations you want to follow. One click and they’re added to your tracking list.

First, add the bookmarklet to your favorites (IE) or bookmarks (Firefox, Safari, other). When you read a post you want to follow, simply click on the co.mments favorite/bookmark. The co.mments server will then follow up and find new comments for you.

I know me I won’t, it’s just not one of those habits I’ll pick up on. I’ll forget and that will be that, another little bokmarking thingy function amongst a sea of others.

See I comment at lots of places, most of time I forget where too. Technorati is kinda helpful and acts a useful reminder although I do wish there was a way of setting a longer default list.

I think thats one of the reasons why I love Jennifers the subscribe to comments plugin its pretty cool and sends me a little message when a comment I’ve made is responded to. I liked it so much in fact, I decided to change the default subscribe to comments option from off to on. My thinking is that if people didn’t really wan’t to have a conversation, then they should either a. Not bother commenting in the first place, or b. Just uncheck the subscribe to comments box a 2 second job, done.

Its not ideal though I know. Some email providers have their anti spam settings turned up so high, you often never receive the confirmations. Take hotmail for example. I had to add technorati, stumbleupon and Digg to my safe list before I could even receive account details. Its been a simialr story for other sites too. the worse thing is of course, that not everyone uses a subscribe to my comments plugin either, so its a hit and miss thing there too really.

Sure, RSS and feed readers are good things too. But, unless I’m blown away I tend not to subscribe to every blog I land up on. It just wouldn’t be practical to sit down and go pruning every now and then either, nah, I don’t think RSS solves it really.

I think co.mments has certainly got a great idea. I think it could be improved though, I wouldn’t know how to code it, but I’m thinking here that technorati for example have a ping service. They are alerted each time you post, dependant upon your settings of course. I’m wondering why co.mments couldn’t do something similar. You could add their ping address to your blog settings, or they could cut a little deal with WP, typepad, blogger and whatnot and have their ping server added by default.

It wouldn’t be rocket science to then integrate this into the existing setup they have there, and maybe respider the urls every so many hours. They could use the bytesize of the page to indicate a change and voila, you’d be able to track your conversations a little easier, without the need to hit that pesky bookmarklet – or am I missing something?

How do you follow your conversations? Do you have a ‘I seldom miss a thing’ system?

Rob Watts
Kickstart your business today - Get an SEO Consultation or just talk to Rob about your online aspirations. With over 20 years experience in building traffic he's pretty much encountered most markets and scenarios

6 thoughts on “Keeping up with the blogging conversation

  1. lyndonmaxewell

    hmm.. Believe it or not, I bookmark significant pages that I wish to track my comments on. Not the most practical, but I’m not fond of trashing through my mailbox for comments worth reading. (P.S. I’m not a really techy person, btw)

  2. robwatts Post author

    Hi Lyndonmaxewell

    Thanks for commenting.

    This is the thing, for me,I just don’t…

    The bookmarklet of co.mments does actually send a message back to the co.mments servers and says ‘check this out’ my I’m not knocking the concept, just the infallibilty of us humans, specifically, me!

    As for my mailbox, that can get as big as it likes for all I care, I use web based services for this sort of stuff, I do hear you on the outlook or eudora mail program front though.

  3. lyndonmaxewell

    Yea, maybe I should just get out of Microsoft hands though. Hopefully, there would be some sort of clean dashboard that sits on desktop that does all of the above. For now, keeping track of comments is still largely a hassle.

  4. robwatts Post author

    It is that. Which is why (especially as blogging is still growing at a phenomenal rate) sooner rather than later a company is going to crack this little chase the conversation chestnut and do exceptionally well as a result. Many are well positioned of course. Its a question of who delivers 1st, currently IMO there’s both a huge gap and opportunity for someone like co.mments to step up to the plate.

    Hopefully not M$ 😉

  5. Andy Beard

    I am using Mark Jaquith’s updated version of the same plugin. For some reason some people still don’t get added to the database, and I have no idea why.

    As for other nifty things, there is also cocomment and comentful.

    Cocomment does track automatically, but can be buggy on some comment forms to the extent you have to switch it off, and reload the page.

    There isn’t an ideal solution, I don’t like delivering emails from my domain, but it is an aid to conversation.

  6. robwatts Post author

    Odd that it doesnt add people to the DB Andy, quirky things to iron out I guess. Thats my one bugbear with this thing too. Ideally it would record mails sent. I assume its actioned once a comment is posted. I haven’t really looked under the hood so couldn’t say with any certainty either. it would be useful if sent mails were recorded somewhere just for reference purposes. A future proj perhaps.

    Will check those other conversation following tools out too, cheers

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