After testing Discourse commenting for three months, I've come to the conclusion that it's not helping the conversation and the sense of community here on BlenderNation. Articles only have occasional comments and more often than not, a real conversation never takes off. I think it's a shame, all these empty articles don't give a feeling of activity anymore (BlenderNation has over 40,000 visitors a day!) and I've seen much better activity in the past.
A bit of history first: my main motivation for looking for alternative commenting systems started in the days that my webserver was collapsing under the load that the amount of traffic generated. I needed to apply aggressive caching, and having users log in to WordPress to comment would break that. My poor old server just couldn't handle that. Disqus and Discourse seemed good solutions and they each had their benefits, but certainly also their drawbacks.
Since then, I've switched to another hosting provider and upgraded my hosting package. After running some tests over the last few days where I disabled most of my caching, I'm satisfied that the new server is capable of handling the load that native WordPress comments would cause.
So from now on you'll be able to log on to BlenderNation again and use regular WordPress comments. As the main advantages I see:
- You don't need to register with an external service like Disqus - your account stays here on BlenderNation.
- The entire discussion takes place on the article page - not on a separate page like the Discourse embedded comments. I received lots of feedback on how confusing this disconnection was.
I hope this will make it more fun to leave your thoughts with an article, or to engage in a proper discussion with other readers. Please let me know if you consider this a good move, or a bad one. Let's bring the community buzz back here!
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