Intense Debate


Yes, I took the plunge. Intense Debate (“Value Your Voices”) is now installed on BSJ, along with the updates to WordPress 2.7. I’m going to leave it optional for about a month to give people time to sign up. So for now you can still comment the old way, just with your name and email. But Intense Debate also allows use of OpenID if you have one.

It allows for comment threading, and allows people to see all your comments across multiple websites and to follow commenters anywhere. It’s a great way to get to know people’s overall interests, and it doesn’t tie you to a particular site. Rather it expands the community. A great concept.

It’s also a big plus for comment management. Other visitors can rate your comments. Over time you establish a reputation depending on how helpful people think your comments are. This works to improve the standing of really insightful people, and it’s a way of weeding out troublemakers without banning (always a last resort). As always, first-time commenters are subject to moderation.

So please bear with us for now while my webmaster and I get the formatting bugs worked out. One thing that’s still broken is the “Latest Comments” plug-in. It no longer takes you to the specific comment. We are working on a fix for that.

I hope you agree this is a big improvement. Comments welcome!

Comments (23 comments)

vjack / December 20th, 2008, 2:08 am / #1

I sure have found it useful. I hope it works for you too.

du hoc / May 15th, 2011, 7:51 pm / #2

I am using it, so i think it is very useful and nice. I like the way Intense Debate does.

BlackSun / December 20th, 2008, 7:38 am / #3

Thanks, vjack. I'm trying to figure out how to get back the nice html tag buttons from the wordpress comment system. Also how to handle links. They seem to be just showing up as <a href=… instead of actual links. Maybe that's just imported comments and new ones will be OK.

Ah, technology. There seems to be some methods of applying CSS, but I don't know about programming. It seems Intense Debate will have to add those features itself. I like the simplicity, but it all takes some getting used to. Your readers seem to be taking to it pretty well.

db0 / December 21st, 2008, 3:44 am / #4

Btw, don't forget to use the most useful feature of IDC: Threading ;)

BAR / December 22nd, 2008, 4:54 am / #5

2nd level threaded comment test

db0 / December 22nd, 2008, 11:28 am / #6

Ah, that looks better. Although I think it would be better if you allowed the page layout to occupy the full width of the page using variable width. Then you have much more space for threading.

BAR / December 22nd, 2008, 4:32 am / #7

I hope it does :) I have been working hard on the heavy css code, which is btw a repeat of the same code 3 times in the same file (big screw-up from IDC there).
A full 740px width might too large in my view for comments. i.e. It can get hard to read from left to right. I don't foresee endless threads requiring so. I would say if it gets too narrow it may be time to stop being too argumentative. ;)

db0 / December 22nd, 2008, 4:36 am / #8

Not really, I use variable width on my own blog and comments are generally easy to read. IDC stops expanding after a while so you never use the full width of the page anyway.

As for the CSS repeat, perhaps let the devs know?

BAR / December 22nd, 2008, 5:15 am / #9

Yes it stops at 800px by default. Longer lines would be insane… I find comments on your blog slightly hard to read though, especially with the short line-height for the font size you have, in addition to the white lettering on a black background, which is already challenging. A narrow leading with long lines and no sufficient margins is generally not very friendly to the eye.

db0 / December 22nd, 2008, 5:31 am / #10

the short line-height for the font size you have

I'm not certain what you mean by that.

Generally I think it's subjective matter. I never had problems with neither white font on dark background or moderately long lines. Of course very long lines spanning the whole page width are not good but I think that the number of words I can fit in a line is good enough.

OTOH, I generally don't like sites where everything is bunched up in the middle and all the screen real-estate that exists goes to waste.

db0 / December 21st, 2008, 3:45 am / #11

Btw, don't forget to use the most useful feature of IDC: Threading ;)

EDIT; Ah, I see that the threading does not show correctly yet.

db0 / December 21st, 2008, 3:43 am / #12

Cool, another convert! :)

I'm glad to see you joined the fun and finally updated your wordpress. It must have been growing spiders by now :P

The latest comments of wordpress will not work unless you have enabled the old comment system of WordPress (from the ID settings). You should replace it either with the ID widget itself which is for the same purpose or you should use an RSS widget and feed it the ID comment feed of your site.

Your html tags should work correctly on your new comments (as you see in my link above) but not all tags are active. The important ones: a b i blockquote and img work however

Welcome to the party ;)

PS: What made you switch?

BlackSun / December 21st, 2008, 10:50 am / #13


I'm not sure why the threading is not working. I'm not really a web developer, so I get my webmaster Bruno to deal with all of that. He's been updating the CSS and trying to replace the functionality of the old comment system.

I just liked the ability of the old plug-in to display latest comments on multiple stories and comment handles in a really compact format. But one of the things that IDC breaks is the ability to have numbered comments. This is obviously because threading would make no sense with numbers being out of order.

I switched because I really like the social aspect of IDC. I always wanted to be able to see everything a particular person was posting all in one place. Since comments don't show up in Google searches, you need something like this. Also, the reputation system will make it harder for people who are troublemakers. I'm less likely to have to ban someone if they are concerned about their reputation. I think it will make for better behavior overall.

LasraelLarson / January 7th, 2009, 6:43 am / #14

Well signed up for this feature finally.

I'd be the BSJ poster formerly known as Louis. ;)

One immediate observation, the old mark-up text cue's are gone… is format, url slinking, etc still same as before? Also, no preview post… perhaps I will be given the option to edit after posting?


edit: hey cool edit feature works :)

BlackSun / January 7th, 2009, 10:34 am / #15

Hey LasraelLarson, cool handle!

Yeah sorry about the hiccups, IDC says they are implementing html buttons soon. Don't know about preview. But that's kind of moot now that you can edit your comments after the fact.

AmenASHandF / January 8th, 2009, 6:13 am / #16

Hey Louis, is that you you? Thks again for your reponse weeks ago or was that months? Loosing track of time man!
Okay, as Sean knows, I miss the old but this new formate is great ! It's clean, better organised & fun! I've been enjoying it! Anyone got "Computer for Dummys", I need one! new Windows Vista for Xmass & this new format I've been messing with, I'm having to relearn more than I want ! Hope the gliches pan out so you can keep it up!

Alan / February 18th, 2009, 1:48 pm / #17


I haven’t stopped by in a few months but I always thought it was funny that your site was on an old version of WordPress :). I’m not a web developer, but I’m an IT guy, so I always keep mine up to date.

Anyways, I’m posting from a text-based web browser in my Linux command line, so I don’t see any of the new features. I’ll check it out tomorrow at work, though.

Welcome to WordPress 2.7. :)


khmerbird / May 24th, 2010, 11:21 am / #18

i have use it my blog but with IE so often the comment cannot load, it display something like this

This website uses IntenseDebate comments, but they are not currently loaded because either your browser doesn't support JavaScript, or they didn't load fast enough.

Do you have any idea how to fix this?

my blog url is

Exchange / October 21st, 2010, 12:04 am / #19

Intense Debate is driving me nuts personally. I finally found a theme that doesn't break with it installed nor ignores it, but now it won't show older comments even though the settings page says they've been imported. WP2.7 is supposed to have threaded comments when it comes out which was my main reason for attempting to install ID. I'm thinking of just doing away with ID.

du hoc / May 15th, 2011, 7:53 pm / #20

I think the applications working well. I test them on Firefox 4.0, Google Chrome, they work very nice !
I have just installed Intense debate on my site:

pacotes de viagens / September 4th, 2012, 8:00 pm / #21

Intense Debate is driving me nuts personally. I finally found a theme that doesn't break with it installed nor ignores it.

Dieta dos Pontos / November 10th, 2012, 9:09 pm / #22

i cant install this plugin

vinalinkscompany / June 3rd, 2018, 7:30 pm / #23 – tu van dinh cu my dien eb5
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