WPWeekly Episode 90 – Interview With Michael Koenig

wordpressweekly1In the first Saturday edition of WordPress Weekly, I interviewed Michael Koenig who is VP Of Marketing for IntenseDebate as well as an evangelist. During this episode, Michael gave us the low down on what IntenseDebate was all about, how the service works, how it can be extended by end users, and how it is different than some of the other third party commenting services available. Another interesting part of the discussion centered around the fears involved with using a third party to handle comments and how IntenseDebate calms those fears with its synchronization feature.

The turn out for the show was much better than what I’ve been seeing on Tuesday evenings which I’m pretty happy to see. Also during this interview, I accepted a challenge from Michael. The challenge was to install the IntenseDebate plugin and use the service for at least one week. Starting March 8th, the comment form on WPTavern.com will be powered by IntenseDebate until March 15th. After the challenge is over with, I’ll write a review and also solicit feedback from those who submitted comments on the site within this time frame.

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Announcements:

On March 13th, I’ll be interviewing Mike Cloutier to talk about his use of WordPress for RidgewayHerald.ca and we’ll also talk about the state of the print industry as he sees it.

WPWeekly Meta:

Next Episode: Saturday, March 13th 2P.M. EST

Subscribe To WPWeekly Via Itunes: Click here to subscribe

Length Of Episode: 54 Minutes

Download The Show: WordPressWeeklyEpisode90.mp3

Listen To Episode #90:

8 Comments


  1. I’m hesitant as well to switch my comments over to IntenseDebate. Guess I’ll be checking your review post and make a decision at this point. Great interview with lots of insights!

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  2. I’ve been meaning to give Intense Debate a try for a while now, I’ll be interested to hear how your experiment goes Jeff.

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  3. @JLeuze – this seems to be a general consent within the WP Community … the default WP Comments handling isn’t too bad but the features IntenseDebate promises to add are tempting. Still a lot of people holding back on adding them … maybe Jeff is going to be the big switch ;-)

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  4. Well, the main advantage of distributed comment systems has always been the idea that people who stumble upon your site are already logged in and therefore more likely to leave a comment. Anything – absolutely ANYTHING – you can do to lower the barrier to participation is good.

    As such, the value of any one system largely depends on how many users it has: how many users will arrive at your site, see their own gravatar smiling back at them, telling them that they are already logged in and that any comment they contribute will earn them rep within the larger system. Any rep system used by a large number of sites is going to encourage people to comment more frequently.

    Now that the merge between the IntenseDebate and WordPress.com userbases is underway, IntenseDebate effectively has 12 million users – at a stroke, it has become the most useful commenting system. If the rep system is also deployed across all WordPress.com blogs, Automattic will have a home run, no-one will be able to match that momentum, IntenseDebate will become the standard.

    My only reservation about IntenseDebate it lacks the killer feature that makes Ajax Edit Comments (the comment plugin Jeff uses here at the tavern) really shine: the countdown that allows users to fix mistakes in their comments that they didn’t notice before clicking Submit.

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  5. @donnacha | WordSkill – That’s a good point, such a small percentage of readers actually leave comments that anything you can do to reduce the friction is a good thing.

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  6. @Michael Koenig – I’m late on our bet but I have my reasons lol. Still working on getting ID on the site for at least a week.

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  7. I have been commenting with intense debate for a while but just today installed it on my blog. It is easy to set up and I like the fact that it works with comment luv. When I installed it, it did take out my top commentators but you can install intense debates version using HTML.

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