coComment: Comment Tracking

One of the hot topics on the internet the last couple of days has been the private beta launch of coComment. coComment allows you to track comments you make on other blogs and display them via a customized page at coComment, a side bar component (like I do with Most Recent Inbound Links on the right side of the main Newsome.Org page) and/or via an RSS feed. The service is free and it looks very promising.

Solution Watch has a very good summary of how it works.

Here’s what I have been doing to track my comments and my initial impressions of coComment.

My Old Plan

Previously I have been bookmarking my comments on other blogs via Delicious with a “mycomments” tag. Here is that page on Delicious. Then I use RSS-to-Javascript to create a java script that I display on my Comments Elsewhere page (Update: no longer in operation). I didn’t think this up. I read about it on A Consuming Experience or Fresh Blog or somewhere similar.

It works pretty well, though occasionally RSS-to-Javascript is slow or down. But it has been a pretty reliable system so far.

My New Plan

Now I am going to start doing my comment tracking and serving via coComment. There’s not much I can add in the way of an introduction to the service that isn’t covered by the Solution Watch post, but here are my initial impressions. I’m not going to talk about bugs and whatnot, since that is the whole purpose of beta testing and I’ll post those reports in the coComment beta forum. But here are my initial thoughts on the service.

The bookmarklet that you use to integrate your comments into the coComments feed is simple to install (at least in Firefox) and very unobtrusive. It only requires a single click before posting a comment to another blog and a little icon appears in the comment box to indicate that you’re good to go. All in all, the commenting process is the same as it was before, with only a single additional click required. This should solve one of the concerns Mike Arrington had yesterday about using a third party service for commenting. It’s much more like Delicious in this regard than it is a third party central commenting platform (which is a good thing).

So the comment tracking seems to be very well implemented and easy to set up and use.

The side bar comments serving is also an improvement over my current approach. I have not added that content to the main Newsome.Org page yet, but I have been testing it on a separate page. I don’t know if I’ll add it to the main page or not, but at a minimum I’ll reconfigure my My Comments Elsewhere page to use coComment.

The most promising feature is the RSS feed of your comments. I am still playing around with this feature and will talk about it more in my next coComment article.

Current Conclusions

A very promising service. Wonder if they can figure out a way to do the same thing with inbound comments?