Does Your Blog Still Offer Popup Comments?

Filed as Features on October 25, 2007 10:34 am

I have to admit that I’m still a little stunned, and frustrated, when I can’t find the comments on a blog post, even though the comment counter says 11 comments. I want to leave a comment, so I click on the comment link and, boom, a popup comment window blasts in my face.

Is your blog still offering popup or hidden comments?

Blogger is the most notorious for this uncomfortable method of comment handling. Some of the blogs don’t show the comments unless you click the comment’s link, and then they are shown in a separate popup window or the page reloads so you can see the comments. Some Blogger blogs now include comments posted on the same page as the post, which does make it easier for responding to the comments when they are all connected to the post, but most still require the long wait for the popup window to load so you can leave a comment. SIGH.

The default Themes for WordPress also offer an option to use the popup comments form, though few bloggers and Theme designers choose that option.

Which makes me want to ask those who are still using popup comments on their blogs: why and is it working for you?

Are Popup Comment Windows Working for Your Blog?

I’m a firm believer in “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. So if popup comment windows are working for your blog, why? How are they working? How do they help?

Are they helping? Or have you just gotten used to them? Or do you not know how to change them?

A lot of bloggers do not know how to change their blogs to stop popup comments or integrate comments back into their blogs. Check with your blog’s guide for how to fix that, or find a willing friend to help.

I know from my years of blogging and asking fellow bloggers what is working and not working on their blogs, they all agree that anything that gets in the way of the blog conversation hurts a blog. This includes CAPTCHAs, torture tests, quizzes, and popup comments.

While the rest of us have learned that they don’t work on our blogs and have stopped using them, I want to hear from those who are continuing to use popup comments.

Please, help us understand why you are using them and how they help your blog.

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  1. By cerebralmum posted on October 25, 2007 at 2:45 pm
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    This definitely is an annoying feature for me. I have a small screen, and sometimes the pop-ups cannot be resized even though the contents do not fit. With the blogs I read regularly, I know about it and use Firefox’s “Open link in new tab” function so I get a full screen, but I much prefer leaving a comment on the posts page.

    There have been times when I decided not to comment after all because of pop-ups. In web-time, that extra half-second can be a lot.

    Reply

  2. By d posted on October 25, 2007 at 5:09 pm
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    i actually prefer the pop up comments window. i almost never click on “continue reading” or “after the jump” links. one reason i like the pop out is because i can comment, but leave the blog i’m at with a link i find interesting.

    Reply

  3. By Darnell Clayton posted on October 25, 2007 at 11:48 pm
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    Hey Lorelle,

    I am not to sure if this is default for blogger blogs. Last I checked, you had to select this feature (otherwise it would default to the “blogger comment” page).

    Most people who select the pop ups do it because they do not want people to leave their screen, or they think its cool.

    I find them pretty annoying, not to mention the fact that pop-up blockers may find them delicious (hence the reason I would never recommend them).

    Reply

  4. By Ree posted on October 28, 2007 at 9:06 am
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    My site has pop-up comments. I’m not fond of it either, but my host doesn’t permit commenting for free accounts; I had to go with an outside service. I considered putting comments in their own IFRAME to display them on the same page as their entry, but an IFRAME would not expand as more comments were added. I thought a link was better than a mostly blank IFRAME or multiple scrollbars on the page.

    It’s an unpleasant situation — but I’ve been on this site since 2000, there’s no exporter for the writing I’ve already done there, and I don’t relish copying everything by hand. I work with what I have in place.

    Reply

  5. By Lorelle VanFossen posted on October 28, 2007 at 1:27 pm
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    @Ree:

    I did a search for “export diaryland” and there are a couple options. You can export with XML and someone has written a script for exporting into a MT format. Either of these will easily import into WordPress, including WordPress.com, free, too. With better commenting.

    There is always an alternative, and a lot of creative people who just need to be asked the right question.

    Why wait another couple of years worth of posts before moving “up” to something better. And an iframe is not a solution. It’s just giving you another problem.

    Reply

  6. By Justin Tadlock posted on October 28, 2007 at 5:22 pm
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    I have to be really inspired to say something about a blog post if the blogger expects me to use a popup window. They were annoying when I first started blogging five years ago. They’re annoying now. There’s a 99% chance that I won’t return to your blog if my only option is to use popup comments.

    Ree, listen to Lorelle.

    Reply

  7. By Brenda posted on November 1, 2007 at 1:34 am
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    For a highly visual blog such as Twelve by Twelve, we found that we preferred the pop up window as it allowed us to see the art quilts whilst we were composing our comments.

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  8. By Lina posted on November 2, 2007 at 5:25 am
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    I have always been annoyed with pop up windows in general, but yet I still had pop-up windows for my comments up until I read this post to remind me to switch it over. It is annoying, and furthermore, if you are a do-follower, the comments in the pop up window do not follow in blogspot even after you change your CSS to follow – all the more reason to take pop-ups off!

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  9. By Lorelle VanFossen posted on November 3, 2007 at 2:02 am
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    @Brenda:

    While you preferred it, do you readers?

    What we prefer has little or nothing to do with what our readers like, need, and want. Are they really looking at your quilts when they comment? Or are you losing comments because people don’t want to wait for the popup window to load, or find it frustrating, or it opens in a tab at the end of the queue and they don’t even know the popup opened until they get to the end of the tab queue? Or do they click to comment, and then lose track of what they wanted to say as they waited?

    Really check with your readers to see if they like it, and then choose appropriately to their needs, not your assumptions.

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  10. Weekly Digest: Lorelle Recovers From WordCamp Israel, Sicks, Tackles WordPress.com Marketplace, Content Thieves, and Kicks Blogging Ass « Lorelle on WordPressNovember 17, 2007 at 6:44 am
  11. By Amorettia posted on November 28, 2007 at 6:55 am
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    It really annoys me:(
    I couldn’t find any solution of this problem for hours. blogger/blogspot is flexible but also lack of necessary services now, while Korean Blog Services are mostly abundant with this type of services but not flexible(cannot edit with HTML, not customarizable)

    Reply

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