Automattic buys IntenseDebate, roll on a better commenting system for WordPress

Automattic has announced that it has acquired IntenseDebate for an undisclosed sum. This should ensure that, in time, the free blog commenting service has the potential to find its way onto both hosted and self-managed WordPress blogs – over four million at present.

According to a CNet article, Automattic’s Matt Mullenweg has said that IntenseDebate software could become the default commenting option on both and, citing email replies and comment rating system as the two of the main reasons for taking on the service.

IntenseDebate features comment threading, reply-by-email, and importing and exporting of comments from and to other systems. It’s already available for other blogging platforms including Movable Type and Blogger.

At present, though, the software has been closed to new sign-ups, while the system is ramped up to deal with many more users.

IntenseDebate (Via CNet News)


  1. says

    after reading Matt’s post, I checked IntenseDebate website … looks promising :) … but, do we really need threaded commenting ? are they going to make it default ? :(

  2. says

    You say threaded commenting is planned for 2.7, perhaps ID is the method by which this will be achieved?

    Of course, it’s perfectly possible for anyone on self-hosted WP to implement their own commenting system using plugins, but this brings it to the masses.

    It would be good if this is an option rather than a forced addition, though personally I really like the idea of threaded commenting, scoring systems, etc. I’ve liked it, when implemented well, on other blogs and sites, as it can help in keeping track of different comment threads, and weeding out trolls and irrelevancies, but just haven’t had the will to try and implement it on my own sites.

    My concern is about handing comments over to a third-party, however good they are. I’m not sure whether the ID system will be built in (native) to WordPress, or whether it will always be separate service.

  3. Jeremy says

    What is with WP folks “poking fun” of 6A when they release MT 4.2 which is all about comments and they turn around to try to make WP all about comments?! It sounds like WP is falling behind and needed to play catchup.

  4. says

    @Jeremy: WordPress has always had strong comment features, including a wide variety of WordPress Plugins developed by the community which include threading, replying by email, and many other features. While other blogging platforms claim they are “all about comments” that might be on the administration side. It is certainly not consistently true on the user side. TypePad, Google/Blogspot, and others make commenting complicated where WordPress has pushed for open and easy comments without anything getting in the way for a long time.

    Yes, the Administration Panels have need updating regarding comments, so now they are doing so. They listened for several years to what people wanted and watched the changing environment around comments and are now implementing that research. It’s not catchup nor is WordPress poking fun of anyone. They are working on making WordPress as robust and flexible as possible and I admire that.

    With MT going open source and feature improvements in all blog platforms and new competitors entering the market, it’s a chase for everyone to keep improving their programs and staying competitive. We can all benefit from the competition.

  5. says

    @Jeremy: I presume you were talking in general, as I don’t see any comments or indeed, anything I’ve written, poking fun at Six Apart.

    I use both platforms more-or-less equally, and both have their good and not-so-good points. IMO, the current default commenting system on both could be improved. I admit I haven’t seen the latest MT system yet, though I’ve heard good things about it.

  6. PREMIER HOME says

    I haven’t try this yet but i think it is good and i must try this to improve my quality of work……

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