coComment: Four reasons why I am disappointed…

coComment: Track your blog comments everywhere
coComment: Lets you track your blog comments. Here’s where it falls short…

UPDATE: coComment developers indicated that they’ve fixed some of the problems I’ve shared. If you need technical support or want to suggest a feature, they have an active forum for addressing usability issues and more. Hat tip to Stephanie for sharing her perspectives on coComment as well.

You’ll often hear everyone in the blogosphere rave about the latest and the greatest, but not everything always works the way they were advertised. coComment is one such example, and I really wanted to like it a lot. Here are reasons why I am giving it a thumbs down:

1. Missing a step kills the joy…
While the bookmarklet feature makes the tracking process quite simple, I sometimes forget to hit the coComment button before posting my comment. There is no undo for this step. Instead of the bookmarlet, CoComment really needs to make a browser plugin or extension to make the entire process transparent.

2. Doesn’t work everywhere…
Yup, simply put, it didn’t work on all WordPress blogs (perhaps they get too customized sometimes) and it didn’t work for any blogger.com ones either. I think these two blog engines make up for more than 75% of the blogs out there. Major Bummer.

3. Comment tracking issues…
I assumed that coComment tracks entire comment treads, not just what I alone posted on someone’s blog. Well, it worked for others, but not me. It didn’t do anything beyond giving me a bookmarked list of comments I made, complete with what I wrote and providing this as an RSS feed. Don’t believe me? Compare the comments tracked on my coComments with the actual comments on Popagandhi’s post on the 1gb iPod nano. coComment only reflect my one comment, while there were six on that post. What’s up homie?

4. Equivalent Del.icio.us hack for coComment
Because of my earlier point, we can ALREADY do what coComment does by using existing technology. Steve Rubel once said how brillant Elisa Camahort was to use a specific del.icio.us tag to track blog comments… simple, zero-learning curve, and yes, you can subscribe to that tag’s RSS feeds. She called her tag “Commented” as you can see it in action here.

So after a week of CoCommenting, I doubt I’ll use it anymore. I’ll probably switch to using the abovementioned idea of substituting it with the omnipotent Del.icio.us instead. Let me know if I’ve missed out something big here, because I definitely don’t see the unique selling point of CoComment anymore.

Aside: I think some users are already gaming the “Most Comments” segment on the front page of CoComment.com. To appear as a top commenter, just CoComment you own comments on your own blog a gazillion times.

8 thoughts on “coComment: Four reasons why I am disappointed…

  1. Note to those disappointed or criticizing coComment: you need to be aware that it was made public prematurely, while still in pretty early closed beta testing stages.

    Hear it in Laurent’s own words: “The release was not planned. We were NOT ready, and are in trouble ever since. As Scoble explained he asked me what I was doing and I ended up showing cocomment to him and those present at the chalet. Scoble liked it, and the rest is history.”

    http://pascalrossini.typepad.com/mon_weblog/2006/02/lift06_levier_c.html#comment-13756819

    No, it doesn’t support all blogging platforms — the developers are coding night and day.

    If your blog isn’t supported and you want to try and fix it, here are instructions you might be able to use: http://www.cocomment.com/teamblog/?p=18

    No, it doesn’t track non-coComment comments — the developers are coding night and day.

    Have your say on development priorities! http://www.cocomment.com/teamblog/?p=27

    Hitting the bookmarklet really sucks. Get the GreaseMonkey script which frees you from doing that forever:

    http://www.cocomment.com/teamblog/?p=14

  2. Glad my little del.icio.us “hack” is getting around, but I do have to advise you of the biggest problem with it: user forgetfulness.

    Your #1 problem listed above is also a lesser problem with my solution. I periodically forget to post to del. after I’ve commented. Now, if I realize it I can go at any time and fix it, unlike CoComment. It does go to show you though that it will always be true that solutions are only as good as the people using them ­čÖé

  3. Stephanie: Thanks a lot for the remedy links. Still, I do think coComment was open to the public a little too early. Being first to market is important, but having a flakey service would turn away users and even give them a bad impression. Do note that a lot of web services advertising their themselves by using invitations to closed betas to entice signups, so this shouldn’t be an exception to coComment. My goal is to promote new startups, but I hope you can see that I’m reflecting the general sentiment of new coComment users. Moral of the story: Be early to market, but not too early!

    Elisa: Thanks for dropping by. At first I didn’t get how advantagous your del.icio.us hack was until coComment came out. Comparing both solutions, I agree that it only serves to show us that the good old del.icio.us solution is way better (i.e. comment reposting, rss feed, search). Now we just need a greasemonkey script that’ll detect comment posting and send them to del.icio.us for us!

  4. Hi Kevin, first of all thanks for your sincere criticism, all words taken in account. Many of them were already part of the ToDo list and actually some have been acomplished..like support for many more blogging platforms than the ones you mention above, i,e MT (MovableType) has been included… http://www.cocomment.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=131

    For the record we will like to stress that a ton of work and resources are being put to make the service better, both from the growing commnity of users and the project developers. Soon there will be many more controls over the way commnets are entered and reviewed, even our beloved bookmarklet is in danged of being rendered obsolete…it’s just beginning so please keep commenting, we are open to your remarks: http://www.cocomment.com/forum

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