(UPDATE MAY 10: Sadly, I’ve had to uninstall this extension for now, it was causing problems with my browser.)
Being a proponent of conversational media, I’m a big fan of anything that makes it easier to follow online conversations wherever they occur. Increasingly these conversations happen through weblog comments. That’s great — but tracking and following those conversations over time generally has been pretty complicated.
Last summer I hacked together my own comment-tracking solution using a del.icio.us tag, mycomments. That strategy served me well for a while it’s comprehensive, coherent, and shareable. However, it’s also a pain too many clicks required to make it work each time I comment.
In February I checked out a promising service called CoComment. At the time I thought CoComment was cool, but it didn’t quite meet my needs. So I gave it time to develop. During that time I’ve lapsed in faithfully recording my comments in del.icio.us because of the labor involved.
Today I learned, via Easton Ellsworth, that CoComment has made its system much less labor-intensive. They’ve debuted the CoComment Firefox extension, which automatically updates your CoComment account as you leave a blog comment! The only extra step beyond making the blog comment is adding tags and that’s optional.
Way cool! So I’m trying it out…
I’ve only just installed the CoComment Firefox extension, and tested it by leaving a comment. It seems to be working fine. I also installed a new sidebar box (look to the right-hand side of this page for the blue box that says “Amy’s Latest Comments”).
I love that I can tag my comments with keywords that I select. However, I think the way CoComment handles this currently (at least via the Firefox extension) is clumsy. I’d prefer if the tags worked more like del.icio.us, where I get to pick items off my predefined tag list. Right now it seems that I have to type my tags by hand. (I may be wrong about this, but that’s how it looks so far.)
Even better: I wish I could simply import my extensive list of tags I’ve developed over at del.icio.us. (Hint hint to the CoComment team…)
So I’ll try CoComment out for a while now, via the Firefox Extension, to see how I like it. I’m especially curious to see how well it really does at alerting me to followup comments left by other CoComment users.
I know… it’s still not as comprehensive as I’d like. But I never expect perfection. CoComment still doesn’t support every blogging platform, so I’m sure there will be many times when I can’t track one of my comments via CoComment. So I’ll continue to use my del.icio.us tracking solution for those. (You can follow those comments here.)
What do you think of how CoComment is progressing? Please comment below.