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Two Level Commenting Now Available, For Blogger Blogs

Blogger blog owners and viewers have been asking for the ability to post threaded comments, for many years. Today (slightly late for Christmas 2011), Blogger released it's first answer to that request - two level commenting.
Blogger now supports threaded commenting, which means that it is now much easier to differentiate between whether someone is making a general comment on the thread, or responding to another comment on the thread.

This is not what I would call classic "threaded commenting", but it's a reasonable alternative.

If you want to reply to your readers, when they post comments on your blog, that ability is finally here.

You will need a blog with full feeds enabled, and using the embedded comment form. Since private blogs do not publish newsfeeds, this feature will not be available, on private blogs.

As described in the Buzz post, once the comment form and feed are selected, using the New GUI, there's no additional selection needed. Just surf to the blog of your choice, and look under any comment for a new "Reply" button or link.

You'll note that since this feature is provided as part of the embedded comment form, it's built into the standard post template. If your blog, maybe using a custom or third party blog template, lacks threaded commenting, you'll want to refresh the post template, to enable this feature.

Every "Reply" link, whether under an existing or new comment, or under any reply to a comment, when posted, becomes a reply to the original comment. It's quite simple - you have just 2 choices.

  • You can post an original comment.
  • You can post a reply, to any comment.

And, that's it.

Since two level comments are part of the embedded comment form, you're going to need to check your cookie filters - people using computers with overly restrictive filtering won't be able to use the embedded comment form, and they won't see the two level commenting option. Beyond that issue, two level comments should be simple to use.


Alanna Kellogg said…
Is it true that the feature only works for blogs which publish with a full feed?

If so, why would Blogger make such a decision?
starsunflower said…
Nice! Super good news. :)
Hey Chuck! Is this not available for 3rd party templates?
Chuck Croll said…

It's part of the embedded comment form, which is built into the standard post template. If your blog using a third party blog template lacks the standard post template, you'll want to refresh your post template.
Chuck Croll said…

The Buzz post specifically mentions the full feed requirement. That bothers me too - and when I'm awake I may explore that some. It appears to have been designed for use in the dynamic templates, though as tested it also works with the standard templates.

My guess is that it caused problems with dynamic template comments, with partial feed enabled. Does that make sense?
I'm familiar with this, since LJ had it, years ago.

But.......... I do not have time to return to a post, once I have read it. So if the blog owner chooses to answer questions, right in the post comments, in which they were asked... It will do me no good.

I never return.

Oh I know, it can make for a fun bunch of threads... Again, who has the time to read through a fun bunch of comment threads?

Not I. Not any more...

Just my view....
Tami said…
Thanks for the test comments. For some reason it let me reply to your comment but won't let me reply to the other two on my page. Very strange.
Roy  said…
There seems to be a number of issues with the new system. These include, the time/date format in the settings is not carried over into the new system, time zones aren't working properly across he world, and there are reported font problems and browser crashes. Clear for such a great idea it was fully tested.
Chuck Croll said…
Interesting points, Auntie.

You're not required to read the responses to your comments immediately - or at all. But if you comment, someone replies, and you reply without reading previous replies, you're just going to look like an idiot.

I guess it all boils down to - How much time do you have to participate?

I don't spend half the time that I could, replying to what gets said, so I guess I'm not a great example either.
Chuck Croll said…
And here I am wishing that I had two level commenting on this blog - and knowing that if I did, I would have way less comments to reply to.
Jean said…
I have wanted this feature for the entire two years I've been blogging. Now it's here ... but not for me. Since Blogger added the feature, I have not even been able to access my dashboard and my blog locks up when I click on Comments on a post. Every time I attempt to access the dashboard I get a long ERROR: message that concludes with "Expect more errors." Needless to say, I am quite unhappy with Blogger!
Hi Chuck .. I can't comment on blogs that utilise the two tier commenting set up ..

It's a pain - often I can't comment on embedded comments anyway - even if I change browsers back to IE from Chrome that I use everyday, the choice of name and URL don't appear.

Cheers Hilary
I did not make any changes, on my Comments. But Blogger installed this new *thing,* anyway.

Many of my Readers, now can NOT comment in my blog.

This is no great improvement, for me. Or for the other bloggers, who can not comment, in many blogs they read.

Chuck Croll said…
Jean / Hilary / Auntie,

This is a typical beta product, in the history of Blogger. What's unfortunate is that they installed it without an ability to not opt-in.

Hopefully, they will learn from this experience, and never again deploy a new feature without at least providing an "opt-out" setting.

If you want to opt-out, try tweaking the post template on your blog.

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