Hidden Nuggets Series #47 – “The heart of the prudent acquires knowledge…” – Proverbs 18:15
I find it frustrating when people make blanket statements about a topic without proof to back up their claim. They present their argument as the gospel truth when, in reality, it is only based on speculation. At the most they have anecdotal evidence to support their claim, not anything that would validate their position.
Truth is, I also do this more often than I should.
Evidence is the best indicator of truth. That’s why it’s so vital in a court of law. Without sufficient indicators that connect the dots, the accused will more than likely walk free. That’s why the prosecutor works diligently to acquire the necessary knowledge to convince the court his arguments are valid.
The Bible says in Proverbs 18:15 that “The heart of the prudent [wise] acquires knowledge…” Why? I’m convinced it’s how we make better decisions, produce surety and make us prosperous. As Solomon would later right in Ecclesiastes 7:12, “…the excellence of knowledge is that wisdom gives life to those who have it.”
What does this have to do with a blog commenting system?
Well, I can’t make any declarative statements about which one may be better or worse without gaining some knowledge for myself. So I’m deciding to run a little test.
Oops…That Plugin Was Deactivated
I’ve had the DISQUS commenting system on my blog since its inception. Honestly, I had no biases towards it when I began, being such a newbie blogger in those days. I happened across a few solid reviews for it, saw it on several key blogs I was reading at the time and thought I’d give it a go.
For some time now I’ve been reading about the debate over whether third-party comment systems like DISQUS are effective. As with any system there are pros and cons to using them. The two big drawbacks seem to be that they are not optimized for SEO and that they create an unneeded barrier to engagement. The system requires users to register an account with the comment system before they are allowed to comment. Evidently many people don’t want to hassle with that and thus choose not to comment.
That’s not good since comments are seen as the lifeblood of an engaging blog.
So last weekend my DISQUS plugin registered on my WordPress dashboard as having an update available. I clicked to update the plugin and in the middle of the process my Internet connection cut out. I received an error message and was forced to wait a few moments before I could refresh my page.
Once the connection returned, I noticed the plugin had indeed been updated. However, for some reason it had also been deactivated. When I went to a blog post, all the old post comments were showing up in the standard WordPress commenting system style. Weird.
Could this be a sign from above that it was time for a change? Hmmm…
A Six-Month Commenting Test
So, for the next six months Luke1428 will be running the standard WordPress commenting system. My goal is to see if it increases engagement. I’ll be comparing the total number of comments in the first and last halves of the year.
I really don’t know what I’ll find or if other factors will contribute to more or less engagement. Once completed though, I will share my results with you. I wouldn’t feel qualified to present a case one way or another until I gave it sufficient due diligence.
What commenting system do you use? Do you comment on DISQUS blogs? What benefits or challenges do you see with it? What are some other ways to test reader engagement? What have you done to get your blogging community more involved with your site?