Intense Debate (Comment System) on iRunFar!

Howdy readers,

Here at iRunFar, we’ve long considered a way to enhance our comment system to embrace the positive, communal aspect of our sport that iRunFar was built on… as well as to deal with some of the growing pains that were likely inevitable in growing from a personal running blog to a global news and information source. That’s why I’m excited to introduce iRunFar’s new comment system powered by Intense Debate.

Some of the new features we’re excited to share include:

  • More personality and greater personification through the use of avatars and personal profiles;
  • A more refined look and, hopefully, greater usability for the comment section;
  • Community upvoting and downvoting of comments to help separate the wheat from the chaff;
  • The ability of a commenter to visibly build a reputation as an insightful and informative contributor via the above system;
  • Easy reader log-in options via ubiquitous platforms such as Facebook and Twitter; and
  • Integrated email notification system for comments as well as reply by email(!).

We’re simultaneously taking steps to make iRunFar’s comment section even more friendly and informative, two of the hallmarks of our website–and, indeed, the trail /ultra communities–since its inception. To that end, you’ll now need to log in to leave a comment. We are a community and community members have faces, history, feelings, responsibility, and reciprocal relationships. The major historic drawback of requiring logon–the log-in process itself–has been heavily mitigated by the ubiquity of Facebook and Twitter and the ability to sign in with either in addition to being able to sign in with an Intense Debate (or WordPress.com) account.

We highly encourage you to sign up for and use an Intense Debate or (WordPress.com) account as one is needed to up vote/down vote comments as well as accumulate reputation points.

Even with attribution now required, there will be the occasional bad actor. With Intense Debate, you’ll be able to help us identify trolling, offensive, or spam comments by clicking “Report” on such comments.

One of the great things about Intense Debate is that we can try it on an exploratory basis with nothing lost if we decide to revert to WordPress’s native commenting system in six days, six months, or six years.

The goal of this change is to foster the constructive dialog that iRunFar has long been known for while limiting distracting issues that developed under our previous comment system. With that in mind, we’d love to know what you think about Intense Debate as well as if you have any problems leaving a comment!

-Bryon