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February 09, 2006

Comment Order Poll

Comments currently appear from newest to oldest. Several people have asked me to reverse the order. Personally, I prefer newest to oldest, but hey, I'm a flexible Guy, so cast your vote! Not only that, but I've been dying to try this Blog Flux polling thing.


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WOW, i just noticed that I am about 8 months too late to this party. Went to see if anyone has responded to my last post and found that I was the first since Feb.15th Maybe some poor soul will come across this 8 months from now and join me

I was just came from another site where I was reading the posts and was completely lost until I realized that I was reading from the most recent to the oldest. I have never noticed that before so I just did a google search to see if I could find any discussion on the reasoning for the order and to see opinions, thats what brought me to this posting. Now I have to admit, I haven't read completely through this one so if this has been mentioned then I apologize for repeating, but I would like an option to be able to "sort" them in which ever order needed at the time.

Guy, re: http://www.cocomment.com

Well in fact it offers 2 mayor things (still in early beta):
All the comments you write are stored and sharable on cocomment's site.
You can but up a box on your blog, featuring all the comments (and their cocommented replies) you made on your site and elsewhere.
It indeed does not replace the comment feature of typepad (yet?).
If you want to try it out, here an invite code for the beta:
best alfonso

alfonso - "you get the results on the applet itself, no pop-up and no page relaod as well as neat visual."

I don't see how this one is much different (not as neat visually, but I think the map is even better feature).

Sorry to take it off course, but to a newcomer, it makes sense to read the older comments first and then the newer ones. No way to get a drop down selection box to be able to choose?

Hi Guy,

Oldest first. Makes people read what's been said before repeating things. Adds value to the conversation you are building.

Much better free polls: http://www.dpolls.com


ps: Cassandra M. says hi.

The pace in a comment conversation is much faster than the publication of blog posts. Also, many people contribute in comments, which means chances are that when you go and look to see if there are new comments, you're likely to have quite a few to catch up with.

Ever started reading somebody's blog archives from the beginning, bottom up? It's really annoying. Having the latest blog post at the top works because in most cases, the only thing you'll be reading on the page is indeed the latest blog post (or the two latest ones, if it's the blog of a prolific blogger).

Laggards should prefer from «oldest to newest» as it permits to read as a plain text. But, those who are among the first to react, and come back twice (or more) to see what new, will prefer «from newest to oldest» because it is simpler for them (new are at beginning). So Guy, which one of these readers should you privilegiate : those who answer quick and are very interested, or the laggards ? Asking the question give the answer. Sorry for laggards, but «from newest to oldest is the best» ;-) (and I say that even if I am a laggard in these case as I answered the question late !) But, both side, I will read this blog anyway because I enjoy your comments, laggards or not ;-)

The ideal thing would be to have them somehow moderated, so the best ones come first, not necessarily the oldest or newest...


I voted incorrectly and would like oldest to newest. I would end up reading the comments more.

I didn't realize until I got to Ric's comment that it was going from newest to oldest. I don't like it. I feel like I've been duped because I haven't been following a conversation, but reading backwards.

I think it makes more sense to go from oldest to newest, so that people can see what initial reaction to a topic is, and then how the thoughts about it mature over time.

Interesting poll. I was just thinking of switching mine to newest to oldest and then I thought about it some more.

Let's face it, a lot of people comment, (guilty), to promote their blogs or websites. The first comment on a post is probably by someone just reflecting on the article and offering some words of related wisdom of their own. As for the people who comment later on, after the post has been live for a while, they probably woke up checked their RSS aggs, and saw that Guy posted a new article, "better comment to promote my site."

Who wants to scroll through 20 meaningless comments just to get to the meaning"full" comments.

Just some thoughts.


Why not make it oldest to newest, with the newest comment featured on the bottom of each article on the homepage?

Apple is first and foremost a hardware company. Apple is in the business of selling computers. Offering their OS on computers not made by them would be like shooting their own legs off.


Hey Smittie... good point.

My (lame) excuse for lack of user prefs on my blogs is that I use Blogger... so let's blame Google.

Mostly I blame Microsoft for not having robust blog support tightly integrated with Windows and IE.

And of course I blame Apple [Are you listening, Guy?] for not offering the Mac OS on non-Apple Intel boxes so many years ago so that poor users wouldn't have had to go with Wintel in the first place.

-- Jack Krupansky

Hey Jack,

Didn't see a whole lot of user prefs on your blog.


Ideally I agree it could be a user pref.

I would prefer old-to-new (newest at bottom). I can see how one might prefer the other way, but this is the way my mind is currently trained.

Thanks for the blog!


I use TypePad. I don't control whether I can offer user defined sort order. If TypePad offers this feature, I'll do it. Otherwise, what you see is what I can do.


Maybe some new way of viewing comments will come out this. Perhaps it could be a collaborative start-up effort. :-)

Oops... NOW I see the merit of showing the most recent comments on top... MY latest comments will be right there at the top. Cool. But of course that isn't necessarily in the best interests of other readers.

-- Jack Krupansky

I'd love to hear a REALLY good rationale for *always* putting the most recent comments on the top. The only one I can think of is that after you've read all the comments on one visit, you'd like to see the unread comments right there at the top. But that's really an argument for allowing the user to click that they read a comment and then next visit they should see "unread comments". That's the way a web feed aggregator treats posts, right?

I find that a blog post and the related comments are one *linear* story (modulo some multi-threading and off-topic comments), and that comments are frequently replies to *earlier* comments, so it makes perfect sense to read from earliest to latest.

So, either leave the order as chronological, or add a feature so that I can mark comments as "already read".

I also vote strongly for the concept of "user preference" and I have nothing but intense disdain for the seemingly-preferred concept of "blog author DICTATES preferences".

-- Jack Krupansky

It's a matter of (perceived) standards. We're used to seeing blog posts in new-to-old, and comments in old-to-new order, and doing it otherwise is confusing at the first glance.

I'm with Eric, there has to be a way to make this a user-definable option. Isn't there some kind of Guy K. principle about how computers should do things the way WE want and not the way they want? Same thing goes for this blog.

I'm with Sara (not literally but in spirit): the map is the coolest element of this post. Perhaps there's an "Art of the Map" germinating here.

umm... how 'bout a sort order button? too simple? i vote viewer choice...

Nevermind, it still nailed my location even with the bad IP address, unless someone else lives near me... Anyone in Michigan? :D

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