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Intense Debate blog comment system launches public beta

Intense Debate
And the race for complete and total dominance of the blog comment marketplace is on. OK, not really, but Disqus isn't the only blog commenting system launching today. After spending a few months in private beta, Intense Debate is launching an open beta this morning.

Both Intense Debate and Disqus offer web publishers an advanced comment system with support for threaded comments and the ability to track users' comments. Both services also offer integration options with popular blog platforms like WordPress, Blogger, TypePad, and Moveable Type.

As a reader/commenter, you can subscribe to comments via email or RSS. And both services let you create a profile allowing you to see all the conversations you're currently participating in from one user-friendly screen.

Intense Debate is doing more than emerging from private beta today. The service has also added a few new features which set it apart from Disqus:
  • OpenID Support
  • "Chameleon" feature that automatically blends in with your blog theme
  • Sign up for an account without leaving the blog you're commenting on
  • Web publishers can download an XML file with their comment data

Intense Debate also offers more advanced options for how blog comments show up on your site than Disqus. For example, the comment window can slide out from under a post without a fresh page load, or it can pop up in a new window.
Intense Debate 2
Is there room for two blog commenting systems that basically perform the same features? Maybe. But it'll be interesting to watch this space and see which company (if either) gets a significant user base. Because the more registered users a blog comment service has, the more useful it becomes. Users can build profiles and reputations. And more importantly, they won't have to login to multiple services every time they want to leave a comment on another site.

Tags: blog-comments, comments, disqus, intense-debate