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P8TT Housekeeping: Threaded comments are back!


By Adam Bink

Folks, you may have noticed threaded comments are back. Our tech wizard installed them, along with fabulous new rotating pictures of the community that rotate every so often, last night.

A few issues to help you get used to the new comments system:

  • You may have noticed old comments have not yet ported in. Don’t panic! We have over 100,000 comments in the system since Day One, and it can take some time to import in. We’re keeping an eye on the progress. Here’s an example of what an old post with imported comments looks like (the margins may look a little funky). Sometime later today, all the comments will have been imported. As of this post, comments from January 2010 through early March of this year are in the bag.
  • While we are still exploring login options, at the moment, there are several options you can use to log in. First is your old account. This is different than your login at the top right of the page. It’s the same username/password you used on the old system before we migrated over, e.g. from January 2010 until early May 2011. This is helpful because many more people have that account than have registered under the new system. A second way is to register with IntenseDebate, which runs the new comment plugin. Note: if you already have a account from the old system you’ve been using prior to last month, you do not need to register with IntenseDebate; the accounts are automatically linked so you don’t have to create a separate one. If you look at my comments on this morning’s threads, you see I am using my old WordPress account from the first version of P8TT, linked with IntenseDebate. The third way is to register with OpenID. Last, you can comment as a guest. It’s up to you. There may be more ways, and we are waiting for the comments to finish loading in on other posts, so I will post any updates.
  • You can turn on and off the threads. I think this is one of the coolest features. If long-running debates that make you scroll way down aren’t your thing, or you’re tired of a discussion, you can simply click to turn off that thread, while leaving on other threads if you like. If you love you threads, you can leave as many on as you like. So, it’s kind of a happy medium between those who love their threads and those who want to get to new comments when they reload or come back to a page. It’s all up to you.
  • You can subscribe to new comments in two ways. One is by subscribing on the backend of your user account. Simply login, and you will find this page:

You can have the system automatically e-mail you when someone replied to a comment you made.

You can also subscribe by leaving a comment and subscribing just to replies, or to all new comments on a blog post thread.

Several folks have asked whether you can still subscribe to new comments without leaving dummy characters for comments. We’re waiting for the comments to finish loading, and will look into it. A lot of folks like that, and so do I.

  • As always, it can take some time getting used to the system. Please use this thread as an open thread to leave questions and report glitches. Not everything will be perfect for everyone, but we think the plugin will do the job. As always, if you’re having extreme trouble, drop me a line.
  • Comment away!


  • 1. Maggie4NoH8  |  June 9, 2011 at 5:54 am

    OK – is my picture showing up yet????

  • 2. nightshayde  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    I don't see it yet & I just cleared my cache … but if you added it through gravatar, it could take a few minutes to show up.

  • 3. DazedWheels  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:39 am

    Great work, Adam! I very much prefer the threaded comment format.

    Can you ask your tech support folks if there's any way to HTTPS-enable the login here? If I change the http to https for this site, as is, a CentOS Apache test page is displayed. Thanks again, and "hi" everyone!

  • 4. Sagesse  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:27 am

    Subscribing. There's nothing new under the sun.

  • 5. Ann S.  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:28 am

    Hooray for threaded comments!!

    Edited to add: once you post there is an "edit" button on the right and below your comment, which you can click to edit your comment. Hooray!!!

  • 6. Carpool Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 11:51 am

    OMG….we're all back together again. And an editic feature? COULD IT BE????

  • 7. Carpool Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 11:53 am

    Oh noes…I don't see the edit button….and I made a typo, too! Oh well, I am just glad to have the comments collected into threads : )

  • 8. davep  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    I'm gonna try that edit feature myself….

  • 9. davep  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    Hmmm… I'm not seeing it either…..

  • 10. Kathleen  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:34 am

  • 11. Julie Cason  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:41 am

    Bee-yoo-tee-ful. Thank you for the flexible functionality.

  • 12. justjoel  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:43 am

    I’m still not seeing how to reply to a comment, nor am I seeing the replies. Could someone reply to this in a separate comment @ me with some advice?


  • 13. Mark Mead-Brewer  |  June 9, 2011 at 11:41 am

    This is just wonderful!!!

  • 14. Carpool Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Oh, and how FAB we have some lesbian couples featured up on the masthead now!!! THE TIME HAS COME!!

  • 15. Kate  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    And I still can't find the edit button……….

  • 16. nightshayde  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    I don't see it as a "button," but as a link in the bottom right-hand corner of a post after you submit your reply. Perhaps there's only a certain time-window in which to edit a post? At least that's the way it works on another site at which I post.

  • 17. nightshayde  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    Maybe it was a mis-click?

    How is married life treating you, Mark?

  • 18. Mark Mead-Brewer  |  June 9, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    Maybe…..doubt it, but maybe
    Married life is wonderful…been working on getting the house back in our name…have plans for a big party on the 25th, a sort of reception as it were.
    Couldn't be happier right now 🙂

  • 19. nightshayde  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU! I'm so happy to have threaded replies back. 😀

    Now one small picky little thing: Is there a way to get the "Subscribe to: ___" field (bottom left-hand corner underneath the box in which comments are typed – opposite the "Submit comment" button) to default to "None" instead of defaulting to "Replies?" I may well be in the minority here, but I don't need or want e-mails telling me about new posts. I prefer to check for new posts manually, leaving my e-mail box to its regularly-scheduled spam. I just know I'm going to forget to click to "none" now & then and that I'll wind up with all kinds of e-mail I don't want.

    ETA: I was able to change the default in my account settings, I think. Also — I'm loving the fact that we have an "edit" option!

  • 20. Maggie4NoH8  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    How do you get a picture??? I want a picture. I don't want a blank silhouette.


  • 21. Maggie4NoH8  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    Oohhh… Testing a comment. I am liking the collapsable reply thingie-ma-bob!

    AND it's editable, too?

    Holy Cow, Batman!

  • 22. Prop 8 Trial Tracker &raq&hellip  |  June 9, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    […] keep trying out and posting comments on the threaded comments thread, folks, as we cover other topics. It helps to have everything in one place […]

  • 23. Sagesse  |  June 9, 2011 at 1:03 pm

    Deja vu all over again. I seem to have forgotten to tick the box :).

  • 24. Sheryl, Mormon Mom  |  June 9, 2011 at 1:07 pm

    Thank you Adam and the technical team for not only giving us back the Reply feature but also giving us editing capability. Now to find those typos as soon as I post not 2 days later.

  • 25. Sheryl, Mormon Mom  |  June 9, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    I, too, have had to shorten my name. So, you will no longer be reminded that I have this wonderful son who just happens to be gay. And speaking of him, he will be with me Monday. Looking forward to seeing all who can make it.

  • 26. Carpool_Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:01 pm

    Oh! Are we invited somewhere??? And WHAT'S TO EAT???

  • 27. davep  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:24 pm

    I believe Sheryl is referring to the folks meeting at the court house in SF on Monday. Sure wish I could be there with all of you!

  • 28. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    Maybe editing requires an Intensedebate login? I don't get it with OpenID.

  • 29. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    Ahh yes. Creating an account with IntenseDebate seems to be the way to go (or use your wordpress account if you have one – I didn't).

    Sure enough I see Edit and Delete links below my posts now.


  • 30. Kate  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    Thanks JonT — I'll try that.

  • 31. Kate_B  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    OK — am trying again. Naturally there were already many Kates in their database, so I am now Kate_B here so I can use the editing feature…. now to see if it works for me.

  • 32. Maggie4NoH8  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:07 pm

    I signed up for an intensedebate account… and uploaded a pic there. Went to lunch, and ta-dahhh… There's my pic here.

    Apparently, a giant glass of iced tea from McDonalds helps. 😉

  • 33. Sagesse  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:10 pm

    For information. I have subscribed, but am not getting e-mail notifications. I did receive some earlier in the day, don't know what's changed.

  • 34. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    I have not either. When I was using OpenID auth, rather than the ID auth I'm using now, and I selected subscribe, it did send me confirmation emails, but trying to 'confirm' them simply resulted in errors like:

    'Unable to validate
    Validation code: 71c47d7ba953cb6f08c5a9a7d91a96e0

    Since using the ID auth, even though I select 'All new comments' I still have not received any. Yet.

    But I must admit, I really like this system so far. Hope the email thing will be worked out soon.

  • 35. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    Yes, I am getting 'confirmation' emails, but when I go to the URL's in them, I got (I had 2 of them):

    502 Bad Gateway

    and the second:

    Unable to validate
    Validation code: 8be628bcc328352dcae46aa4522b6767

    So something is not yet quite right there. Maybe the old comments need to finish loading first?

    Anyone else having any difficulties?

  • 36. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    Note that the 'Edit' function seems to disappear after awhile, but there's always 'Delete' 🙂

    Also, my 'name' JonT' was also taken so I chose another. However, in the IntenseDebate 'edit profile' area, you can indicate what you want your 'display' name to be – hence I show up as 'JonT' here again.

  • 37. Kate  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Excellent — I will see if I can make that work for me, too.

    EDIT: It works! I'm back to being the same ol' Kate.

  • 38. Carpool Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    Oh god…I must confront technology ONCE AGAIN as I scurry over there to get account.

  • 39. Carpool Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Yes….this will be like the ride off into El Dorado…searching for the Fountain of Youth.

  • 40. Carpool Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    OH GOD…..someone else got to them first!!! yet, a fine gravatar was chosen, and all was well in the land.

  • 41. Jeff Tabaco  |  June 9, 2011 at 2:58 pm

    Neat! Hello, everyone, again! OK, so no wonder I wasn't seeing any of the threading and "reply" buttons and other neat features… I have a browser extension called Ghostery (which is supposed to block all kinds of bugs, cookies, and other bric-a-brac). Sometimes it blocks all too well, and I finally thought to look at it just now… sure enough, it was blocking IntenseDebate. So I unblocked it and things look fine to me.

  • 42. Carpool_Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:04 pm


    Go to Intensedebate website and create an account. Somehow, through the unseen magic of electricity, wires and who-knows-what-all-else, that gives you different options here. You can enter a pic as an avatar, too!

  • 43. davep  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    Thanks Carpool Cookie! I'll check it out later tonight when I can browse through some photos on my home PC!

  • 44. Carpool_Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    Remember, hardly anyone uses an image of themselves. You can protect annonymity by using…like, a picture of me! (Or some similarly bright image)

  • 45. adambink  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:54 pm

    Thanks everyone for helping each other out!

  • 46. nightshayde  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:17 pm

    I'm pretty sure there are gremlins and/or elves involved, too. Perhaps a wee bit of magic.

    A wizard did it?!

  • 47. nightshayde  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    I see it after I post. Maybe it has something to do with the browser or OS you use? I'm posting from a Windows XP computer running Firefox (but not Firefox 4).

    ETA: I just read down the page a bit. It apparently has to do with the account you use to log in here. I am logged into WordPress, so my WP profile is being used (and I have an edit option).

  • 48. Carpool_Cookie  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:00 pm

    I fixed it by joining that intensedebate (or whatever it is) program. yay! Thanks for the response : )

  • 49. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    Testing some stuff…

  • 50. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:37 pm

    Embedded image?

    <img src=""&gt;

  • 51. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:37 pm

    nope. URL?

    Daily Squee

  • 52. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:38 pm




    <del>deleted – uses 'del' tag?</del>

  • 53. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    no del… let's try strike

  • 54. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:44 pm


    How about a 'naked' URL?

  • 55. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    Good… in square brackets?


  • 56. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:46 pm

    Bad idea 🙂

    Would be nice to embed images (can be enabled according to… )

    But I can see how some might find that annoying…?

  • 57. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 6:40 pm

    Testing a reply via android phone.

  • 58. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 6:42 pm

    Looks great!

    Edit: try an edit? 😉

  • 59. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:18 pm

    Embedding a Youtube video?

    <iframe width="560" height="349" src="; frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

  • 60. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    Nope. Let's try 'old embed code' from yt:

    <object width="560" height="349"><param name="movie" value=";hl=en_US&amp;rel=0"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src=";hl=en_US&amp;rel=0&quot; type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="560" height="349" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true"></embed></object>

  • 61. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    Ok so no YT embedding that I can see… Lets try via naked URL?

  • 62. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    Nope. No YT embedding I guess…

  • 63. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    Ok, after reading:

    YouTube embedding, spellchecking and a few other capabilities are provided via plugins for the IntenseDebate plugin itself.


  • 64. adambink  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    Good questions. Looking into it tomorrow.

  • 65. Mark Mead-Brewer  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    Experimenting….dummy post 🙂

  • 66. Mark Mead-Brewer  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:05 pm

    Trying to find this edit button I've been hearing about 🙂

  • 67. Mark Mead-Brewer  |  June 9, 2011 at 3:56 pm

    Seems to have been deleted 🙂

  • 68. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    So not finding this edit button…not seeing how to delete a post (assume that it's tied in with the edit button)
    I have tried setting up various accounts and looked at all my options and settings in wordpress etc
    Any suggestions? 🙂

  • 69. Kate  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    Mark, it finally worked for me after I set up an account at IntenseDebate and used that to log in here.

  • 70. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:04 am

    Tells me I already have my email addressed linked to an account on so won't let me set up a new account and I have no idea how to find the account info.
    I seem to be able to log in with my wordpress ID and my P8TT ID, but neither give me the neato edit button I covet so.
    I may try a different browser…firefox can be a pill sometime

  • 71. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    For me, all I had to do was set up an intense debate account and login to it. Then to the right of the "Reply" button, you should see an Edit and Delete link.

    The Edit link seems to disappear after some short time, but the Delete stays.

    I'm still having some issues with subscribing to comments though.

    (tried edit 🙂 Me Likey 🙂

  • 72. Mark Mead-Brewer  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    Thanks guys…I'll give that a try

  • 73. BK  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:25 pm

    Love the new page banners! I love how they keep changing! : )

  • 74. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    Subscribe without posting a comment:

    According to:

    You can subscribe without commenting…

    Select the 'RSS' dropdown just before that start of comments.

    I think I will try that since the other way does not seem to be working.

  • 75. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:31 pm

    Ok, that was easy. Did that and it said: You're subscribed. So we'll see if that's actually true!

  • 76. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 4:36 pm

    It still sends me the validation email with a link to go to. However, this time it validated! Yay.

    One other thing… I had a typo in the main post starting this thread – it will not let you edit a post once it has replies. It will give you an error 'Can't edit a post with replies' once you make your correction and hit 'Save'.

    Edit: Just FYI 🙂

  • 77. Sagesse  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    Thank you… still need to see if it works, but looks promising

  • 78. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    Ok, I've been playing with this (and some of you are probably quite sick of it by now 🙂

    The only issues I see so far are:

    1. Subscribing seems… flaky. I've tried subscribing to posts from the 3 or so main post from today, and only the 'The power of storytelling' actually seems to be sending me the posted comments. Nothing from the other two (including this one) have shown up. I have whitelisted and checked the mailserver logs. No rejects (like the last time).

    They are just not being sent AFAICT. I'll wait a few days for the sync to complete and things to settle down some, I guess.

    2. Embedding Youtube videos. I've only ever done this a few times previously, but others, notably Ronnie often did this. A feature I liked though…

    Apparently this is accomplished via a plugin to IntenseDebate (ID) itself. Might be a plugin worth adding…?

    BTW: Where is Ronnie? I miss him. Who's his designated keeper for this month?

    3. No image embedding. Didn't have this before, not sure if anyone cares if we have it now 🙂 I mention it because I saw that it was supported in ID, and there have been a couple of times I would have liked to do it. 🙂

    4. Sometimes I notice that my 'Session times out' when sitting on a P8TT page, and then after awhile try to post a comment. A refresh of the page 'fixes' this, but then the comment I was typing is lost, so I end up retyping it.

    Hopefully this will not happen while typing a long post.

    5. The ability to Edit a post disappears once a reply is made to it. I can see why this would be so, I only mention it for completeness. It seems that you can indeed go back and edit posts made some time in the past as long as there are no replies to it.

    'Delete' always seems to be available.

    AFAIK, an ID account is required for either Edit or Delete to be available.


    I really like this WP plugin – it seems to work pretty well so far… More time will tell. Thanks Adam (and Miles) for your work on this!

  • 79. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    Oh, and one other thing: I really love the rotating pics in the top banner! Nice 🙂

  • 80. adambink  |  June 9, 2011 at 7:57 pm

    Folks, we hit a glitch with comments importing in on other posts and are re-starting that process. Just an FYI.

    Thanks for the notes on embedding, which we will look into, and subscribing without leaving dummy comments. And thanks for helping each other out! What a great community.

    More tomorrow.

  • 81. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  June 9, 2011 at 8:12 pm

    I can feel that old comfortable feeling returning to the site already.
    Thank you again Adam and crew….this is so wonderful!
    Love love love being able to feel like I am chatting with other users rather than just posting @ them 🙂

  • 82. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    Same here Mark! 🙂

  • 83. DazedWheels  |  June 9, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    BK, I'm not sure your comments are displaying for the rest of the P8TT folks. I posted a couple of comments using Firefox with NoScript, without enabling JavaScript for and, and the comments just show up here – in the older interface. The comments don't show in the new intensedebate threaded comments.

  • 84. Mark  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    I posed this question to the courthouse today: Will this hearing be simulcast on C-SPAN as the last hearing was? Here was their response – The answer to your question is, no – there will be a live video feed from Courtroom 10 to the Ceremonial Courtroom ("overflow Courtroom), which is also on the 19th Floor, and to the Media Center on the first floor (reserved for credentialed media representatives only).

    Larry W. Bittner

    Lynn Fuller
    Media & Public Outreach Liaison
    United States District Court
    Northern District of California

    So…I am hoping that Prop 8 Trial Tracker will be there live blogging to keep those of us inquiring minds up to date. Thanks for all you do.

  • 85. davep  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:20 pm

    OK, got another question – when I click on 'COMMENTS' at the bottom of an article to view the comments for that article, I get inconsistent results. Sometimes the comments appear with all of their replies visible and indented, but sometimes only the 'top level' comments appear and they each have a "REPLIES" button below them and I have to click on each of these one at a time to expand & reveal the replies…. Any idea why, or how to make the replies always appear? Thanks!

  • 86. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:46 pm

    Good question – I've noticed this as well.

    Usually only 'top level' comments are available, but occasionally I do see all of them — which I'd prefer myself…

  • 87. JonT  |  June 9, 2011 at 10:47 pm

    Ahh.. And it looks like comments are divided into pages now? This one (and the one above from davep) seems to be on 'page 2' of the comments…

  • 88. DazedWheels  |  June 10, 2011 at 4:09 am

    Hi all…
    If someone (like me) posts comments using Firefox with the NoScript plugin, and that person hasn't "allow"d JavaScript for,, and, the comments are accepted and displayed, but the comments aren't displayed for the rest of you. 🙁 I love the threaded comments, but I very much distrust JavaScript.

  • 89. JonT  |  June 10, 2011 at 5:46 pm

    I think this is a sync issue… According to what I read on the ID site, comments are stored both on the WP site and the ID site, with the 2 sites syncing continuously. I guess there might be a short delay when one show up on the other, but I hope it would be a very short delay…

  • 90. DazedWheels  |  June 10, 2011 at 4:16 am

    …and it looks like I'm not the only one posting comments which don't display for the rest of you. I'll post a comment on the JavaScript-not-allowed side, to let the others know.

  • 91. AnonyGrl  |  June 10, 2011 at 7:38 am

    I had a longish post about the new NOM comment on the CDC stats… which I had to break up into three posts because they were too long.

    We've never been restricted by length before, and I think that is a problem, because we DO sometimes write longer pieces, especially when dealing with legal issues or statistics. Can that be fixed?

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