Beginner's Guide for WordPress - Start your WordPress Blog in minutes.
Choosing the Best
WordPress Hosting
How to Easily
Install WordPress
Recommended
WordPress Plugins
View all Guides

6 Reasons Why We Switched Away from Livefyre

Last updated on by
Elegant Themes
6 Reasons Why We Switched Away from Livefyre

Almost exactly a year from today, we decided to make a major switch in our site and ran Livefyre Commenting System to replace the default WordPress comments. It was a product that we fell in love with from the start, and we established great relationship with the folks in the company. Unfortunately, with our recent overhaul, we made the decision to part ways from Livefyre. A lot of our users have been asking us to do a detailed article on the new design and changes. The most common question we were getting was why did we switch from Livefyre. In this article, we will give you some insights into the decision of switching away from livefyre and reverting back to the default WordPress comments.

Why we initially fell in love with Livefyre

Livefyre offered real-time comments, “reduced” spam because of registration requirement, integrated with social media and brought conversation back to the site. Livefyre allowed sign-on with facebook, twitter etc as well. The thought of reducing server load was also in the back of our mind. All that sounds great, but as our site grew we saw us running into a few issues.

What the heck happened?

1. Real-Time Comments

We really enjoyed the real-time comments feature because we were able to have some great chat-like conversations in our comments. It was the best engagement experience that we have ever seen from comments. However, real-time comments got harder to moderate. Spammers realized that they were only a single registration away from getting all of their comments approved on our site.

Livefyre Comment Spam

Note: Normally we would never publish emails or IP addresses of users. This is a spammer, and we feel that it is only fair to reveal their identity.

Back to the point. So we found ourselves cleaning up a lot of these comments on a regular basis. Some would even escape our eyes and stay in for months until a user sees it and reports it as SPAM. One of the reasons why we kept this feature going while moderating these comments was that the user’s link was pointed to their livefyre profile rather than their actual website. So we weren’t out-linking to bad neighborhood sites. This came to an end when Livefyre decided to launch a new feature that allowed users to add their own website links and giving website publishers NO CONTROL over this option. We started seeing an increase in SPAM comments, so we quickly disabled the real-time feature (which was the main the thing that attracted us to Livefyre in the first place).

2. Like SPAM

One of the things that sold us to the idea was that requiring registration will reduce spam. Well that was totally WRONG. Livefyre has a feature called Like. Which obviously was created with great intentions. However, the system is being heavily abused. Let us explain the process. Any registered livefyre user can like a comment if they agree with what is being said. When a user likes a comment, their avatar shows up next to the comment with a direct backlink to the user’s site. Not to mention it is a DO-FOLLOW backlink. Below is a screenshot from Livefyre’s blog itself where you can see Like SPAM in works.

Livefyre Like SPAM

In the example above, this spammer is not a very smart one. He is using the default mystery man avatar. The spammers on our site were smarter. They had their logos as avatar. So you would see a colorful bunch of mini-icons that were being linked to spammy SEO sites, credit card offer sites etc. Some might not believe this to be a real thing, but this is happening. Below is one of the users’s profile that we reported to Livefyre almost a month ago.

Livefyre Like Spammer Profile

No action has been taken so far. The spammer’s profile is still active or at least seems active (because it is visible). Now either this guy really loves every single comment he reads, or they are a spammer. We choose to believe the latter. Don’t believe us, go check out the site link mentioned in his profile, it is an adsense farm website.

Now you are thinking what we described above is bad. The worst part is that there is no notification of who liked what on your website. There is no way for you to know who is SPAMMING your site. The only way to find out is if a user reports it to you, or you accidentally go to one of your older posts and notice this.

When we found out that we were a victim of Like SPAM on numerous articles through out the site (and probably more that we didn’t know about), we knew that we had to switch right away. We felt helpless and out of control. One of the downside for not owning your content.

3. Social Conversation

Social conversation is a very nice option that Livefyre provides. You can choose to bring in your conversations from Twitter and Facebook back to the article. In theory this sounds great, however it has yet to be perfected. We saw a lot of irrelevant comments coming from Twitter. It is a good idea, it just needs more perfection and a better filter. We tried this feature on our site, and it did not work as great as it should have.

4. Moderation

When choosing to use Livefyre, we were under the impression that there was a two-way communication between Livefyre and your WordPress database. Which would mean that you can use WordPress moderation to approve, delete, or reply to comments. Well that was not TRUE. It seemed to work for us in the beginning, but recently it backfired. We updated the Livefyre plugin, and all of the sudden we had hundreds of comments pending moderation. Turned out all the comments we had moderated already were back (and marked as pending). Not sure what happened there. We contacted Livefyre support and got the response:

It sounds like you’re trying to moderate comments from within the WordPress Dashboard, which we do not support at the moment i.e changes within your dashboard won’t sync to Livefyre.

We are sure that it was working in the past. Don’t recall which version upgrade it was, but it seemed to mess things up. Talked with a good friend Mitch Canter (@studionashvegas), and he said it worked on his site too. He said it still works for him. So we are not entirely sure what went wrong, but nonetheless, we were left with hundreds of comments to go through and re-moderate.

We were told that in order for this to work, we have to moderate the comments using the Livefyre Moderation Panel. There were quite a few reasons why we absolutely disliked the livefyre administration panel from the start.

  • No Bulk Moderation – If you want to delete multiple comments or mark them as spam, there is no way to do it easily. You have to do it individually. This remains to be the problem even in their NEW interface.
  • Poor Individual Moderation – Simply deleting a comment requires 2 clicks. One is the decision to delete, then giving the reason to delete. This can get tedious. This remains to be the problem in their NEW interface.
  • No control over comments – When we made the decision to switch, there was no option to edit user’s comment. This made it harder to enforce comment guidelines. For example someone leaves a great comment, but ends a signature link (which we do not allow). We either have to accept the comment as-is or delete it. This is fixed in their new interface. You can now edit comments.
  • Replying is a PAIN – For a site like ours, we often find a need to reply to comments. There is no easy way to do this. You will see the comment in livefyre moderation panel. You have to open the article where you can see the comment as pending. Approve it, and then reply from there. This makes the Livefyre moderation panel pretty much useless. In WordPress backend moderation, there is a really cool feature called Reply and Approve. So you can reply to the comment without ever opening a new tab/window for the post.

5. Formatting Issues

We noticed that Livefyre was adding additional CSS as comments text for some users. It has to be some sort of user-end issue because it was only happening to a handful, but we value all of our users. Not sure if this has been fixed or not.

Another thing we noticed was that adding line breaks in your comment was a pain. So we would try to reply to someone and paste a link. However Livefyre’s auto-formatting would get rid of those. Sometimes even caused the links to be broken, so we would have to add extra spaces between the link and the text after that. The biggest problem was that when you are typing, you can use Shift + Enter, and it will show you that the line break was there. See the image below:

Livefyre Line Breaks

6. Not a Fair Compromise

When deciding to use Livefyre, we made some compromises. We gave up some opportunities to get other cool features that Livefyre was providing. But after using Livefyre for an extensive period and see the downsides, we felt that we did not make a fair compromise. Let us elaborate a little bit.

No Custom Styling

We were well aware of this when we switched to Livefyre. Anytime you use a third party script, you lose control over some of the styling. Currently our comment design matches the theme, and it looks beautiful. With Livefyre we did not have control over the looks as much. They do not have the white-labeling option available for the general public. However, we do believe that this service is provided for enterprise level customers.

No Lead Generation from Comments

We knew that once we switch to Livefyre, we would lose the lead generation opportunities from the comment form. We were doing comment redirects for first time users as well as giving the users an ability to subscribe to the newsletter from the comments. We talked with the Livefyre team about adding this. The bottom line was that there is no SIMPLE solution. The solution they proposed was that there is an API available which we can use to hook into their system and collect emails if the user checked the checkbox. There was no possible way to do comment redirect.

Our team’s thought process went a little like this:

In order for us to use this platform and get the features we want, we have to build it ourselves. Whereas there is a perfectly good commenting system in place which is much easier to work with. There are plenty of plugins already available. Well the decision was unanimous.

Third-Party Registration

Again, we were aware of this when we signed up to use Livefyre. We knew that we would have to require our users to sign up with a third-party service “Livefyre” to comment on our site. We believed that it was for the greater good because we will have meaningful conversation and other added features. All the WordCamps we attended, we always had a few users come up and complain about the commenting system. We got numerous user emails about it as well. Folks were having trouble commenting behind a firewall, some folks just felt their freedom to comment on WPBeginner was lost. Yes, a few months back Livefyre added guest commenting as a feature. But it still encourage users to signup with Livefyre afterwards. This again was not a fair compromise. We let our users down. A lot of them stopped commenting. Few would comment via email to let us know if we made a mistake etc. This was really disappointing for us. Some of these users said, they would happily register to comment, if they were signing up for WPBeginner. But we were requiring them to signup with a third party. We talked with Livefyre about this. They do have an enterprise API that will let you keep your own user base. All user data would be yours. However, the integration process didn’t seem as straight forward. Don’t recall the whole thing, but basically we would have to create a separate bbPress or BuddyPress database to hold all users. It just sounded too confusing. We chose not to go forward with that.

At the time, these compromises did not sound like a big deal compared to all the cool features that we were getting with Livefyre. However as time went by, we were able to see a clearer picture from our experience.

So What Now?

Well, we have switched back to the built-in WordPress commenting system. Few users emailed us asking what we are using to add the sign in with Twitter / Facebook option that you see below. We are using a combination of two plugins (by the same author @otto42) called Simple Twitter Connect and Simple Facebook Connect.

Update October 12, 2012: We got rid of both twitter login and FB login options mainly because we saw that people weren’t using it as much. Getting rid of them makes a significant impact on load times. We would rather have the site faster for the majority :)

We have met and talked with numerous users who love using Livefyre. While it was not a right fit for our site, you are more than welcome to try it out for yourself. We would like to hear your thoughts on Livefyre. If you have an opinion, feel free to comment below.


Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress lovers led by Syed Balkhi. Page maintained by Syed Balkhi.

WPBeginner's Video Icon
Our HD-Quality tutorial videos for WordPress Beginners will teach you how to use WordPress to create and manage your own website in about an hour. Get started now »
  • Zac

    It seems like the summary for most of your points was “there was a perfectly viable solution to this, but it sounded too hard or confusing,” which is not really an excuse at all when you are working on a technical project. If it is too hard for your engineers, you need better engineers.

  • forcedalias

    Livefyre has been buggy for me on both Firefox and Chrome (both up-to-date) on multiple sites.

    I’ve never had a problem with Disqus — it’s always worked.

  • Sandeep Kumar

    Sir I am very confused about the plugin for commenting on my blog. I was going for livefyre but after reading your article. I will not use this. So what I use for commenting????

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com/ WPBeginner Support

      At WPBeginner we use the default WordPress commenting system.

      • Michael Podboreski

        I am starting to learn that defaults – are defaults for a reason.

  • Lorenzo

    The only thing I don’t like about Disqus is that it’s limited to FB, Twitter, and G+ users. I wish they would also include other platforms

  • Dogguie

    Que tal Disqus?

  • Brian

    So, what about using ajax in comments? Which services make use of ajax?

  • Chris

    Not trying to bash or anything but, just so you know, you can easly edit Livefyre’s CSS by adding ” !important ” to all its statements. I.E. background-color: #2d2d2d !important; and so on :)

  • Jack

    Hey Bro,

    I am a new blogger and i was confused with livefyre or disqus. After reading your experience, i will definitely use livefyre on my blog.

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com/ WPBeginner Support

      Jack, seems like you didn’t read the article. Our experience with Livefyre was not good.

  • Tim Arthur

    Great post. I hope to leverage these login options in the future on our site

  • Glenn Younger

    Thank you so much for this article! My two websites were spammed so badly, and so filled with various strains of freezer-virus (I made that name up because I got frozen out of my own sites and couldn’t even access the dashboard), that I have to build both again from scratch.

    Naturally, I decided to do it “right’ this time (of course I’m still a rookie despite the 200 pages lost on one of my sites). I have put hours of research into how I want to do the comment section. Do I use disqus? Livefyre? Comment Luv? The list goes on. I was leaning towards Livefyre and now I see that isn’t the way to go. BUT, the best part about this article is I discovered your website WPBeginner. Fingers crossed that it will help me move up from a rookie site builder to (I hope) a competent one. For that, I’m giving you a double thank-you.

  • Angel Rodriguez

    I played with livefyre sometime ago, then switched out to “Social” by mailchimp. That plugin was pretty good, but it doesn’t like my current template. The great thing about social is that it actually pulls in every post on twitter and facebook that is made and includes the url of your post. It’s pretty cool, but also pulls over some garbage as well.

    Currently I’m on livefyre, but it’s not importing or tagging users as I hoped it would, which really is the main motivation for me to have it. Most of my dialogue happens on FB and twitter, so I enjoy bringing over the conversation, even if it’s just static data that doesn’t necessarily interact with the site itself.

    I’ve also been considering disqus, I do enjoy using that one, but it doesn’t interact with my social media well. I’m considering going back to “social” and trying to tweak the template myself.

  • Neil Ferree

    I like to adding Google+ comments with CommentLuv in most of my sites these days.

    • Angel Rodriguez

      How are you doing that Neil?

  • GD

    I really still can’t decide.
    Disqus looks the best but not if you can lose your comments when they go down.

    • Peter

      Disqus sucks, because it required a double registration – firstly to a social media than to disqus – this can uncourage a lot of people…

      • Matthew Barnes

        Also I found that Disquis can slow down your site. I saw Disquis on some very popular blogs, and sometimes Disquis would fail to load. Fail to load, with no comments. Thumbs down on Disquis for me

  • Antano Solar John

    Thank you. Very well written article. I am glad I read this instead of switching to livefyre. I had an intuition that it wasn’t going to work for me.

  • Greg

    Anyone using Jetpack comments?

  • Mayur

    I have not used WordPress Native Commenting system but, I used Disqus & Livefyre & as a UX point of view I found Disqus is much better than Livefyre.

  • Adil

    so whats a best comments system?huh

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com/ WPBeginner Support

      Right now we are using default WordPress comments system, it works well on all our sites.

      • Kevin Bolger

        But you have to scroll to the bottom to find the post new comment box. Surely that should be above the rest of the comments?

    • Faris

      I am using Disqus on my two sites (one personal / one professional) and I like it. Was considering switching to LiveFyre for the more social aspect, but after reading this article I definitely won’t be!

  • Matt Kettlewell

    Great job on writing an article so long ago that’s still relevant, useful and pulling in new comments and conversation!

    I, like most reading your article, are looking for that perfect commenting system.

    One that allows Facebook & twitter comments to become part of the discussion.

    One that allows logins through the social media vendor of your choice.

    And to eliminate spam comments 100% ( or at least 95% )…

    And to allow custom styling

    And not slow things down

    And allow integration with newsletters and local functionality/API integration…

    we all want this perfect commenting system, but it just doesn’t exist ( unfortunately ).

    I keep wanting to use LiveFyre or Discus, or Intense Debate, but none of them are perfect, and in the end, decided to use the WordPress commenting system as well.

    I have my sneaking suspicions that in the near future ( by end of 2014 ), we’ll have a nearly complete solution. There are good frameworks that just need a few extras integrated.

    I do, however, view these upgrades as a premium feature that will help monetize the base company, where what we see today will remain free, and the complete integration package will be paid.

    I for one would gladly pay to have it all!

  • Daneil

    Hi

    I am also using WordPress comments with my child theme. The one thing I do’t like is the inability to go back an make edits once you have posted. -esp for those of us who have bad spelling! Are there plugins which will allow this on WordPress comments or do I need to evaluate Discus et al. .Maybe there is a review of all of them out there?

  • mAsT3RpEE | Walter Otsyula

    Thanks for this. I was wondering weather to choose livefyre or disqus. Do you also have a review of disqus? I hate the native system (spam even worse). It uses javascript to load comments so I think that should stop most bots (I’m just guessing). Users can flag comments (I think, just installed it).

    Can you also explain the obsession with backlinks outgoing links google rank etc? I thought the point was to make a website and leave the search engine geeks to tinker with their ai’s intelligence. If google’s bot is so easy to fool why do we all search using it.

    Fortunately for me I’m still new and my site uses free hosting. So right now a low ranking is what I’m looking for. If my rank goes to high my dns provider might park my domain -_-. Any advice on keeping a ranking low?

    Thanks in advance.

  • allergicvegetarian

    I researched LiveFyre and decided not to use it as I wasn’t totally impressed. I just had a gut feeling that it wouldn’t work for me. I do want to be accessible to all people regardless of who they are. Discus is what I’m using currently anyways, and do recognize that this won’t work for those who need yellow background and bold black text. I do use Akismet too. Spammers will always be there, and they will always get in. Can’t stop that easily.

    Spam: I found that banning IPs from certain countries, using the backend, has really helped a lot. However, the pro spammers are really good at hacking IP addresses. A Ukrainian fool, is so good, that he has hacked into a Netherland’s IP address. I had to ban registration out right, and manually register people. This was NOT on a WP account though, it was eFiction. My other blog by ?b-evolution? something like that, had tons of spam. I stopped allowing comments. My WP blog, using WP commenting, gets less spam so far, but you can almost gauge how good your SEO is, by the amount of spam you get. The more spam, the better your SEO (does not apply to forums, only blogs).

    If you go to stopforumspam dot org, they have all the IP addresses and other data of spammers. Bottom line is though, no matter what you do, short of disallowing commenting, you are going to have the spammers.

    Social Media: I found that commenting on a post is more necessary if its a how-to article and someone needs help. Otherwise, most things can be discussed in a forum. There, you can have 1 thread in 1 board that is exclusively for people who want an account. Then, if they are approved, you can set them up. And, leave the commenting as disallowed on all the articles. I may end up doing this on my recipe blog (WIP, no link given). The only drawback of a forum is that people lose interest quickly but the spammers don’t. I think this is largely due to our “instant gratification expectation” culture we’ve become.
    (Not clicking notify me, but will check back.)

  • Sebastian

    Very very helpful. thank you guys

  • Tim

    Good article and case study. I use Livefyre and find it disappointing that I can’t style how I want without heartache involved (I understand code – CSS/HTML, etc.) but styling Livefyre for my site was a pain. I gave up in the end, and I can tell you that my “digital” defeats are few!

  • Vishal Verma

    Livefyre=slow down your blog+some comment are always missing

    • Dirtysouthrep79

      Nailed it. Slow as hell and auto mod won’t let simple benign messages through.

      • Rourke Decker

        I am guessing this is the fault of user error or wrong settings, then. We have never experienced anything like this. If messages are getting caught up in the spam filter, it’s usually because similar messages have been flagged or deleted by moderators. Check into that first.

  • Gracy

    Thanks for the great article. I was looking for a commenting system for my website and I was leaning towards using Livefyre. BUT now I am lil confused. I might just go for WP default commenting system.

  • Carlos

    Hi
    Great post, just I’m looking for a comment script for some of my clients.

    What do you think about Disqus for comments?

    Regards
    Carlos

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

      We personally wouldn’t use a third party commenting system unless our site is getting thousands of comments every minute.

  • Sue Kearney

    I’ve been back to default WP comments for maybe a month now, and I don’t see any significant increase (or decrease for that matter) in spam.

    I’m really happy with this choice, and how pretty I’ve been able to make the comments section look (thanks to tips I’ve shamelessly copied from wpbeginner, thanks for your generosity and transparency!).

    Love and light,
    Sue

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

      We do all we can to help Sue :)

  • thomas wooldridge

    i was checking out livefyre and looking for opinions and found this site.. I got tired of the spam on the default WP comments.

    Added disqus and so far so good..

  • David Chantry

    I think that the default comments is the best comments.

  • Adam

    I am using third-party comment systems for a few blogs instead of the default WordPress comment system mainly because of the amount of spam the default WP receives. Even using Akismet we would still get tons of spam. So one blog we’re using Disqus and the other we’re using LiveFyre and we don’t get much spam at all, if any. The number of comments though is now lower, but that could be because of the content. But if I had to choose, I like Disqus more than LiveFyre or the default WP comment system.

  • skopp

    What font is this, for comments?

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

      Using the combination of Google Fonts: Oswald for Names and Lora for comment text.

  • skopp

    Hi… I keep getting mailed about new comments here, so felt I have to chip in with my 20c as well. If you really want it done right, as with anything, you…?

    Yup. Do it yourself. I’m not saying start your own Livefyre or Disqus (unless you want to). But the next best thing – better than even builtin WP comments – is Github Gists – as comments.Go as Open Source as you can. But Disqus is okay – I use it. I just hate the “around the web” feature.

    • Sara Soueidan

      You can stop that feature from the admin panel. :)

  • Bava

    Thanks for the genuine review after trying out. I was about to use livefyre because of it’s appealing features. I think it’s always better to stick with the default wordpress commenting system.

  • John

    I agree with the comments here. Let’s see.

  • Steve Demmitt

    I recently had a similar problem with the Disqus commenting system. But the main reason for my switch had to do with slow server issues on their end. Comments would not post at a quick enough rate. I switched back to my old system and couldn’t be happier. I’m sure there are benefits to a commenting system like Disqus and Livefyre but for most sites I would say the stock commenting system does the job well.

  • Rourke Decker

    Before anyone gets the wrong impression, I want to emphasize that am not badmouthing Livefyre. I have the utmost respect for them as an organization. They have always treated us extremely well; their customer service is professional, competent, and courteous — second to none, really. I think Livefyre is a great product produced by a great organization. I think it would be a great fit for many sites. I am just struggling with disillusionment at the frequency with which the conversations on our articles have nothing to do with the articles themselves, and that is obviously not the fault of Livefyre.

    Maybe I simply have unrealistic expectations when I hope that a sports site could trigger relevant conversations that lasted more than a few minutes. That is entirely possible.

  • Sue Kearney

    I disabled Livefyre today! Too much aggravation with the comment counter not matching the actual comment count, and even more important, some of my readers didn’t want to have to create LF accounts. I finally gave up.

    Your article was very helpful, I’m using the native WP comments for now.

    Thanks!

    Love and light,
    Sue

  • Rourke Decker

    I have had Livefyre installed on my website since April 2012 and could probably count on two hands the total number of spam comments we’ve seen. I would be willing to wager that 99% of the spam people are complaining about is trackback spam. If you’re tired of rooting out trackback spam from your moderation queue, simply turn off trackbacks in your WordPress Dashboard. Problem solved.

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

      No. The spam we referred to in this article is about Like Spam where livefyre users will like all comments to get their favicon show up next to the comment. Those favicon would link to their site which gives spammers even more incentive to like just about every comment with their company profile.

      Also, you don’t see these likes as easily on your site because there is no tab in your dashboard that shows comment likes. We only noticed this because several of our users reported it.

      • Rourke Decker

        I know that you were referring to “like spam” in your article. I was mainly addressing the comments made by other people in this thread. We have experienced fewer than 10 instances of spam, almost all spambots shilling e-readers for Amazon.com, and it was easily taken care of with the ban button.

        On our site, we have never — not once — experienced “like spam,” and I can say this with complete assurance because there is a weird culture of competition among our readers to collect the most likes, so all likes are closely monitored.

        We are considering removing Livefyre for other reasons — it reduces both the quality and longevity of conversations on an article, guaranteeing the conversation dies as soon as the next article is published — but spam has never been an issue for us.

        • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

          Thanks for sharing your input Rourke. Would be really interested in learning about your experience, and what you mean by “it reduces the quality and longevity of conversations”. Perhaps via a comment, or we can talk it out via email :)

          -Syed

        • Rourke Decker

          The problem with real-time commenting like Livefyre is that it turns your commenting stream into a chat room; in essence, your site, no matter how serious it may be, devolves into nothing more than a social networking hangout. Our author work very hard on our articles — some of them take many hours of research to write — but we’re lucky if even one percent of the comments people make have anything to do with the article at all. Livefyre has a lot of features that make commenting a lot of fun, but those end up being a distraction from the article.

          For example, readers love the media embedding features, but all that means is that the vast majority of our comments are just people posting funny pictures and videos instead of talking about the article. This has the negative side effect of drastically increasing resource consumption and slowing down page-load times. I have seen my articles taking up well over 100 MB of RAM in a Chrome tab.

          Because they’re hooked on the real-time instant gratification, as opposed to having to refresh to see new comments, readers migrate to the next article as soon as it’s published, completely ignoring the old article. Not that it matters, considering they’re not talking about the old article anyway. Comments that come hours or days later are ignored as an unintended side effect of the fact that Livefyre sends out an email notifying you of new comments, which means people quickly turn that feature off. As a result, people who discover our articles later through Google or other means don’t feel welcomed and engaged, leave a single comment, and never come back. If Livefyre had a feature allowing notifications to be sent out only for articles that were, say, at least one week old, then we could respond to these late comments, keep the conversation going, and hopefully engage some new readers. As it stands, I only accidentally discover these comments if I happen to be checking back on an old article.

          By contrast, I have seen sites on which articles are still receiving meaningful comments six years after the article was written, and some of those comments are longer and more in depth than the article itself! Look at this article: it was last updated in October 2012, but it’s still sparking discussion. That is what I would like for our site. Unfortunately, our articles just die as soon as the next one is published, because they’re little more than a chat room anyway.

          I want my site to have staying power. I want it to be seen as a reputable source of information on our topic. I am seriously tempted to disable Livefyre and go back to the default WP commenting system, while installing a chat room that people can use for all their silly pictures, videos, and off-topic nonsense chatter. Something else I have considered is creating a mirror of my site that does not have Livefyre and loading our more important articles there. I don’t care so much if people chatter off topic on the morning links articles. But I want the statistical articles that takes days, sometimes weeks, of research to write to be provoking conversation five years ago. And I just don’t see that happening with Livefyre, at least not as long as everyone turns off new-comment notifications to avoid their email inbox being flooded.

        • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

          Thanks for sharing that Rourke. Really appreciate the insights. Yes there is that issue of alienating your audience, but creating a live chatroom might be a good solution to keeping things relevant on the articles while still giving your audience a place to goof around. I think you are in the same boat that I found myself in. All the features that attracted me to livefyre at first ended up being the reason for me leaving the platform.

          Do keep me in the loop of your decision. Feel free to send an email or tweet whenever you think I could be of any help.

          -Syed

        • Sue Kearney

          I was going to ask the same thing Syed asked. I’d love to hear more about reducing the quality and longevity of conversations.

          I’m on my first day post-Livefyre. And I’m basing my comments styling on what you have here, Syed, should be fully formed by Monday.

          Thanks!

        • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

          Sweet. Keep me in the loop Sue. I think the article we wrote today about styling the comment form might help a bit in terms of plugins for checkboxes that we have. Let me know if I could be of any help.

          -Syed

        • Rourke Decker

          Holy typos, Batman. “Our authors” . . . “five years from now.”

          I forgot to add that I have a feeling I will alienate the majority of my readership if I disable Livefyre. They’re so used to using the site purely as a social hangout that they might not come back if they have to refresh to see new comments. If that happens, I might well lose a significant proportion of my writers too. It’s a risk I am weighing and one I hesitate to make, because it might mean starting over at square one trying to build up a readership. On the other hand, it’s extremely demotivating to spend so much time writing meaningful content, only to have no one even engage it — or worse, openly poo-poo it. Part of me thinks I’d rather have 10 comments contributing to the conversation and spurring new ideas than a thousand off-topic one liners and memes, most of which have been repeated ad nauseam already.

        • Meghan Krane

          Hi Rourke,

          I’d love to talk with you more about the changes that you want to make on your site and brainstorm a bit about ways that you can adjust Livefyre to better meet the needs of your community. We’re always open to feedback about how we can improve our tools. I’d really like to speak with you, whatever your decision ends up being, so that I can share your thoughts and feedback with the Livefyre team. I’ll be getting in touch shortly.

          Best regards,

          Meghan
          Director of Community at Livefyre.

  • Gemma Wild

    I was under the impression Livefyre completely replaces the default WordPress system but this doesn’t seem to be the case for me.

    I’m using the current Livefyre (4.0.3) on my WordPress blog and am receiving regular spam comments directly through the WordPress commenting system, not via Livefyre.

    I realise spammers can be quite clever and find ‘back ways’ in but this does defeat the purpose of incorporating an external commenting system.

    Did you guys ever experience this or did your spam come through Livefyre?

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

      In our case, SPAM came through livefyre.

    • Meghan Krane

      Hi Gemma, I’m Meghan, Director of Community at Livefyre. Our Comments 3 plugin does replace the default WordPress comment system. One of the features of Comments 3 is that we write all of the comments that we process through Livefyre back to your WordPress comment database, so that you always have access to all of your comments in one place.

      If Comments 3 is installed correctly all comments on your site will be processed through Livefyre, our spam filter, and any moderation rules you have set up. You can track all incoming comments from the Livefyre admin panel. If you are seeing comments on your posts that are not appearing in your Livefyre admin please send us an email at support[at]Livefyre.com and we can investigate and get that sorted out for you.

  • Robert

    I noticed you don’t use Disqus, LiverFyre or any 3rd-party commenting system now. Is there a reason for that? Are native wordpress comments just plain better?

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

      Hey Robert,

      We decided not to use any third-party commenting system because we wanted to have the freedom to do things our way. For example, if we want to allow users to subscribe to our newsletter from the comments, or redirect first-time commenters to a new page, etc. We can do that. We also wanted control over how comments were displayed. The native WordPress comments are the most flexible, and in our opinion the best solution for most sites.

      If you are running a site that is getting tens of thousands of comments a day, then comments will become a hassle for your server to manage. In those cases, people utilize 3rd-party commenting systems to off-load server resources.

  • Sue Kearney

    Hi, thanks for a helpful article. Tell me, please, did you still have all your comments on your site, and visible, when you disabled LF? I’m afraid I’ll lose everything!

    Thanks,
    Sue

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

      All your comments will stay on your WordPress install.

  • Adamo “Aerendir” Crespi

    Hi guys,
    i came on this article serching for an article about your comment system: i’m a new WordPress User, coming from the Joomla! world.

    Very interesting article, especially for the opinions about LiveFyre: it is now used by Mashable and i searched for info about it some days ago, and now, serendipitously, i’ve found the bad opinions i were searching for.

    Anyway, i’ve yet decided to use the default WordPress’ comment system but a question is going around and around in my head: what about the “Notify me of followup comments via e-mail” and the “Subscribe to WPBeginner Updates (Weekly Email)” checkboxes? Which plugins are you using? And how do you synch the newsletter subscription here in the comments with MailChimp?

    Best regards guys, your is a very helpful blog, and not only for its contents!

    • http://www.wpbeginner.com Editorial Staff

      Hey Adamo,

      Thanks for the comment. Yes, some larger sites like Mashable and TC are starting to use Livefyre, but we believe that’s the enterprise version with custom user database. Every thing that we use on the site can be seen on our blueprint page: http://www.wpbeginner.com/blueprint/

      Here is the page about comment section specifically
      http://www.wpbeginner.com/blueprint/comments/

  • Kathy Korman Frey

    Hi folks – I was recently impressed by LiveFyre because it kept hooking me back into a discussion via Twitter. Someone mentioned me in a comment by my Twitter handle, I was compelled to reply – whereas normally I think that post would have been buried in utter obscurity.

    This is so key for me. On our site, we have Disqus. We have great content and no one comments, yet we have a very active Twitter following. I thought LiveFyre might be great for this.

    I figured it might be between CommentLuv and LiveFyre, now, I am not sure and feel as if creepy crawlies will get into my site with LifeFyre, and our comment threading will be compromised when / if we switch.

    So – after reading this, I plan to have another cup of coffee and do nothing. “Is doing nothing an option” is one of my favorite tips for busy women who follow our project…and, now I will be doing it myself. Gracias!

  • Justin

    Thanks for the follow-up post – I’ve been evaluating comment systems and having a hard time deciding. It seems there is no perfect solution