Fixing The Comments by Removing ‘Luv

A bit of a short one today.

Recently Quietschisto brought to my attention a problem that I am now certain has existed a long time. Probably since very shortly after setting up last year in fact. It was pretty well invisible to me as from my side everything was working just fine.

The issue will also have been invisible to Blogger account holders, only really noticeable to other WordPress users.

What was it? Well, thanks to Quiet also helping with additional troubleshooting, I now know. If you are a WordPress user — you know the little notification pane in the top right, that can tell you when someone replies to or likes one of your comments? Doesn’t even have to be for your blog — can be a comment you’ve left on any other WordPress blog. Very handy for keeping track.

But here? If you commented directly via the page, you never would have received such a notification of my response.

Oddly, if you commented via WordPress Reader, then notifications worked and everything was hunky-dory.

Tracking down the source of the problem was a nightmare. Nothing I thought of at first seemed to be the cause. Jetpack comments seemed to be set correctly. WordPress accounts with comments were allowed. And like I mentioned, I was getting notifications OK even when I was offsite on another blog.

I eventually found out what was causing this by running through the plugins that I had that in any way touched the the comments form. There was really only one though, CommentLuv.

That was the plugin which allows commenters with a blog of their own to link to one of their recent posts. It’s been around for years, it’s a plugin I used to use on my old blogs just as a nice little touch of ‘thank-you’ to those taking the time to comment.

The problem?

In order to display the additional UI elements required for CommentLuv to work, it has to essentially hijack the comment form. It won’t allow the JetPack comment form to load by default — and if you override this behaviour? The CommentLuv UI elements vanish anyway.

So! I had a decision to make:

  • Keep notification responses broken, but allow people commenting via the page to use CommentLuv to reference their posts if they so wished, or
  • Fix comment response notifications, but remove CommentLuv.

I didn’t have any access to stats advising where most people commented from — page or reader — but I could see that only somewhere between 1/3 to 1/2 of comments used the CommentLuv feature.

That plus the fact people could still drop a link to a post in a comment itself if needed, but I had no other way of fixing the notifications lead to the decision to remove CommentLuv. It’s a shame as I really liked what it offered other blogger-commenters. But just know, you’re welcome to replace the function by hand and drop a comment to your recent posts if you so wish to. And either way, I hope you appreciate actually being notified correctly when a response comes through!

This was a post for Blapril 2020, the annual blogging event (albeit usually as Blaugust), brought forward to help bring a sense of community during the challenging time of COVID-19. Blaugust is an event aiming to welcome new blogger blood into the fold and revitalise those who’ve been at it a little longer.

The Blaugust Discord is still available to join in, year round!


Gamer, reader, writer, husband and father of two boys. Former WoW and Gaming blogger, making a return to the fold to share my love of all things looty.

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