Support » Plugins and Hacks » Hacks » RFC :: New Feature :: FAIR comment ordering

  • Summary
    Blogs with heavy comment traffic often include a number of comments whose insights may rival or exceed that of the blogger’s own. Such comments represent valuable content worth reading but can get lost in the voluminous comments of well-known bloggers. Even if the blogging system includes “liking” for comments, the ordering of the comments themselves — whether sorted newest-to-oldest, oldest-to-newest, or even by “liking” count or some other metric, results in an uneven probability skewing for the *order* in which the comments are presented and read, and hence any “liking” metric derived from it.

    Obtaining a fair ranking of the comments themselves (not the individual blog posts) would be of great value, because it would allow favored comments to rise to notable levels via standard ranking metrics. This fair ranking could be obtained using probability distribution mathematics that rearrange the comments in a “fair reading order” that takes into account a number of dynamic variables which are nevertheless known when a reader chooses to read a blog post: total number of comments, position of each comment in the order, probability distribution curve of how many comments might be read by a current user. (This system assumes only one level deep comments). Using these variables in addition to The algorithm would arrange the comments for reading order to a reader such that over the lifetime of the blog post, the probability that each comment would be read would be equal. This would allow for “fair voice”, overcoming the current problem that the first (or last) to post comments receive a disproportionate amount of “reads.”

    Request For Comments
    If such a system were to be integrated into WordPress, would it constitute changes to the core, or could it be done as a plugin?

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