Comments

Overview

The ability to add comments to a page in OU Campus is a feature that is available with Live Delivery Platform (LDP). Unlike the other two asset unlocked with the purchase of LDP (Forms and Galleries), the Comments asset is not its own unique asset type; typically, it's a JavaScript-based Source Code Asset. Comments are made through Disqus, one of the most popular web-based commenting platforms available.

LDP Comments gives website visitors an opportunity to have their voice heard on the institutional website. Visitors can provide their perspective on a topic, like or dislike a page or another visitor's comment, create comment threads, and much more. Administrators have the tools to monitor all feedback, approve and moderate comments, and have granular control over who can input a comment. Live Delivery Platform has to be purchased and activated before Comments can be configured.

Basic Steps

For a standard implementation of LDP Comments, much of the work has been done for you by the Professional Services team performing the implementation. Follow these simple steps to get comments up and running for the site:

  1. Create an admin account on Disqus' site to moderate comments.
  2. Add the generated Disqus shortname to the Comments Source Code Asset in OU Campus.
  3. Insert the asset on a page.
  4. Monitor comments as needed.

More detailed information for these steps, along with some optional steps, can be found in the sections below

Setting up a Disqus Admin Account

Create an account at Disqus for the site. When the Disqus account is first created, a Disqus site should also be created. When registering a site at Disqus, a shortname is created to uniquely identify the site. This shortname is used in the code that is entered on the page at OU Campus. Alternatively, a new site can be added to an existing Disqus account.

  1. Go to http://www.disqus.com.
  2. Click the Get Started button on the homepage.
  3. Sign up by filling out the NameEmail, and Password fields. This email address and password will be for the primary moderator account.
  4. On the next screen, select I want to install Disqus on my site.
  5. On the next screen, add the Website Name, which will be used as the friendly name for the Disqus account.
  6. If the Disqus shortname created from Website Name is unsatisfactory, click Customize Your URL and create a custom Shortname.
  7. Select a Category.
  8. Click Create Site.
  9. For the choice of platform, choose the Universal Code box at the bottom of the list.

    Choose "Universal Code" in Disqus Platform Chooser

  10. Ignore the given code on the next page, as the Source Code Asset in OU Campus is configured slightly differently, and the Asset should already be created. Click Configure at the bottom of the page.
  11. On the following page, complete the rest of the configuration steps, most importantly the Website URL.
  12. Click Complete Setup to finish setting up the Disqus administration account.

 

Now, the Disqus account has been created. Users will be taken immediately to the administraton panel after the process finishes.

To navigate to the Admin panel any time after this, simply click on the Admin link of the Disqus homepage after logging in.

Link to Admin Panel on Disqus' Homepage

From the Disqus administration panel, admins can:

  • Moderate comments made on pages
  • Change general settings
  • Update site information; name and URL
  • Define who can post comments
  • Change options for comments
  • Add additional moderators
  • Add restricted words
  • Define blacklists and whitelists

Editing the Disqus Source Code Asset

Typically, with a new implementation of LDP, a Disqus Source Code Asset will already be created in the Asset Manager of OU Campus. The shortname created in step 6 above needs to be added to this asset in order for the Disqus comment panel to appear on webpages. If the asset is ever deleted or needs to be re-created, the following code can be used to re-create the asset:

<div id="disqus_thread"></div>
<script>
    /**
     *  RECOMMENDED CONFIGURATION VARIABLES: EDIT AND UNCOMMENT THE SECTION BELOW TO INSERT DYNAMIC VALUES FROM YOUR PLATFORM OR CMS.
     *  LEARN WHY DEFINING THESE VARIABLES IS IMPORTANT: https://disqus.com/admin/universalcode/#configuration-variables
     */
    /*

    var disqus_config = function () {
        this.page.url = page_url;  // Replace PAGE_URL with your page's canonical URL variable
        //this.page.identifier = PAGE_IDENTIFIER; // Replace PAGE_IDENTIFIER with your page's unique identifier variable
    };
    */

    // REQUIRED CONFIGURATION VARIABLE: EDIT THE SHORTNAME BELOW
    var shortname = 'EXAMPLE'; //IMPORTANT: Replace EXAMPLE with your forum shortname!

    (function() {  
        var d = document, s = d.createElement('script');

        s.src = '//' + shortname + '.disqus.com/embed.js';

        s.setAttribute('data-timestamp', +new Date());
        (d.head || d.body).appendChild(s);
    })();
</script>
<noscript>Please enable JavaScript to view the <a href="https://disqus.com/?ref_noscript" rel="nofollow">comments powered by Disqus.</a></noscript>

Before the asset can be used, a few things need to be configured:

  • Replace the default shortname (EXAMPLE) with the shortname for your site. For example:
var shortname = 'my_site_shortname';
  • Optionally, uncomment and configure one or both of the two configuration variables, this.page.url and this.page.identifier. Read more about these two variables on this page from Disqus. These variables are meant to enhance the reporting capabilities of Disqus, and their values will change on a per-page basis.

In addition to the Source Code Asset, a small script is placed in the <head> of each page on the site, which allows for the same Comments asset to be used on multiple pages. The script indicates on which page the comment came from, and works in conjunction with the this.page.url variable located in the asset. Make sure this variable is uncommented in order to use this functionality.

This code is typically placed during the implementation process, and therefore doesn't need to be added by you, but in the event that it needs to be re-added, it should be placed in the <head> tag of common.xsl (or similar, like default.xsl) and look like this:

<script type="text/javascript">
var page_url="<xsl:value-of select="concat(string-join(remove(tokenize(substring($ou:httproot, 1), '/'), count(tokenize(substring($ou:httproot, 1), '/'))), '/'),$ou:path)"/>";
</script>

 

It is still possible to have multiple Disqus sites in order to allow multiple moderators access to moderate only comments that pertain to their portion of the site.

For any additional questions related to setting up the asset or script in the site, please email OmniUpdate Support.

Adding Comments to a Page

After the asset is configured and the script is added to the <head> of the page, the asset can be placed on any page where comments are desired, by following these steps:

  1. Create or edit a page.
  2. Click the Insert Asset icon from within a WYSIWYG Editor or the Source Editor.
  3. Locate the appropriate asset from the Asset Browser and insert it on the page. We recommend adding the asset to the end of the content region, at the bottom of the page.
  4. Save and Publish the page.

Comments will now appear on the page. The comment count refers to the number of comments on that page, even if the same asset is being used on multiple pages.

Example of Disqus Panel on a Page 

Moderating Comments

Once the asset has been placed on some pages and comments have begun to roll in, administrators can moderate the comments and perform other tasks from the Disqus Dashboard.

Moderate Comments Button on Disqus Dashboard

All comments added to the same Disqus "site" (asset using the same shortname) will appear on the same moderation page, but the page name relating to the location of the comment will be shown with each comment.

Comments can be marked as spam or deleted. If pre-moderation is on, comments will have to be approved before they're shown on the live webpage. Those comments will appear under the Pending tab in the moderation screen.

Example of Disqus Moderation Panel 

There are many more moderation tools available from the Disqus Dashboard. More detailed information concerning the tools available, and how to use them, can be found in the Disqus Knowledge Base.

As a best practice, configure an Add-On in Account Settings (Setup > Account > Add-Ons) that points to the Disqus Dashboard for easy access. This Add-On can be marked for Admins Only so only level 9 and 10 administrators can access the link.