|Founded||San Francisco, California (October 30, 2007)|
|Headquarters||San Francisco, California|
|Key people||Daniel Ha (CEO)
Jason Yan (CTO)
|Slogan(s)||"Discover your community."|
|Alexa rank||292 (April 2014[update])|
Disqus, Inc. is a blog comment hosting service for Web sites and online communities that uses a networked platform. The company’s platform includes various features, such as social integration, social networking, user profiles, spam and moderation tools, analytics, email notifications, and mobile commenting. It was founded in 2007 by Daniel Ha and Jason Yan as a Y Combinator startup.
Disqus ranks #1 in Quantcast's U.S. networks with 144 million monthly unique U.S. visits Disqus has been featured on many major publications, such as CNN, The Daily Telegraph and IGN and about 750,000 blogs and Web sites. It competes with IntenseDebate, Livefyre and Echo.
Disqus was first developed in the summer of 2007 as a Y Combinator startup headed by Daniel Ha and Jason Yan, both of whom were undergraduates at University of California, Davis. Disqus was first incorporated and launched on October 30, 2007.
In early 2011, Disqus raised $10 million in funding from North Bridge Venture Partners and Union Square Venture Partners.
According to a March 2011 study by Lijit, Disqus is used by 75% of websites who use a third party commenting or discussion system.
Starting in November 2010 Disqus began officially offering three add-on packages for Web sites: Plus for $19/month, Pro for $199/month, and VIP starting at $999/month. In mid-2011, the Plus package was removed and Pro was increased to $299/month.
Both the Disqus site and comment system were translated into more than 60 languages in 2011. With the introduction of the new Disqus in 2012, language support dropped to 7 languages and even though Disqus accept applications for new languages, only one such has been added since bringing the current number of supported languages to 8 as of 2013[update].
||This article's Criticism or Controversy section may compromise the article's neutral point of view of the subject. (November 2012)|
As with other embedded Web widgets, such as like buttons, the Disqus widget acts as a Web bug which tracks a user's activities, even when they are not logged in, across different sites that use the Disqus commenting system. Information tracked by Disqus.com, which may be disclosed to third parties, includes pseudonymous analytics data, such as a user's IP address, their Web browser version and installed add-ons, and their referring pages and exit links. Although these data are referred to by Disqus as "Non-Personally Identifiable Information", such data, when aggregated, has been shown to be usable for de-anonymizing users.
Users wishing to avoid these issues may opt to install a privacy-enhancing Web browser extension, such as Ghostery, NoScript, or DoNotTrackMe, which identify widgets such as Disqus as Web bugs, and allows them to be blocked; this renders Disqus-powered commenting sections unviewable.
Disqus has also been criticized for publishing its registered users' entire commenting histories, along with a list of connected blogs and services, on the publicly viewable user profile pages. The option to keep profile activity private was later added.
Disqus also was criticized for not giving users control over who follows them. Prior to 2014, any user could follow any other user, but a user being followed could not control or block who was following them. This allowed the system to easily be misused for harassment purposes.
In the event that Disqus shut down, hundreds of millions of comments would be wiped away from a wide range of sites, since by the very nature of the service, comment content is not being managed locally by sites implementing the service. However, it is possible for site administrators to export all of their comments as an XML document which can then be ported into other commenting systems.
In 2013 a Swedish group called Researchgruppen obtained and exposed a large number of anonymous Disqus identities through the application programming interface (API). The group co-operated with the Bonnier tabloid Expressen, who subsequently visited some of the commentators in their homes, confronting them with allegedly racist, misogynic and derogatory sentiments. Researchgruppen, which includes people from the far left, said their database contained millions of comments from Disqus users around the world who are at risk of de-anonymization. In March 2014, Expressen and Researchgruppen won the investigative reporting award Guldspaden.