Discourse vs Disqus

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Discourse vs Disqus: What are the differences?


In this article, we will discuss the key differences between Discourse and Disqus, two popular discussion platforms used on websites. We will highlight six distinct features that set them apart from each other.

  1. Customizability: Discourse is an open-source platform, allowing users to modify and customize the code according to their requirements. On the other hand, Disqus offers limited customization options, primarily focusing on branding customization such as colors and logos.

  2. Hosting: Discourse requires users to set up their own hosting server, giving them full control over their data and privacy. Disqus, on the other hand, is a cloud-based solution where the hosting is taken care of by Disqus itself. This relieves users from the technicalities of server maintenance but may raise concerns about data ownership and privacy.

  3. Community Building Features: Discourse offers a range of community-building features, such as badges, trust levels, and user profiles, which can be used to gamify the user engagement experience. Disqus, although it provides basic user profiles, lacks the extensive range of community-building features offered by Discourse.

  4. Moderation Tools: Discourse provides robust moderation tools, allowing administrators to have fine-grained control over their community. It offers features like post flagging, automatic spam detection, and the ability to set custom moderation rules. Disqus, on the other hand, has more limited moderation tools and relies on automated spam filtering algorithms.

  5. Integration Capabilities: Discourse supports integration with numerous third-party tools and platforms, allowing seamless integration with existing infrastructure. Disqus also offers integration options but with fewer available plugins and limited flexibility compared to Discourse.

  6. Pricing: Discourse is free to use for self-hosted communities, only requiring the cost of server hosting. However, if users opt for the Discourse-hosted option, there are pricing tiers based on the size of the community. On the other hand, Disqus offers a free plan with basic features, but advanced features like custom branding and analytics require a subscription-based pricing model.

In summary, Discourse offers greater customizability, community-building features, moderation tools, integration capabilities, and requires self-hosting or has paid hosting options, while Disqus provides a simpler plug-and-play solution with limited customization, moderation, and integration options.

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Pros of Discourse
Pros of Disqus
  • 28
    Open source
  • 19
  • 13
    Email digests
  • 9
    Better than a stereotypical forum
  • 8
    Perfect for communities of any size
  • 7
    It's perfect to build real communities
  • 7
    Made by same folks from stackoverflow
  • 7
    Built with Ember.js
  • 6
    Great customer support
  • 3
    Made by consolidated team with a working business
  • 3
    Translated into a lot of Languages
  • 3
  • 2
    Easy flag resolution
  • 141
    Ease of use
  • 116
  • 62
    Great ui
  • 45
    Sign-up not required
  • 40
    Wordpress integration
  • 26
  • 18
    Up votes
  • 8
    Threaded discussion
  • 6
    Easy ghost integration
  • 4
    Tumblr Integration

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Cons of Discourse
Cons of Disqus
  • 3
    Heavy on server
  • 2
    Difficult to extend
  • 2
    Notifications aren't great on mobile due to being a PWA
  • 4
  • 1
    Poor support
  • 1
    Bugs with migration tool

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What is Discourse?

Discourse is a simple, flat forum, where replies flow down the page in a line. Replies are attached to the bottom and top of each post, so you can optionally expand the context of the conversation – without breaking your flow.

What is Disqus?

Disqus looks to make it very easy and rewarding for people to interact on websites using its system. Commenters can build reputation and carry their contributions from one website to the next.

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What companies use Discourse?
What companies use Disqus?
See which teams inside your own company are using Discourse or Disqus.
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What tools integrate with Discourse?
What tools integrate with Disqus?

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What are some alternatives to Discourse and Disqus?
Flarum is the next-generation forum software that makes online discussion fun. It's simple, fast, and free.
Discord is a modern free voice & text chat app for groups of gamers. Our resilient Erlang backend running on the cloud has built in DDoS protection with automatic server failover.
Imagine all your team communication in one place, instantly searchable, available wherever you go. That’s Slack. All your messages. All your files. And everything from Twitter, Dropbox, Google Docs, Asana, Trello, GitHub and dozens of other services. All together.
JavaScript is most known as the scripting language for Web pages, but used in many non-browser environments as well such as node.js or Apache CouchDB. It is a prototype-based, multi-paradigm scripting language that is dynamic,and supports object-oriented, imperative, and functional programming styles.
Git is a free and open source distributed version control system designed to handle everything from small to very large projects with speed and efficiency.
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