Online commenting platform Disqus announced it’s been testing a native ad product in the form of Sponsored Comments and will be expanding the test “based on early, promising results.”
The Sponsored Comments appear at the top of discussion threads for publishers that opt-in to advertising on Disqus.”A Sponsored Comment can use all types of media to get their point across, just like any other Disqus comment,” wrote David Fleck, head of publisher development at Disqus wrote on the blog.
Fleck added that the placement is designed to maintain the integrity of the user experience, “they’re not part of the discussion happening on that thread or community itself. That’s too disruptive.”
The new product is a follow up to Featured Comments, introduced earlier this year, that allow publishers and marketers to highlight a comment by pinning it to the top of a discussion thread.
Some commenters on the post were quick to ask if Sponsored Comments means the ushering in of spammy ads for weight loss tricks or “that cousin that makes 2000 a week on the internet”.
Fleck responded, “Very fair point. The quality issue is one that we spend a lot of time thinking about and is one on which we have a lot more work to do. A constant tension in the ecosystem is striking the right balance so that we do what is best for users, what is best for publishers and what is best for advertisers. We will communicate more about how we think about quality philosophically and also brass tacks what it means day to day so that it’s not so opaque to users.”
Disqus will sell the ads, which will be priced on an impression basis to start and are only available to a small set of publishers that Disqus is reaching out to.