Facebook to launch third-party comments system

Facebook is about to launch a comment system for third party sites that would take on services like Disqus and proprietary systems, multiple sources are confirming.

The news, which has leaked out on Monday, could mean that Facebook would allow sites like Pocket-lint to feature a Facebook run comments system allowing greater connectivity with Facebook users elsewhere on the web.

With such a strong focus on commenting on Facebook many see the move as a natural progression for the site as it continues to expand its reach beyond Facebook.com and into the wider web.

The rumours first started on Cnet¬†in the US, that the social network would launch a new system in the coming months. Cnet’s Caroline McCarthy hints that:

“This new technology could see Facebook as the engine behind the comments system on many high-profile blogs and other digital publications very soon...The Facebook commenting product may also permit users to log in with Google, Yahoo, or Twitter IDs if a publisher chooses to incorporate them.”

Following the news, Mashable is reporting that it has reached out to its contacts and says that it has confirmed, via unnamed sources, that “Users can use the platform by logging in through Facebook Connect or Twitter, Comments are threaded, can be voted up, and that Comments are synced across a publisher’s site and Facebook Page, meaning that a comment made on a publisher’s site will show up on its Facebook Page, and vice versa.”

Comments is the next big battleground for social networking sites as they look to harness people’s thoughts around the world.

Currently the landscape is dominated by Disqus, a free and premium package that promises to stop spam and provide a number of features to publishers beyond a dedicated system of their own.

However, the biggest question for publishers is who owns the comments and what rights will they have and what control will be offered to those who look to bring in outside help.

UPDATE: A reader has emailed in to suggest that Facebook already has a third-party comments system that can be found in the developer site on Facebook. 

http://developers.facebook.com/docs/reference/plugins/comments

Could Facebook be planning a bigger push for this little widget?

What do you think? Should Facebook launch a third-party comments system and would you use it if it did? Let us know in our comments system below.