Dec 11, 2012

Protecting our blogs... one comment at a time.

One of the most dangerous threats to blog safety: unprotected comments.

It must be true because so many people still have captchas attached to the end of their comments. I must be visiting more new blogs than normal, because I have been amazed by how many times I typed words like "phoacy 234" after I thought I had already left a comment.

So I need to know WHY? Is there some email forward going around stating that word verification will protect you against evil Chinese spammers?  Maybe that if you allow the comments to be left it will open your computer to viruses?  It's terrifying really.  Besides, why make it easy for people to leave comments on your blog? You can challenge your reader's ability to type in random words like "pinest 69" and keep a straight face.

For the record: I do not have any hatred for the Chinese people.  I have a deep respect for all of Asia. I am merely commenting on the Chinese spam I've had left on my blogs...

In all seriousness, I got rid of word verification months ago, and I rarely regret the decision. I have discovered that you only get spammers leaving comments if you allow spammers to leave comments. If you delete the comments just after they leave them, they stop leaving them (like gangsters and graffiti). It takes less time to delete a spam comment than it does for your visitors to type in a random word {that they can't read}.

The other risk of leaving unprotected comments would be the random negative or nasty comment... but really, unless you write controversial stuff or have thousands of followers, the number of crazies is probably not too high. Again, you can just delete the comment.

I challenge you to try it out! Turn it off for a week! You can easily change this by clicking on "Settings", "Comments", then scroll down to "Show word verification for comments?" and click "NO".

Done and DONE!

Linking up with TALU Tuesdays - where you take out an old post, dust it off and share it again!


  1. I don't have a captcha activated on my blog, but I do have it set up so that I have to approve comments before they appear. I know how annoying it can be to translate some of those captchas into legible writing. This way, I get a chance to remove spam before it can be posted without driving my readers crazy. I think the only thing close to a negative comment I've had so far was ironically from a friend's son, but I wouldn't stop someone from leaving a negative comment - their opinion is their opinion. I would just respond appropriately. What concerns me is how many people have had their blogs hijacked. I don't really understand how that happens and am hoping it's somehow related to the spam that I'm careful about filtering - maybe they've opened a link someone posted in a comment, etc. Then there are the occasional comments where someone I am aware of already attaches links. I just find that to be rude and don't post them. Unless I had a post that related to whatever I was commenting on, I would never post my page in every comment.

  2. I have no word verification or captcha. But, I do moderate before something post. Surprisingly, I have gotten several mean comments from "anonymous" commenters. So, yeah, I don't post those.

  3. That is surprising (getting mean comments). I prefer moderation over word verification any day!!!

  4. Captcha is the absolute worst! When I was on Blogger I got numerous complaints about how my readers wanted to comment, but the code was so annoying so they decided not to and commented on my post via Twitter or Facebook. Once I realized how many comments I was missing out on, I decided to just get rid of it altogether. I've since switched to Wordpress and Disqus and haven't looked back since!

  5. I don't like captcha either. I have a spam filter plug-in and settings to moderate the first comment left by a person and any comments with more than one link.

  6. I think that approving comments works for me. Even if I like to see my comment on the blog before I move on, I understand why some people choose to do this. I can't handle the captchas though... makes me feel blind and stupid. ;) Thanks for the visit and comment!

  7. A-freakin-men! I get them wrong half the time and just back out without leaving the comment. I use Akismet. (plug in for Wordpress) and it is fantastic at blocking spammers.(talu)

  8. I despite word verification. One night I tried like five times to type the word and gave up. I'm on WordPress, so I suppose someone has to be logged in somewhere to comment. I do not allow anonymous comments. And, I approve a new commenter once and then they are in for life!

  9. I turned captcha off almost immediately after my first try-to-commenter told me she wasn't able to comment because of captcha! So far I have not witnessed anything evil about not having it turned on, so I am fine! However, I have moderation of my comments. Great post! I found you over at TALU!


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