I’ve been getting lots of comments on my blogs lately.
Normally that would be a good thing. However, many of the comments I’m seeing come through are actually spam.
Some are obviously spam. Some are a bit tricky.
There are a few telltale signs of spam blog comments. Red flags go up when I see things like:
- Lots of links in the comment
- Crazy bad English (or just gibberish)
- Super long comments about nothing
- Overly complimentary or generic comments
- Comments that have nothing to do with the post
- Sentences taken directly from my actual post (with nothing else)
- Multiple comments from different sources that include the same theme (like essay writing)
- Anything with Viagra in it
While the Akismet plugin for WordPress works well to filter out the obvious spam comments, some still come through. In the other blog I write, I’ve been receiving up to 10 spam comments a day that have something do to with writing essays and thesis statements. It’s an addiction blog. If anything, those spam comments belong on this blog, which actually talks about writing. And though I do monitor all comments on that blog, due to its content, it’s still frustrating and time consuming.
I recently came across a video tutorial from from Michelle Shaeffer that walks you through two ways to combat spam comments on your WordPress blog. The first is to add words to your Comment Blacklist (like “essay,” for example) in your Discussion Settings. The second suggestion from Michelle is installing the Growmap Anti Spambot Plugin (search “GASP”), which forces commenters to prove they are human by checking a box. Automated spambots won’t be able to get a comment through. Michelle explains both in the video.
My problem seems to be people spamming me and not bots. For now, I’ve switched my discussions settings to “Comment author must have a previously approved comment.” Hopefully this new setting will allow my regular commenters to post with ease, while giving me the ability to moderate new commenters. I’m also trying out the GASP plugin on the other blog. We shall see.
Have you had a problem with spam commenters? What tactics have you used to combat comment spam?
Photo Credit: Flickr