For it is by grace you have been saved...

Monday, March 4, 2013

The Comment Conundrum

A little "housekeeping" here.  For the longest time I used the "word verification" feature for the comments on this blog.  It was a way of keeping out the mechanized "spam" that you all know about so well.  

But after awhile, this simple little tool became not so simple.  People started to get frustrated because the system would give such runtogetherwords, or odd pictures that you couldn't see, and it was difficult to get past the little security nazi.  I know because I found the same frustration when trying to comment on others who had the same system going.  It was a pain.  And let's face it.  Nothing on this blog is so amazing that folks are going to spend twenty minutes and a dozen tries to get through a word verification procedure. So I removed it. 

~Sigh~  Now my comment box is full of spam.  I've left the comment moderation on because I had an earlier problem with a spammer going way back in my blog archive and filling old posts with links to all kinds of unwelcome things.  It took me forever to find and remove all those.  So with the comment moderation, at least I can control what actually appears on the site.  But again, now that the word verification is off, I'm regularly deleting a boatload of advertising comments from my email/blog.

I've also noticed that the blog seems so much more popular now, at least according the stat keeper.  However, it largely involves a lot of hits to old posts that coincidentally are also the targets of the spam comments.  ~Sigh~ again.  

This whole thing is a bit frustrating.  Especially considering that I don't get an overwhelming number of comments to begin with, at least real ones.  I know that the three people who read this blog are often too busy comment, or that what's written here is usually not that comment worthy, so...   is it worth it to have the comments enabled at all, or not use the frustrating word verification, or... I don't know. 

Anyway, here's the deal.  For the next few days I'm going to leave things the way they are.  I'm hoping that someone out there will read this and actually offer me some advice on the best way to deal with all this.  After that, I'm seriously considering going back to the painintheneck word verification just to empty my spam box and get the stat numbers back in a realistic neighborhood.  Any thoughts?


John said...

I don't use Blogger (I'm a WordPress guy) but you might check to see if Akismet is available for Blogger. It's great at catching spam so you don't have to deal with it.

Also, check to see if it's possible to turn off comments on posts older than a certain number of days.

Those two will eliminate nearly all your spam.

Ophelia - Marie Flowers said...

In my opinion, if it is that much of a bother you probably should switch back to the word verification, even though it can be hard for readers to figure out at times. That you've got a post about it shows that it's a pain to deal with all the time.

I do think you should keep the comments enabled. :) I've commented a few times on this blog - I know it's nice to be able to.

I hope you're able to get this all straightened out.


Eddie Eddings said...

I have the same problem. Spammers and fewer comments. (Facebook, I think, is partially to blame.) Bloggers spam filter is not doing it's job. I wonder what happens when I click on "spam" to inform Blogger...I still get spam from same sources. It is a pain. I will be returning to your post for solutions myself.

Alicia Price said...

I think one of the best ways to solve your problem is to ban anonymous commenters. This is normally where the spam comes from so, without this option the influx of rubbish slows down a lot!

I am glad lots of people are realising what a pain CAPTCHA can be to the readers! I am dyslexic so i find CAPTCHA nearly impossible to decipher, all of the letters squish together even more than they are when i look at them... and then my brain explodes!

I have recently started using CAPTCHA bypass software though, which I would recommend to anyone who has problems like me or, is just a serious blogger! Its called rumola (try it at and it just reads and fills in CAPTCHA so you dont have too!

Good luck with the spam, hope my comment helps :)

Scott said...

Thanks for some of the ideas. I'm going to look into some options. Oh, how I long for a spam free world!