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How to Eliminate WordPress Spam Comments

WordPress comment spam chafes my nipples. It turns out that I’m not as laid back as I like to think I am when I’m bombarded with comments from all over the place that are links back to pharmacies and college educations. I tried the approach of approving the comments and responding to them, but that got old for all concerned.

Red Queen

Lewis Caroll was probably not talking about drag racing in his red queens race

The war against spam, I fear, is something like the red queen’s race. To be maintaining the status quo – the current level of spamification, you have to be installing and updating plugins every time you log into your wordpress blog.  As fast as you update, the spammers evolve and you’re back to installing the new anti-spamware.

That said, here are the two plugins I’m trying right now, and a bunch that DON’T WORK

Really Simple Captcha – DOES WORK – it makes it harder for legitimate posters and hopefully impossible for spam bots. It’s a shame I can’t leave my front door unlocked any more. Maybe I should move to Canada. This integrates with Contact Form 7 allegedly, so that spam bots won’t contact me on the get in touch page.

SI Captcha – DOES WORK- this adds a little “are you a human?” question to the comment form.

Math comment Spam Protection – DOES NOT WORK -this means you have to be able to add to leave a comment. Which may exclude a few of my readers, and hopefully the less smart spam bots. [Edit – of course, this doesn’t actually work, and prevents anyone from commenting on your blog]
WP Hashcash – DOES NOT WORK – this is an anti-spam Javascript solution. Which means it probably works some of the time. And hurrah! It doesn’t say it’s compatible with this version of WordPress. Fan-freaking-tastic.

So for both of you bone fide commenters out there, sorry for making the fence a little higher, living as I do in a low trust environment – the etherweb.

Oh, and yes, I realize that by laying all my cards on the table in terms of my security arsenal I have made myself a target for all those professional hackers who actively seek out small underfunded blogs and try to bring down western democracy by infiltrating them. Big deal. You could get the same results, Comrade L33t Haxx0R , by sending me a t-shirt with an anti-dem0cracy message. I’d wear it. I’m cheap.

{ 3 comments… add one }
  • Testimonial Video Booth 2010/12/04, 21:37

    Ha! This is me spamming my own site. But at least I’m showing I’m human (not just fallible, I’m having to type a funny code too)

  • Squiggle 2010/12/05, 21:12

    In case it’s of interest, I’ve found Aksimet (http://akismet.com/) to be super helpful in keeping spam comments out of my Wordpress blog.

    • ronmalibu 2010/12/05, 21:28

      I like Akismet for non-commercial stuff too! The challenge I have is that, er, it doesn’t seem to eliminate as many messages as I’d like. Either that or I have it set up to still email me when I get a comment. I’ll look at that…thanks!

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