Blog Comment Spam: Be Careful

Steven7 responsesBlogging

Google certainly understands the value of comments on blogs and websites. They know blog readers like to interact with the author and everyone else who visits the blog so they’re perfectly fine with comments, per se. However, Google also understands the potential for comment abuse and that’s not something they’re willing to overlook. Here are a few tips to help you be more careful with your blog comment spam so you can keep your readers and Google happy at the same time.

blog comment spam

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Install A Good Spam Blocker

If you’re blogging on WordPress then you could just activate Akismet and go get yourself a key. However, in my opinion, Akismet doesn’t come anywhere near getting the job done. Look for a free WordPress plug-in called G.A.S.P., GrowMap Anti-Spam Protection. It catches more than 95% of your comment spam. (I’m currently using both these plugins at the same time)

Install A Verification Program

At the very least you should install a Captcha program so commentors have to verify they’re not a spam bot before they’re comment is accepted.

Use No-Follow Links In The Comment Field

Use the no follow attribute for links in the comment field, the area inside the text box where users actually type their comment. This allows your commentors to leave their links but you don’t lose any authority by recommending them to the search engines.

Turn Off Hyper Links In Comments

Completely disallow hyper links in the comment field. Your commentors may still drop URL links but your readers would have to copy and paste to follow and most users won’t do it because they don’t know where they’ll land.

Block Comments Pages In Search

Use robot.txt or metatags to block comment pages from the search engines. That way, if spam comments do get by, the search engines won’t see them. However, your readers will.

Use CommentLuv To Encourage Responsible Commenting

All of these tactics will discourage unscrupulous bloggers from spamming your comments day in and day out and all take a little bit of work or an additional plug in. You can solve all your commenting problems with one plug-in – CommentLuv. CommentLuv includes the G.A.S.P. Anti-spam plugin, a plugin for Twitter links, and it allows you to set your own configurations for comments.

For example, you can allow commentors to have do-follow links after they’ve commented a specified number of times or after they tweet or share your blog post. They can also include a link back to their choice of content and a link to their Twitter account. At the same time, spammers are stopped by G.A.S.P. and a checkbox to verify they’re humans.

If you have a busy comment section then CommentLuv takes care of all that moderating and blocks more than 99% of spam and it rewards your loyal followers with do-follow links to their content.

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7 Comments

  1. Jeanne Melanson

    Well, if you say CommentLuv is enough, than that’s good enough for me. I’ve got this on my site and love it. So do the commenters. Thanks for your high quality posts. I share them (and read them) from Triberr.

    1. I would advise you to not use only G.A.S.P. Here on Dukeo, I use a combination of Akismet and G.A.S.P.

  2. Michael Neuendorff

    I like this post! It’s short, sweet and gets the job done. I have not activated Akismet because it’s pricier than I want. Now that I know about G.A.S.P. I am going to install that instead.

    I have seen CommentLuv and do like it, but I have Disqus now and don’t want to switch it out though it doesn’t seem to have the same encouraging levers that you can pull. I’m going to give it some thought. Thank you!

    1. As I said in a previous comment, to me, the perfect blog moderation setup is to use the combo: Akismet + GASP

  3. Jenna Stratman

    Great post! Thanks for the tips. Would you be able to share where I could change some of these settings in WordPress, like “Use No-Follow Links In The Comment Field” and “Turn Off Hyper-Links in Comments”? Thank you!!

    1. Most blog themes already have comments links set to no-follow. If that’s not the case, you can check in the files: comments.php and functions.php to try to find the right piece of code and add: rel="nofollow" to the links. Regarding links in comments, the first step is to make sure links do not get automatically transformed to clickable ones.

    2. Jenna Stratman

      Thanks for your reply! I appreciate it. I’ll have to double check that on our company website. We had a problem with spammers for awhile, and I’d love to be able to prevent them a little, if nothing else!

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