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April 28, 2017

Fighting the War against Comment Spam in WordPress

Coment Spam WordPress Vuukle

WordPress powers around 25% of the internet today. If you are a digital publisher, chances are, you are running your site on WordPress. But there is a price to pay for popularity. WordPress powered websites are a favorite hunting ground for spammers and scamsters. Comment spam, in WordPress sites, is a huge menace. It is not just an eyesore but harmful to your website because Google is banning sites with bad links (even those within spam comments). Also, spam comments decrease user engagement and lower the quality of user experience on your site.

Here are the most common ways to fight comment spam in WordPress and why they may, or may not, be the best option for your website.

Disguise WordPress

You can make your website invisible to most spam bots that are specifically hunting for WordPress websites. There are numerous WP plugins that let you do this with a click. These plugins do hide away the most obvious tell tale signs of WordPress. However, for the most sophisticated spammers just your comment form is enough invitation. Hiding the WordPress login and other URLs does not deter them.

Activate Akismet

A paid plugin which is already present on WordPress, but requires activation and a API key. Akismet is quite useful in filtering and catching the spam comments. However, the enterprise could cost you around $100 per month which is way too high for just a spam filter.

Comment Spam WordPress Vuukle

Akisment is not a viable solution for enterprise websites or large digital publishers

Block Spams through Honey Pot

With the help of honeypot technology, spambots are able to identify themselves. A hidden area present in the form will only be visible to spam bots as they are processed in such a manner to fill all required fields.

Add Captcha Plugin

The captcha plugin uses an image that contains characters which needs to be typed in before submission, so the spam bots are blocked.

Comment Spam WordPress Vuukle Google Captcha

Google Captcha is the best. But you won’t need it if you are on Vuukle

Take this Neat Trick from Moz

A great way in which Moz became quite successful in increasing the number of quality comments and removing the nasty spam comments was by putting up a discussion question right after the blog ended. This was done by automatically seeding a comment question at the end of the post which invited discussion from the readers and the thin spam comments like “good post” or “useful post” were identified easily as spam. Lastly, the comment section was also automatically closed by them after a period of 30 or 60 days.

Comment Spam WordPress Vuukle

It is not every day that you get a comment from Barack Obama

This way your readers who are always following your blog will be looking forward to answer your question, whereas the spam comments won’t be able to do so. An easy trick which reduced the spam comments down by a considerable number and this is what we call, kicking out some spam off our blogs, bye we say!

How Vuukle Fights Comment Spam

Vuukle has cutting edge technology to help digital publishers fight comment spam. Most of these features have been developed over years of working closely with some of our earliest clients like The Hindu.

In Vuukle moderation panel, you can control each and every comment and easily find blacklisted words. The advanced settings option lets you block any particular IP address or email id, black listing of IP address and integration with Google API to auto block hate speech. The real time analytics seen on Vuukle dashboard gives you email reports, time spent by user on articles, apps etc.

Comment Spam WordPress Vuukle

Vuukle Comment Moderation Panel and tools reduced the moderator team size at The Hindu by 80%

Comment moderation on Vuukle dashboard is easy. Through the comment moderation section, you can easily reject or delete any comment, edit comments and the best part is filter comments from the drop down list present on the left side of your Vuukle account.

How Vuukle helps Digital Publishers Fight Comment Trolls

Vuukle has partnered with Google for its fight against comment trolling. Google has always hated spammers. This dates back to the obnoxious pop-ups of the 90s to sophisticated spam comments we see today.

Google and Vuukle being old partners, the latter shows relevant ads through Google’s advertisement network and makes sharing with publishers easy. Advertisement through the Google platform is the best choice as it shows only relevant ads and no disguised ones. Now you can easily open an API with Vuukle and partner with us.

Understanding Vuukle + Google Comment Toxic Rating

Try commenting on this post in the comment section below. By simply entering your comment you can come to know the toxicity level of your comments. This can be known even before pressing the enter button. Hence, the best way to filter out spam comments can be done via setting a threshold for toxic ratings, though depending upon the website, but we would suggest a toxic rating of 70 – 75% maximum, above which all comments should be dropped.