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"Comment Spam" places links to spammers websites in the comments of blogs around the internet. There are various techniques to combat it.
How do I stop comment spam in my blog?
I almost titled this entry "What does a porn site have to do with Ask Leo!" because I was getting regular comments that were nothing more than attempts to post a link to porn sites. Naturally I removed them as soon as I was notified about each but that's time consuming and annoying. It was easy to see that the comment spam was machine-generated because the posts were extremely similar right down to bad grammar and misspellings.
I had one technique in place for some time but it was still allowing this class of spam to get through. Time to break out some bigger guns.
For the record, Ask Leo! is powered by Movable Type so the techniques I'm outlining here are specific to that.
My first attempt some months ago was simply to rename the comment addition script from the default name used by Movable Type. That actually worked very well until just recently. I had been getting several bogus comment posts per day and they simply went way for some time.
Recently though, I started getting more porn posts and decided to go for a solution I had seen on several of my friends blogs: the use of a Captcha Turing Test. You've probably seen them, you're presented with a graphic that contains a somewhat obscured number or word and you are asked to re-type what you see. This is intended to "prove" that you're a real person and not a computer because presumably a computer running an automated spam-bot could not read the text in the graphic.
James Seng has in fact created a Captcha Turning Test for Movable Type called SCode. Installation proved to be a bit of work so it's possible that this is not for the weak of heart. In my case I needed to upgrade a graphics library on my server which involved downloading, rebuilding and installing that library, and then rebuilding SCode and installing that. Then when all that seems to be done all of the comment templates needed to be altered to include the actual test presented to commenters.
It was a bit of work but it appears to be working. I'll still delete inappropriate posts but at least number of those should decrease dramatically.
If this solution seems a bit daunting for you then perhaps a visit to blogspam.org is in order. They have a number of solutions for preventing spam on Movable Type and other content management systems.
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