Keep Spam 100% off your blog

The Trifecta to keep Spam 100% off your blog

This week I’ve had emails or comments from two bloggers that are spending time and money removing spam comments or trying to prevent them in the future.

I have 6 main blogs and at least 20 all together. I’ve never had a spam comment make it live on any of my blogs. Maybe I’m lucky, or maybe it is the way I have them setup.

Here are the three things I have in place which have kept my sites safe from spam.

  1. Settings. Discussions. Moderate comments.The first three comments anyone leaves go to moderation (you can set this to any number you want). And I get an email for approval. Once I approve 3 comments their comments will be posted automatically (I still get an email of the comment)   This way I trap a lot of people leaving spam comments like “Nice Blog, keep up the good work”.   They are looking for a link back because the Lab (all my sites) are do follow blogs.
  2. Use Askimet plugin to trap spam. This traps 99 percent of spammer comments. How it does this: anyone using this plugin that sends a comment to spam it goes to Askimet. If 3 comments from that email or url are flagged as spam those comments automatically go to my spam filter. As new spammers leave comments and guys like me requiring moderation trap them and send them to Askimet many never get them coming to anything but their spam filter.
  3. Peter’s Custom anti-spam comments plugin. This requires a simple captcha that catches bot spam.

There you have it.   My trifecta spam filtering system.


  1. What I find strange about website spam is that I’ll go a month with nothing and then get slammed.

  2. I get the same thing Brandon. It seems to come in waves, at least from bots. The occassional link hunter will show up, but usually its from Russia with spam. 🙂 I think I’m going to try the custom anti-spam plugin and see if that eliminates the need to moderate bot spam.
    .-= Charles Richey´s last blog ..Las Vegas Property Auctions – Deal or No Deal? =-.

  3. Brandon and Charles

    I have zero bot spam coming in for moderation. I have about a dozen comments roll into moderation a week and that is total from all the blogs. So not bad. I have many, many trapped each week in the spam filters.

    Have a great weekend guys


  4. I currently have bogs on third party sites and I am going to be starting my own server with a blog on it shortly. I have been trying to decide whether to do a comment section or not. My biggest worry was spam bots. If I decide to do a comment section I will be using some of your techniques and experience.

    I comment occasionally and usually will use my latest blog as the website. It ends up being a long URL. I have noticed sometimes I don’t get through on the comment section. Does any one know if some of the plugins automatically consider long URL’s spam?
    .-= mike´s last blog ..Home Run 2 Grant in Utah $4000 =-.

  5. Mike,

    I don’t know about the long urls getting you thrown into spam, but I do know that you have been put in the Askimet spam filter. Which means enough people have considered your comments spam they have put you there.

    You will need to appeal to Askimet to be re-instated or all your comments will continue to automatically go to spam folders.

    If you want to include a url in a comment you might want to consider using a tinyurl generator to make the url shorter.

    The best way is to use the blog post url you want to mention as the one you use when you leave the comment and then state in your comment they can find the URL by clicking on your name, avatar, etc.

    But the first thing you want to do is appeal to Askimet.

    I found this in the spam filter which is why I know you have already been tagged as a spammer.

  6. Dave, Thanks for your input. I took your advice and have already submitted something to Askimet. It will be interesting to see what they say.

    I will have to check into tiny URL’s. I can’t figure out any other reason I would be blacklisted.

    BTW I really enjoy your blog. I have learned a lot from reading your blog and like your writing style. Thanks again for sharing your knowledge.
    .-= Mike Harrison´s last blog ..Home Run 2 Grant in Utah $4000 =-.

  7. Mike,

    You are welcome. Honestly, it isn’t too hard to end up thrown in the Askimet spam filter. This can happen in a couple of ways.

    1. In the beginning a lot of new bloggers have been told to visit blogs especially do follow blogs (Like the Blog Lab) and leave comments on them. What they don’t say is “Read the Post, contribute to the discussion” Unknowingly newbies make their comments too generic or self serving by posting links in comments to their own blog (Not a good thing to do until a relationship is established) This will often result in getting a comment thrown in the Askimet Spam folder and deleted.

    2. Sometimes putting long urls in a comment can break a theme. Poor theme design contributes to this sometimes, but any blogger on any given day can see those comments and rather than fix them, (Yes we can fix comments and change the code in the comment so the URL doesn’t even show.) But the easy way out is to delete the comment. And on a bad day throw it in the spam filter.

    I’m not saying you did anything wrong, sometimes it is being in the wrong place at the wrong time. I know some very well known bloggers who have ended up thrown in the Askimet file and had to appeal to Askimet.

    I try and always read through the spam folder before I delete the comments and send them on to Askimet. Sometimes I find one like your comment and publish it and let the author know they were in the Askimet folder, (like I just did with you).

    Keeping Spammy comments off a blog can be a daunting task. Not so daunting if you do the steps in this post, but intensive if not. The quick thing is dump the spam folder. For those that don’t want to be bothered, they never look in the spam folder, they simply let them be auto deleted in about 30 days. But once the process mentioned in this post is put in place it is much easier to check the folder and fish out any “friendly fire” comments.

    We all want comments on our posts. The more comments a post has it seems the better the positioning of that post for PR and organic placement.

    Enough, Have a great weekend Mike


  8. Hi Dave,
    I just watched a video of Matt Cutts from the most recent WordPress conference (a few months ago). He swears by Cookies For Comments as a spam prevention. Funny thing, is Matt Cutts only uses 4-5 plugins. The CFC plugin is one of them.
    .-= Joe´s last blog ..Kennewick Real Estate Listings =-.

  9. Joe,

    I saw that same video and installed the plugin. But even before that using the system outline here I’ve never had a spam make it to publication.

    Great to hear from you Say hi to Colleen for me.

    Have a great holiday weekend.


  10. We use the same tools on most of our blogs (if not all) and we really don’t get spam. I have never been able to understand why bloggers complain so much about spam (since our tools usually take care of it); I’ve always just figured that we don’t get as much traffic or as many spammers looking for a link.

    @Charles & Brandon – I’ve noticed that we get a lot more comments around the first of the month. I’ve always thought that it’s because of our top comment widget – do you both have the same?

  11. Thank you for the spam reduction ideas. I get a lot of spam asking me to shrink things or grow things, and not a whole lot of real comments. I use Askimet on my wordpress blogs and that works well. My activerain started getting spammed hourly so I turned off comments made by non-members. All the best. Ken