Category Archives: problems commenting?

New website, new anti-spam

That was weird. When I was working on the transfer to another host, I noticed that I could no longer install the anti-spam plugin that I have used for years and which I was happy about (WP Spamshield). It proves to have been taken out of the plugin store because it is no longer maintained. Too bad!

I had one day without anti spam plugin and already caught a couple, so I have installed a plugin that I have no experience with (conveniently called “Anti-Spam”), so I hope it does not make any problems for ‘real people’. Let me know if this is the case.

And yet more anti spam

I am getting so tired of cleaning the spam queues every time that I decided to install the dreaded “captcha”, you know, an image or question that you have to type over in order to be able to submit something. (By the way, did you know that “captcha” is short for “completely automated public Turing-test to tell computers and humans apart”? Who the hell came up with that?) It looks like it that I found a plugin that only shows a captcha image when a comment would be marked as spam. Normal visitors should not see them! Should that work, that would be awesome. So, should:

Sorry, but it looks like you are a spambot. Please complete the CAPTCHA below to prove that you are human.

What are the fifth and sixth characters of the following sequence?

with a line of number, something does not work right (or you are a spammer). Please contact me when you are unable to leave comments.

New anti spam measure

Sigh, spam is somewhat of a dayjob when having a website. I have two plugins that should be activated by default, Bad Behavior and Akismet. However Akismet seldom lets any spam through, I have a staggering amount of spam in my spam queue (that should actually be caught by Bad Behavior before it even gets there) since I disabled the plugin called “Cookies For Comments” that even prevented myself from making comments. Because of the large number of spam that manage to dodge Bad Behavior, I activated another third anti spam plugin. Hopefully this one will do the trick. Should it somehow block comments again, please go to the website intro where you can see contact details to inform me about this.

Anti spam

There is a problem with my main anti spam plugin, so I installed another one that I have no experience with. Should you have any problems commenting, please see “website intro and contact” for an emailaddress to notify me of this.
[edit] Problems with Akismet solved, the other plugin deleted.

Security and anti-spam

I almost forgot to mention that when I was working on the complete makeover of this website, that I had to replace some security plugins and/or was suddenly able to use the latest version. Of one very extensive security plugin I was never able to use but a very old version and now I use the latest with many many features of blocking access and stopping bots.

Then in the old setup I found an easy way to block IP’s, referrers, hosts, etc. I am not completely sure if this still works, but you will know soon enough when you are on the blacklist 🙂

As far as I know this has not resulted in new problems with commenting of access to these pages. Should you experience problems, please visit the “website intro and contact” part to send me an email about this.

A few other things that I consider with all the spamming etc. going on is disabling or at least replace the “live comment preview” and the “subscribe to comments” (in the articles and book sections). Bots load the “live comment preview” files every time they stop by even when they are not able to do anything. The same goes for the subscription feature. Spam are caught, but the emails end up in my subscribtion list. Both cost server effort which is not really necessary. There are hardly any subscribers in the first place, but a preview before posting a comment is an almost obligatory feature.

Subscribe to comments

Well that subscribe to comments function proves to be another extra job. My anti-spam measures might block spam comments, but not the spam subscriptions to comments. Not that these are of any use, but an automatic spam bot doesn’t care about that of course. Since I don’t expect ongoing discussions about music or filmreviews or newsitems, I disabled the plugin in these parts. If in the bookreviews and articles sections things remain silent, I might just as well get rid of it there as well.

Spam’n’eggs

A while ago I was notified about the fact that people had problems commenting, the problem was the antispam plugin that I used used some kind of Java that did not work for everyone. I replaced the plugin only to find out that I receive several spam comments every day. So I looked for yet another antispam plugin, hopefully it works better. Should you have any problems commenting, please to go the ‘intro and contact’ section and send me as many details as possible by email.

Anti spam measures

It seems that things like this have to happen from time to time. In a few days time I got two notifications of problems with commenting. One visitor was kind enough to contact me and tell me the error he got. It was a white screen with at the bottom giving not only the file which gave the error (hmmm, that is not a good thing), but also the line: “In order to prevent spam, you must manually copy the given number if you do not have JavaScript enabled. Please go back and try again.” I use two anti spam plugins, apparently both use some JavaScript, but the error quickly showed me which one gave the problems. I could not reproduce the error, but I hate the fact that some people do have problems. So I got rid of the plugin (that apparently is no longer maintained anyway) and replaced it by another. All works fine here, should you now or at any given time have problems with commenting, please go to the “website intro & contact” and see there how to email me. Please provide as much information as possible, what section (articles, book reviews, etc.) what browser you use, what error you get (a print screen might help), etc. I hope I have solved the problem for now, but like I said, it seems like this has to happen from time to time.

Some new features

Recently it bothered me that when I reply to someone’s comment even myself couldn’t let the commenter know that (s)he got a reaction to the original comment. I looked around for a “plugin” that allows people to have their comment send per email to the person they respond to, but I couldn’t find one that worked properly. Then I thought that it would be better to have the potential receiver of such emails decide if they want to get them, so now I installed a plugin allowing people to subscribe to the comments of a certain post.
Looking around for the plugin I ran into a comment preview plugin. I used to have one, but it stopped working after some upgrade of WP. I prefer to be able to preview myself, so I want to offer the possibility here too. These features are added to all sections but this one (news).
Last thing is something that you shouldn’t notice, but I have tried to stop search engines from indexing search results, author and date archives, etc. since I noticed that search results a bit too often contains way of entering posts that I do not prefer.

Of course I did some testing, but should you run into anything strange or something that does not (or no longer) work, let me know by commenting on this post or if commenting is the thing that stopped working, go to “website intro and contact” for other contact information.