Lately I've been receiving a lot of comment spam, more than I should be getting, so I contacted Akismet to see what I could do. They shared a tip with me that turned out to be quite helpful.
Here's the key insight: spam is attracted to spam. Let's say a spam comment sneaks by you and remains on one of your posts. That spam somehow attracts more spam on that same post. It's like the spam algorithms look for posts that already have spam comments.
The first step in reducing spam, then, is to clean out all spam from your blog. But what if you have more than 1,000 posts and no time to do this? Don't worry. Rather than moving post by post from the beginning, try this instead:
1. When a new spam comment appears on your blog, don't just immediately remove it. Go to the Comments section in the WordPress admin area and click the talk bubble that appears to the right of the comment. This shows you all the comments for that post.
2. Remove all the spam comments from that post.
That's it. Now that post will be less likely to attract new spam. In the week that I've been trying this, I've noticed a decrease in the number of spam comments that sneak through.
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I'm a technical writer based in the California San Francisco Bay area. Topics I write about on this blog include technical writing, authoring and publishing tools, API documentation, tech comm trends, visual communication, technical writing career advice, information architecture and findability, developer documentation, and more. If you're a professional or aspiring technical writer, be sure to subscribe to email updates using the form above. You can learn more about me here.