Clean Up The Comments on Your Blog

By Daniel Scocco

Even if you are using an anti-spam plugin, there are good chances that some spam comments made it through on your blog. This happens for several reasons.

First of all anti-spam tools are not perfect. Secondly, many malicious users will post apparently legitimate comments to trick you into approving them. Finally, the most used moderation system on blogs is the one where only the first comment of each user goes into moderation, and sub-sequent comments get approved immediately. This obviously can be exploited.

Given those problems, it would be a good idea to run a periodic cleaning session in your comments. This will improve the aesthetics of your comment section and remove the risk of getting into trouble with search engines.

clean-blog-comments

If you are using WordPress. simply click on the “Comments” link and use the search function. Search for terms like sex, porn, loans and casinos, and analyze the comments that will appear. Then delete all the nonsense ones and the apparently legitimate comments that are linking to suspicious websites.

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25 Responses to “Clean Up The Comments on Your Blog”

  • Yuen

    I prefer to close comment after one month. That’s also an idea!

  • Chanda @ BizDharma.com

    That was a nice quick tip Daniel.
    Apart from what Yeun suggested I believe rather than having one session to delete all the mess we can have a daily track of the comments coming in and delete the unnecessary ones. I believe deleting couple of them daily is a better alternative than sitting one day choosing the wrong ones and deleting one at a time. Wat say ?

  • Stefan

    I use a different method where I receive a mail every time someone comments on my posts. Sure you’ll get a lot of mail some days but thanks to Gmail they are all grouped together.

    The advantage of using this method is that I can not only answer my readers questions but also see if there’s a new spamuser.

  • Daniel Scocco

    @Chanda, this would only work if you moderate all the comments on your blog. Once you start getting lots of comments moderating all of them individually becomes a time waster though.

  • Joshua Dorkin @ BiggerPockets

    Great simple tips for cleaning the slate every once in a while. I’m actually shocked that I found a few posts that slipped through, but by doing a search for a few of the terms you used and a few others, I found some junk that was live on the blog. Thanks Daniel!

  • InternetHow

    I put those words in spam filter. It seems like it filters all the spammy comments. As well as other spam guards such as Akismet, I get rid of spam comments easily. Saying that, i don’t get as much comment as this blog. So, after my blog gets more popular, I am sure it will be more difficult to control spam comments.

  • V.C

    I don’t use any anti-spam plugin, I think it’s so useless.
    Just use the blacklist tools in discussion.
    If’s more effective than all of the anti-spam plugin

  • Chester

    I think when your site is popular, that means you’ve been spammed. So heck, that’s the indication!

  • Igor Kheifets

    Cool tip.

    I just manualy scan my spam queue every now and then. Most of the time, the opposite happens.

    I find completely legitimate comments and trackbacks in my spam folder.

    Igor

  • Surender Sharma

    Thank you for the tip.
    Lot of spammers try to cheat the blogger but thank God Akismet kills them.

  • Melvin

    Well it can be a hard task to really find those spam comments manually especially if they have been approved for a long time… Searching it might just be the most convenient way.

  • Tom Bradshaw

    Need a loan? Want to make money fast?… Only joking!
    Yeah you’re right, the best way to clean up your comments is to monitor them yourselves. Lots of people don’t bother to read a post as all they’re interest in is getting the link for self-interest. That said it can take time to moderate it yourself, if you miss a day or week then that’s a lot of effort you could put into something more important.

  • excITingIP.com

    I have comment moderation for all the comments!

    Daniel on a related note, how do we know if the comments are actually no-follow in wordpress? And how to make them no-follow, if they are not?

    excITingIP.com

  • Ajay

    I check all my comments constantly, to ensure that I never have spam comments on the blog.

  • Ching Ya

    It’s true, sometimes things just get a little tricky. Luckily the amount of comments are still manageable. For those who receive far more comments than I do, Daniel’s tip could help out. Think I overlooked the ‘search’ function. ^^ Good to know.

    @wchingya
    Social/Blogging Tracker

  • Daniel Scocco

    @ExcitingIP.com, download the “search status” Firefox extension if you want to find out what comments are nofollowed (or check the source code of the page).

    If you haven’t changed anything on your WordPress, though, your comment links are certainly nofollowed.

  • Max Chat

    The only spam that I remove is that from Russia. They are kind of easy to spot because of the .ru extension on the Website links. Outside of that it’s okay, we all need some link juice sometimes.

  • Ronald Redito

    My site’s quite new, I got a few comments though not spam. I think spam messages will help in the ranking of my site. lol.

  • Yuen

    @Daniel Scocco on August 21st, 2009 7:25 pm
    I’m using search status add-on but don’t know how to check for nofollowed comments. Please suggest!

  • Boerne Search

    I don’t use wordpress but I do try my best to scan thru and clean up my post and users.

    Kane

  • Web Marketing Tips

    My blog is do follow, so you can expect the number of spams. I usually check everyday or tell my employee to do this.

    As even a single spam comments can raise a finger about the maintenance of blog and I do not want to take this chance.

  • Walter

    Those spammers are real trouble. What do you think of recaptcha? Will it be good to integrate it on a blog? 🙂

  • iCan’t Internet

    I think (re-)captcha are good things, but for me, personally, I approve each and every comment manually. Bad comments can give you problems with Google’s Adsense if you’re not carefull!

  • RateBrain

    Can you explain what AdSense problems you are talking about? We are considering opening up a blog with no-moderation comments, but also run AdSense – any info would be greatly appreciated.

    thanks

  • Keith Davis

    Good tip but I don’t think that I have to bother too much at the moment.
    The number of comments I get can be easilly managed manually.

    On a site like this with daily tips and lots of comments, I can see that your system would be needed.

    Hopefully I’ll come back to this post when my comments have built up!

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