Comments come in a few flavors.
- The real kind – having real discussions on your posts is a wonderful experience. It builds relationships, community, and so much more.
- The argumentative kind (trolls) – who are just looking to disagree or push your buttons. They’ll attack you or other commentors, they are just looking for a fight.
- and then there’s the spammers. We all know about them.
The easiest answer is that YES you can simply turn comments off.
You can turn off comments on just a single post or all posts. Some of the widest read bloggers (like Seth Godin) don’t have comments. That works for them but there are other options.
First of all, enable something called Akismet and
Everyone who has Akismet on their site and marks a comment as spam, also signals the database at Akismet. It tells the database who left the comment, what their email was, the website they entered and their IP address. Akismet tracks all this and if enough people mark a comment, an IP, or a website as spam the Akismet algorithm kicks in and starts blocking it automagically!
Akismet kills 99% of all spam. Goodbye Spammers!
As for the Trolls (#2 above) studies have found that if the Commenters are not ‘anonymous’ they tend be a whole lot more civil. There’s a few ways to do this.
- You can allow only those who are registered on the blog to comment. (this requires management by you)
- Use a comment moderation system that allows them to sign in via social media sites (like facebook, google). This site uses Disqus to do just that.
You can always moderate comments. You can edit and you can delete but if you do, you should also have a comment policy in place.
Posted in: WordPress