Captcha Shmaptcha

This is a test... a test of my updated system for preventing comment spam, which has totally gotten out of control ever since I upgraded MovableType to version 4 (which sucks, by the way).

My goal was to avoid using the "captcha" system because I hate it. You know what I'm talking about... the images of warped, distorted or otherwise mangled letters you have to type to prove you're a real person before you can comment on someone's blog.

Seriously now... these things have gone to far.

captchas that suck

...but what else can be done to fight spam? By early this week, my site was averaging twenty spam comments a day that were making it past the spam filter. Clearly, something here had to change.

I guess I could force people to register before they can post a comment, right? Uhm... no thanks. That feels too restrictive to me - especially since I think the web is at its best when it's as participatory as possible.

The solution I found probably wouldn't work for everyone, but it sure seems to work here.

I installed a little doodad called TinyTuring. In order to post a comment here, you have to type one letter to prove you're a real person, and the letter is not warped or distorted in any way. Best of all, spammers can't beat the system unless they post comments by hand (which they of course don't).

a better way.

I installed TinyTuring a few days ago and so far it's completely stopped all spam.

Yes, all of it. Woo hoo!

Got a MovableType blog? I highly recommend you check TinyTuring out!

::::: | Friday, Mar 14 2008 at 12:26 PM
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Me! said:

Testing one more time just to be sure it works. Grin.

::::: | March 14, 2008 12:34 PM

Dave said:

I'm on blogspot so I don't know if I can use it but I'll look into it. That's so much better than captcha. Really cool.

::::: | March 14, 2008 8:38 PM

BrianM said:

I had a friend who is a much better programmer than I write a little module that pulls up a random question and forces folks to answer it. Math questions, simple stuff. It's visually-impaired-friendly and stuff.

But yours seems much simpler.

::::: | March 17, 2008 9:27 AM

Me again! said:

Three years later and it still works better than anything else I've ever seen. I've gotten a total of five pieces of spam during the past three years. You read that right. FIVE.

Not five per day.
Not five per week.
Not even five per year.
I've only gotten five pieces of comment spam during the past three years, and I believe they were each posted by hand, by two different spammers. In both cases, I banned the IP and that put an end to it.

The real problem is that MovableType is dead as a platform, which means I'll eventually have to give up my awesome spam blocker when I switch to something else (WordPress?).

::::: | March 27, 2011 1:15 PM

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