As a freelance writer, I always try to have places to write my opinions and to promote articles that I write. I have a LiveJournal and a few different Bloggers. I have heard of WordPress and I know that people use it, but I have never quite understood how to set one up and I get concerned that I’ll never keep up with it. This is sometimes I can hardly keep up with my other journals because I have to write to get money so I can pay my bills. Another problem on WordPress that I have heard about is spam. I doubt it is any worse than LiveJournal’s spam, which doesn’t have options for fixing the problem yourself. I’d probably find the spam messages amusing. However, other people never want to deal with spam. There are solutions to help block spam on WordPress journals.
One of the first things I look at on browsers and websites are plug-ins. This isn’t because I don’t want to take care of spam messages myself. However, I look for plug-ins that don’t require much maintenance so I can be concerned with writing other things instead of maintaining a website or comment on a website. Recommended plug-ins for WordPress sites are Akisment, Bad Behavior, and trackbacks.
Captchas can drive me crazy. I have literally gotten Captchas that have asked me to enter Greek characters and Arabic characters. Obviously, I cannot enter these without having to turn to a special font and use special keystrokes. Luckily many of the Captchas have “Re-Captcha” technology, so all I need to do is ask for a new Captcha by pressing the curved arrow. I can do this until I find a Captcha that I can read. While Captchas can be annoying, they are difficult for web bots to detect. This keeps automatic spam away from WordPress sites. A plug-in that can be used is SI CAPTCHA which is found on the WordPress site.
Using .Htaccess requires more know-how, but I would find it easy to use since there is a supplied code that tells me what I need to replace in it. I have used this type of thing for web sites I have been making ever since high school. It has never been difficult and I make sure that it is marked in the HTML by using comments so I don’t accidentally change the coding. The htaccess of your web site can block web bots and automatic spammers by inserting and changing a simple code that can be found on e-moxie. This link will be in the sources and in the related links.
Blacklisting words can be both a good and a bad thing. I was once a member of a bulletin board that blacklisted any words that it considered to be “bad words” and replaced them with other words. This resulted in the name “Alfred Hitchcock” becoming “Alfred Hitchthingy” and a book title that mentions “silver spoons” mentioning “silver sthingys.” WordPress blacklists even partial words like that bulletin board, so it is important to be careful of the words that you blacklist or comments with partial words will not be accepted. E-moxie provides this list of common spam words.
One of the things that is an option on WordPress is to make sure all people who comment must be registered. This will keep many spam bots from putting spam into your WordPress journal or WordPrss site. There are a few tricks spammers use with registration, but they usually do not get past the requirement of being registered to comment on a site.