I’ve been running WordPress for a long while, and I love that it’s a powerful open source software package. I’ve ran comments on this site for a long while, and for whatever reason the bots have managed to get better by orders of magnitude within the past year.
I first wrote my own simple plugin, which fooled most of them for a few months. Soon after that, it was becoming much less effective.
I then turned on Akismet, the WordPress spam filter. That mostly worked, though the amount of spam was just so immense that even though few were getting past, I could easily get more than 20,000 junk comments over the course of a couple days. I actually saw my database files grow rather quickly as a result, and not purging every few days was beginning to not be an option.
Hopefully I’m not just on the cusp of a second wave, though so far I’ve been rather impressed by Jetpack Comments. Beyond various social login mechanisms, it also extends the form to have a lot of nice tricks to fool bots and allow the humans to come through.
I’ll update this post if things change, but so far I’ve went from 10,000 spam comments a day to zero, just by enabling the module. It’d be nice if some of those features and protections were built into the stock system, though I’m not entirely sure if it’s possible. If anyone knows, or would like me to dive a bit into their code, do leave a comment. As it is, I’m quite happy with the result, and would recommend everyone to flip the switch.