What is Akismet?
Akismet is a service that filters spam automatically from blog comments. It works in a similar way to how an email program (like Outlook) filters spam. The Akismet web service checks for spam comments and puts these in the spam section in the plugin’s admin area. Here, you can approve, trash, or leave comments where they are.
Akismet is a sophisticated system that knows the tricks and techniques used by spammers from watching millions of blogs and forums. It knows all the tricks and can detect comments that
don’t look legitimate.
Here are the main features of the Akismet Spam plugin…
In the admin section, you can see which comments were identified as spam and cleared by Akismet. And which comments were categorized as spam for you to review later. This alone, saves the blog owner a lot of time and effort.
The Akismet spam plugin has a useful stats section, which shows you the total spam, ham (not spam, or good comments), missed spam, false positives (a legit message marked as spam by mistake), and accuracy rate of the spam filter. You also have the option of viewing these stats over different time periods… daily, 6 months, 1 year, or all time.
Links are highlighted in comments so you can see clearly whether they look legit or not.
You can set the Akismet spam plugin to automatically delete spam on posts more than a month old, so you don’t even need to review them. And show the number of comments approved beside each comment author, so you know which authors look credible.
Why do you need to use the Akismet spam plugin on your blog?
Well, in a nutshell, so no one can use your blog for their own gain and harm your blog in the process…
When you get spammy comments left on your blog, It’s free advertising and exposure for the spammer’s blog. They do this a lot to try and build backlinks to their own sites and get your readers to buy their products. They peddle porn, fake pills, money making scams and malware using these comments.
How do you identify spam comments? Well, they usually offer no value. The sites they link back to are low quality. And they offer products that are irrelevant or offer no value to your readers.
Spammers also use trackbacks and pingbacks to generate comments. These are just ways they notify you that they are linking to your blog post from their site. You will see these types of comments a lot in your spam section when you use the Akismet spam plugin. You can tell because they have usually cited a part of your blog post in the comment. It’s not a real comment, as these are usually written and posted manually.
The Akismet spam plugin filters spammy comments on auto-pilot so you don’t have to. And It is remarkably accurate. There is the odd occasion when a comment does get through but this is very rare.
Every time we set up a new blog, the Akismet spam plugin is one of the first plugins we install. It is an important and essential plugin for any blog. It can protect the quality of your content and you blog’s reputation by filtering comments that offer no value. This also means your search engine rankings and traffic aren’t harmed in any way.
The Akismet spam plugin is easy to use and un-complicated. It was developed by the WordPress creators’ themselves (aka: Automattic), so it’s bound to be a great plugin.
BONUS ANTI-SPAM PLUGIN
We’ve become big fans of the Growmap AntiSpambot plugin. It’s very simple and effective at preventing spambot submissions. Use it in conjunction with Akismet and kiss your spam comments goodbye.