For last couple of weeks, the ChurchMag server has been rebooted due to CPU overload.
For years, now, ChurchMag snagged between 150 to 300 spam messages … per day.
You can imagine the strain it puts on a server.
Since acquiring ChurchMag, things like server maintenance automatically fell into my lap. It reminds me of when my wife and I bought our first house and one of the appliances stopped working. My wife, Anne, looked at me and said,
“Time to call the Land Lord.”
Ha! As I struggle through the details of owning and operating a professional blog, I’ve had the same feeling.
I was faced with a decision this past weekend. Either upgrade my server to handle the onslaught of spam, or add some sort of captcha.
I hate captcha.
So what to do?
3rd Party Comment System
I considered a 3rd party comment system, but I don’t like them. The comments on ChurchMag should be on ChurchMag, not lost inside some sort of 3rd party comment system that requires additional steps for readers to leave a comment. I understand why sites like Mashable and Techcrunch need these, as the number of comments they receive everyday needs more automation. ChurchMag is an in-between size blog and I would rather keep my comments WordPress native.
So, I began looking into a solution that was not traditional captcha, but remained native to WordPress.
Growmap Anti Spambot Plugin (GASP)
For the time being, I’ve opted to use the Growmap Anit Spambot Plugin. For two days, now, I am happy to say that my spam comments have been minimal. Going from 150-300 spam comments to only one or two, is sizable! Not only will this lower my CPU usage, but I will be saving myself about an hour a week!
Here’s how it works:
Growmap adds a simple checkbox to your comments:
Here’s the admin, so you can see what your options are:
[Click for Larger]
I would like my final solution for fighting spambots to be the Jetpack comment system. I’ll eventually get to that as ChurchMag makes the appropriate theme upgrades, but in the meantime, I am really happy with how GASP is working. Asking you to check one box before submitting your comment isn’t too hard or complicated and the reduction in spam has been phenomenal.
How do you fight those pesky spambots?
[Image via My Island Tribe]