Akismet Asteroids

Akismet, the anti comment spam service run by Automattic recently announced that they had stopped 25 billion spam messages.

It’s quite an achievement of course and worth worth celebrating with a game of Asteroids. I’ll let you find the game yourself, it’s not hard to do so! 🙂

Slow down trackback spam with Simple Trackback Validation

I used the Simple Trackback Validation plugin for a while until I noticed these errors showing up in php_errors.

PHP Fatal error: Cannot instantiate non-existent class: snoopy in /home/www/wp-content/plugins/simple-trackback-validation/simple-trackback-validation.php on line 158

This morning I decided to fix it as the spammers have been going crazy. I spotted dozens of POST requests to trackbacks as I tailed my log files.

How to fix the plugin:

  1. Open simple-trackback-validation.php in a text editor and go to line 158. It should be this line:

    $stbvSnoopy = new Snoopy;

  2. Above that line, add the folloing line:

    include_once( ABSPATH . 'wp-includes/class-snoopy.php' );

  3. Save the file and upload to your host again.

It’s no substitute for Akismet but along with Cookies for comments it should help keep your blog spam free!

Or, as I’ve just done because this blog is being inundated with trackback spam right now (over 17,000 in the last 9 hours), I blocked off access completely with this rewrite rule. Any WordPress blog will send a pingback anyway and MT even supports pingback now!

RewriteRule ^(.*)/trackback/ - [F]

WIP: Blog Voyeur and Custom Akismet screenshots

Here’s a sneak preview of some stuff I’m working on, besides WP Super Cache and WordPress MU.

First of all, there’s my Blog Voyeur plugin. It’s a visitor logging plugin like many other ones, but this one only records hits from users who have left comments here. The screenshot below is what you see in the backend listing page. I took out the names of the users for privacy reasons but so far it’s worked quite well. I’m not sure yet if this plugin will see the light of day. After discussing this with Mark he came up with some possible uses for it. Inventive fellow is he. Comments in brackets by me.

“When I made that post yesterday criticising Matt, I wondered if he would look at it. Well now I know he did… and because he didn’t comment he’s guilty…” (paranoid?)

Match your cookie thing with crazyegg 🙂 (excessive?)

Have a popup – “Hi Matt!” (annoying?)

See returning user, see no comments so send them an email asking for their views on the posts they did not comment on. (obsessive?)

voyeur-list-t.gif

I mentioned this second plugin already. It’s a modified version of Akismet. You can download it yourself if you want to play with it. If someone else wants to take it further feel free to. It’s all GPL code. I’m posting a screenshot because it’s amazing to see so much spam from one IP address in only a few days. Just goes to show what a good job Akismet does.

akismet numbers

Idiot spammers

This comment was posted automatically using Blog Comment Poster. Check out its site to learn more and start building backlinks to your websites today.

This post was written manually using Donncha’s fingers. Check out the Akismet anti comment-spam plugin to stop the idiot spammer at 75.126.132.23 using “Blog Comment Poster”.

The Schneider Interview

Robert Scoble talks to Toni Schneider, the CEO of Automattic in this video interview about WordPress.com, Automattic and lots of other stuff. I’ve only watched the first 10 minutes, Toni talks about some of the features of WordPress.com – paid features, making money, adverts, fighting splogs and more.

Do you like Akismet? That’s covered too. Make sure you set aside some time today to watch this interview if you use WordPress!

The Akismet Worst Offenders

Rich Boakes has written an extension to Akismet that makes deleting all the spam comments much easier. His extension adds a “Worst Offenders” list at the top of the Akismet page. The list is ordered by hits from IP address and helped me delete 2,407 comments with 3 or 4 clicks and saved me scrolling through an endless list of spams.

To make things load faster, look for “LIMIT 150” in akismet.php and change 150 to 10. Your Akismet review page will only display 10 spam comments now, which is more convenient.

Using another mod he wrote he has also hooked Akismet up to Apache’s deny/allow capilibities. It updates his .htaccess to deny requests from the worst offenders on his Akismet page. If your server isn’t particularly powerful this would be a great way of stopping those spammers eating all your precious server resources.

The best anti-comment-spam engine just got a great UI overhaul!