UPDATE: 2011-12-08 I lasted just over a week, but couldn’t bear the silence…commenting is open again on posts dating back up to 30 days, although commenting on anything older or on legacy pages from Elemental Discoveries and the pre-Wordpress incarnation of Sciencebase is disabled.
As of 2011-12-01 the Sciencebase Science Blog will no longer be accepting comments on posts and pages nor in its guestbook. I have been running the site under the WordPress content management (CMS) platform for several years now, although the site has actually existed since July 1999 and in that time comment spam has grown considerably.
The site has published more than 2000 posts in the WordPress system with a couple of hundred more under my old web design and those posts have generated more than 7000 legitimate comments from interested readers (for which many thanks). Unfortunately, in that same time period, the Akismet anti-spam plugin has blocked over 730,000 spam comments and that does not include the spam that was blocked by IP before it hit the plugin nor by the various other spam filters I’ve tested over the years. So, just 1% of comment traffic is genuine discussion the rest is ads for SEO, Ugg boots, pr0n, drugs and other nonsense.
Now, I know every other blogger has to put up with comments, but I’m taking a leaf out of Seth Godin’s book and am now disabling commenting on Sciencebase altogether. If you wish to discuss any particular post, then you can more usefully do so on the social media sites where Sciencebase has a presence: Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Feel free to share, tweet and like posts on those and any other site you favour. I will try to respond to comments on those three in a timely manner, but cannot guarantee to pick up comments on other sites. If you have any problems with this new policy let me know. Comments will remain open on this post until the end of Movember (GMT).