Friday, May 25, 2012

Commenters Heads-up: You Do Not Have to Prove You Are a Human Anymore

I have not been keeping up with email and postings of blogs followed. The fast approaching summer season and the chaotic look of my garden heightened the urgency and necessity that it was time to head outdoors and tend the yard. I sorely neglected it the past couple of months. Travelling far afield and catching up when home allowed no time for the yard.

But warm, sunny weather coaxed me outdoors. And the work commenced. Pulling weeds, trimming bushes, planting. I am trying tomato plants in containers this year and bought some young plants. We receive a wonderful weekly variety of vegetables from our CSA, but there can never be enough tomatoes in the house.

But I digress. Getting back to catching up, I finally took some time to relax from weeding and planting to read blog posts accumulating relentlessly in my inbox. One blog prompted me to comment.

I spent a few precious minutes writing my comments. Like many blogs, there was the commensurate keying in of random letters to ensure I was a real human person and not some electronic spam machine playing havoc on the Internet.

 I typed the letters; there were two separate arbitrary combinations.

Then the trouble began. I made an error and had to do it again. Another combination appeared on the screen.

 Again my letters were rejected.

I tried again, typing slowly this time, assuming I was hitting the wrong keys in my eagerness to transmit my words of wisdom.

Once more my efforts did not match the magic combination.

I must have tried ten times. Then I gave up. I do not know what the problem was, but it was time to move on. My frustration was rising to a dangerous level.

There could be a number of reasons for my failure to complete the seemingly mindless, easy task:

·      I am not human. (I will not even consider this option.)
·      I am too computer illiterate and/or dumb to understand the instructions. A possibility.
·      I am going blind and cannot make out the letters on the screen. Also a possibility.
·      My Mac had a bad day.
·      I had a bad day.
·      Blogger had a bad day.
·      A combination of the above.

Then I had a revelation.

I also require commenters to prove they are human. How often do people give up because the letters are too blurry to see, or too close to decipher whether a letter is a c or an o or that line on the screen – is it a d or part of the next letter which might be a b?

So I decided to throw caution to the wind and end the roadblock to comments on my blog. No longer must oblique, blurry, too close, wavy letters and numbers torment would-be commenters annoyingly and irritably attempting to key in the correct characters.

I hope the spam machines do not find me.

If no new posts appear in the next week you can assume I have been buried by spam.

Meanwhile I wish everyone a wonderful holiday weekend!


  1. Hooray! I just won't comment on blogs with those crazy letters. I'll bet you won't have all that much spam. I have never gotten a lot of it after 6 years of blogging. If you really feel the need, you can activate the app that lets you read the comment before it can be posted. Then, you can delete whatever you don't like.

  2. They are hard to read, that's for sure. I hardly ever get them right the first time.

    I'll be interested to know if you get flooded with spam. I hope not. Anyway, I promise not to make any inhuman remarks myself.

  3. Good luck with the spam. Sometimes I hate the crazy words we must type to leave a comment. I don't get discouraged often if I am intent on commenting, but an overly busy site really gets to me.


    PS your site is OK

  4. I took them off my blog. I think. So far, all is well.

  5. Yay, no "prove you are not a robot" here. I don't have that on my blog, it is too annoying! I moderate the comments before they are published, to weed out garbage.

  6. I removed mine long ago and am mightily impressed with Blogger's ability to block spam. I have to go in every now and then and inspect the spam for real stuff and delete them for good, but only occasionally does a real comment make it into their filter.

    They messed around for awhile with the captcha and mostly it is pretty easy for me to use these days. But I'm always glad when I don't have to do it! Thanks!