Anonymous commenting on a WordPress.com blog

If you are a new to blogging setting up your blog comments is a task that may be made easier by reading WordPress.com Comments and Discussion Settings.  It will help with these 9 things:

  1. Enabling and disabling comments on posts and pages;
  2. Overriding default comment settings on individual pages and posts;
  3. Comments on the Front Page;
  4. Auto-completion of Comment and Contact Forms;
  5. Automatic Comment Closure;
  6. Using HTML in Comments;
  7. Images in Comments;
  8. Comment Embeds;
  9. Moving Comments.

I believe Moderating Comments is a Good Thing but if you want to set up anonymous commenting on a WordPress.com blog you can.

other-comm-settings

This page > Settings > Discussion is where you set up defaults for comments.
Discussion Settings
Other comment settings
_Comment author must fill out name and e-mail
_Users must be registered and logged in to comment

Note that the prompt to submit an email address and a website URL will still appear, but providing an email address and logging in are not required.

You can post instructions for your visitors in a text widget if you wish to set up anonymous commenting. You copy and paste this into a text widget:

Readers: Note that the email address and logging in prompts do appear for comments on this blog, but providing an email address and logging in are not required.

P.S. Do be sure to set up full comment moderation ie. “An administrator must always approve the comment” because anonymous commenting is bound to increase the amount of spam your blog will receive.

Once you’ve set up it’s time to consider the choices of  Blog, Website or BothA Comment policy for your blog and Encouraging blog readers to comment and comment baiting strategies.

Two ways of attracting like-minded subscribers who may comment on your blog are (1) commenting meaningfully and frequently on blogs with similar content and (2) being active on social networking sites. Aim to develop relationships with other bloggers so you can expand your range and build a blog readers’ community around your blog.

Here are some commenting etiquette tips for how to win at commenting: Read thoroughly,  Contribute something of value, Keep your comment comment-sized, Don’t leave shameless plugs, Mind your manners and Be yourself.

Related posts found in this blog:

WordPress.com Comments and Discussion Settings
Why blog comment moderation is a good thing
Crazymaking Blogger Comment Settings
Blogging: Comment Baiting
Encouraging blog readers to comment
A Comment Policy for your Blog
Crafting Quality Blog Comments

17 thoughts on “Anonymous commenting on a WordPress.com blog

  1. It’s easy to forget that comments become part of one’s post, and can enhance or diminish the content. For that reason alone, I think comment moderation is a very wise policy.

  2. I moderate everything,I do allow Anonymous comments, I don’t have a political site so no heated discussions so far, the number of comments is quite low, I admin for a friends “we are retired now” site and they get more comments than I do, but then the site was intended for their close friends so it is like a large family.

    1. Hi there,
      I’m surprised that you do allow anonymous comments but given what you describe it seems to work well for you and the other site you are the Admin for too.

      1. The other site is the standard email etc required – but on my main site so far no trouble – most people go ahead and fill in the fields anyway – if it ever becomes a problem I will check the boxes again – fingers crossed on this one

        The other thing that moderating comments do is keep personal info off the web – one person got confused on the other site and let loose a personal family feud thing and I was able to stop it and deal with it and keep it inside my friends family and private

        1. It’s good your main site people are actually people and not bots. Thanks for your feedback on this. As I don’t Admin sites other than my own it’s good to know what you have experienced. I’ve learned a lot also in the support forums from you re: domains. Thanks for that too.

  3. I just experimented with anonymous commenting in my blog. I unchecked the box and then used another browser to post an anonymous comment.

    In the admin panel I see that the comment records the IP address. So if the same IP address keeps coming up with various anonymous comments. it would be a pretty safe bet that it is the same person who keeps commenting anonymously.

    I think you are correct about spamming. I am sure bots can read whether fields are ‘required’ – and if they are not, then they will home in on such a blog.

    By the way, ‘required’ fields are one of the ways that bots are detected and prevented from signing up to membership sites.

    The way it works is that the ‘required’ fields are hidden from normal view. Therefore, real people don’t see them and don’t attempt to complete them.

    But bots do see the fields and do not know they are hidden from normal view, so they attempt to complete them and thereby reveal themselves as bots. :-)

    1. Hi David,
      Wow! Your comment is a great post enhancement. Thanks so much for it.

      P.S. I did some experimenting too and can confirm the same findings. :)

      1. Ah, now I see what you mean.

        I have been working on my ‘spam-scan’ eyesight – zipping through spam comments at top speed, looking for false positives.

        I am sure that this something that bloggers have developed as an added technological skill.

        Before the Internet, who would have guessed such a thing as ‘spam-scan’ eyesight would come into existence? ;-)

    2. Hi David,
      re: the UK comments going to spam issue

      tellyworth
      Staff
      Jul 16, 2013, 5:45 PM

      If you’re in the UK, and you’re still experiencing the issue, please let us know, especially if you’re a BT or Sky customer:

      http://akismet.com/contact/

      We’re still investigating the underlying cause. It seems to be a network-related issue specific to some UK broadband networks and affecting only WordPress.com. If we can publish more details than that then we will.

      If you’re not in the UK then your problem is not the one being discussed in this thread. http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/i-cant-seem-to-comment/page/4?replies=113

        1. Hi there,
          It was directed to you. No your comments are not going to spam but many others were. I didn’t want to create a big deal out of this but I did want you to know the issue existed in case some of your commenters experienced it. Check your spam queue closely.

  4. Hi. Anonymous commenting is done by cowards. The same folks who would never dare say something to your face in real life, but would talk up a storm about you behind your back.

    If you can’t leave a real name & e-mail addy, wy think what you have to say should be posted?

    Stand up and be an adult when leaving your comment, if you type it, own it.

    Thank you for allowing my comment.

    [timethief removed the off-topic tat from the bottom of this comment]

    1. I don’t post under my actual name, instead I use a pseudonym. I don’t provide my primary email address as it’s for use of family and close friends only. I have a separate email address for each blog. I also have a commenting policy posted http://onecoolsitebloggingtips.com/commenting/ to make it clear which comments I will approve and which ones I won’t approve.

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