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CAPTCHA Screening Added, For Anonymous Commenters, Is Not Optional

We're seeing reports, in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue, about a new way Blogger is blocking comment spam.
I didn't enable CAPTCHAs, for commenting on my blog! Why are my readers having to solve one, before commenting?
It appears that Blogger has added a new CAPTCHA form, to the commenting process.

In Blogger Help: The word-verification option, we see the notation.
Note: Even if you don't have word verification turned on, anonymous commenters might be asked to enter some text. This helps protect your blog from abuse.
It appears that "might be asked" is the key detail, here.

If you are logged in to Blogger / Google - or can login when commenting - you may not have to solve the CAPTCHA.

People who have not logged in can either log in, to comment using any allowed authentication option - or can solve the CAPTCHA, without logging in, to comment anonymously. A Blogger / Google account is not the same as a GMail account - and can be created, if necessary, as you login.

If you are not logged in, simply select "Google Account", and hit "Publish Your Comment", to login. There does seem to be some variation in ability to login, and retention of the message being composed, depending upon comment form placement, and moderation policy.

If you don't have a Blogger / Google account, click on "Create an account", on the Google "One account" screen. A simple 5 minute form, starting with any non Google email address, is all that is required, to create a Blogger account.

After you login, you can continue composing your comment. When you are done, select any available authentication option, and hit "Publish Your Comment", again. You should not see the CAPTCHA form, if you are logged in.

People who have filters blocking the third party Blogger / Google login cookie may still have to solve a CAPTCHA, and comment anonymously.

If you don't want to login, or don't want to setup a Blogger / Google account, you can solve the CAPTCHA. You can compose your comment before, or after, you solve the CAPTCHA.

After you solve the CAPTCHA, you can continue composing your comment. When you are done composing your comment, select "Anonymous" or "Name/URL", and hit "Publish Your Comment", again.

Many of the people, who report a problem here, may be people who also have problems previewing their posts, using Stats, and / or editing the template of the blog. All of these features are sensitive to cookie and script filters, and to various other security settings found on private computers.

I'll again point out that third party cookies are an increasingly critical issue because Neither of these issues are caused by Blogger Engineering, and neither are details that Blogger Engineering can program around. Everybody needs to be aware of the issues, and learn to setup their computers, properly.

If you are seeing a CAPTCHA where one does not belong, and you are properly logged in to Blogger, check the cookie and script filters - starting with the browser "third party cookies" option, and as necessary, all filters everywhere else.

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KC Bob said…
Thanks. I have wanting to allow anon comments but did not want the spam.
FixarFarsan said…
I hate this change! I have approved anonymous comments on my blog but I have manually published them.

Is there any CSS trick or any other way to turn of the new CAPTCHA setting??
Chuck Croll said…
No, Fixar,

The "Anonymous" CAPTCHA is not optional.
® said…
So, there really is no way to fix the captcha?
It seems that over the new year many Blogger blogs had their captchas turned back on and they cannot turn them off. --This is according to them. And they don't know what to do.

Is this really true? I read in an older post their was a glitch that was effecting captcha. Is this still true. Is there some place I should direct these bloggers?
Chuck Croll said…

Blogger Engineering partially corrected the problem that they caused, in early December, yes.

Basically, Blogger has 3 goals.

1. Let people enable comments from people who wish to remain anonymous.
2. Keep spammers from overwhelming the "anonymous" comment queue.
3. Support blog owners who don't want people who authenticate to comment, to have to solve a CAPTCHA.

This requires that they require CAPTCHA authentication, by anybody who wants to remain anonymous - even if the blog owner has declined CAPTCHA authentication for people who are willing to identify themselves.

So, all anonymous comments require CAPTCHA authentication.

If everybody had no problems accepting third party cookies, that would be the end of it. But people who block third party cookies cause extra details, which Blogger Engineering did not foresee.

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