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The CAPTCHA, For Anonymous Comments, Isn't Going Away

Several weeks ago, Blogger added a security feature to Blogger commenting, to reduce comment spam.
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.

This change has not pleased everybody.
I disabled "prove you're not a robot" for commenting. Why do my readers still have to solve a CAPTCHA, each time they comment?
This blog owner is not looking at the bigger picture. This new feature will benefit many blog owners - when Blogger is used, properly.

By adding a CAPTCHA, to the option to allow anonymous comments, we get several benefits.
  • People can allow anonymous comments, without allowing uncontrolled spammer activity.
  • People can allow authenticated comments, and not require a CAPTCHA.
  • The overall level of spam, currently being seen on some blogs which allow anonymous comments and require no CAPTCHA, will drop. This will allow Blogger Security engineers the chance to concentrate, more intently, on the remaining spam.
Instead of restricting the ability for people to comment on our blogs, this change actually increases the ability for people to comment - and decreases the spam.

People who are logged in to Blogger - and who are visible as logged in - won't even see the new CAPTCHA, even if they want to comment anonymously. Only people who are not logged in (or who are not seen as logged in), and who wish to comment without logging in, will be inconvenienced.

The biggest problem, with the new CAPTCHA form, is with people who are seeing the CAPTCHA even when logged in - because they are filtering "third party" cookies. Those people will have the choice of logging in again, or solving the CAPTCHA.

Anybody who is not logged in can avoid having to solve the CAPTCHA, even if one is presented, by logging in to Blogger. Since the standard Google "One account" login is used, people who do not have a Blogger account can setup one, on the fly, in a couple of minutes. This option is not obvious, from the commenting form - especially with the CAPTCHA displayed - but it is present.

Since the commenting form comes in 4 versions, depending upon template type and comment form placement, Blogger Engineering will need to make a coordinated effort, to improve the overall design of the comment form.

The various buttons and links, which allow the comments to be published using the many options, will have to be displayed better - to make it apparent to everybody that logging in to Blogger can avoid use of the CAPTCHA - even if the reader wishes to not identify, by commenting anonymously. And, other improvements are needed, also.

And once again, I will point out that a better user experience will be had by all who can properly maintain their computers, and not block "third party" cookies. Anybody, who is able to login to Blogger, should be able to comment anonymously, without inconvenience of the CAPTCHA.

Some solutions in Blogger require our action - not just action by Blogger Engineering.

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Anonymous said…
This comment is being made anonymously, by someone properly logged in to Blogger.

This comment does not require CAPTCHA solution.

The blog does, however, still require moderation of comments.

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