Don’t get me wrong. I love WordPress. I love Automattic. And I love almost all the products they have made so far. Among which are Gravatar, Polldaddy, Jetpack, and of course, our favorite WordPress and WordPress.com.

However, there is this one product that I’ve never been a fan of. This comes default with every self-hosted WordPress installation, and powers every blog on WordPress.com network. Ever since I became an advanced blogger, I stopped using Akismet on my self-hosted blogs. It’s mostly because Akismet catches a lot of legitimate comments as spams and sometimes lets spams through. On my blogs, I either use Disqus which is faster and more user-friendly, or I use a plugin called Growmap Anti Spam Plugin which basically adds a checkbox at the bottom of comment form asking to check the box. I’ve seen that is enough to prevent spams 99% of the times.

On my WordPress.com blog though, like this one, I’m out of luck. It’s no wonder that WordPress.com forces us to use Akismet. Do not get me wrong again, I wasn’t furious because most of the time Akismet does a great job keeping spams away from my blog. But when I say that Akismet works most of the time, I’m referring to the past.

These few months, I’ve seen an increasing number of spams being approved on my blog. I care about live discussion which is why I’ve set comments to appear automatically. Akismet is supposed to stop spam comments, but it isn’t. I have nearly a hundred spam comments that have been approved by Akismet and I have yet to understand why Akismet did not think they were spam comments. I’m not contacting Akismet because I know I’d be asked to just mark those as spams. The point is, what’s the use of manually marking spam comments since Akismet is there to do just that?

akismet wrong See these spams? They are in the approved folder. akismet fail And these spams are also in the Approved folder. What on earth was Akismet thinking?!

I’ve gotten tired of Akismet and I really do not understand how Automattic folks haven’t yet been able to make it perfect. When I look at WordPress or some of the other products they have made, I just think they are perfect and they just keep getting better. Could someone explain to me why Akismet is going the other way around? Why does it keep getting worse? I would sincerely ask WordPress — or Automattic — to give Akismet a serious look. I look at my Spam folder and there are thousands of spams caught by Akismet — so I know the plugin is working. But when I go back to my Approved comments folder and I see nearly a hundred spams approved, I lose the respect for Akismet.

Perhaps it is time WordPress.com allowed us to use third-party comment systems?

Have you ever faced such serious situations with Akismet on your WordPress/WordPress.com blog?

13 thoughts

    1. With other solutions out there, I feel left out not to be able to use them. I understand why WordPress may not let us use Disqus here, but the Growmap Anti Spam Plugin-type something would be really useful. Basically it adds a checkbox saying “Confirm you are NOT a spammer” and that needs to be checked in order for your comment to go through. I’ve used that in a number of my blogs and 99% of the times, if not 100%, that stopped all spams from going through.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. [ Smiles ] Maybe, someday one of WordPress’ engineers would explain why we are only allowed Akismet.

        I use Disqus for my other blog over on Blogger and it doesn’t allow spam to infiltrate my comments feed.

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        1. I guess I already know the answer. Both WordPress and Akismet are products of Automattic. It only makes sense that they’d want you to keep using their own products. I would be okay with it given that it worked. Now that it doesn’t, I don’t see why they shouldn’t allow other systems to be integrated.

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  1. Hi, I’m an engineer working on Akismet.

    Why does it keep getting worse?

    Our accuracy rate isn’t getting worse; it’s been hovering consistently around 99.98% over the last year. One problem we’re facing is that total spam volume is booming — we’re catching 100,000,000 more spams per day today than we were just a month ago. However, with a constant accuracy rate, that means that we’re still missing more spam each day than we were a month ago.

    Akismet will never be perfect, but we are working on getting as close as possible. If it’s ok with you, I’ll take a look at the comments getting past Akismet on your blog; the case is usually that the first batch of comments from a new wave of spam get past Akismet, and then it catches everything after that when it’s apparent that that particular type of comment is spam.

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    1. Hi,

      Thank you for taking the time to comment on my post. I understand the challenge Akismet has to go through but excuse me for being a little harsh on Akismet since it has been letting a lot of spams through lately. I appreciate your explanation and you are more than welcome to take a look at my approved comments. Only a handful of (comments from this post and the previous post) comments are legitimate comments. Other than that, as you’ll see, most of them are spams and they have been approved by Akismet. Keep going and you’ll see a lot of spams which I didn’t have the time to send to spam yet.

      Again, thanks for your time and I appreciate your help regarding this.

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  2. Let me try this one more time. Akismet has a far more serious problem. Sometimes it flags legit comments as spam. I, for one, can no longer comment on WP blogs. I can’t even leave my URL without triggering the blood thing.

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