If you don’t use a challenge response system, do you make people sign in every time they want to make a comment?
Why do you make it difficult to comment?
My hunch is you have those barriers to blog comments because someone told you they would help eliminate spam. I suggest that caution is costing you readers and good comments.
One of the great things about blogging is the opportunity to create community through comments about your posts. When you make it difficult for your readers to comment you’re limiting the community.
When I try to comment on a blog and run into a capcha code or other barrier I usually move on; it’s just not worth the time it takes in most cases. Somehow I doubt I’m alone in this.
“But what about spam?” I can hear you cry.
There are better ways to reduce spam.
The first are programs like Akismet. It’s a free plugin that somehow or another filters spam from my blog. It’s almost 100% effective and other than occasionally updating the plugin I don’t have to do a thing.
The other thing you can do is set up your blog so the first time someone comments their comment has to be approved; once you give it the okay, they can comment at will.
These systems are designed to help you get the kinds of comments you want without the spam.
Just for the heck of it I checked out three big blogs and made comments:
None of them require any hoops at all – I just made my comment, clicked submit and I was done. That’s community building!
Image from http://www.sxc.hu