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Evil spammers screw up my site again

I'm afraid I've once again turned off anonymous commenting on this site. (Actually, Josh Triplett did the turn-off and clean-up. Thanks hugely, Josh!)

Apparently some poker site spammers flooded FOB with garbage this evening. As a result, I can't really take anonymous comments anymore.

I'd love to have suggestions as to alternatives: just email The ones I am currently considering are some kind of better account creation mechanism for folks who want to comment, or captchas. Either is a pain for me to implement and administer, and will probably require completing my upgrade of the Drupal bits here. Neither will be 100% effective in solving the problem.

Over the years, I've twice had friends become involved in spamming operations. I was pretty hard on them. In retrospect, not nearly hard enough, though. The spammer is one of the lowest forms of human life. May every spammer develop a conscience, then die of shame.



Why wouldn't captcha be 100% effective? Do spammers really pay kids to get around this technology?

Nice summary statement, never heard it put that way before.

The following is not unheard of: Alice the Spammer puts up a site that automatically gets a captcha from Vic the Victim and presents it on Alice's site as her own. When Sam the Stooge logs onto Alice's site using the captcha, Alice's site uses Sam's answer to automatically log onto Vic's site. Of course, Alice needs an incentive for Sam. If only there was some kind of content Alice could offer that costs Alice nothing, but that Sam would solve a captcha to see?

Of course, it's unlikely that I will be targeted by automated captcha-defeating spamming operations; my eyeshare is way too small. What is more likely is that a particularly persistent pest just manually posts an ad every once in a while. Pain in the neck, but way more manageable than automated spam floods—I hope.