Akismet Spam WordPress

Akismet Stops Spam

Akismet is a new web service that stops comment and trackback spam. (Or at least tries really hard to.) The service is usable immediately as a WordPress plugin and the API could also be adapted for other systems.

I must say, this has been one of the more rewarding things I’ve worked on lately — when people tell you they’re able to spend more time with their family because they’re not spending 30 minutes a day dealing with spam it really puts things in perspective. If nothing else, I hope this makes blogging more joyful for at least one person.

Anyway, try it out, install it for a friend, link it on your blog. The more you use it the more effective it becomes. It’s a virtuous cycle that will hopefully curb the spam arms race.

Update: The reviews are starting to come in. Here’s some one with stats (from when the service was still in development).

50 replies on “Akismet Stops Spam”

Isn’t this a little bit “big brother”-like? Watching all those comments coming in and being filtered … I prefer local solutions where I have complete control over what is happening. Nevertheless, I suppose it’s a good service for people who like it simple and want something that “just works”(tm) 😉

While the first version had a small village watching every comment as it came through the system and manually approving or nuking it, we found this didn’t scale quite as well (okay there was a revolt) and so we became forced to use computers to do the heavy lifting. It was difficult at first, but I can promise that the computer makes no judgements as it sees your comments fly through its system. As one said to me the other day, “Bits is bits.” We’ve had a submission that encrypts and hashes and anonymizes the comment before sending it to Akismet, but that makes it awfully hard to figure out whether it’s spam or not.

I have people that are using what I see as splogs that trackback and ping me. They are perfectly legit tb/pings but I do not want their linkage from me. SpamKarma2 allows me to specify that these incoming links should be shot on sight – it never misses. Does Akismet allow the same ? Can I add my own list of undesirables ?

Podz, from what you describe it sounds like they’d be blocked as automated spam but feel free to email me a few of the comment notifications and I’ll run them through the system to double-check.

Seems like a good idea. Really, my opinion of such a service hinges on a few factors:
– the non-evilness and dedication of the person or people in charge (you qualify)
– the reliability of the service (which I’m sure you’ll be working on)
– the stability of the business model (free for personal, charge for business works for me)

So I’m optimistic about this. I’m still going to leave Bad Behavior on, as it will catch stuff earlier, and save server resources, as well as stop non-comment-spam bots (e-mail harvesters, some ref spammers, etc), but I’ve disabled SK2 for the time being, to see how Akismet holds up.

I’m going to give it a few weeks, and if it seems to be exceeding or matching SK2’s accuracy, I’ll be installing this for my WordPress-based clients. Is it fine for me to just use my API key for my clients? I don’t want to register a blog just for the purpose of getting an API key.

This has been the absolute best spam defense I’ve used, and I’ve used them all. It will only get better over time. When I began beta testing, I totally dropped ALL spam defense (Bad Behaviour et al.) and only left the “must have previously-approved comment” enabled.

I don’t quite understand how to obtain the API key. I’ve applied for an invite, but I’m guessing the invite won’t be sent anytime soon now. Wouldn’t it be logical to supply the keys more freely, considering that greater use will lead to greater effectiveness?

Is this only available to users? The instalation instructions certainly lead be to believe this is the case. How do I get an API key without either signing up for an invite and new blog or handing over bundles of cash?

Sebbi, it’s obviously opt-in (minus blogs which are hosted and are subject to prying eyes by their nature). If you want a local solution, keep on using your local solution. I installed Akismet last night and have had only 2 (out of 50 now) spam comments make it to my moderation queue and 0 make it to my blog.

[…] is running here. I have – at this time – deactivated the superb SK2 to give Akismet a fair crack. Reading a couple of posts a few hours ago, at the mention is made of the spammers hammering the server(s) that the Akismet lives on in an effort to kill it – or at least stun it. I have no idea if this is a real possibility, but given that Poker company shares are still rising and the card game/chips etc are still being bought in the shops this is a huge business. Would the hammering just move overseas ? I don’t know. What I would like though is for something to monitor the state of the Akismet server and at the first sign of trouble / delay / non-ping / whatever to then switch SK2 back in. Thinking about it, I cannot recall any plugin being able to switch another plugin on/off – why ? Can it not be done ? It would be amazing if that could happen – a 3-tiered defence. […]

[…] I’ve been getting several spam comments/day on here lately, mostly on posts more than a year old. I installed two plugins to prevent such occurances, but the spam continued. Today, I log in and find two more spamments that passed the moderation queue, and were displayed. I’ve taken action with Matt’s new Akismet plugin/service. Hopefully this will take care of all those pesky spamments that await me everytime I log on. Need sleep. […]

[…] 不久前matt在blog里提到wordpress.comçš„API Key,但只是一个Key,还没实质的作用。 现在基于此API Keyçš„Plugin终于推出了”””” Akismet。此plugin是一个反comment and trackback spam的工具。 从文字中我猜到(英文不精 )它通过慢慢积累spam的资料,然后把它们挡下的。当然它不仅仅能用在wordpress上!! The more you use it the more effective it becomes. [more]Akismet Stops Spam Download Akismet WordPress Plugin […]

I NEED this. Really. And that invite from that I have been hoping to get hasn’t showed up. How long will I need to wait before I can start using comments in my blog again? (yes, it was really THAT bad).

Matt, when this plugin catches spam from the same site (Lets say 6 spam links), It shows only the first spam link and when clicking “Not spam”, It shows the next one until the last one. Why doesnt it just show all 6 on 1 page? Too much clicking…

I was lucky enough never to have been troubled by spam up until a week ago, but when they finally did get to me, boy did I know about it! I installed SK2 and BB at the time, but for some reason SK2 didn’t seem to work properly, and although I emailed one of the developers (who was extremely helpful), unfortunately I still found that a lot of spam was getting through – 16,450+ in fact – mainly from Forex Trading, Poker sites and ringtones.

I’ve only had Aksimet installed for about 12 hours, but I agree with Craig Hartel – it’s certainly impressive so far. At this point in my day I’d usually have over 200 spam comments, since installing Akismet I’ve had NONE.

Sorry, that’s just a long winded way of me saying a big thank you to you, and to all the other developers involved!

“they’re able to spend more time with their family because they’re not spending 30 minutes a day dealing with spam”

Surely I’m not the only one slightly weirded out by this? Priorities people!

[…] I’ve been getting more and more comment spam lately — probably the downside of the growing popularity of my blog (it’s hard to believe, but I’ve had 43 people check my blog’s feed yesterday — forty-three). Yesterday, Matt Mullenweg, main developer of WordPress, announced a solution named Akismet. It is basically a semi-automatic automatic social network; every WordPress user who has it installed as plug-in and who marks comments as spam / not spam automatically contributes. […]

“they’re able to spend more time with their family because they’re not spending 30 minutes a day dealing with spam”

If you fight spam rather than see your family, then you might be a blogging maniac.

Where can we go to report bugs? How do you pronounce Akismet?

P.S. an easy bug on your akismet website is that the “I have a testimonial!” radio button on your contact page does not have a label.

[…] Recently Matt has been working on a tool that will help WordPress bloggers from comment and trackback spams. The tool is called Akismet and it is a web service. So you don’t need to do anything except uploading Akismet into your wp-content/plugins directory and let Akismet does the real work for your weblog. Unfortunately you must have the API to activate the service. But don’t worry, as you already know you can get a account if you use Flock. Thus, get in one over here. […]

[…] I’ve been getting 20-30 spam comments a day for the last few days, which was really really grating on my nerves. So, it was clearly time for an upgrade in spam protection. It appears that I timed my need pretty well (although the increase in comment spam is probably related to some spamming bozos trying to break this new tool), since the people behind WordPress just release a new comment spam tool called Akismet. […]

Thanks you!

This was time well spent. My first blogging experience was setting up a wordpress blog that got a ton of spam within the first week and I shut it down precisely because I didn’t have the time to deal with the spam.

Except that you need a account to get the API key to use the plugin – I’m suspicious of these ‘services’ that are springing up around (Flock and Akismet) – and their lack of an apparent business model. I’ll stick with my guaranteed-to-be-spy-free copy of Spam Karma 2 if you don’t mind.

[…] when i saw photo matt’s post about Akismet stopping spam, i figured i’d give it a go, since the WIMP stack i’m running on doesn’t allow me to run any of the GD-based anti-spam tricks. what follows is like an RPG for beta software: i go download akismet. akismet requires an API Key. API keys can only be obtained from a blog. i go to blogs are invite-only. but they’re currently partnered with flock. i go download flock. flock won’t run on anything but tiger. lose turn, go home, download flock for windows on my home machine. go back to, using windows flock. get blog set up get API key go to blog activate akismet insert API key […]

[…] If you are a wordpress blogger you probably know about Akismet, the new spam stop solution that Matt Mullenweg announced last week. It’s his try to prevent spam from ever appearing on all those wordpress blogs on this planet. already uses it and you can download it on as a plugin for WordPress 1.5.2. All you need is a API key and for that you need a account and for that you need to download Flock (brrr, you know Flock sucks, but it gives you an API key … hurray!). So this is a fairly complex way to get and use this super simple plugin of theirs. […]

[…] Matthew Mullenweg, Spam Killa — The creator of WordPress has started a new web service called Akismet that blocks comment and trackback spam on the blogs of subscribers. A few days latter, Sebastian Schmieg released an Akismet plugin for Spam Karma 2, my spam-blocker of choice. (via) […]

Thanks you!

This was time well spent. My first blogging experience was setting up a wordpress blog that got a ton of spam within the first week and I shut it down precisely because I didn’t have the time to deal with the spam.

I haven’t try it before, but i think its nice idea to try using Askimet. Till now, because my website not too popular, so spam bot not yet try bugging my website :). Prevent is better that threaten 😀

Well, it sounds interesting and I’m sick of deleting those three word sayings that contain the word “mature” in them and refer to back-ended sexually explicit crap.


How exactly does one get the API key? What’s this with getting some blueish web browser to sign up for an API? Currently, without explicit instructions, the barriers to entry are mighty high. (though comment #39, the pingback from The World According to Sebbi clarifies immensely… still, the fact that it takes nearly 40 posts to elicit such enlightenment is discouraging.) Would you please be explicit about what a poor beleaugered weblogger needs to do?

[…] Hors, c’est de l’analyse de ces quantités massives de données qu’Akismet semble tirer sa force. Nous n’en avons pas encore de confirmation officielle, mais il semblerait que le système emploie des techniques similaires au filtrage bayesien anti-spam dont dispose Thunderbird, par exemple. Un système “apprenant”, qui s’améliore et s’affine au fil du temps et s’adapte aux nouvelles techniques mises en place par les spammeurs. Nous suspectons fortement GMail d’employer des techniques similaires, et l’efficacité redoutable de son filtre anti-spam n’est plus � prouver. Même si dans le cas de GMail, les marquages manuels de certains messages comme spams ou non est fort probablement aussi pris en compte, introduisant de fait un système distribué de vérification humaine. […]

whats this shit about having to get Flock then sign up for a blogging site that I’m not even going to use just to get a key so that I can use this on my personal site. This would be like SixApart making me sign up for LiveJournal to download MovableType. Faggy bullshit I say!

Also, I can’t find the download link on the Akismet site, probably because it’s located in that dreamworld called Web 2.0 and I’m guess I’m not using a sufficiently stupid browser (like Flock) to see it.

So, where do I download it and why do i need to have a key again?

[…] Since I’m not the only webmaster out on the World Wide Web, the smart people have created plug-ins and external services that is supposed to make comment spam history. However, I’m a bit concerned about handing my comments to someone else. Also, having someone else clean my garbage is simply handing the problem to someone else, and no one is going to offer such a service in the long run for free. […]