Delete or Edit Comments?

Boys Having Fun

photo by Rayphua

When I first started blogging, I remember not getting even a single comment and it hurt real bad. I kept writing and slowly people started reading and commenting and then some also started linking to my posts and the blog which brought more people to read and give feedback and I felt part of this wonderful community. I LOVE getting comments and hearing different takes on what I write and I LOVE discussions taking place here on the blog.

I have gotten to know so many people by their first names and remember their blogs that now when I see them on some social media site, I can immediately tell who this person is and remember to go to their blog and leave a comment on their post of the day or just say a hi via comment form etc.

But what do I do when some inanimate object like Sofa, Dining Tables, Swimming Pools, Stock Trading Software, Printed Circuit Boards or Ghillie Suits leave a comment and I have no way of knowing who this person is? Clicking on the links they leave gets you to their niche site or some made for adsense site.

Sometimes the comment is nothing but gibrish and I don’t have to think twice about deleting it. My dilemma comes when the comment itself is good but the commenter leaves their business name instead of their own name in the ‘name’ box. I wouldn’t want to delete the comment but I also do not like to talk to furniture or circuit boards.

What do you do? Do you edit the comment or delete it altogether?

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66 Responses to “ Delete or Edit Comments? ”

  1. On my webmaster blog I got sick of people keyword stuffing, so I made a post about it and said basically I would delete or edit the post if it was full of keywords. If I am in a good they get it changed to anonomous, If I am in bad mood it gets deleted. It has gotten better since I made the post.

    Lee’s last blog post..It Takes a Community to Raise a Blog

  2. I guess I would delete it. I don’t want people using me for free advertising. So just for the lack of respect of your personal blogspace, I’d delete it. But if it is a really good comment, I like Lee’s idea of changing it to anonymous.

    teeni’s last blog post..Three Strikes and You’re Out!

  3. @Lee.. Hopefully this is that post then :) and hopefully those people would start leaving their names so we know them better and in time perhaps will also think of supporting them by buying something off their sites – but first thing is for them to tell us who they are…

  4. @teeni – I like Lee’s idea too to change it to anonymous! but I wanted to give a fair chance to them by announcing how I feel about talking to non living things! hopefully they’ll come alive now ;)

  5. Hello Pearl! My dear friend! How are you today? I’m here to leave a message for you, ok? Sorry, I think that my English is bad to leave a comment about your post, but I’ll trying someday. I had stydy hard alone for this. Hope you enjoying your weekend! Take care always! Your Brazilian Friend, Renato de Trindade

    Renato de Trindade’s last blog post..Prayer for Peace

  6. I’ve been pretty lucky, and I haven’t had any comments that walked the line like that. I know it has been a problem for other bloggers. Usuaully with my comments, they are either legitimate, or they are total spam.

    I would delete them, but that’s just me. :-)

    Mike Scott’s last blog post..I am Legend

  7. I’ve been deleting most when its like ‘great post’ or ‘yes, I agree’ ‘Interesting stuff’ etc, but when the comments are a bit more and seem relevant, but the name appears of some pharmaceutical, I can’t decide what to do…..

    pearl’s last blog post..Delete or Edit Comments?

  8. I delete. Actually most of the time those things won’t make it past my filters, but they do keep trying..

    Anthony Lawrence’s last blog post..The upgrade that wasn’t by Anthony Lawrence

  9. If comment makes sense it stays. It is a bad habit to make own name just for SEO and adsense reasons, but if I delete one because of that, I have to make all kind of rules and to know when I will delete next comments. This is easier. And, after all, it’s about conversation, not our names.

    dandellion’s last blog post..Social Media Mega Project: Second Life

  10. Sorry I haven’t been around to comment as much as before. I have been buried with funding documents, SEO, etc. It seems like I spend most of my social time on Twitter these days b/c I can read 140 characters pretty quickly.

    You are a great blogger! As I said on twitter, I would spam them. Personally, I would feel weird leaving comments on someone’s blog with the name of my company, Babble Soft or something like Baby Breastfeeding or Baby Software. Seems so odd to me!

  11. @Aruni – I know you are busy and thanks for the good words :) yeah, thats funny isn’t it? I don’t get mad at them, I smile and keep them but I’ll talk more about how else I’ve been handling them in the next post!

    hope you do come back again!

    pearl’s last blog post..Delete or Edit Comments?

  12. I delete it hahaha!! how are you?

    kaylee’s last blog post..A Phone Call(well actually a day) of Happiness

  13. hey dandellion – good to have you here… exactly what I was saying.. It is bad manners to leave those keywords and a good comment – I wouldn’t delete anyone who otherwise left a good comment….

    Have I met you on some social network? I remember coming across ‘dendellion’ but this is the first time I saw your blog! thanks for stopping by and commenting!

    pearl’s last blog post..Delete or Edit Comments?

  14. Tony – its interesting how stubborn they are sometimes! Thats the reason some blogs went from do-follow to no-follow!

  15. Well, they are stubborn because a lot of it is just scripts – no human involved. I have my filters give them what looks like a successful response – a human would realize that the comment was dropped but the script doesn’t – so they keep coming back to post more spam (and get dropped again) until my filters see that they are way too active and start blocking them entirely.

    Anthony Lawrence’s last blog post..The upgrade that wasn’t by Anthony Lawrence

  16. Well, I must admit that until now I didn’t spoke with any furniture, but I spoke with some keywords, like “make money online”. Dear “make money online” how are you today? Haha… But I didn’t delete those comments, because some of them are pretty valuable. I’ve deleted a lor of spammy comments, though, if there are nothing but spammy, like “great” and other stuff.

    Diana13’s last blog post..I’m back!

  17. If the comment was legitimate, I wouldn’t edit it at all.

    Mark Dykeman’s last blog post..Somebody is going to pay

  18. @Tony – Im not sure if ALL of these comments are spam through a script though…

    I think its possible that some people just become a bit careless and tunnel visioned where all they see is ‘making money online’ and forget the human side of blogging and community building

  19. LOL Diane – I think you are so lucky :lol: I did ask “ghillie suits” their name too after welcoming I think :)

  20. @Mark – are you fine with them leaving keywords in the name box though?

  21. I won’t hesitate to delete or mark as spam comments that are full of keyword stuffing.

    I think it’s perfectly justifiable to delete those comments from people trying to gain free advertising. No matter how good the comment is, their intention isn’t sincere to start with.

    betshopboy’s last blog post..Featured At MagMyPic

  22. If people leave a spam comment, such as one that is just full of links or keywords, I obviously delete it. But if it’s a real comment from a real person, and it applies to the actual post and fits in with the discussion, I’m not going to delete the comment just because the person made their name link to their site as ‘Guaranteed Loan’. In all honesty, it doesn’t bother me too much or hurt anything, especially since I’m not using DoFollow anymore. If the comment is valuable and on topic, that’s what I’m asking for. If it’s about 200 links to Jessica Alba pictures and sites, then it’s going to be deleted.

    I love meeting and networking with other bloggers too; the whole community aspect is one of my favorite things. But I’m not going to delete all of my comments just because a legitimate person entered in their blog’s keyword instead of their name. I don’t accept spam, but I don’t believe THAT is spam. :)

    Tay – Super Blogging’s last blog post..The Best of the Blogosphere: January 25, 2008

  23. Oh dear, Pearl. Do you EVEN have to ask this?! I am extremely QUICK at deleting invalid comments as well as marking spam as spam. I don’t give no 2nd chance :D

    But in cases where the comments sounds valid but the names not, maybe you want to try change them to Micky Mouse and Donald Duck? LOL.

  24. @Betshopboy and @Pelf –

    I understand you sentiments – really do. I have thought about ‘sincerity’ issue but then it might just be an oversight on their part…. I am willing to give them a second chance though –

    believe me I won’t hesitate in deleting them if they continue to ignore the warning….

  25. @Tay – and believe me, I don’t consider inserting one’s blog name as spam either – but only if it is a blog! not some e-commerce site! :)

    but then again, may be my readers wouldn’t mind seeing 200 pictures of Jessica Alba anyway :D I could do a poll on that

  26. […] Delete or Edit Comments? from Interesting Observations. […]

  27. Definitely delete the non-names. I get more spam comments with keywords even though I clearly say real names are required.

  28. This is the first time I am mentioning about it here so I’m hoping this to be considered as a fair warning to those who do it. If they don’t stop it, may be I’ll start to delete them.

  29. Hi Pearl
    I would be inclined to give them the benefit of the doubt if it was obvious they had actually read the post and were contributing something in the comment.

    If you felt it was a valuable comment maybe you could check their blog out and change the name to the one they use when signing off their own posts? If not delete!

  30. Hi Pearl! I mostly got comments that were clearly spam. So I deleted them. No that I have a spam filter, they rarely get through. But if I were in a situation where the actual comment is really good, I’d also edit it instead.

    Alina Popescu’s last blog post..WOBM Turns Three

  31. Hi Pearl,

    Ghillie Suits here, I’ve been using The Ghillie Suits Guy for my name on blogs now. I am a real person who reads your blog regularly. I don’t use my name real name because I’m private about my businesses. If you want I can certainly put a name down like “John” or “Mike” but it’s the same as not knowing my real name. I certainly did choose a name with beneficial keywords for my site on purpose. Feel free to email me and I’ll divulge who I am and where my personal blog is.

    The Ghillie Suits Guy’s last blog post..Photos of the Ultra Light Ghillie Suit – Mossy

  32. Hi Pearl,

    Let me just start off by saying that this is the first time I stopped by your blog and I love it!! You have a brand new dedicated reader. What the hell took me so long to stop by? I love your fresh perspective of things. :-)

    Anyway, your post…. I think I would delete the comment. It is unfortunate that if the commenter had something that would have started a wonderful discussion, but by using something other than his/her name on the comment leaves you to wonder whether they are trying to get a back link for his/her keywords. If we allow a few through then our readers will think it is okay to do the same. But, by deleting the comments that are there for the back-links we are letting our readers know that those kind of comments are unappreciated.

    Again, Pearl…. you have a wonderful blog and I will be back regularly to check your posts out.


    Shana Albert – TheNanny612’s last blog post..26 Reasons Why I Love Twitter – Plus 27 More just in Case

  33. @Sue – exactly – thats my stance, I’d feel a bit unfair to someone who otherwise adds a valuable feedback – thanks for stopping by

    PS: I replied to your email the other day… hope you rec’d it

  34. @Alina – same here… I’ll edit the comments instead… may be some of us are too soft :) glad to have you back Alina…. stay in touch

  35. @Shana – heyy I am soo glad you finally found the blog and I never realized you didn’t know :) thank you so much for the kind words and I am thrilled to have you as my reader Shana ..

    hmm whats it with me that I feel bad deleting people’s comments? I really feel they ought to have a bit of consideration for others ‘coz if everyone started doing this, it wouldn’t look like a conversation at all…

    please… do come back and I’d be looking forward to your comments here…

    Oh, my good friend ghillie suits is here today :)

  36. Hi Ghillie Suits Guy – Im glad you came by! and let me first thank you for reading my blog… sincerely.

    Now I understand that you choose to be private and I absolutely don’t have a problem with that… and its not really about me wanting you or anyone to give me your real true names when you want to remain anonymous.

    May be if you had used any name – other than your business, no one would have noticed anyway..

    and with the commentLuv plugin, and this blog being do-follow, you were getting the benefit anyway… don’t you agree? :) let me know…

  37. No deleting unless they are spam or offensive to the readers. And no editing the comment either. What I do though is remove the link if it leads to offensive or questionable content. :) I don’t want to have my readers to land on pages that contain porn, spyware or anything that might offend them and I do not want my site to be associated with such elements. I am a “dofollow” blogger like you, and many spammers abuse this (actually my blog is listed in the ultimate list of dofollow blogs on many forums and blogs). I noticed that the spammers make now valid comments so I always check the link if I get a “new reader.”

    Mihaela Lica’s last blog post..Social Network Automation and Why You Don’t Want to Be Part of It

  38. Because my site is members only (although it’s free to join), all of my comments, at thus far, have been great. And yes, I love getting comments, too……………….:)

  39. I’m of the edit point of view. It does help to have a written policy (blog post or static page).

  40. Pearl,

    It’s all about link juice, PageRank and ranking high in the search engines (SERPs).

    Because you’re a DoFollow blog, I get a little bit of PR for the link I leave with my comment. That helps with my PageRank, but not necessarily with the SERPs.

    If I leave my name in the name field, it really only helps me in the SERPs if people are searching for my name. If I leave my keywords instead, it helps me if people are searching for my keywords. That’s the reason people leave keywords instead of names – not because they are just advertising…

    Personally I allow keywords in the name field, because I don’t mind people benefiting – IF they’ve read my post and made a decent comment.

    Having said that, I’m starting to think about using the CommentLuv plugin as you do. That will help people get keyword rich links, so I may decide that the name must not have keywords. IF I do that, I’d edit my template and change the Name (required) prompt in the comment form to something like Name (no keywords allowed).

    Stephen Cronin’s last blog post..WordPress Plugin IFrameWidgets 1.0 Released

  41. @Mig – great strategy there :)

    @IAAdmin – hmm members only site – whats the purpose of that though? Are members able to publish their content as well on your site?

    @Matt B – I will be adding commenting policy soon… had been thinking about it for sometime but never got around to it!

  42. @Stephen – I understand people want to get the benefit, and I didn’t mind it either really – only recently it started getting to me – with commentLuv, they do have the keyword rich links as you said – so there was no need to over do it – just took the focus away from real conversation….

    good to have you back Stephen – hope you visit again!

  43. Its a tough question and many have left good answers here already – sorry I’m late! My general rules are: if it’s commercial, I delete it and I also sometimes (if I have the chance!) like Sublimely: check their blog and correct the URL. If I am in doubt, I let it pass – commenter’s will have to stand for what they have done.

    Since we are at it: experience of blogging and commenting I mean: Why do you make a new comment when replying, instead of edit the comment with your own reply? The way I do it e.g. Just curious – I mean of course: you do it your way and that’s perfectly okay!

    Btw: Talking about experiences: Why don’t you join me in The Big Blog Bang:

    RennyBA’s last blog post..Canadian Maple Fudge invading Norway

  44. Hi Pearl,

    Conversation keeps the brain stimulated, but not if it’s just to get you or someone else to click on over their blatantly commercialized, made for adsense site.

    Bring something interesting to the conversation. The sad thing is that most of the people who set up these kinds of sites could probably get all the traffic that they wanted if they would concentrate on publishing excellent content instead of mindless drivel and ads.

    Give a real name – no keyword stuffing – leave real thoughts or delete em all.

    Chris Melton

    Chris –’s last blog post..Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it also creates millionaires

  45. @RennyBA – hmm, I never even thought of it! guess, ‘coz sometimes I do not want to log in the blog just to reply to comments! and when I’ve filled out my info in the name, email etc, it stays for the next reply and its just easier :) anything for the short cuts! Oh, Im heading over there now (im surprised how your comment got through akismet with that link though :))

  46. @Chris – guess some of us are a bit more sick of such spam and thats understandabe – I thought of letting all of these people in on how I feel on the issue – so if they are going to provide value to the conversation, I welcome them whole heartedly – but with commentLuv, they don’t need to worry ‘coz they get value back!

  47. I usually try to leave them if the content of their comment is good. If it’s gibberish I delete it. There are a few commentor’s that leave their business name in, and I’ve come to just use that as their “name” and it works great!

    David Deangelo’s last blog post..By: David Deangelo Announces New Live Program

  48. […] Delete or Edit Comments? from Interesting Observations. […]

  49. […] why some people put keywords in the name field – to help on searches for those keywords – at the risk of being marked as spammers. SERPs = Search Engine Results Pages or how high your site ranks when people search for a […]

  50. I’ll have to look out for that commenting tactic — huh. The only spam I’ve gotten so far is a TON of pharmaceuticals guaranteed to slim, firm or enrich me. Thank goodness for Akismet.

    I read a review of some dofollow plugins that mentioned Lucia’s Linky Love as one with more capabilities than the familiar DoFollow, fyi. It’s supposed to make it a less friendly environment for the spam commenters. I may switch to it if I start seeing much comment spam. Have you tried anything like that?

    Carolyn B.’s last blog post..Let an Old Reporter Talk: 12 Tips to Interview Anyone

  51. Lucia’sLinkLove is definitely the way to go. I also found that if you’re using Lucia’sLinkLove, then it’s a good idea to remove the dofollow plugin because the dofollow plugin overrides you Lucia’sLinkLove settings and makes for thigns being dofollow when they shouldn’t

    Selif’s last blog post..Weird Facts

  52. I think that was a pretty good post. I couldn’t do it :D . Keep up the good work.

  53. hmmm… I like a blog post that makes me think.

  54. Why would you delete a comment just because of the anchor text? If they leave a legitimate comment on your blog then they are creating content for you for FREE!. Let them link back to their site. I always do. Now if it is a garbage spam comment that is different and I delete.

    Work At Home – Bruce’s last blog post..Work From Home Jobs / Work At Home Jobs

  55. I am in complete agreement with Bruce on this one. As long it isn’t spam there is not really a reason to mess with it. The thing that really gets me is when i am trying to get anchored links for my niches and instead of deleting my comment they spam it without reading my comment. Some people automatically see an anchor and think it’s spam.

    Pierce’s last blog post..Tony Rezko Verdict

  56. So are you going to delete my post or let it stay? Or will you allow keywords in the name field if the post is relevant to the conversation?

    Obama Liess last blog post..Obama Photo

  57. @Obama Lies – You sure took a chance here…. so let me see if you come back with a meaningful contribution, if not, you already know the answer! I’ll be waiting..

    @Bruce: Agreed, I’d leave a comment if the comment is relevant but if it is something like the comment just above this one, would you? :) thanks for coming by

  58. […] there are always borderline spam cases: such as those that leave a good comment, but use keywords in the name field, or those that leave their name but link to commercial (non blog) […]

  59. If it is a valuable comment, I actually edit the comment to use the real blog name, and kill the key words. I have also wrote anonymous where a name goes if I felt the site was totally spammy. The other thing I do is make judicious use of the mark as spam. There is also a plugin for wordpress out there to make a no follow case by case but I haven’t tried it yet. It sounds interesting though. If you could turn do follow or no follow free then selectively no follow that could be interesting. :-)

    staticbrain.coms last blog post..The Shining Path – Un sendero luminoso

  60. […] our name. While this helps you rank well for your name, it’s practically worthless for your keywords. That’s why some commentators put keywords in the name field, but they risk being marked as spammers. […]

  61. i would edit it if i could, but not knowing the person’s actual name, that’s not possible. :( so i guess i’d favor deletion.

    koujis last blog post..haiku poem: help end hunger

  62. One solution for this is to use the KeywordLuv plugin, which allows commenters to use keywords and anchor text but also makes provision for their real name (the format is name@keyword and displays as “Name from Keyword”).

    An alternative to this is to have a standardized comment policy where people must include a name or username in the name field, regardless of whether keywords are used or not, for the comment to be fully approved. For people who do not follow the rule, you can simply remove the link but leave the comment — this is what I usually do if someone tries to link to a site that might get me in trouble with Google (bad neighborhood, link farm, etc.).

    Karlonias last blog post..XBox Red Light Fix: Repair the Ring of Death

  63. CommentLuv seems like a good compromise. I really like it. I love blogs, there’s some really talented people out there in the US and in the world. It kind of gives you hope in humanity to know there is intelligence because the media only shows the hate, the bigotry, the total ignorance.

    Thing is I enjoy blogging and commenting, and I always respond and don’t spam… and in return I expect some limited link juice out of it. It makes my time spent doubly delicious because I informed myself and got something extra out of it. It really irks me how most blogs are nofollow and I think there will come a time when people will turn their dofollows back on.

  64. I would like to make several points here. First is I see a lot of people talking about commercial sites and deleting them automatically. I also seen someone say that if they wrote good content, that the visitors would come, this is plain out fiction. Let me ask you how many people could write loads of content about plumbing for consumers, and consumers just “love” all of that content? Kinda funny, ya think? It makes as much sense as a screen door on submarine, then there is the factor of location, so general plumbing information will not help the plumber in small town USA.

    The next point is names, I really wonder how many bloggers really use their real names, mostly i see screen names, so, do you really “know” them as you try to convince yourselves that you do? So, I would suggest that if they take the time and effort to read the post and make a good comment that there is no real way to consider it spam, especially when when there are people on this post making comments about content being what brings traffic.

    Links is the basic infrastructure of the internet, so why would you make a conscious attack on the basic structure without a reasonable reason to 1st: delete content, 2nd, deny a fair trade of link love in exchange for that good content,3rd: limit a person from making a living in these hard times to be “politically correct” when politics is the whole reason we are suffereing in the first place?

    It is a rare occurance to get traffic from a blog to a commercial site from a comment, but what you do get is higher rankings in the search engines from the link juice (if it is a dofollow blog) and the keywords (anchor text).

    I understand the arguement that a commercial site has no business having links on a personal blog, I have to respect that,But… you as a blogger have to realize that anything you do in life is not perfect, everything , even your most loved hobby to a pet project offers trials and tribulations, or it is worthless persoanally. So, if you want to blog on the net, then you have to deal with all of the issues that come with it, so either stop blogging or deal with them like an adult. Sorry for being so blunt, but someone has to speak the truth and expose the core of the issues here.

    It is not that I am biased, just that I have a LOT of experience with both sides of the river so to speak. I am a professional internet marketer and SEO. I have been one since 2001, so i am no rookie and seen both sides of the arguement.

    I have plenty of commercial and private blogs, and plenty of commercial sites. This is why I can say without a doubt that anyone who claims that content is king has no clue whatever about the internet and has never thought it through. Without links, you have little, if any chance of getting traffic of any kind.

    I know, there will be a few right now starting to boil telling me in their mind that I do not have a clue, so let me clue you in and show you how a blog works.

    First off, WP has a tag system that pings several pinging services if setup right, once pinged, they are then linking to you, so that is the first set of links. Next is sites like Technorati and others, these are high PR links to the blog. Next, if you are tied into the WP tag system, there is more links. We have not even started with others linking to you or the internal link structure of the blog itself.

    How many of you web savy people who have “persoanl blogs” with a dot com? that stands for commercial.

    next: how many web savy people shop online and buy from commercial sites? Don’t try denial, this past black monday went down 15 % and cyber monday went up 15 %. So, I would tend to think most of you do buy stuff online from commercial sites you refuse to help out a little. Not very nice, is it?

    When that drain cloggs up, a lot of people go to the net for a plumber, 6you get disgusted because all there are is directories, not plumbing sites. but it cost that plumber 2k a month for decent placement in the directory, then you complain because the bill is so high, but you helped create that additional bill for being biased based on nothing. And yes, the directories can rule based on hundreds of thousands of properly structured internal links, something the local business does not have the time or knowledge to deal with.

    If bloggers would allow the exchange of a good link that has keywords, you would cut down on spam because the legit ones would help you to keep it clean and report stuff to you because they do not want a spammer placing 25, 50, or even 100 links ina comment because it bleeds that pages power and makes the real marketers link less valuable.

    I could really come up with a 10 k word post here, but comments are supposed to be short, sorry for the long comment and hope this info gives you some more points to consider.

  65. Those SEOers had better elaborate when they post comments or else they’ll be flagged.

    Author’s Note: Hi Income From home network… You are right, I could have flagged your comment and deleted it. But just so you know, I won’t allow people to insert keywords to rank on my blog, I’ve edited your URL! Sorry

    Thanks for stopping by though…