For quite a while now, I've been removing occasional comments from my weblog. Not just spammers. If someone violates my weblog comment policy, I nuke their comment(s). It's that simple.

Until now, I hadn't published my policy. Instead, I forgot about Rule #1 (People Are Stupid) and figured that common sense would rule the day.


So, here are the rules--things you should not do when posting a comment on my weblog. And since it is my weblog and not yours, you don't have a lot of say in the matter, do you?


  1. post off-topic. If you're not sure what the topic is, you probably shouldn't be commenting.
  2. engage in personal attacks.
  3. provide a fake e-mail address. If you don't want to leave an address, leave it blank.
  4. provide a URL to a non-weblog. If you don't have a weblog or don't want to link to it, leave it blank too.
  5. spam. Yes, this is redundant with #1 most of the time, but I figured I ought to be explicit.

I'll update this post from time to time as rules change. I'll also link it from the comment form so that nobody can claim ignorance.

Violation of this policy may mean any of the following:

  • I will remove your comments.
  • I will block your attempts to comment in the future.
  • I will contact your Internet Service Provider.
  • I will randomly screw with your mind.

To the 99% of you that never needed to read this in the first place, thanks for putting up with this post.

Posted by jzawodn at July 13, 2004 02:07 PM

Reader Comments
# Martijn said:

Help! Getting nervous here.
I fall under rule #1. When am I posting off-topic? Am I doing it now? So after this post I will be banned and get randomly screwed with my mind? But I am already screwed up (see rule #1). What kind of screwing are you going to use? Just asking...

on July 13, 2004 02:34 PM
# Kartik Agaram said:

#4 was non-obvious to me and I prob violated it at some point - I don't have a weblog yet. Apologies.

A propos of nothing, I ended up self-censoring a long comment/rant about the comments on a previous post of yours. For the record those anonymous #$%#s deserve to have something unmentionable happen to them.

on July 13, 2004 02:37 PM
# Alden Bates said:

I had all the screws in my mind replaced with those funky ones which no screwdriver will fit. :)

on July 13, 2004 03:15 PM
# jr said:

Well, Alden, I had originally recommended invoking sixteen different degrees of witchcraft, specifically to deal with hex nuts.

(And now i'm guessing that this comment will get deleted for being just a really bloody awful joke.)

on July 13, 2004 03:48 PM
# willc2 said:

re: "provide a fake e-mail address. If you don't want to leave an address, leave it blank.

I generally put bogus email adresses in comments because:

some blog comment scripts will demand a non-blank email address entry and if you don't put one in, will page refresh and nuke your comment. The Scoblizer blog got me that way.

Some blogs let themselves be scraped for address. Joi Ito's blog got me that way.

just two data points

on July 13, 2004 04:11 PM
# Scott Johnson said:

I have a similar policy for comments on my weblog. But it's not published. If the comment doesn't fit, it just gets nuked. After all, it's my site.

on July 13, 2004 04:50 PM
# said:

Hi Jeremy-

Good comments policy, which, I suppose will give you a good deal of latitude in sanctioning that which you find offensive or non-responsive.

I may have to stop posting to be compliant with it, but I'll try...


on July 13, 2004 05:55 PM
# Dougal Campbell said:

#5 is *not* necessarily redundant with #1. I've seen lots of comment spam on my sites where the comment text was actually on-topic, and obviously hand-written by someone who had read the article that they were commenting on. But they were blatantly commenting for the sole purpose of exposing their URL.

Ironically, this occurs most frequently on my anti-spam blog.

on July 13, 2004 07:09 PM
# Alan Danziger said:

Martijn: If Jeremy didn't delete your posts, they're probably on topic :-) To the extent he cares, anyway...


on July 13, 2004 07:27 PM
# Dane Carlson said:

Doug, if the comment was ontopic, even if the commenter was trolling for pagerank, why did you remove him? Did it not add *any* value at all?

on July 13, 2004 09:30 PM
# Larry said:

> I will randomly screw with your mind.


on July 13, 2004 10:26 PM
# Dougal Campbell said:

"Doug[al], if the comment was ontopic, even if the commenter was trolling for pagerank, why did you remove him? Did it not add *any* value at all?"

Who says I removed them? Actually, I think I did remove many of them. But in some cases, I just removed the link to the user's site, and left the comment text in place.

But to answer your question, why did I remove them? It's my blog. I can moderate comments however I see fit, and when it comes down to it, I don't have to explain my logic (or lack thereof) to anybody. But, that said, I'm still not comfortable removing comments that sit in that "gray" zone. I'll probably create a plugin for my site that lets me either remove or redirect comment author URIs with just a click.

on July 14, 2004 05:39 AM
# Tim said:

If people are posting valid comments but linking to a non-weblog site, why bother? It seems they could be using their time spamming for page rank elsewhere.

I can see the value if the comment was violating of rules 1, 2 or 5, but why does it matter if it's a weblog or not? A personal page doesn't have to be a weblog, but for some reason it doesn't seem to be counter-intuitive to post a non-weblog personal page as your URL. Perhaps posting a link to a business page is a bit shady, but what if that's someone's legitimate home on the web?

I can see your point, and unless you're really getting comment-spammed/trolled/etc.'d, I don't think most people are out there to comment just to raise their page rank. Maybe that's a bit too optimistic, but I think that most people would rather spam wikis.

on July 14, 2004 08:24 AM
# Martel Firing said:

This was most interesting, especially Mr. Campbell's comments regarding anti-spam software. I've been exploring blogs for two purposes: 1) to try and understand blogs (which is why I read the rules article), and 2) to find people that might be interested in and find useful a free product I've spent a year developing. So you could say my motivation is selfish -- but if I didn't tell anyone about it then no one would benefit from it. Right?

So I've left my URL blank (it's my commercial web site). Hope this isn't interpreted as spam.

on July 14, 2004 11:16 AM
# Matt said:

You should also add that you close the comments after xx number of days... Or maybe just not display the form any more after comments can no longer be posted.

on July 14, 2004 02:21 PM
# Gerald said:

> Ironically, this occurs most frequently on my anti-spam blog.
had a similar experience, most spam occured in articles offending spam practices.

jeremy, i would like to mention an annoying feature of your comment functionality regarding older articles:
Comment Submission Error
Your comment submission failed for the following reasons:

Comments are not allowed on this entry.

Please correct the error in the form below, then press POST to post your comment.
Do you call that a joke?
there is no hint that comments are not allowed. even the preview works. it's frustrating to write a comment, perhaps a longer one, use the preview, make corrections and after that nothing happens, nothing positive :-(
at least there should be a hint, and better, there should be a deactivation of the comment form.
it's your blog, it's your kitchen, but we are your guests. i hope for a little bit more hospitality :)

on July 14, 2004 02:24 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

MT-Blacklist is doing well enough that I'm thinking of re-enabling comments on old entries.

on July 14, 2004 02:31 PM
# aaron m wall said:

#5 is absolutely not reduntant with #1.

Tonight for example I registered a few sites in a directory for what I though was a one time fee. This shoddy directory confirmed my submissions and then sent me the email telling me that the submission was for one month.

One of the sites I entered into their directory was my SEO blog. Within 10 minutes of my sites being listed in their directory they spammed my blog up with various semi correct on topic information linking to about a half dozen of their crummy sites (with optimized link text of course).

I sometimes feel in question when deleting a comment or feel guilty when I am unsure of the intentions of the author. It is totally relevant to call out a comment policy.

Some people who believe in the blog only comments idea just go one step futher and disable comments but leave trackbacks open. It is a sad price to pay though to miss out on feedback.

on July 15, 2004 02:55 AM
# Laurie Henkel said:

Was it ever clarified as to what screwing your mind entailed or if it went any farther than your mind :)

on July 15, 2004 01:41 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:


Nope. Not yet, at least. :-)

on July 15, 2004 02:01 PM
# mpt said:

What if someone's personal site is, say, a Wiki rather than a Weblog? Why are you prejudiced against Wikis? :-)

on July 16, 2004 01:46 AM
# mpt said:

And what if someone's only Weblog is one published for profit?

on July 16, 2004 02:19 AM
# Ferenc said:

I disabled commenting on our blog completely. It took too much time to go through all the messages. I don't think this policy will help a lot.

on September 17, 2004 05:26 AM
# Tom said:

Over the last 5 years I've become a sort of yahoo message board addict. But the blogs seem to offer some better features.

I regard the message boards as a "company water cooler". I spend large amounts of time on the computer waiting for something to happen with certain stocks I follow, (I'll scalp positions intraday or over a few day period, I'm monitoring changes in volume and tend to fade against multiple sigma deviations in instances where I feel my business knowledge allows me to understand the reason for a mutual fund dumping panic).

Given my responsibilities, I’m one of those guys always around the water cooler. In fact, hanging out around the cooler often produces leads. I'm fairly well read and my joy for irony and complexity makes me think in a devils advocate/outside the box way.

What’s the etiquette for posting? Is the standard of something to add on a subject at a social gathreing high enough? Or a thought or question that I might have asked after a lecture back at Cal? If something you write triggers a one off thought stemming from an initial response I think of, is it appropriate to respond via track back?

I tried something on the Orwell piece you did.

I actually continued the complexity of expression subject on a yahoo chatboard (because no one came out to play?)

Any thoughts? Again this isn’t meant as a challenge in anyway….I’d like to understand general protocol so I don’t make too come off as too much a dweeb!


on September 18, 2004 01:45 PM
# Zeia said:

As for #4, what about the people who has to share the site for blogging and non-blogging activity? I only have one site and I host both non-blog and blog on it.

on October 14, 2004 11:03 AM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

Link to the blog. That's what "Weblog URL" means.

on October 15, 2004 10:56 PM
# Joe said:

Great policy, but it seems like it's not working too the MT comment filter active?

Wordpress has some pretty good automatic comment spam tools available now as well for those buried under this type of garbage.

on October 25, 2004 09:22 PM
# Peter da Silva said:

I've got mixed feelings about deleting comments from weblogs. One of the things that was so useful about Usenet was that there was no moderation, so you got to see all kinds of feedback. It's a shame that the tragedy of the commons hit it so hard, and moderation is a way of keeping that fate at bay... but, damn...

on November 19, 2004 05:54 AM
# Lori said:

I could use some help installing firefox on
Mac OS 10.2.8.

Not sure if this would be a place to make this request as this is the first time I'm doing this. I have downloaded Firefox but can't seem to do anything else with it.

Can you help or direct me to a place for support. I guess I can also call Mozilla directly.


on November 19, 2004 07:37 PM
# Peter said:

#3 is always a difficult one. I tend to write out the email addresses (i.e. peter at search engine blog dot com) so the harvester bots don't get them, however real people still know where to send you mail. Does your field allow this?

Hopefully those bots don't get smarter :)

on November 22, 2004 05:51 PM
# ernesto said:

Is there any one who can help me with the sony dav-ea20 hack?

on November 25, 2004 02:00 AM
# hotindex said:

Seens good polices, but it is also very hard to stop Spamers, you may take many times to remove spam messages.

on December 1, 2004 08:05 AM
# 123 said:


on December 9, 2004 12:01 AM
# Michael Schubart said:

If you're so particular about people entering their e-mail addresses correctly, you should also explain how that address will be handled: Will the address be displayed publicly? It seems so, because I can see other commenters' addresses in some cases.

on December 18, 2004 08:40 PM
# MD said:

looking for a region hack for a shrp Home Theatre with DVD model No. HT-CN400DVW.

Any help?

on January 5, 2005 06:25 AM
# MD said:

looking for a region hack for a Sharp Home Theatre with DVD model No. HT-CN400DVW. Currently in region 3

Any help?

on January 5, 2005 06:26 AM
# BNB said:

In a perfect world there wouldnt be any need for a comments policy, but we're far from a perfect world, and the freedom of the Internet seems to encourage the worst of people.

on January 8, 2005 08:53 AM
# mose said:


on January 19, 2005 08:54 AM
# George Manty said:

I really wanted to have comments on my blog, just to see what others think about it. But I don't allow comments at the moment because of comment spam. I didn't want people putting up links to obscene sites and the like on my blog. I also didn't want to spend all my time editing my blog comments. I think the new "nofollow" attribute will help alot. Google, Yahoo, and MSN are all planning on supporting it. I hope using this new tag removes comment spam forever.

I think I should post about this myself...

on January 21, 2005 08:13 AM
# said:

The abuse on the internet is not only offensive but can lead to the discouraging new users to the comments system who are usaware.

on March 4, 2005 07:14 PM
# Cool said:

Jeremy, you have an awesome blog and are pretty generous in letting people link from your site in their comments. I think your rule about only liking other blogs is a bit strict but its your show so I understand.

on March 10, 2005 11:31 AM
# Amir said:

Sounds interesting, I need some help regarding commenting, can you help me?

on March 23, 2005 07:43 AM
# Dave said:

I you have any invites left, I would like one.


on March 29, 2005 02:14 PM
# shimidan said:

I want to produce a cleaner solution for antireflex glasses ( non-alcohol & non-ammonia ). but I'm not sure in proprietary ingredients . please help me & please mail your data to my inbox .

good luck

on May 23, 2005 10:50 AM
# jeremy said:

Asian Preteen Free Teens Naked Art Portal

on May 24, 2005 03:18 AM
# Cabana Boy said:

OKay, now i understand how to use this site...I've done acid, shrooms, and ccc. Chronic, coke, ecstacy, and weed (brownies are exceptions) are not drugs, they are strong stimulants. i went wa week n a half straight on coricidin cough and cold. othing can beat day one. On a sat night, my friend tells me bout that morning (1:00 am)i down a nasty bottle of cherry robo. dont take nyquil...too drowsi. drink half a nyquil, go to bed, and dream up candy-land. ccc is the ultimate cheap, easy=to-get trip. I took a whole box of tripple C the next night, starting at 4:50. Like an alarm closkc was set, it naied me in one hour. I expressed feelings like I was rollin'. i was in the backseat of a car alone, except the driver and passenger. "it's all good" i said w/ a smile over and over and over." they played metal core and i went nuts...eventually we smoked. We had planned to smoke on a small island on a small lake. to get there, waqlk accross a long, wide clump of wood. O fell in after walking the public trail without a shirt and without balance. The balance or vertigo is as hunter described ether. you see yourelf and just think, "HHAHA, OH SHIT."AFTER SMOKING, WHICH ACTUALLY ENHANCES IT, I WALKED BACK OVER. BEING SOAKED DIDN'T BOTHER ME AT ALL. I'D LAY DOWN ON THE TRAIL FOR NO PURPOSE. EVENTUALLY, WE RETURNED TO THE CAR AND MORE FUN WAS ON ITS WAY. i kept drunk dialing, but told people they were vivid amd beautiful. I loved how i studderred a bit, went through tons of emotions and never came close to freaking out. Unfortunately, I'm a rare breed. Too many people apparently puke their guts out trip oput bad! i had to take care of a ccc trippin girl, i was on coke, ccc, and 8 beers at 9 in thr mornin'. 3 o my friends bounced w/ other people, scared we'd get caught. me n another friend ghot this girl who said she was gonna die to the top of one of NHs tallest Mt.s Ohh the trippy scenery of NH! no one knows either.

on May 31, 2005 09:15 PM
# Private Pyle said:

I too, jumped into the CCC (coricidin cough and cold) late. Noone in my school did it, but old friends talked bout it. I ate a box and did as Cabana Boy did. I continued to beat up my liver for two weaks. I thought, 4 days after the ccc craze, maybe i'll try a new chem.: Dienhydramine! This chemical can be found in Benadryl allergy pills. my moms had i took some one night. I assumed it would be relative to CCC. BIG MISTAKE! BENADRYL! This shit was awful. i go two hours feeling nothing, i evenm did 100 chin-ups out of order to get blood flowin. Eventually, I noticed a shift in the force of motion. i was tryin to go nstraight but wen right into a wall over and over again. I felt fuzzy and itchy. the aura of everything seemd unbalenced. i went to bed. I felt tired, but couldn't sleep. I turned on The Allman Brothers Band's Mt. Jam. Erowid said it builds a greater appreciation of I just started talking to friends in my dark room. I could see them moving around, sitting down, talking. Someone would lie in bed w/ me for a bit...I was alone! Real halucinations...shitty, paranoid halucinations. I was up all morning, lying in bed...sleeping and dreaming, waking and doing things that were real...but only in my head. MOst brealistic dreams ever...better than opium dreams...or shuld I say realistic and scary. They continue the next day. I drove alone to school and was having convos w/ imaginary peeps in the back. i FELT A LIL NAUSEOUS TOO. i PROCEDE TO TAKE TWO FINAL EXAMS. eVERYONE WHo glanced at me new. dark, veigny eyes, blood-shot, huge pupils,..burnt out. on my way home, i popped in at diff moments, Mt. Jam, then Big L. Both were so amazing. Know that shiver you get from peeing...imagine that shiver everywhere on your body, but more intense and for a longer duration. I'm hoping I didn't make a mistake.

on May 31, 2005 09:30 PM
# Nancy said:

I feel sorry for all the people who have been having problems with seasonal allergies. If you go to an allergist which involves several visits, they will tell you what you are allergic to and they can desentisize you for about 2 years, after which you have to do it all over again. However, you can determine yourself what you are allergic to, by observation. Most common food allergies are milk, cheese, wheat, eggs, peanuts,yeast and others. If you are allergic to dust and dander then you have to get rid of it or also use an air filter/humidifier. To avoid using drugs, you have to take a complete vitamin and mineral supplement and increase your dose of Ester C (not ascorbic acid) to 2,000 mg daily for at least a month. After that you can go down to 500 mg per day. Avoid foods with artificial colors and sulfites. Dried fruits and salads in salad bars might contain sulfites.One might be allergic also to fermented foods which include beer and wine. Aside from vitamins,avoiding foods you are allergic to, getting enough sleep and rest, you have the exercise factor. Exercise boosts your immune system. All these take about 3 months to take effect. It takes some kind of discipline and seriousness about your health to achieve it. Allergies cannot be totally eradicated. You will be sneezing now and then, but rarely, and not enough to bother you. Long time use of drugs can lead to other ailments.

on June 8, 2005 06:46 AM
# Asad said:

When ever i sign on yahoo and click on to start a conversation with someone, a window comes up where i only have two options one, which says Send Error Report and the other one says Don't Send so even if i click any of them yahoo messenger closes up?

on June 19, 2005 08:31 PM
# I hate my comcast said:

Comcast is the worst services around here. technicians been here upteen times and still cannot fix problem. tech support S$#K! they will credit me 14$for my down time of over 60$of services lost. oh one service call the tech did not even bother to show up!
Need other company in the area comcast monopolize everything here. they are the dark side taking over !!!

on June 22, 2005 09:21 PM
# ALP said:

What happens to the comments of those that have AADD?

on July 28, 2005 01:00 PM
# Jo-Anne said:

I've just finished reading this entire page,I wonder about that 1% hahaha! This made my day,I am laughing here thinking...there are so many run on /off topics & strange postings! Jeremy,have you gone astray on this? I would point to a Nov 22nd post up there.."real people still know where to send you email"..I am real and came to this place because I couldn't find a "contact me" button and since you now have my ISP info- you know I'm real :) I'm not in violation of the there a way to contact you other than the comment box? Better yet,since all of the above is taken into consideration- can you contact me ...oh and I am still laughing from all the read on this policy page comments..thanks :)

on September 6, 2005 10:56 PM
# alice said:

how are you ,Jeremy Zawodny. i am interesting for all electronic products. epecially, it is very fashion that is bluetooth mouse . even if that bluetooth is expensive than normal mouse. but i still love bluetooth mouse. and be charmming for it. their outlook looks very unique and convenience. no feel on par with a cored mouse. i take it to any place at any time, throw into my bag with notebook for traveling. now i have an idea, i myself manufacture more style of bluetooth mouse. if you have better advice , pls tell me. we will share any happy from bluetooth mouse. My MSN ID: i hope we could talk online. wait....

on September 7, 2005 03:24 AM
# Adam said:

Of course, ironically, there is spam in the comments on this page.

on November 2, 2005 09:21 AM
# Mark said:

I feel that if someone responds with a post which is relevant to the topic, they should be reworded with the link they leave. Afterall, it's the topic related responses which work to better serve your blog site.
Mark C.

on January 9, 2006 06:42 PM
# kirtesh said:

i have a sata (serial) hard disk 160 GB model ST3160211AS. it not work on linux, a error comes drive not found for load ,but it work on Microsoft version like(Windows XP,2000 SERVER, 2003 Server ), plz give me suggestion for what i can do.


on December 16, 2006 12:35 AM
# Suzy said:

Sometimes I do ramble but I'm always trying to be helpful, interesting, and amusing!

on December 16, 2006 03:13 PM
# Anne said:

Thanks, Thanks, Thanks

on January 20, 2007 01:52 PM
# graywolf said:

So when you were wearing your "I'm not Matt Cutts" t-shirt were you spamming at pubcon?

on January 30, 2007 04:07 PM
# google seo said:

Spam is a real problem for us, bloggers. For example, Matt Cutts really often link to his "rules" page couse of spammers. You are right when you don't do it so difficult to comment that can prevent usual users from commenting. It's hard but this is our work!

on July 28, 2007 06:37 AM
# said:

can someone help me how I can make my webblog

on December 20, 2007 03:19 AM
# liz631 said:

watch full movies anime tv and cartoons at it is free for you to stream and download......check it out

on January 7, 2008 11:25 PM
# David said:

Very interesting website. Keep up the outstanding work and thank you...

on June 14, 2008 12:37 AM
# Liz said:

Rules are clear Jeremy.


on July 11, 2008 12:19 PM
# gazduire said:

I like youre criteria about Weblog Comment Policy. And i am surprize about what an good blogger admin can do. Why? Because i see lot of blogs where the single policy was just to put on link rel="nofolow". I think this policy blog it's good for people who are interested about blog discussion and not to see only spam message or outher java script advertising.Thanks

on September 23, 2008 04:47 AM
# Selvin George said:

I'm surprised to see such a large response to your post on "My Weblog Comment Policy". I followed a link to this post after seeing that my comment to another post was under review.

Why is this the case?
1. People like to discuss metadata more than data.
2. Since this is a not a specific topic, you'd deem fewer comments to be spam.

on October 1, 2008 10:54 AM
# winston said:

Hey, since you're into out-selling the spammers, maybe you would like to promote our pill? Im serious, we have a pill that works just as good as the top male enhancement products out there. The only difference is that we offer a free trial bottle. The customer doesnt need to pay for anything -except for the transparent shipping costs. Sell one of these free trial bottles (one month supply) and we pay you $20.
We have a christmas promo right now where we pay retailers (affiliates) where we pay $50 up to until the 15Th of this month. Let me know if you're interested ;-)

on December 7, 2008 06:34 PM
# beautifull sexy girl said:

Dear friend
i am impressed with your great policy
hey friend
should you relax it for a guy like me who is google publisher and want to have realy a link from your website to get mutual benifite
please put a link to my website and i will put for yours
we both progress

on January 14, 2009 08:18 AM
# Antispam 360 said:

those are hard rules. Don't you think that you are being severe whit those?

on April 30, 2009 04:51 PM
# Myers said:

Easy way to check all the site statistics

on May 31, 2009 02:48 PM
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are mine and mine alone. My current, past, or previous employers are not responsible for what I write here, the comments left by others, or the photos I may share. If you have questions, please contact me. Also, I am not a journalist or reporter. Don't "pitch" me.


Privacy: I do not share or publish the email addresses or IP addresses of anyone posting a comment here without consent. However, I do reserve the right to remove comments that are spammy, off-topic, or otherwise unsuitable based on my comment policy. In a few cases, I may leave spammy comments but remove any URLs they contain.