We've had some of the most vibrant discussion in our site's history over the past few days, which has been really, really rewarding to read. A few of our newer site visitors have asked why comments on our posts go into "moderation," or why some comments don't appear on the site.
The first few times someone new makes a comment, that comment goes "into moderation," which means that I or a member of my team must view it and approve it before it displays to the general public. This is to make sure that spam doesn't make it on to our pages.
This does cause a bottleneck at times when I'm away from the computer, in a meeting, or asleep. While it does slow down some discussion from newcomers, this process prevents literally hundreds of spam messages from infiltrating the comments.
A few folks have asked whether we can speed up the process, and we've done two things. First, we've set up our registration system so that commenters who have been approved a few times no longer have to wait for comment moderation. Second, I'm checking in more frequently to catch comments from new folks.
We also subscribe to Akismet, a service that pre-screens messages for potential spam. In a relative handful of cases, Akismet may flag a post as spam because it came from a network address that has posted spam on other sites, or because the content of the comment triggered a spam filter. If you feel like your post was flagged improperly, send an e-mail to our "tips" address and we'll check it out for you.
Finally, because this is a blog and not a bulletin board, our database starts to sweat when the number of comments for an article exceeds 100. When that happens, I'll close the post and direct comments to a new page. I'll also highlight some key discussion points in main posts to keep our readers on RSS feeds up to speed.
Thanks for all the creative energy you've sent to the site over the past few weeks. I look forward to seeing many more of your comments in the months to follow!