Google Sees Your Comments as Spam?

My dear friend Leslie from Leslie Loves Veggies recently posted that Google sees some readers’ comments as spam. (Be sure to click on that link to read the full article.)

no spamAccording to her post, Google had flagged one of her old giveaway posts stating that a high number of short comments artificially increases the number of keywords on a page, thereby qualifying those comments as spam.

SIGH.

I am constantly keeping my eye on SEO, and it seems that what is acceptable is always changing. Awhile back, you wanted people to comment on your posts because it would increase your pageviews. Now, you still want that, but you want them to be good comments.

And what makes a comment good?

A comment must be approximately 2 – 4 sentences so that Google doesn’t mistake them for spam. (I’m just hoping Google doesn’t then decide that comments that are too long are spam as well!)

If Google finds too many spam comments on a blog, (or comments that qualify as spam – even though they may not be), they can “take action on a site.” (Read this article: http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=2721437)

With that being said, I am going to have to enforce a new comment policy here on Blessed Beyond Words:

All comments posted on the blog will now need to be approved before posting. Only comments that are at least 2 – 4 sentences long will be approved.

I know that I have a giveaway going on right now, and one of the entries is to leave a comment on the blog telling me which item you’d purchase if you won. Of course, these are now what Google calls spam. I have removed that option from the rafflecopter gadget and will also be deleting all the comments on that post. I can’t afford to do anything against Google’s guidelines.

I will also be going through old posts and deleting any comments on posts that have a large number of short comments.

If you see that I have deleted your comment on a post, please do NOT take it personally. I treasure each and every comment on this site, and want to hear from you! You’re just going to have to talk a little more. That’s all. :)

I hope this information helps someone else out. I know that I was shocked to read this over on Leslie’s blog, but I appreciate that she let us know instead of keeping the information to herself. My goal is to do the same for other bloggers. I believe we should help each other out instead of sneaking around and only bettering our own blog.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. Have you had to delete comments from your blog because of this, or will you be?

Angie Vinez (2659 Posts)

Angie is a wife and mother to 7. Her life revolves around cooking, cleaning, laundry, and other household duties. She is passionate about her life in Christ and wants to encourage other mothers in their own walk of faith. Angie is active on many social media networks, loves technology, photography, and graphic design, and loves creating blog designs for other mom bloggers.


All comments posted on the blog will now need to be approved before posting. I take the time to read every comment, and they are so important to me. However, any unkind or unnecessary comments will not be approved.

Comments

  1. 1
    Leslie Mayorga says:

    Hi Ang, I hated to institute that policy on my blog but.. the large amount of 1, 2 and 3 word comments caused my site a very heavy penalty. That and a reader who commented on every single post over the last 2 years “I’d love to win this prize.

    That reader caused me to have to place a captcha on my blog when I was hosted with my prior hosting company. And even after I contacted this man, yes man. He still keeps leaving the same comment on every single giveaway. He’s never entered on a Rafflecopter Widget. I’ve emailed him numerous times asking, no begging him to stop. But he won’t. Finally I marked his email, and IP as spam and now I don’t even have to look for his comments they just got right to spam.

    So Readers please be aware, we aren’t trying to be mean. We just want to keep our blogs in good standing with the powers that be. :)

    Leslie from Leslie Loves Veggies

    • 2

      I am so glad you posted about this and let us all know! Thank you so much for taking the time to do that. Bloggers should work together to better the entire internet, and you’re making that happen. Love ya!

  2. 3
    Tara Allison says:

    Thank you for this post. As a result, I have edited my requirements for giveaways on my blog, as well, and made it so I have to approve comments. I find it somewhat of an inconvenience even while I can see where Google is coming from. The fact of the matter is that these comments are NOT spam.

  3. 5

    I see google as a company that wants to lose customers.

  4. 6

    I see it as very controlling and lazy on their part. What if that is what, you as a blogger, want?
    If this is what you do need to do, please leave it as a rule, clearly stated on your contests. My memory is very poor, and it is helpful to me to know what I have to do.
    For the record, I despise Google as a company. Their human rights violations are awful, and they seem to do things that only benefit themselves.

    • 7

      It is lazy for them – and more work for us! I’ve created a new comment policy page, and I am also trying to figure out how to get the comment policy to show up in each post. It’s such a pain to have to do this, but I can’t risk my blog being “punished” if I don’t.

  5. 8

    Google is definitely making it tough on new bloggers. There’s so much to learn and get “right” to appease the powers that be. Thank you so much for stopping by here! Good luck on your new blog. :)

  6. 9
    Kate Maloney says:

    Yikes! My blog has sort of been on hiatus, but I’ve wanted to get it started back up again … now I’m almost reconsidering after hearing about this and other things companies are doing that make it so much harder to manage a quality blog/website. It’s so discouraging to have so many rules and regulations to follow just to be able to share thoughts, reviews or giveaways with our readers! :(

    Thanks so much for sharing about this!

  7. 10

    Guys, this is NOT true. As someone who has had YEARS of writing for SEO blogs and has attended more SEO conferences than I can count (plus, I read SEO blogs every single day), your commenters can never sabotage your site for you. It’s about what you, the blogger, writes. If you provide good original content, the comments are just that: extra comments. Google will NOT zap you. This blog post and Leslie’s (I’ll comment there as well) are highly misinformed.

  8. 11

    Google does not take length of comment into consideration. Barry Schwartz at Search Engine Roundtable saw this issue here and on the other blog and he asked Googler John Mueller about that. John said comment length is not an issue. If the comments look like spam to Google then it may flag your site for downgrading or manual review. Generally speaking, they see so many spam comments that if you allow very short, terse replies the chances that those replies (though legitimate) resemble real spam posted elsewhere is greater than if a more robust comment is shared. But don’t be afraid to approve short comments if you know the commenters and trust them.

    • 12

      Google will not tell us if they want long comment. Its always open ended Google policy. However, you know that Google wanted quality information only therefore you should know the answer.

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