How To Kill All The Spam with Livefyre Real-time Comments

As part of the blog’s redesign, I switched the comment system from WordPress to Livefyre. Now that the real-time comment system has been running on the blog for a few weeks, I can recommend it without hesitation.

Livefyre is a real-time comment solution for bloggers looking to centralize conversations from around the social web back to their content, while encouraging live engagement between users on the site. Some key features of Livefyre include:

  • Social Sync: pulling Facebook & Twitter comments into your content in real-time.
  • Tagging Friends from Facebook & Twitter: anyone leaving a comment brings their entire social network with them to the conversation.
  • Intelligent & Community Moderation: ability to moderate in real-time thereby increasing the quality of the conversations without affecting the quantity.
  • SEO credit: Livefyre is Google crawl-able so you receive SEO credit for all comments, including those originating from Facebook & Twitter.
  • Real-time technology: built on XMPP chat technology for the fastest, lightest weight conversations possible.

As nice as real-time comments are, the best feature of Livefyre is it’s virtually spam proof. Before switching to Livefyre, I was coming up on 1 million spam. Now I doubt I will ever reach that figure. Because Livefyre replaces your WordPress comment system, it’s immuned to the common spam attacks that hit every WordPress blog running the WordPress comment system.

Why Livefyre And Not Disqus?

Many readers have asked me why I went with Livefyre and not Disqus? The first reason is I was never able to get Disqus to work on my blog. I’m sure with some digging, we could have got Disqus to work. However, Disqus is kind of a one-way street. Once you’re on it, you’re pretty much stuck with it. Comments are saved to the Disqus servers. Should you remove Disqus, you’ll lose all the Disqus comments and are left with the old WordPress comments from the pre-Disqus days. I’m sure there’s a way to import all the Disqus comments back into WordPress, but I’m also sure it’s not something that Disque would make easy to do.

Like Disqus, Livefrye saves comments on their servers. Unlike Disqus, a copy of the comment is also saved to your WordPress comment database. This makes it extremely easy to switch back to the WordPress comment system should you decided to remove Livefrye. However, once you start using Livefrye, you’ll never want to switch back to plain old WordPress comments.


89 thoughts on “How To Kill All The Spam with Livefyre Real-time Comments”

  1. travelwires says:

    one pet peeve though that i have with livefyre…after numerous attempts and reporting to their support for help, it’s failed to import my old comments.

    1. travelwires says:

      it would also be cool to have side bar widgets to showcase your recent comments to encourage more debate on trending topics…

      1. John Chow says:

        @travelwires The recent comments sidebar widget was removed with the new design. Right now, I have no plans to put it back.

        1. travelwires says:

          @John Chow no, i was actually referring to livefyre…they don’t offer any side bar widget options.

        2. tweetfind says:

          @[email protected] Chow I currently have a Livefyre Widget for recent comments on my blog: http://blog.tweetfind.com – Is that what your asking about?

        3. travelwires says:

          @[email protected] Chow yes, but i can’t locate it on my side bar widgets?

    2. tweetfind says:

      @travelwires same here. They have emailed me about importing my old comments, but at this moment have not been able to.

      1. jennalanger says:

        @[email protected] Hey guys, Jenna from Livefyre here. Sorry we’re having issues importing your comments, since every WordPress site is different there can be problems with your servers talking to ours. We’re continuing to refine this process and will keep you posted. Thanks!

        1. tweetfind says:

          @[email protected]@travelwires Thank you Jenna! – rubenorozco

  2. machbio says:

    is it really true.. i think disqus also allows you to backup the comments in the wordpress…@johnchow

    1. John Chow says:

      @[email protected] Yes, I’m sure they do, but they don’t do it at the same time like Livefyre does. I can switch back to the normal WordPress comments with just a post of a button. With Disqus, I would have to download the comments and restore the to WordPress.

      1. @John [email protected]@johnchow that could get really messy…to say the least!

      2. ryanvalentin says:

        @John [email protected]@johnchow We actually do sync comments back automatically and almost immediately after new comments are added.

        On some sites there’s can be a performance hit, so we also provide the option to disable automatic sync and run it manually, if you choose.

  3. arthurcundy says:

    Hmm… I may have to give Livefyre a look then.

  4. tweetfind says:

    I agree! Livefyre has also increased our comments at: http://blog.tweetfind.com

  5. nathanskillen says:

    LiveFyre is great yes. You can still get trackback spam though on wordpress, use the plug-in “Simple Trackback Validation” to eliminate those

    1. John Chow says:

      @nathanskillen I no longer accept trackbacks so no problem there.

    2. @nathanskillen I recall the STB having huge gaping holes in it.

  6. Michael Kwan says:

    I see you’re using spellcheck, as it automatically changed (nearly) every mention of Disqus into Disque. 😉

  7. It is good to not see any spam comment, but I do not understand what 5 pts, 6 pts, 7 pts does after every comment?

    1. John Chow says:

      @Property Marbella You are awarded points when people “like” your comment. This encourages commentators to post better comments, instead of the “Great post!” comment.

  8. post free ads says:

    Its great,

    killer of spam

  9. Uzair says:

    @John Chow Can we say that use of livefyre will kill the need for Akismet?

    1. travelwires says:

      @[email protected] Chow indeed, it has made Akismet redundant…

      1. travelwires says:

        @[email protected] Chow together with commentluv

      2. Uzair says:

        @[email protected] Chow So is it time to say good bye to akismet?

  10. I started using this before my blog design came up. I didn’t really do any sort of research into it except that I noticed a lot of blogs were using this now. Now that you’ve mentioned this, I haven’t had to moderate any spam. I was starting to easily receive more than 100-200 spam messages a week.

    1. @MoneySavingLisa the spam bots are smacked before coming in the door by a tool called Imperium. Works great!!

  11. fas says:

    Why not use vbulletin?

    1. John Chow says:

      @fas vBulletin is more forum software than blog comment system.

  12. IamNTB1 says:

    @John Chow Before installing it, I wanted to see what your opinions were after letting it run on your redesign for a while. Glad to see it satisfies your needs. Getting ready to check out the plans now. Are you using the free or pro version and why.

    1. John Chow says:

      @IamNTB1 Yes, I am still on the free plan. I’m not exactly sure what the pro plan offers. The free plan does everything I need right now.

  13. Well I have to say that you are right about the spamming issue and I can see how this would clear it up for you therefore im going to go and look at installing this onto my blog because the level of spam I get is terrible.

    Thanks for the quality information

    1. @TheMIllionaireMark Mark, I like many of the others here on the thread were getting creamed by spambots. Justin of dragonblogger fame schooled me on this.

  14. it sounds like i am going to swich my blog comment system thanks for the comparision between two of the commenting system john

  15. BobRoberto says:

    Hi John. I was trying to use this comment system in my blog but I could not activate it properly. Is there a manual how to use it?

    My problem is that, whenever I confirm my site, it just go to livefyre site and not redirecting back to my site.

    1. John Chow says:

      @BobRoberto you should contact livefyre support about that. They respond very fast.

      1. Dhara Mistry says:

        @John [email protected] Hey Bob, would you mind shooting us an email at [email protected] with details? We’ll be happy to help you get set up. Thanks!

        1. @Dhara [email protected] [email protected] And they’ve got quick support too! Wow, makes me ponder on a possible transition to livefyre too.

        2. wmwebdes says:

          Just spotted you Dhara

          Keith Davis here – you are helping me with my Livefyre install on my new site.

          Now I know what you look like. LOL

  16. I’ve also grown to like the Livefyre system better than ID,Disqus, and the basic WordPress comments box.Nice comparison of the two systems.

    Do you allow guest comments on your site too?

    1. John Chow says:

      @tonygreene113 Yes, I’ve enable guest comments but most seem to login via a social network.

  17. I love commenting using Livefyre. I didn’t know it saved the comments in WordPress as well. That’s awesome!

  18. jennalanger says:

    hey @John Chow , thanks for the post! We’re excited to have you in the Livefyre network and glad that our real-time spam filtering is working well. Don’t hesitate to send any feedback and questions our way.

    1. wmwebdes says:

      Hi Jen

      I’ve just installed Livefyre on my new site – that Danny Brown can be very persuasive. LOL

  19. danielha says:

    Hi @John Chow – thanks for checking out Disqus. Just to clarify, Disqus automatically syncs data between Disqus and WordPress (it can be toggled off).

    Was that not obvious to you as a user? Would love to see how we can fix that then.

  20. b.nijhoff says:

    Livefyre is really great because it’s really easy to use and easy to go against spam. I really had a lot of spam on my site but thanks to Livefyre I almost got no spam or some spam that doesn’t look like spam. Thanks for sharing!

  21. wmwebdes says:

    Hi John

    I’ve just set up a new blog and am giving Livefyre a run out.

    Still having a few problems, but the Livefyre team are very helpful.

    Struck me that Livefyre replaces about 3 4 other plugins so it looks like a good system.

  22. TerenceChang says:

    johnchow Thanks for the intro. Always love to find something useful on your blog. It does looks promising. However, I’ve tried to install it and get confirmed without luck. I keep getting no redirect after login and confirm the blog. I am currently using CommentLuv premium and are happy with it. The only advantage with LiveFyre over CommentLuv is the social tagging feature.

    1. jennalanger says:

      @TerenceChang Hey Terence, can you email us at support at livefyre dot com? we’d love to help you finish installing.

      1. TerenceChang says:

        @jennalanger Got it figure out by using IE9. Ouch! Obviously, the confirmation process doesn’t work on FireFox 8.0 even after deleting all cache and cookies. There are also some other minor stuff to improve. For now, I decided to switch back to CommentLuv, which is used by many sites I like to comment on.1. The old comments (link) are no longer clickable. It means that people who original comment on the site will be upset. 2. The “My last conversation” pick the link that I don’t want to show and I don’t have option to choose the link I want.3. Can’t switch profile easily. So I can’t post different comments using different email address. Other than this, it’s a great plugin for a new blog. Thanks!

        1. Vance Sova says:

          @[email protected] Thanks for this Terrence,

          Almost always there are two sides to a story. It’s good to know what the shortcomings or limitations are and clearly Lifefyre has them too.

          If it weren’t for John using it I would likely never register with them to be able to comment. A lot of blogs still use Disqus and I had to register with them too a while back.

          I have noticed a marked decrease in the comments on John’s blog with a lot of people dropping off. Luckily for him it’s mostly those with spam comments but still, there are some good ones that I don’t see here anymore.

          The amount of traffic that goes to my blog from John’s has also decreased a lot but the quality of the visitors has tripled.

          So it’s a mixed bag.

          I won’t be in any rush to install Lifefyre. Let’s see what John and the early adopters say after a year instead of after a month or two.

        2. TerenceChang says:

          @What is a emoNope. I switched back to CommenetLuv, which is very robust comment system. Here are the reasons that I don’t use LiveFyer. 1. Confirm your blog doesn’t work on FireFox 8.02. The anchor link is using username and not customized keyword (for SEO purpose). This is one of the reasons why people comment on the blog3. Not easy to use different link unless you create new profile. It should allows commenter to chose which registered blog and keyword they want to use as the link. 4. No html?

          5. Not able to pick extra link from the registered blog as backlink.Since I disable the plugin on my blog, I can’t really test the spam filter.

          Here are few reasons I like LiveFrye.

          1. Easy to comment

          2. You can tag your twitter friends and Facebook friends

          3. Easily to share your comment. (I just don’t know why people want to share their comment)

          I have no doubt that LiveFyre will do better in the near future. Until then, I will stay with CommentLuv for now!

        3. jennalanger says:

          @TerenceChang Hey guys, thanks for the feedback. We’re aware of the FF issue and will be fixing it very soon.

  23. Anonymity has been out of the internet for years. If you want anonymity join 4chan. It is important in keeping healthy relationships to show yourself through a common profile picture and such. Anonymity breeds abuse.

    1. @Above Ground Pools And with all of the need for anonymity comes the spam merchants.

  24. IamNTB says:

    Just finished installing it on my blog. A few complications trying to register it. The login page kept bouncing me to a post I had made, but finally got it worked out. @Dhara Mistry is a big help and responds pretty quick to provide resolutions.

    1. Dhara Mistry says:

      @IamNTB Hey Pat, we received your email. I’ll be in touch with your shortly. Thanks much for your patience in meantime!

  25. Tram Tran says:

    To be honest I like WordPress comment better.maybe its just me:]

  26. Abhik says:

    That’s awesome!!! I am sure many of your readers already started using Livefyre.

  27. Midnight Rambler says:

    Speaking as a commenter not a blogger – hate, hate, hate it. No html support, only two levels of nesting which makes it impossible to follow conversations, only shows 50 comments at a time (forcing you to keep reloading from the bottom for long threads), showing oldest first doesn’t really work, plus lots of extra white space that just takes up room. One of my most-visited websites, talkingpointsmemo.com, switched to it a few months ago and it’s widely loathed among the commenters there. Frankly, I’d almost rather have the spam!

    1. @Midnight Rambler Can’t please everyone…lol

      1. Midnight Rambler says:

        @tonygreene113 FWIW, it’s now eating my comments – they appear for about five minutes, then vanish. Meanwhile, the trolls’ sockpuppets comments show up just fine. Lovely system…

  28. hypnodude says:

    After having seen Livefyre here I’ve decided to use it on my blog and everything went well from the beginning. Also even with the free plan their support service is amazingly fast. Given that they seem to take into account suggestions I think they’ll probably improve Livefyre even more in the future.

  29. ellie1912 says:

    I’ve been using Livefyre for about two weeks. Although I still have alot to learn and discover about it, I can say my experience so far has been very positive.

    1. Dhara Mistry says:

      @ellie1912 Hey Ellie, thanks for your feedback here. Here is a link to our FAQs that will throw some more light on our features and how to you can put them to good use: http://support.livefyre.com/

      Hit me up with any questions you have! I’ll be happy to answer them.

      1. @Dhara [email protected] Dhara, do you foresee some well formatted videos that might spotlight the pros and cons of native versus other third party solutions like yours?

  30. it had been a while since i visit johnchow, but i must say the design is quite okay, neat and the most intriguing part is the comment area.. 🙂 look professional..

  31. Barzrul says:

    Just installed lifefyre, will see the result. Btw nice comparison here.

  32. ellie1912 says:

    Brand new to Livefyre. Thanks for the much needed information.

    1. @ellie1912 Welcome aboard…

  33. Scholar Mel says:

    When I moved away from disqus I had duplicate comments in my regular wordpress commenting system. I love livefyre and will stick with them. 🙂

    1. Tyler Hayes says:

      When this issue originally occurred, did you try contacting our support team at http://disqus.com/support by chance? Or did you try selecting the “Remove all imported Disqus comments before syncing” option under Advanced Options in our plugin and then clicking Sync Comments (to effectively remove any Disqus comments, if those had duplicated during the sync process, and then re-sync only one copy of each)?

      1. Scholar Mel says:

        @Tyler Hayes This happened over a year and half ago. At the time it didn’t seem clear on how to uninstall. Maybe that is just me.

        From a commenters perspective I have noticed that you guys appear to have a better comment system than you once did.

        1. Tyler Hayes says:

          Thanks for clarifying. Sorry we weren’t there to help back then. If you ever do decide to give disqus a shot again or just have any questions or thoughts don’t hesitate to reach out to us at http://disqus.com/support or http://twitter.com/disqus

  34. shirleybrown says:

    I am a new livefyre user and I have to say I am pretty impressed. Livefyre seems like where twitter meets blog comments. The features and easy of use of livefyre is simply amazing!

    1. wmwebdes says:

      @shirleybrown

      “…where twitter meets blog comments” sounds like a good description.

      I tried Livefyre in the past but had a problem with “white space” at the top of the comments section.

      Livefyre tell me that this has been fixed now so I may give it another try.

  35. p90x says:

    I have just recently heard of Livefyre. It seems to work well with blocking spam comments. I plan to try it on my own blog eventually. Thanks for the report John.

    – Robert

    1. @p90x Imperium is the tool that is used against spam. I’m never going back to native WP for that among other reasons.

  36. FreeBook says:

    “Like Disqus, Livefrye saves comments on their servers. Unlike Disqus, a copy of the comment is also saved to your WordPress comment database.”

    This point is really amazing, men, love it

  37. This is really very interesting post. I like it.

  38. There’s a lot of damn angst and back-biting going on against the implementation of Livefyre.

  39. Wilson Lee says:

    This is a post just suits me. I am a newbie in the blog world and now revising my WordPress Comment format. I will give a try and thanks for your post, John!

  40. RascalSeahorse says:

    Thanks for the advice!

  41. I am a Livefyre user and will stay so…native comments and other tools have always come up a bit short for me. and the arguments that are Disqus state that the links from previous commenters go away.

    This is true, but for me the purpose of a comment is to build a channel of communicating whether pro or con for the article being commented on.

    Simply dropping keyword filled links to gain an SEO value is hogwash to me.

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