|Captcha has taken to swearing back at me...|
When I was invited to speak at Cybher in May 2012 I made sure that I included a slide about word verification. It is currently the most viewed slide of the online presentation. However, I am hearing that many people are still (annoyingly) using word verification - sometimes known as "Captcha" - on their blogs.
As is the case for the Blogger platform, word verification can be default on a new blog and many bloggers don't realise this. We all love comments on our blog and word verification is one main barrier to interaction (let's just put comment moderation to one side for a moment). And it sucks you in. It lets you write your comment - long or short - before it sneaks up on you as you press the "publish" button.
Merry tells me that her mobile devices make Captcha almost impossible to read and Sonya backs this up by mentioning that her tablet autocorrects the word to a real word. Jayne made me laugh when she said (and I quote verbatim),
"Come on people, these are blogs, we're not trying to gain access to top secret documents."Helen also makes a good point about people with dyslexia having even greater difficulty reading them.
There are an enormous amount of linkys (blog posts written to a theme and linked up on one lead blog) and, if you are joining in with a linky, it is considered blogging etiquette to visit other participants' blogs - it's part of being a great community member. Yet each week I hear the same jungle call of "AARRGGHH CAPTCHA" from all corners of the blogosphere.
There are lots of reasons NOT to have word verification on your blog and I would be very interested to hear the argument "for" word verification. Does it stop spam comments? Have you been hacked in the past? You can join in the discussion in the comment section.
And finally, here is a reminder of how to turn off Captcha on a Blogger blog (click to enlarge). The easy route in is Blogger > Dashboard > Posts and Comments > Show word verification > NO