Comments are a feature of blogs which allow readers to respond to Posts. Typically, readers simply provide their own thoughts regarding the content of the post, but they may also provide links to other resources, generate discussion, or simply compliment the author for a well-written post.
Comments allow you to interact more with your site visitors as well as generate feedback and discussion on your Posts.
Comments can be controlled and regulated through the use of filters for language and content, and if you prefer, can also be queued for approval before they are visible on the web site. This is useful in dealing with comment spam.
When you click on the Comments menu option, you’ll be shown a list of all the comments on your site.
At the top of the screen there are links that allow you filter the comment list to only show the comments that are Pending, Approved, Marked as Spam or that are in the Trash. The number in brackets will advise how many there are for that particular type.
As well as the standard settings that allow you to manage your comments, the default WordPress install comes with an excellent plugin that helps to filter out spam from your comments. This plugin is called Akismet.
After activating the Akismet plugin, you need to supply it with an API Key. You can grab an API key and find out more information on the Akismet website.
When hovering your cursor over each row in the list of Comments, a few links will appear beneath the comment.
- Unapprove/Approve – Allows you to unapprove the comment. This will stop it displaying on your site. If the comment is already unapproved then this link will change to Approve, to allow you to approve the comment
- Reply – Allows you to write a reply comment
- Quick Edit – Allows you to quickly edit the commenter’s Name, Email or URL as well as the actual comment
- Edit – Allows you to edit the commenter’s Name, Email or URL as well as the actual comment. It also allows you to mark the comment as either Approved, Pending or Spam and change the Date and Time
- Spam – Allows you to mark the comment as spam
- Trash – Allows you to mark the comment as Trash. Once it’s in the Trash, you can either restore it if you made a mistake, or delete it permanently
If you would like to change the status of numerous Comments at once, click the check boxes next to the Comment(s) you would like to change and then choose either Unapprove, Approve, Mark as Spam or Move to Trash from the Bulk Actions drop down list at the top of the page. After selecting the appropriate option, click the Apply button.
How To Reply To A WordPress Comment
To respond to a comment that someone has written on one of your Posts, simply hover the mouse over the comment and click the Reply link when it appears. An edit field will then appear beneath the comment where you can type your reply.
When you’ve written your comment, click the Reply button or alternatively, click Cancel to stop replying and cancel your editing.
The editor that appears when replying or editing a comment (using either the Reply, Quick Edit or Edit links) is much like the editor when creating or editing a Page or Post, only not as intuitive. At the top of the editor there are numerous formatting buttons. These buttons provide you with basic HTML formatting capabilities when composing a new reply comment or editing an existing comment.
The buttons work in two ways. Clicking a button without highlighting any text first, will simply insert the opening html tag relevant for that button. As an example, clicking the Bold button will insert the <strong> html tag into your comment. Clicking the Bold button again will close the tag by inserting the closing </strong> tag. If you highlight some text prior to clicking a button, both the opening and closing tags will be inserted around that highlighted text. For example, highlighting the text, ‘bold text’, prior to clicking the Bold button will insert ‘<strong>bold text</strong>’.
|Bold – Bold text|
|Italic – Italicize text|
|Link – Used to insert a website link. When the button is clicked a pop-up window will appear where you type in the URL that you would like to link to|
|Block quote – Used as a way of showing a quote. How this looks will be entirely dependent on the Theme that your site is currently using|
|Delete – Used as a way of showing deleted text. How this looks will be dependent on the Theme but is usually done by showing the text with a strike through|
|Insert – Used as a way of showing inserted text. How this looks will be dependent on the Theme but is usually done by showing the text with an underline|
|Image – Used to insert an image into the comment. When the button is clicked a pop-up window will appear where you type in the URL of the image that you would like inserted|
|Unordered List – Used to insert an unordered (or un-numbered) list|
|Ordered List – Used to insert an ordered (or numbered) list|
|List Item – Used to insert a list item into your ordered or un-ordered list|
|Code – Used for indicating a piece of code|
|Close Tags – Used to close open tags. If for example, you clicked both the Bold and Italic buttons to insert their opening tags, clicking the close tags button will insert both of the matching closing tags, in the correct order|