"I have a mind like a steel... uh... thingy." Patrick Logan's weblog.

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Thursday, January 20, 2005

Wiki and Comment Spam

I've not written my own wiki or blog system, and not thought about this problem at all. Given that, what if a form of "email authentication" was used to approve wiki edits and blog comments? (I think I've seen this somewhere but can't get google to remind me where.)

  1. Someone edits a wiki page or adds a comment.
  2. The change is suspended until "authenticated".
  3. At this point the person enters an email address (of some determinably accountable, non-transient nature).
  4. The change or some indication is sent to the email address.
  5. Upon receipt of the response or via an http form in the email, the change is accepted.
  6. In addition to other filtering and governing, the site now also has an email address.

8 comments:

Stefan Tilkov said...

That seems to be a great idea - I'd replace my dumb CAPTCHA solution with something like that in a minute.

Anonymous said...

The blogs hosted by Weblogs Inc. (www.weblogsinc.com) already do this. They send a link to the address you give when you post a comment. Your comment only shows up when you access the URL they've sent. It seems nice.

-john p. speno

Anonymous said...

It might not work for wiki sites for concurrency reasons. In theory one particular blog entry could have a series of queued up changes. However, the second writer would overwrite the first's changes because they couldn't see them.

Its the classic last write wins problem.

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Portland, Oregon, United States
I'm usually writing from my favorite location on the planet, the pacific northwest of the u.s. I write for myself only and unless otherwise specified my posts here should not be taken as representing an official position of my employer. Contact me at my gee mail account, username patrickdlogan.