Lately we’ve been getting hammered with spammy new user accounts here at On The Pitch (dozens a day). It was becoming an administrative nightmare, so we’ve taken a few steps to try to reduce the load on our server and still make it easy to comment and participate in discussions.

  1. We’ve enabled captchas for creating user accounts and for posting comments anonymously. The captcha we use is ADA compliant, providing audio captchas on request. Here is an example:

    An Example Re-Captcha w/Audio Support

  2. If you create an account and are logged in, you will NOT have to enter a captcha to comment, since you entered one to create your account. If you are not logging in to a local account, the captcha form will appear and must be completed in order to post a comment.
  3. We had thousands of fake user accounts – so we have deleted almost all of them. If your account has a name entered, a comment linked to it, or an avatar linked to it, we left it alone. All the others were removed. So if you had created an account and can’t login to it – that’s why. Just recreate it with the captcha check, and you won’t see the captcha again

I apologize for the hassle, and I am not a huge captcha fan, but they provide some protection in addition to the many other anti-spam features we have in place.