Since I just launched this site with Textpattern, I picked up a few things that could assist you if you too have a Textpattern site.
Today’s tip has to do with protecting your commenters from SPAM (and thereby encouraging copious amounts of conversation, thus increasing traffic, building community, etc.).
The first thing to point out is just how commenters are in danger of becoming recipients of SPAM. When an e-mail address is posted anywhere on a Web site, it can be grabbed by scripts written to harvest these addresses (even when they are encoded using HTML entities, which is Textpattern’s default ‘safety feature’). These addresses are then used to SPAM (either directly by the harvester or by those who purchase the lists).
Okay, so that’s bad. Nobody wants that. In fact, people are so against it that they will either post a fake e-mail address when they comment or just choose not to comment for fear of SPAM. I have been there. A few times when I have posted without realizing that my e-mail address would be displayed, I have immediately e-mailed the site owner requesting that my e-mail address be removed.
So what to do?
I perused Textpattern’s admin tab profusely. And found nothing. Hmmm… After several reruns of that, I decided to open up my favorite development tool and do a complete site search (Find – Entire Current Local Site). Well, after some PHP perusal, I narrowed it down to the /textpattern/lib/admin_config.php file.
If you open that file, you can change ‘never_display_email’ => 0 to ‘never_display_email’ => 1. BAM. Problem solved.
There are some other neat variables in there you might want to take a look at, as well.