Implement WordPress Comment Moderation with Simple Plugins
Last Updated September 11, 2023
WordPress comment moderation is still a concern for many blogs and business sites. Comments have become less common over time but there are still sites where they are a vital part of the experience. And moderating random content from strangers can be a daunting task. It’s not just spam that you have to look out for either. Many times the user-generated content that site owners are most worried about is hate speech and fighting between commenters.
Thankfully, there are plugins built for WordPress that can help. And these plugins aren’t just for moderating comments. There are other ways in which WordPress moderation can be helped with third-party plugins as well. Today, we’re going to take a look at some of these plugins to help you and your clients get a better grip on their moderation.
Popular WordPress Moderation Plugins
All of the WordPress comment moderation plugins listed here are available from WordPress.org for free. You can download the plugin files from the site and upload them to your installation quickly. If you prefer, they can also be installed and activated from the WordPress admin directly.
We have done our best to summarize each plugin’s features for you. In this case, not all of these plugins are for comment moderation. A few help moderate other areas of your WordPress site as well. While we wanted to focus on comments, we thought it would be helpful to add a few other options since moderation is such a broad topic.
Auto Approve Comments
Auto Approve Comments is the first WordPress comment moderation plugin on our list. It automatically approves comments based on filters. For example, you can trigger approval based on the commenter’s email, name, URL, or user role if they are logged in.
To use the plugin, you’ll need to go to Open Comments and then Auto Approve Comments in the WordPress menu. From there, view the Discussion settings and check “Comment must be manually approved”.
As an option, you may choose to install Akismet so comments that are marked spam are rejected from being automatically approved. You can then configure your filters as you need, save, and that’s all there is to it. By doing this, all comments that meet the settings that you’ve set will be approved.
This plugin was first released by its developer in December of 2015. It is actively on version 2.8 and last underwent a revision on June 15th, 2021. The newest release operates on WordPress 5.8.8. This plugin is currently operating on over 300 WordPress sites. It has had over 8,580 downloads. There have not been many support requests from customers. Users assess this plugin as average.
Comment Moderation Role by WPBeginner
Comment Moderation Role by WPBeginner helps with permissions when it comes to keeping comments on your site in check. When installed, a new role is created on your site that can give someone access to the comment moderation screen. When someone is given this privilege, they are able to approve, decline, or edit any comment on any post on the site.
This plugin can also be used for authors and contributors to moderate comments on posts they have written. All you need to do to create a Comment Moderator user is edit your chosen user’s profile and change their role to WPB Comment Moderator. It’s that simple.
This product was originally released by its owner in July of 2021. It is presently on version 1.1.1 and last had an update on August 2nd, 2022. The newest update runs on WordPress 6.0.6 and requires at least PHP 5.6 to work on your server. This plugin is actively operating on over 300 WordPress websites. It has had over 2,420 downloads. There have not been many support requests from customers. WordPress users are positive and think highly of this plugin.
Post Comment Notification
Post Comment Notification, the next WordPress comment moderation plugin on our list, can send notifications to multiple emails whenever a comment is posted that awaits moderation and approval. This is a solution to the problem that WordPress has when it usually sends the notification to only one email address.
With the plugin, it’ll be much easier to have more than one person moderating your site. You can even send general comment notifications to yourself as well at multiple email addresses. If you want to also notify when any new post or page is created and updated, the plugin works for that too.
There is no limit to the number of email addresses you can add to the list. Having said that, the plugin developer recommends no more than 20.
This product was first released by its developer in November of 2012. It is actively on version 1.0 and last experienced a revision on November 14th, 2012. The newest edition functions on WordPress 3.0.0. This plugin is presently functioning on over 100 WordPress websites. It has had over 4,330 downloads. There have not been many support requests from customers. WordPress users are positive and think highly of this plugin.
Flagged Content is a WordPress moderation plugin that is quite different from the rest in this post. While not focused on comments, it does offer a unique approach to content moderation so we thought it was worth including.
This plugin gives users the ability to report posts and pages that they feel need to be looked at. When installed, the plugin automatically adds a flagging button to every post and page. Once clicked by a user, a lightbox form will pop up where they can enter information as to why it is being flagged before it is submitted.
Buttons, messages, and fields that you can customize to your liking are displayed within the form. You have the choice of whether any field is required to fill out the form fully or not. You can customize selectable reasons, all flags are organized in a flags page, and emails may be enabled to be sent whenever something is reported.
This product was first published by its creator in August of 2017. It is now on version 1.0.2 and last saw a change on October 27th, 2021. The newest version operates on WordPress 5.8.8. This plugin is presently functioning on over 100 WordPress sites. It has had over 2,510 downloads. There have not been many help requests from users. Reviews for Flagged Content are very positive. Many of the customers who left a review found this plugin to be useful.
FV Thoughtful Comments
FV Thoughtful Comments is the final WordPress comment moderation plugin we will be looking at. This plugin makes comment moderation more efficient by moving its capabilities to the front end or your website. It allows admins to ban users and remove comments based on factors like IP, email address, or domain. The plugin works with and utilizes Akismet by feeding information into it along with the built-in WordPress whitelist and blacklist features.
Conveniently, adding the plugin won’t mess up or make changes to any existing comment moderation tables you have in place. If removed, no core functionality will be affected. Logged-in users with permission will have the ability to moderate from the front end. Unapproved comments will be displayed to them to make the process simple.
Per-user moderation settings are applied and comment caching is used to keep the PHP load light and fast. It is advised to use a theme that has a cascade display instead of nested for preserving replies on a comment that was deleted if that’s what you want.
This plugin was first published by its creator in October of 2009. It is now on version 0.3.5 and last experienced an update on August 22nd, 2023. The latest edition runs on WordPress 6.3.2. This plugin is currently running on over 100 WordPress websites. It has had over 14,100 downloads. There have not been many assistance requests from users. Reviews for this plugin are very positive. Many of the customers who left a review found this plugin to be great.
Find the Best WordPress Moderation Plugin
That’s the end of our rundown on some of the best WordPress comment moderation plugins. As we mentioned, these plugins are an effective way to not only eliminate spam but help control the quality of user-generated content on your sites.
In addition to comments, some of these plugins offer even more moderation as well. You can combine several of these plugins together for the ultimate moderation toolset. Keeping your site’s content under control, especially when you rely on users to post, is a key step in running a successful site on WordPress.
We hope this list has helped you find the right plugins for your situation. Thanks so much for taking the time to read it.
Looking for More Ways to Improve WordPress?
Are you here to find a WordPress comment moderation plugin for one of your clients? If so, before you go, you might be interested to learn more about our White Label WordPress plugin.
White Label was built for WordPress developers like yourself who want a way to customize and rebrand the admin experience for clients. Build a custom login page, replace colors and logos, edit menus, and much more.
Check out the full feature list to find out all of the ways that White Label can help you manage WordPress projects for clients. Make the admin less confusing for users and easier for you to support with White Label.
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