SK2 – Moderate Plugin

Current Release: 0.75 (download)

Functional Summary

Enforces the following WordPress administration settings relating to treatment of comments:

  1. “An administrator must approve the comment (regardless of any matches below)” (under Options … Discussion)
  2. “Comment author must have a previously approved comment” ( also under Options … Discussion)

The plugin works by running after all the other Spam Karma 2 filters and ensuring that if either of these Discussions options are enabled within WordPress then for comments to which they apply (All comments in the case of (1)) the plugin ensures that the highest karma level a comment can achieve is -1 so that all comments must be moderated before appearing on your site.


Some people see this as a deficiency in Spam Karma 2, they think that even with the level of protection provided this WordPress option should be observed – now they have the choice. I have also had reports of people receiving a large influx of malicious comments, for example when linked from an online forum, that are from new authors (2) above helps to prevent these appearing on your site when running Spam Karma 2 to protect you against comment spammers.

Future Thoughts

The one main feature of the built-in WordPress comment spam protection system that is not covered by this plugin is integrating the Comment Moderation and Comment Blacklist keyword lists. In general if you still really need these on top of all the normal checks that Spam Karma2 does then you need to look at adding some of them to the Spam Karma 2 blacklist – this maybe a daunting task as this uses RegEx’s rather than straight words. However you should find that taking a word from the Comment Moderation list and adding it to the Spam Karma 2 blacklist as a RegEx is as simple as converting Word into /Word/.


  1. Install Spam Karma 2
  2. Activate Spam Karma 2
  3. Unzip the plugin into the sk2_plugins directory within the SK2 directory in your plugins folder. (e.g. wp-content/plugins/SK2/sk2_plugins/)
  4. Disable the Captcha Check Treatment plugin in the Spam Karma 2 admin pages – otherwise commenters pushed into moderation by this plugin will be able to rescue themselves 🙁
  5. Relax knowing that all comments that pass Spam Karma 2’s checks will be marked for moderation as required by your WordPress Discussion settings

Bug reports welcome (Please comment below!)

91 thoughts on “SK2 – Moderate Plugin

  1. Hi Peter

    There seems to be a problem in recognising previous commenters, here is an example.

    0.63: Valid Javascript payload (can be fake).
    0.38: Comment has no URL in content (but one author URL)
    0: Encrypted payload valid: IP matching.
    2.7: Commenter granularity (based on URL): 14 old comment(s) (karma avg: 2.310000), 0 recent comment(s) (karma avg: 0.000000).
    2.73: Commenter granularity (based on email): 9 old comment(s) (karma avg: 1.820000), 0 recent comment(s) (karma avg: 0.000000).
    -7.44: Spank into moderation – Author has no previously approved comments.
    16: Manually recovered comment.

    It seems to be working based upon the recent comments and not the older comments.

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  3. Hi Peter,

    In your implementation of filter_this, I noticed you spank comments based on this condidtional:

    “if ($cmt_object->karma > 0.0)”

    I noticed a few comments getting through unmoderated, which had a value of zero, so I’ve changed that conditional to

    “if ($cmt_object->karma >= 0.0)”

    I’m seeing lots of SPAM in the log that’s well under zero, so I’m pretty sure it doesn’t go overboard, but does that seem right to you?


  4. John: thanks for the feedback. Yes changing that condition to >= will probably help. I don’t think I have seen any comments that get a karma of exactly zero but it is probably possible so if you are seing them it is a worthwhile change to make.

  5. Thanks, Peter. I think this will help since I’ve been seeing a few posts at zero getting through. Also I think it fits what you document above better, “the plugin ensures that the highest karma level a comment can achieve is -1”.

    I really needed the plug-in, by the way, so thanks for creating it.


  6. Peter,

    Thanks for a great plugin. Occasionally a comment that contains a link it is automatically posted rather than held for moderation. Do I have an issue with my settings, or is this a bug? The first comment here was not held for moderation:



  7. Thanks Peter. That solution worked for the comment that came through a couple of weeks ago, but we’ve just had another one come through unmoderated. This time it’s from a regular comment author, but it’s one we didn’t want posted. I do not have “Comment author must have a previously approved comment” checked under Options, Discussion.

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  9. Eddie

    Hi Peter,

    I have the same problem as Alicia, a comment slipped through despite the fact that I checked “An administrator must always approve the comment” and “Comment author must fill out name and e-mail” and nothing else.

    Here’s what Spam Karma says:


    0.5: Valid Javascript payload (can be fake).
    0: Encrypted payload valid: IP matching.
    0.5: Comment has no URL in content (but one author URL)
    -0.77: Entry posted 4 months, 2 weeks ago. 0 comments in the past 15 days. Current Karma: 1.

    Any idea?

    Thanks in advance and for the plugin!


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