O Holy Night

To my friends and family and anybody else reading this blog, have a very Merry Christmas and best wishes to all this holiday season. Special prayers go to the U.S. cattle farmers whose season has dimmed, somewhat, because of the discovery of a BSE-affected cow in Washington. Our thoughts are with you, especially those of Canadian cattle farmers. Here's hoping for better times in 2004.

Hey! Are My Lights Dimming?

For a Christmas-y link, have you noticed your lights dimming in your neighbourhood lately? This could be the reason why (link courtesy Darren Barefoot)

For another Christmas-y link, try out the Photojunkie Advent calendar.

Carnival of the Canucks

Canada is developing a substantial blogging community, fostered in no small part by BlogsCanada and by Accordion Guy and David Janes. The latest project to strengthen the ties of this community is the Carnival of the Canucks, which bears watching and looks like it's going to be a lot of fun... I might even help out if I can.

Comment Spammers

Movable Type is about to make a leap forward as it announces the pending release of version 3.0 in the first quarter of 2004. The new version promises a faster interface, a load of other features (could we have a spell-checker, please?) and comment registration.

I will certainly upgrade to 3.0 when it comes out. It's good to stay up to date on a program such as this given how conscientious the authors are in maintaining security, and how dogged others seem to be in trying to thwart it and spam everybody, but I'm wondering about comment registration.

Comment registration is ideal for large, high-traffic websites in order to let the interesting posters in and keep the trolls and spammers out. People have to register to be a part of Transit Toronto's mailing list, after all. With over 200 responders, we've had our share of whackos and people trying to spam.

The traffic here is nowhere near as large, but I've had my fair share of problems with comment spammers. I'm sure that the MT-Blacklist plugin helps (and will help even more once the automated update patch comes through), but comment-spam is still getting through. It's an aggravating chore to keep my eye open for these little cowards and delete their pointless messages linking to a porn or prescription website, but right now it's a matter of a few clicks and they're gone. Is this worth asking you, the reader, to sign up with an account, confirm your e-mail address, and have you remember a password? I love to hear comments from all of you folks (except the comment spammers), and I can see how this measure would deaden things.

So, what say you? Is having to log in to comment an aggravation? Or is it acceptable practise in order to keep comment spammers at bay?

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