Six Apart to launch free antispam service for blogs

The no-fee, no-restriction comment spam-prevention service is now in beta.

Rafe Needleman Former Editor at Large
Rafe Needleman reviews mobile apps and products for fun, and picks startups apart when he gets bored. He has evaluated thousands of new companies, most of which have since gone out of business.
Rafe Needleman

Six Apart is launching a free, semi-open-source filter for blog comment spam.

TypePad AntiSpam is the same antispam technology that's currently built into TypePad, but the company is making it available to all who want it, with no charge and no usage restrictions. The service is in semi-beta: "The code is not beta but the (open source framework around it) is," Six Apart CEO Chris Alden also said.

There will be TypePad AntiSpam plug-ins available for Six Apart's blog platforms, TypePad and Movable Type, as well as for Wordpress blogs.

The TypePad AntiSpam framework is open source. Anyone can muck around in the code that integrates the engine, repackage it, and so on. The heurestics and rules in the engine itself, however, run on Six Apart's servers and are not open. Opening them would give spammers everything they need to break through the system, Alden told me. The standard antispam engine for Wordpress, Akismet, is also closed.

However, Alden said, if someone has their own antispam engine, they could plug it into the open-source framework.

TypePad AntiSpam plugs into TypePad as well as Wordpress. Six Apart

Web 2.0 blog TechCrunch has been testing this antispam service, Alden said.