2 Quick Ways WordPress Lets You Disable Comments (And Why You’d Want To)
WordPress hasn’t always been a robust Content Management System (CMS). It started life as a blogging platform more akin to WordPress.com. Regardless, there is still some functionality leftover from the early days with value, such as user comments.
However, while they’re great for fostering a community, comments aren’t appropriate for every site. What’s more, if you don’t have time to manage the comments coming into your site, they can actually do more harm than good.
In this post, we’ll look at two ways that WordPress helps you disable comments. Before that, let’s discuss the pros and cons of using them.
The Benefits of Enabling Comments
As we noted, WordPress began as a blogging platform. Anyone with knowledge of content marketing and promotion knows that blog comments can be a great way to encourage users to interact with a brand and business.
What’s more, some users can even become valuable and helpful members of the community. Depending on what your site offers, this could be a great form of social proof for others. After all, if the community you engage with is friendly and helpful, others will want to join.
As such, you could consider your comments section almost as part of your sales funnel. However, they’re not right for every site. Let’s discuss why next.
Why You’d Want to Disable Comments in WordPress
Unfortunately, comments sections come with a few caveats. Namely:
- Users may simply not want to interact with your content. Other communities are more passive, valid but not helpful for posts with a dedicated comments section.
- You’ll have a diverse mix of users leaving comments. As such, some of the posts and replies may not be in-keeping with your site’s ethics and ethos. This means you need to moderate comments.
- Comments sections are breeding grounds for spam links and other forms of malicious intent.
Overall, if you’re averse to putting measures in place for any of these caveats, it may be wise to disable comments altogether. What’s more, your site may not suit having comments sections. This is true for sites that mainly use static, informational content – such as landing pages.
If this rings true for you, read on to find two ways to disable your WordPress comments.
2 Quick Ways WordPress Lets You Disable Comments
There are more than two ways to disable comments. However, we’re offering the two most straightforward methods to get the job done. We think these will suit the majority of WordPress users and sites – and you may not need more than a few minutes for each method.
1. Use WordPress’ Built-In Functionality
WordPress has some robust functionality for both enabling and disabling comments. There are two approaches you can take for the latter. If you want to disable comments on a site-wide basis, log into your WordPress dashboard, and head to Settings > Discussion:
Here, you can change all manner of options for the way comments are accepted and moderated on your site. However, the option you’ll need is right at the top in the Default post settings section: Allow people to submit comments on new posts:
If you uncheck this and save your changes, new posts won’t have the comments section enabled. However, this doesn’t disable comments on your existing posts.
If you’re sure this is what you want to do, scroll down to the Other comment settings section, and set Automatically close comments on posts older than…days to zero:
Once you check this box and save your changes, this will disable comments on existing posts. From there, you can delete pre-existing comments from the Comments admin panel. Note that you can also disable comments on a per post basis from the Discussion section of the Block Editor for each individual post:
However, if you’re disabling comments globally, using this feature is only going to make sense if you’d like to enable comments for a specific post.
2. Install a WordPress Plugin
…and the confusingly-named Disable Comments RB:
What’s more, both plugins work in a similar fashion. Once you’ve installed and activated your chosen plugin, you’ll find both have dedicated admin panels within the Settings screen of your dashboard:
While Disable Comments RB has just two radio buttons to enable or disable comments, its rival has a comprehensive control panel:
Here, you can disable comments globally, for specific post types, and even for those comments made through WordPress APIs.
What’s more, you’re able to quickly delete comments, both globally and for specific post types:
The Disable Comments plugin takes WordPress’ functionality and turns it up a notch. As such, it’s a handy addition if you want to disable your comments.
Comments sections are polarizing features of any website. However, while there are clear benefits for letting users engage with your content, there are plenty of valid reasons for removing the option.
This post has looked at two ways to disable comments in WordPress. Let’s recap them:
- Use WordPress’ built-in functionality.
- Install and activate a WordPress plugin, such as Disable Comments.
Have you ever considered disabling comments in WordPress? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
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