January 9th, 2017

The situation so far: improved, but a few glitches remain

I’ve been working on fixing the “comments not showing up” problem, and I think I’ve made progress.

But some things remain to be solved. So I’m going to describe some of the details, and maybe some of you brilliant, brilliant tech-savvy people out there might be able to suggest some steps to eliminate the remaining glitches.

As far as I can see, these problems started in a mild fashion maybe a week ago, but then a few days ago they got quite noticeable. I’ve newly-updated the blog and now have all the newest versions of the blog and the spam filter, so needing to update either is not the problem.

Can anyone make sense of the following set of symptoms?:

(1) There is sometimes a delay between the time a person posts a comment and the time the comment becomes visible to the public and reflected in the comments count.

(2) A similar delay sometimes takes place when I publish a post.

(3) The delays are generally worse when viewed on a cell phone. I don’t know about tablets. But laptops and desktops seem to do better at catching up, although I don’t know if that’s a general rule.

(4) If a person manually refreshes the blog, that often corrects the problem and everything suddenly shows up properly. But not always. Particularly on cell phones, the problem can be a bit more “sticky.”

(5) I don’t know whether the following is related, but I suspect it may be. I used to get tons and tons of spam that was caught by the spam filter. It wasn’t a problem when the spam filter was working, which was virtually always. So every day I’d clear the spam filter, which usually had caught many thousands of spam comments—ordinarily between 2,000 and 10,000 spam comments a day. But then, just a little while ago—I don’t know exactly when, but it predated my noticing this “comments not displaying properly” problem by a few days—suddenly the flow of spam comments nearly stopped. Since then I’ve been getting maybe 100 spam a day caught in the filter. And it’s not that other spam is getting through, either; very little spam seems to be coming to the blog in the first place. Ordinarily that wouldn’t be a problem; it would be great to get so little spam. But it’s curious to me that the reduction in spam roughly coincided with this comment-display change that is a problem.

Any theories on any of this? Thanks!

8 Responses to “The situation so far: improved, but a few glitches remain”

  1. Big Maq Says:

    One possibility is your hosting service.

    If your blog is on a shared service (don’t know the exact term for it), vs a dedicated server, then if one of the websites on that service is driving “excessive” traffic (could be their own spam problem, or denial of service), your website could be impacted.

    Hosters should have the means to manage that, but who knows.

    One potential area to look at, anyway.

    If you haven’t already, might be worth contacting them.

  2. neo-neocon Says:

    Big Maq:

    Thanks, but they were the first ones I contacted, and they claim it has nothing to do with them. We”ll see; I’ve still got a lot of angles to explore for a solution.

  3. Liz Says:

    When I clicked on comments, there was one listed as existing, but there was no comment displayed. (Laptop, W10, Firefox, ad blocker). I hit the refresh and still no comment showing.

    I checked via Kindle Fire and there was 2 comments listed, but again nothing showed. Refreshed and nothing came up.

    For laughs, I’ll write a comment on the Kindle and I’ll hit send about the same time.

  4. liz Says:

    here’s the test comment from a kindle. I’ll send one from my laptop. Here goes…..

  5. Liz Says:

    Ok, when I sent the two comments, the first two comments from Big Maq and you appeared on both appeared.

    Hope this helps with someone recognizing the problem. FYI, I think the problem was existing for a period of time. I noticed the lack of comments but I thought it might be a stuck in moderation issue. Did WordPress change something in their comment process?

    Good luck!

  6. neo-neocon Says:

    Liz:

    Just now I tried to access the blog on my cell phone and got yesterday’s version. Even when I got rid of the old cached version and loaded the blog anew, it continued to happen. Then I turned the phone off and on again, and it still gave me yesterday’s version.

    And then suddenly, with no warning and for no reason, it switched to the current version, with all comments intact.

    That’s an improvement, but I’m going to have to get to the bottom of this and fix it so it works properly.

  7. Esther Says:

    My iPad browser shows me older cached pages of your blog, like when I arrived now. I knew there was a newer post because I saw your link at legalinsurrection. So, I refreshed the page and it seemed to update, but I can’t know if that is the newest or correct version.

  8. neo-neocon Says:

    Esther:

    If you’re seeing very recent comments, it’s the newer version. If you comment and then see your own comment right away, it’s definitely the newer version.

    What a pain. I hope to get this solved before long.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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