The Blogerati are starting to wade in on TypeKey, Six Apart’s new centralized comment registration system, and the initial reactions are the same as mine.
“Six Apart has posted a page describing their TypeKey installation, and it is a centralized authentication system. Only one word can describe this design idea: bad.” – Shelley Powers
“TypeKey is a centralized single sign on system for comments on MT3 powered weblogs and thus, one of the last things one might need.” – Haiko Hebig
Questions for Six Apart – Dave Winer
“3) How is typekey different from forcing users to register on a blog and only then allowing them to comment? What if I sign up for typekey and then post all kinds of junk?? who says whether my stuff is spam or not?? Some big shot blogger might think that my opinion on their “learned” topic is spam and decide to report me to TypeKey. Would that mean I could not comment anymore? Is one person’s comment another person’s spam?” – Mindful Musings
Even MeFi is wading in:
“without impinging the motives or purity of soul attaching the creators of this, i would simply note that typekey is a Centralized ShinyWidget that will make it easier to post comments without remembering annoying passwords, when it’s up, and when it’s not, it will prevent all commenting, or allow any wandering spambot to comment.” – MetaFilter commenter quonsar.
The real bad news is that it appears that Jay Allen, creator of the beloved MT-Blacklist plugin and Comment Spam Clearinghouse, has bought into TypeKey lock, stock and barrel, and he says that “MT-Blacklist’s time is coming to an end.” Now I’m willing to trust Jay here, particularly since he has actually been using MT 3.0, unlike most if not all of the others quoted here, but I still have my doubts. Since many people are simply not going to want to use a centralized authentication system I believe there will still be a place for Jay’s solution and vision for a centralized spammer repository and I truly hope he continues to push that.
Bottom line for me is that the solution needs to be almost completely transparent to the person leaving the comment, who in my case is frequently someone who, as I’ve said before, “doesn’t know a blog from a booger.” I don’t want to make commenting difficult for the person who found my site searching for a recipe for coq au vin and who wants to leave a comment telling me how good it turned out.
Unless TypeKey makes that simple I won’t be enabling it and I’ll continue to need MT-Blacklist.