Segregating Comments and Trackbacks In Admin Panel?

March 19th, 2010
WordPress Discussions

For quite some time I have been struggling to moderate comments on my technology blog, the problem is not only with an abundance of comments, but also with lots of trackbacks/pingbacks.

Now, for me pingbacks are really good, but it adds to a load while moderating comments. I do know that they can be disabled, but I don’t do it for a simple reason, which is to keep track of people who are linking back and sending trackbacks. However, approving, reading and responding to actual user comments has a much higher priority than the trackbacks.

Right now, WordPress displays both the trackbacks and comments together, however, it would be great if there could be a way to segregate through both of these.

The biggest gain from segregating the comments and trackbacks would be that you can quickly go through approved/unapproved human comments, and approve them or reply to them quickly without having to weed your way through the other things.

Of course there should also be a dedicated trackback section where you can view and approve all the trackbacks too. This may sound trivial, but believe me when you have to moderate comments day in and day out, this becomes quite a nuisance, specially if you get a lot of comments.

I am playing around with an idea to do this as a plugin, but would be glad if anyone could beat me at it, unless of course if there is something which does that already.

What are your thoughts, do you think that comments and trackbacks should be separated in the admin comments panel, or do you feel it should be left as is?




  1. Daniel Veazey (2 comments.) says:

    I wish I had so many comments and trackbacks. Then I would totally want a plugin to segregate them for sure.

  2. RavanH (11 comments.) says:

    I second this idea. For the Comments widget too.

  3. Matt B. (1 comments.) says:

    I think that’s a great idea; have you suggested this for the 3.0 release?

  4. rick@rickety (10 comments.) says:

    That would be a handy thing to have. I don’t have that many trackbacks so it is not an issue for me. I do get trackbacks from my own posts, which I delete. It would be handy to get rid of those.

  5. GregM (2 comments.) says:

    Top of the “Edit Comments” admin page: where the dropdown menu says “Show all comment types”, select either “Comments” or “Pings” instead of “Show all comment types” and hit the button marked “Filter”.

    A lot of these things are hard to miss once you know they’re there, yet hard to spot before you know they’re there — especially if you’re accustomed to looking at the same old admin page day after day.

    All the best,

  6. ddeconin says:

    Side question, how do you code the ‘notify me of follow up comments by e-mail ?’

  7. Hikari (26 comments.) says:

    hmm great idea!

    Somebody would have to read WP core to see if that’s possible.

    Identify the code it uses to list comments there, if there’s a way to identify when comments are being queried exactaly from admin page to be able to strip trackbacks only from there.

    I doubt we can add a new panel to that page, but maybe core lets us create a new page there to list only trackbacks. But it would be tricky to recreate UI if core doesn’t let us use default one automatically.

  8. Otto (215 comments.) says:

    Err…. Isn’t that already in there? It is on my admin screen.


  9. Jeff Byrnes (1 comments.) says:

    It’s very easy to accomplish; here’s the link where I picked up how I do it:

  10. Keith Dsouza (82 comments.) says:

    Whoops, Thanks @GregM and @Otto you can seriously miss these small things in life :-), Thanks for pointing it out though

    • Ricky Buchanan (1 comments.) says:

      I’m glad you posted it – now I’ve learned how also!

  11. Andrew@BloggingGuide (63 comments.) says:

    I definitely think that that comments and trackbacks should be separated in the admin comments panel.

  12. Viper007Bond (91 comments.) says:

    I added that dropdown and the code that powers it way back in the day and it originally had the ping types separated, but someone wisely pointed out it’d be better if they were combined (most people don’t care how the ping came in).

    However like many things in WordPress, the feature is there but there’s just no UI for it to avoid UI bloat.

    All pings: /wp-admin/edit-comments.php?comment_type=pings
    Pingbacks only: /wp-admin/edit-comments.php?comment_type=pingbacks
    Trackbacks only: /wp-admin/edit-comments.php?comment_type=trackbacks


    • Viper007Bond (91 comments.) says:

      Oh, I read your post wrong. I thought you wanted to separate pingbacks and trackbacks from each other, not pings vs. normal comments.

      As Otto pointed out a few comments above, this feature has been in WordPress since like 2.7…

  13. Atniz (17 comments.) says:

    I think they should have Akismet spam filter work for trackbacks too. It is not easy to check each link that links to us in tracback to approve. If comments, we can easily read the contents and if it is relevant, then we may have an idea of genuine issue plus with the help of Akismet, things get easy. Trackbacks is a whole lot of section that needs more attention. For me, I don’t approve trackback links. It is not easy to manage both comments and trackbacks under moderation radar.

  14. Zach (1 comments.) says:

    Correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t it detrimental to your blog if you approve trackbacks? I thought approving trackbacks meant turning the 1 way link pointing to your blog into a reciprocal link which benefits nobody, making it counterproductive

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