SparkFun is taking steps to ensure that our user community is a safe space. That means we need to make a few changes.
Recently a lot of our commenters have been frustrated by one of our latest changes to SparkFun’s commenting website. We are asking our user community to verify their email addresses before we let them comment. While this is an inconvenience for our customers, it is a pretty important step for SparkFun. We want to try and make SparkFun a safe place for everyone to come out and play. This includes our blog platform. We want to have a conversation with our user community, which means the community needs to have valid email address.
We are trying to stop spambots. While this isn’t a perfect solution, it is a road block. We want to make it just a little harder for the bots to think we are a solid forum for spamming. That being said, we don’t want it to be too hard for you, our loyal reads and customers either. This balance is what we are trying to strike.
Curse you, spambots.
Also, we might not stop at valid email addresses on comments. There are tools at our disposal; how we use them affects you and we are aware of that.
Moving forward, we’ll probably make validating your email address one of our steps in the account creation process. We haven’t implemented this yet, in an attempt to get it right. We still want customers coming in and checking out while creating a new account. We are working through all of these steps now. Everyone already registered is going through the process of validating email address as you comment around our blog platform. Soon new users will most likely need to validate email addresses to create accounts.
SparkFun had a Captcha system for a while. It was disabled when enough people complained it was hindering their shopping experience, but that was before we had a guest checkout system that allowed purchasing without registration. Implementing Captcha again is on the table and being discussed.
Running a modern E-Commerce website is a complicated collection of trade-offs. SparkFun is committed to creating an environment that is welcoming to customers of all types, but we also have to do it in a way that is responsible for our team. SparkFun is working to make the right decisions. As we slowly implement new features we want to keep our user base informed. As we implement these features please let us know what you think. Validate your email address today and speak your mind. We’re listening!