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Problem with WP Comments: Help!

I seem to be having increasing problems with people being able to post comments to my site, and in the spirit of #ConnectedLearning and the Teaching with WordPress #TWP15 mooc, wonder if anybody can offer any suggestions for what may be causing these things or how to handle them? For all I know, these issues may have always been present, but I have simply not used my blog as much as I have been doing recently, and people have thus not has anything to comment on, so I may only be noticing this now.

Yesterday, I deactivated Akismet, as that seemed to cause many things to be flagged as spam that were not, and now am trying WP Zero Spam.

Then, this morning, I awoke to find Tweets from two colleagues who were kind enough to try to post comments AND then let me know they were not able to do so (thanks Maha and Kevin!).

This is what Maha reported:

2015-06-17_08-10-03

after which she then posted a screenshot of her comment so I could at least see it:

2015-06-17_08-09-39

Kevin then had a similar, or perhaps related, experience:2015-06-17_08-13-41

While I use IndieWeb to help capture and post comments from around the social world, this does not seem to have anything to do with comments listed as spam or other issues that should hinder commenting.

Any help will be most appreciated. Getting comments and feedback is very important for me, especially if people are generous and kind enough to offer it. Thank you!