Advantages of moderating comments via email notificationI have set comments in almost all my blogs for moderation via email notification. This means each time a visitor makes a comment, I get an email with the full message and I can approve or reject a comment from there. Moderating comments via email notification has many advantages over moderating via the Dashboard. The first big one I would point out is there is a link to the post where the comment was made. When you have read the message and see that it is not spam, and you click "Publish", a new tab or window (depending on your browser settings) will open with a link to the post itself. Click on the link and you are now in the post, ready to respond to the comment. Another advantage is, you have a permanent record of the comment in your Inbox, and in cases like you accidentally deleted a comment you wanted publish, or you want to edit the comment, you can use a work-around (trick) to republish or edit the comment. See What you can do if you accidentally deleted a comment or you want to edit a comment (click BACK button to get back to this page). Of course if you have set your comments to only registered bloggers, you will have to temporarily set it to allow anonymous comments first. The above advantages are not available when you moderate via the Dashboard.
However, I am often forced to moderate comments via the Dashboard because I don't get email notification for some comments.
How to moderate comments via the Dashboard and respond to commentsModerating comments via the Dashboard and respond to comments is a real big hassle, one I hate to go because I often get a long list of such comments to moderate and respond to. It is irritating, it is time consuming as I have to go through a series of steps and heaven help me if I forget the most important steps.
Here is a screenshot of what you might see in the Dashboard:
Note that it says there are 5 comments waiting to be moderated. Here is a screenshot of the list of comments waiting for moderation when you click "5 comments":
Take very careful attention of the "Post Name" link (highlighted by a red arrow pointing at it). Make sure you click on this "Post Name" link before you do anything, because if you don't. and if you approve any comment or comments, finding the comment or comments to respond to is going to be a real headache. However, atter clicking on the "Post Name" link, the list of comments waiting to be moderated will changed as shown in the screenshot below:
Note that now the title of the posts in which those comments are posted are now being listed and one "How to Contact Blogger Support" is highlighted by a red arrow pointing at it. One more important step or steps you need to do before you approve any comment if you have intention to respond to it or them. Highlight the title or titles, right-click on your mouse and select copy (or press ctrl+C) to copy the post title into clipboard, open a Notepad file, paste the post title or titles. This is very important because once you approved the comment, it will be deleted from the list of comments waiting for moderation, and if you didn't save the post title or remember it, you will not be able to go to the post to respond to the comment. Compare this with moderating via email where you have a email notification with the comment plus the link to the post which is permanently in your Inbox unless you choose to delete it.
Next thing to do is to expand the comment to read the full comment, then make a decision as to whether to publish or reject the comment.
My normal practice is to publish a comment, then right-click on "Edit Post", select "Open in a new tab" using a web browser with tabbed browing. This will open a new tab in the same window of the browser with the list of posts. Copy the title of the post you pasted into the Notepad file into the search box above the list of posts and click "SEARCH". From experience, I have found that sometimes, the search does not turn up the relevant post and I have to delete part of the post title and search again.
Once you find the post, click on VIEW to open the post, find the comment, respond to it. Go back to the tab containing the list of comments waiting for moderation and repeat the process for the other remaining comments.
As you can see, this is a much more tedious and time consuming task as compared with moderating comment via email notification, but often cannot be helped because Blogger has still not solve this problem of not receiving email notification for comment moderation.