1. Uncheck “Allow link notifications from other blogs (trackbacks and pingbacks” ) If you have this checked it allows too much spam.
2. Select “Automatically close comments on articles older than 14 days” – and CHANGE the “14” to 60 days, maximum.
3. Change “Comments should be displayed with the older comments at the top” to “Comments should be displayed with the newer comments at the top”
4. Continue down the page, the next part deals with email: I recommend you let it notify you via email whenever there is a comment – otherwise you will find yourself constantly checking for comments or (even worse) getting busy and missing some!
5. You don’t always want to be “approving” every single comment, so under “Before a comment appears”, select the second option, “comment author must have a previously approved comment”.
6. Keep “Hold a comment in the queue if it contains 2 or more links” checked, under “Comment Moderation”. This helps eliminate link-laden comment span.
You have the top section done, now scroll down to the “Avatars” section.
7. Select “Show Avatar” – people like to see their own picture. It helps to build a Community on your site. And it helps keep conversations in the comments clearer if you have a visual clue as to who’s speaking.
8. Keep your “Maximum Rating” at “G – Suitable for all audiences” (unless it isn’t!) Be honest about this.
9. All business or sales-oriented blogs should select “Gravatar Logo” as the “Default Avatar” that will be displayed for everyone who comments if they have not already created a Gravatar for themselves.
Gravatars are tiny thumgails of people that you see beside blog comments. You can create one at http://en.gravatar.com/. It’s free!
The next item under Settings is Media, but there is nothing you need to change there. You are ready to move on to Permalinks.
Do you need additional help setting up your blog? Check out these posts: