How to Disable Trackbacks and Pings in WordPress

Are you seeing more spam trackbacks listed in WordPress comments?

A trackback helps to notify another author that something related was written to what the they wrote, even if you don’t have an explicit link to his article. This improves the chances of the other author sitting up and noticing that you gave him credit for something, or that you improved upon something he wrote, or something similar. With pingback and trackback, blogs are interconnected. Think of them as the equivalents of acknowledgements and references at the end of an academic paper, or a chapter in a textbook.

That’s the way they are supposed to work. But spammers are also using them to bring unwanted comments into your site.

A pingback is an actual link to another blog contained within a post. You can read about them in this post.
What is a Pingback?

To prevent the unwanted trackbacks and pings you can disable them in WordPress. Here’s how….

Disabling trackbacks and pings can be done in 2 places.

Overall under WordPress Settings > Discussion.  Uncheck the box next to allow link notifications from other blogs. settings-discussion
This will only apply to new posts.

To prevent trackbacks and pings on existing posts you’ll need to edit each one individually.

Open the post for editing and go to Screen Options at the top of the browser window to make sure that the discussion box is checked so it appears under the editor.


Then scroll down to find the discussion task pane and uncheck the boxes. You can disable comments if you like as well.

Trackbacks and pings can also be place on you media files. You will need to follow the instructions above to disable them by opening each image for editing.

If you’re not getting a lot of trackback spam you can simply keep deleting it from comment moderation. However, if you’re getting so much that it is making you crazy you can mas disable site wide via the database by following the instructions at post.. If that freaks you out, contact me and I will do it for you for a nominal fee.