On this page I am going to show you how to remove the email field from comment forms in WordPress using the Advanced Comment Form plugin.

Comments > Comment Form
remove email field

How it looks like

comment form with and without email field

Comment Form with and without email field

How to remove the email field

Visit the Option Page under Comments > Comment Form

There are currently two options you can use. Both are explained below.

admin options to remove email field

Disable required email first

WordPress has a setting to make the email required for comments. So before removing the email field from the form you should disable this setting first:

You can find it unter Settings > Discussion > Other Comment Settings:

setting for email requirement in WordPressAs you can see, this option does not only make the email address required but also the name. Disable this option first before going on to hide the email field from the frontend.

In case this option is enabled, Advanced Comment Form will warn you but still lets you remove the field from the frontend. Some hackers might find a use for this…

Remove email field with WordPress standards

To remove the email field from the comment form programmatically, choose the first option from the settings above. Don’t worry, you don’t need to know what this means. Simply check the option and see if the field is now missing in your comment forms. If this is not working, try the next method or see the issue section below.

Remove the email field with CSS

If the WordPress comment form is not implemented using standard methods or when your website was developed with WordPress before version 3.0.0, chances are, the first method is not working. In this case – and only than – try the second method. It simply hides the email field for visitors. The field is still visible for (spam) bots and also tech-savvy visitors can display and use it. It might also leave some blank space in your layout.

In case this method doesn’t work and you need this urgendly you can contact me for a customization job.

Potential issues / other solutions

Missing files and function

Since WordPress 3.0.0 (released June 17, 2010) the comment form files and functions changed a lot. If your website is older or uses older themes chances are they are missing the file comments.php or the function comment_form(). In this case, using the remove-email-field option in Advanced Comment Form might not work.

Marketing aspects

In my point of view there are two aspects about removing the email field from your comment form.

The first is to make the form simpler. A lot of tests have shown that forms with less fields perform better. An email might also be considered a too sensitive information and many potential commenters (that are not professional marketeers) might not want to give this information away even though you told them it won’t get published.

The second aspect I consider before hiding the email field is that I have no mean to contact the commenter again. Maybe a commenter found a bug in a code snippet you published or asks a question forgetting to mention his contact details in the text fields. In these situations having a required or unrequired email field might spare you some quess work.

In my point of view, a non significant reason to keep the email field is spam. Spam bots are prepared to send their one-way emails through forms too.

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