I don't have any tp readers, and my blog is basically for my friends and family while I'm away. I was wondering if you had to be a tp member to comment? If so, is there a way I could change the settings so my friends and family could leave me a message about my posts?
This comes up semi-frequently (strange that there's no entry about it in the FAQ yet), but unfortunately no, there is no way for unregistered members to post blog comments. The reason behind this is that blog comments are a really attractive target for spammers, and there's just no way for us to police comments by people who aren't registered. You could do it yourself, perhaps - but people who use blogs on this site are often away travelling for months at a time without the ability to do that, and so spam comments could pile up like crazy.
A lot of blog sites use captcha systems (where you have to type the letters in an image) to allow comments from non-members, but this is really unfriendly for people who have problems seeing (bad accessibility), and almost all such systems have been broken by spammers anyway.
So yeah, registration is necessary. It should be really easy and painless to register here at travellerspoint though - it's free, and there's absolutely no obligation to do anything else on the site (though of course we hope they'll come check out what all is on offer on the site) - so hopefully your friends and family will be willing to jump that very small hurdle.
One alternative might be to set up a new account just for your family/friends etc (eg. you give them the username/password and they all use the same login, and just say who the comment is from at the end of each comment. I don't actually know how acceptable this is to TP rules (anybody know?), but my parents, for example, share an account (admittedly they have made only one comment between them ever) and it might be an option if allowed
Sander pretty much summed it up. I've added a note to the FAQ to clarify this point as well. Although it is possible that we'll open it up in the future - for now we're playing it safe.
Thanks for the feedback. I completely understand the spamming issue. I think I'll just set up an account for my readers to make things easier for them, since parents have a tendancy to not be as computer savvy.