CNET’s blog has a posting today about blog spam and what some of the more heavily-visited tech sites out there are doing about it. Some are paying lots of money to filter comments, some aren’t allowing comments at all (a shame), and some are weeding thru the comments by hand, deleting the spam themselves. And some blogs are nothing but spam: they post snippets from other peoples’ blogs and mix in a few spam postings, hoping to get higher hits on the search engines. Evil little fuckers. But most spam is automated using “bots” which just spread out over the Net and post to as many blogs as possible. A lot of people aren’t doing anything about the problem either…their sites are infested with spam and the owners don’t seem to care. When I see a blog that isn’t keeping the spam out, I simply stop reading and never go back, ’cause it’s just not worth it. It’s like trying to watch a country music video: I can only wrinkle my nose in distaste and look away.
It’s interesting to see how spammers will try to shill their shitty products on someone else’s site. I get a little spam on mine, but it’s totally manageable so far… For a while I was getting tons of spams posted to an old story about the Spokane mayor being revealed as a homo-in-hiding…I think the phrase “gay sex” in the title was a magnet for spammers. Every time I would ban an IP address, the next day another spam or three would show up from somewhere else. So I closed the posting to comments, and that was that! I’ve also been getting “comments” from various IP addresses and (fake) email addresses all saying the exact same thing…something like “Hi! Thank you very much for the site, you should also see this!” and it would have a link to Google. What? Yeah, I don’t get it either. BAM! IPs are banned, and I haven’t heard from them since.
I was also getting lots of spam on my Nina Hagen message forum, so I made registration mandatory in order for anyone to post. That took care of it for a while, then I started seeing tons of registered users with websites in their profiles which were shilling Tamiflu and other crap. So I kicked them off…but they kept coming back. Suddenly I noticed that they all had a number at the end of their nicknames, like “jennaboo4”, so I banned all nicknames with a number at the end. Poof, no more spammers! They still try to crawl back in, but I catch them as soon as they register. It’s kinda fun, actually. These people are so desperate they will try anything, including posting on a lowly Nina Hagen message forum, to get their wares and websites visible.
Anyway, blah blah blah. Those of you who have a blog probably have some “fun” experiences with spammers, so feel freel to comment! (And if your comment contains a website selling Tamiflu, well…you get the idea. 🙂