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Comment spammers are getting creative. They are posting messages on blogs, that at first glance, look like actual comments:

Here’s a sample of one I got today;

“Hi! I’m David Banner! Your site is good, i love it!”

At first glance, it looked like a genuine comment. The second line was a link: “Buy cialis”

The ones I get on my ObservationMountain.com blog can get quite wordy:

“Hey! , I must say that you have a great information on your blog o Stage A Home For Sale : Observation Mountain. com . Even I could not understand the whole article it is nice to know that people are writing also for removing wallpaper as that is how i found you on Google , anyway just i stop it to say hello and posted my thought on your blog o Stage A Home For Sale : Observation Mountain. com comment section. Cheers and keep growing your blog.”

This links to a site/blog that has one page with some content, and the rest is filled with ads.

This must be a popular one, as I have six of these…all from different authors of the same site. A site filled with content, but lots of ads.

“I searched for \’Teen Obesity\’ at google and found this your post (\’For Parents – Overweight Teenagers : Observation Mountain. com\’) in search results. Not very relevant result, but still interesting to read.”

Here’s a nice compliment from John:

” Interesting information thanks for writing”

This links to an ebook site

And lastly, Mary left this comment:

“Interesting information thanks for writing”

It’s the same as Johns, and links to the same ebook.

FYI: I did not correct the typos in the above “comments”.

Fortunately I have Akismet as my WordPress spam blocker. Although at times a real comment falls into the spam folder, I do periodic spot checks, and “de-spam” any that are not spam.

Thus far, Akismet has blocked over 3200 spam comments on my blogs

Today’s Assignment

Have you noticed comment spam similar to these hitting your blog(s)?

Which spam blocker do you use?

If you do not use a spam blocker, how much time do you spend deleting spam comments?

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Look Who's Talking
  1. CatherineLNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara – those comment spammers are so annoying. What I hate most is that sometimes I’m so busy deleting them that I accidentally delete genuine comments. I really need to install Askimet, as I waste way to much time deleting spam.

    And you are right. They are getting more creative – I had one recently attack me for pretending to be a biker! When i checked out the site it linked to an online store. So I deleted it.

    And anything which just says great site or great post etc gets deleted. Plus anything linking to porn, drugs etc.

    What I have noticed recently are the creative spammers that come along once and deliberately criticize to try to encourage people to visit their site. On my blog, they’re usually people who claim to be millionaire entrepreneurs, but when you check out their site, it’s some spammy make money blog and they clearly don’t make much money at all!

    In those cases, sometimes I delete, sometimes I leave them up. Depends how offensive they are.

    I think the fact that I use do follow in links encourages them. I like to use it though, as it rewards regular commenters with links. And also, when you link to others, it pings them to let them know.

    But, I really don’t understand the spammers Barbara. Do they ever stop to check just how many blogs are deleting their spam? I delete every single scrap and they still come back. Why on earth do they bother?

    CatherineL’s last blog post..7 Must Do’s Before Starting An Online Business

  2. Ian DennyNo Gravatar says:

    I suspect they aren’t finding your blog and pasting in the comments. If they did that, they might as well tailor it so it looks more genuine.

    It’s probably some automated piece of software that posts the comment to thousands of blogs at once.

    Ian Denny’s last blog post..Champion The Wonder Horse Defeats Business Despair In 32 Seconds

  3. I use Akismet, Bad Behavior, and Spam Karma 2 on my website. It usually catches them all. What it doesn’t track I’ll definitely find. In Spam Karma 2 I ban by I addresses and emails. Those who’ve spammed me before instantly go into Spam Karma’s “spam folder.”

    I really don’t mind businesses leaving comments on my website as long as the comments are legitimate as with anyone else they are just promoting their website. I won’t punish them because their link leads to a business.

    A few months ago a blog buddy told me he banned anyone with a business link. I asked him how was that different from what he was doing? He has adsense and promotes affiliates on his website. He, like many bloggers who make money online failed to see what he was doing as a business? It is.

    @Ian,
    I don’t think they’ve gotten there yet. People actually pay others to comment on other blogs. I’ve seen the advertisemens on many of the job boards. It’s listed under “writing”. Some of the paid comments left have actually been great and added to the discussion, but there have been many that were just “spam”. However, the clients have gotten smart and will not pay them if the comment has been deleted. I had one business owner contact me because he wanted me to remove a comment that was made by one of his “assistants” I left the comment because it wasn’t bad. He just had a different opinion; however, the business owner didn’t want to have his website associated with that comment.

  4. I forgot to add because the owner requested the reasons why he didn’t want it I removed it.

  5. I use Akismet, and it does a pretty good job. 20 spam comments caught, none missed, and 1 false positive. So far all the spam I’ve gotten has been obvious, like a bunch of links with no actual comment. I don’t know why spammers bother with that. Have they analyzed their return on investment? Creative spammers would do much better…but not to say that I encourage spamming!

    Hunter Nuttall’s last blog post..Are You A Gryffindor Or A Slytherin?

  6. NezNo Gravatar says:

    Askimet seems to be working for me — only a couple so far, but where I get the most spam is in my emails. Thank goodness for gmail’s spam filter, which also works really well.

    There must be some minuscule percentage of “success” for the spammers — otherwise, why do something that doesn’t work. As Ian mentioned, there must be “developers” making a fortune selling spamming software to spammers, kind of like hackers and antivirus makers — they keep each other in business.

    Anyway, spammers must really be self-centered, lowly, uncaring, desperate, scruffy-looking nerf-herders with nary a drop of ethics in their blood. I can’t imagine how I’d react if a friend I know was a spammer — I’d probably would become an ex-friend.

    Nez’s last blog post..The Magic of Lego

  7. BarbaraNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Catherine,

    Akismet is so easy to install, and does a great job for me. I know it must have saved me dozens of hours. For new bloggers using WordPress, Akismet is preinstalled, and is just a matter of entering an “API” key (a string of numbers which is provided to you).

    I would guess, spamming must generate revenue for “someone”, otherwise we would have seen an end to it already.

    Hello Ian,

    You do bring up a good point. If spammers used software, they could spam tons of blogs, all at once.

    Greetings Opal,

    I noticed you are using three spam blockers. Do you use all three on each of your websites?

    Hi Hunter,

    Aren’t those comments with like 30+ links amazing. They take up a whole page…..link after link.

    I gather you’re not interested in advising spammers on creativity 🙂

    Hello Nez,

    I, too, still get bombarded with email spam, even though I use a spam blocker. That’s where I spend a lot of time hitting the delete/block sender keys.

    If any friend says they have a job in “creative writing”, you’ll have to ask them “What exactly do you do/” “Care to share some of your work?” Reminds me of a neighbor I used to have who worked for the IRS. They would just say, they worked for the Federal government.

    Barbara’s last blog post..Are Spammers Saying “Gotcha”

  8. i don’t spend too much time cleaning out the spam box. surprisingly i do have a lot of it and when i finally notice it, i will clean it out. in the beginning i noticed i was getting ping or link backs to my post with the words you described and i would comment on their blog asking that they not copy my whole blog. i installed askimet and that works fine. one or two might get through with a fake comment and i just delete it, especially if they are talking about loans or credit. people know i don’t do either, so i’m not endorsing it.

    Natural Woman’s last blog post..I’m Not Overweight, Just Fat

  9. RashyNo Gravatar says:

    I have been fortunate not to really have a spam problem. I suppose that is one of the benefits of flying under the radar.

    From the sample spam that you posted, I would definitely say that they are using software that scans the page looking for key words, and then the bot tries to assemble those words inside a pre-made message to post.

    I never understood why people leave links in their actual message, usually the “website” box leaves a link and it makes your post look that much more legit if you are a spammer. Its a good thing smart people aren’t spammers (although I imagine this is a result of smart people being able to make more money more easily through other methods than spamming).

    Rashy’s last blog post..Oh nuts…

  10. BarbaraNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Natural Woman,

    It sounds like you, too, have found Akismet helpful in controlling spam comments. Without a spam blocker, too much time could be wasted managing that.

    Hello Rashy,

    You are fortunate if you’re not getting spam.

    I think the reason some people leave a link to their site in their comment is that they haven’t learned that by typing in their URL they are creating a link. Often new bloggers are learning by trial and error.

    Barbara’s last blog post..Are Spammers Saying “Gotcha”

  11. KekoaNo Gravatar says:

    Well there’s Barbara, readin’ my mind again. 😛

    Just yesterday I decided to browse through my Akismet spam to see if there were any false positives. There was 2, but that’s still a very good track record.

    Most definitely spammers use automated software, that’s why they’re spammers. If you look closely, you’ll see that spammers almost always mention the page title in the comment. Weird.

    Anyway, yes, Akismet does a nice job, but I’ve been considering implementing http://recaptcha.net/

    Kekoa’s last blog post..The Fiery Tiger’s Jubilee Poem

  12. BarbaraNo Gravatar says:

    Kekoa,

    Like you, I’m happy with Akismet. I get some false positives, but don’t always check the spam folder, so some comments may end up in spamosphere.

    Barbara’s last blog post..Diets, Decorating, Dogs and TV Inspire Me To Blog

  13. […] (okay, I admit it, this is another post inspired by a comment on Barbara’s site) […]